1992 Summer Olympics Highlights
The 1992 Summer Olympics were the first summer games without a boycott since 1972, increasing the opportunities for highlights. South Africa abolished Apartheid, the Berlin Wall fell and the threat of Communism ended. The 1992 Summer Olympics were a chance to celebrate a collaboration that had not existed since 1972. (see: reference 1, under the subtitle ALL FACTS - there is no separate link, only pull downs menus on this page)
- The Dream Team - Men’s basketball became open to all professionals, creating the first ever men’s “Dream Team” in the 1992 Summer Olympics. This team of All-Stars representing the United States stands as one of the best collaborations of athletes in basketball history. Christian Laettner, the best college player at the time, joined Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Charles Barkley, Patrick Ewing, Karl Malone, Scottie Pippen, Chris Mullin, Clyde Drexler and John Stockton. The team dominated the event, beating their eight opponents by averaging a total of 117 points.
- Baseball Joins the Olympics - While baseball had been a part of the Olympics since 1904, the games finally granted it medal status in 1992. Unlike basketball, baseball only allowed amateurs who played in a round-robin tournament. Also, unlike basketball, baseball was not a sport dominated by the United States. In the 1992 Summer Olympics, it was Cuba who proved to be the dominating country, winning the gold medal while Japan, another baseball powerhouse, took the bronze.
- Vitaly Scherbo - Vitaly Scherbo, a Soviet gymnast, won six out of eight gold medals in the 1992 Summer Olympics. His gold medals were in the pommel horse, vault, team event, rings, the all around and the parallel bars. He became only the second Olympian to win five individual gold medals at that time in history. Even more impressive is he won four of the gold medals in the same day.
- Africa - The 1992 Summer Olympics were the first since 1960 that South Africa competed, after a long suspension for its apartheid policy. The show of unity was most evident in the 10,000 meter race. Derartu Tulu, an Ethiopian runner, won the race and stopped waiting for her opponent, Elana Meyer, a white South African to cross the finish line. The two greeted, clasped hands, and ran the victory lap together.