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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

Texas A&M utility Gavin Grahovac (9) throws the ball during A&Ms game against Georgia on Friday, April 26, 2024, at Olsen Field. (CJ Smith/The Battalion)
Southern slugfest
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Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp attends the Class of 1972 50-year reunion in Kyle Field on April 20, 2022.
A&M System’s Title IX director suspended after supporting Biden's Title IX changes
Nicholas Gutteridge, Managing Editor • May 23, 2024
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Growing up in the hills of Monterrey, Mexico, Pedro and Carlos Luna were surrounded by soccer.  Clad in the gold and blue of Tigres UANL,...

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Beekeeper Shelby Dittman scoops bees back into their hive during a visit on Friday, April 5, 2024. (Kyle Heise/The Battalion)
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Kennedy White, 19, sits for a portrait in the sweats she wore the night of her alleged assault inside the Y.M.C.A building that holds Texas A&M’s Title IX offices in College Station, Texas on Feb. 16, 2024 (Ishika Samant/The Battalion).
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Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
The BattalionMay 4, 2024

Bringing home Aggie gold

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Photo by Photo by Abbey Santoro

Of the seven Olympic medals earned by Aggie athletes at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games, phenom Athing Mu’s gold-medal-winning performances accounted for two of the seven medals. 

If Texas A&M were its own country competing in the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games, the Aggies would have tied for 17th in gold medal finishes.
Athletes from around the world represented A&M from their respective countries in Tokyo, with 26 Aggies competing for the top spot. In the end, five athletes combined for a total of seven medals, four of which were gold.
One of the most notable performances from a former A&M athlete in Tokyo belonged to middle distance runner Athing Mu, whose achievements, much like her fame, rose quickly.
One year ago, Mu entered college as the No. 1 recruit in the 2020 fall semester. Now, she is a two-time Olympic gold medalist. The Trenton, N.J. native set a new American record of 1:55.21 in her 800-meter finals performance and became the first American woman to win the event’s gold in 53 years.
“This isn’t the last time you’re going to see me run,” Mu said after winning her first gold. “This is just the beginning. There’s more.”
Although Mu was referring to a more long-term career outlook, she made another appearance in the games and took home another gold in the women’s 4×400-meter relay with teammates Sydney McLaughlin, Allyson Felix and Dalilah Muhammad.
“Six years from now, two years from now, it’s going to be my time,” Mu said. “I’m going to do whatever I can in my time, no matter what age I am, no matter what I’m doing and do whatever I can to be great.”
Bryce Deadmon, one of Mu’s teammates during A&M’s 2021 track and field season, is now also a two-time Olympic medalist. Deadmon competed in the men’s 4×400-meter relay, where Team USA collected a gold medal, as well as the mixed 4×400-meter relay for the event’s Olympic debut, earning bronze.
“It’s definitely something I’ve only dreamed about, and to have it come into fruition, it was something I couldn’t wrap my head around,” Deadmon told Houston Life. “I’m still trying to fathom the fact that I was a part of a gold medal-winning relay.”
The pair of athletes, both fresh off of their collegiate seasons, became the first two Aggies to ever earn multiple medals in one Olympics, according to 12thman.com.
The last of A&M’s Olympic golds in 2021 came from former A&M — and now Milwaukee Bucks — forward Khris Middleton. The basketball player made a quick turnaround off of an NBA Finals-winning season to join Team USA in Tokyo.
Although the team started slow with a pair of unexpected losses, the turnaround to an eventual gold medal-earning 87-82 victory over Team France was swift.
A&M’s next-highest medal came from former A&M runner Fred Kerley, who set the men’s NCAA 400-meter record in 2017. After running the 400-meter as his primary race for three years, Kerley decided to switch his focus toward the 100-meter.
On his path to the finals in Tokyo, Kerley became one of three athletes to run a sub-10 second time in the 100-meter, a sub-20 second time in the 200-meter and a sub-44 second time in the 400-meter. Kerley’s decision to run the shorter sprint in the Olympics paid off mightily as he secured a silver medal with a time of 9.84 seconds, also becoming the first A&M athlete with a podium finish in a short sprint, according to 12thman.com.
“The race was a beautiful race,” Kerley said. “Can’t complain about coming to the biggest stage of my career to come away with a medal.”
Although many Aggies represented countries other than the U.S. in Tokyo, only one medaled. Former A&M swimmer Sydney Pickrem was a member of Canada’s 4×100 medley relay team, where she recorded a 1:07.17 breaststroke.
Pickrem’s contributions aided Canada in its eventual bronze medal in the event.
Tokyo 2020 showed a resurgence of prominent A&M athletes competing for their countries on one of the biggest stages in athletics as seven other Aggies missed the podium despite competing in the finals of their events.
Following the conclusion of this year’s competition, A&M athletes throughout history have collected 12 gold, six silver and four bronze medals in various Olympic games.

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