For the fourth consecutive Summer Olympic Games, the United States came away with most overall medals. The U.S. team led all countries, earning 104 total medals in London (46 gold, 29 silver and 29 bronze), and 20 past and present representatives of seven Big 12 schools were part of the medals won by U.S. athletes.
Five additional medals were won in track and field competition for the Bahamas (2), Kenya, Trinidad & Tobago and Jamaica by athletes who have ties to Texas Tech (3) and Texas A&M (2), which is now a member of the Southeastern Conference.
Among the Big 12 medal-winners were four-time Big 12 high-jump champion (indoor and outdoor) Erik Kynard of Kansas State, who took silver in the even in London, and Diamond Dixon of Kansas, who earned gold as a member of the U.S. women's 4x400-meter relay team. Both Kynard and Dixon will return to school this fall: Kynard for his senior year, and Dixon will be a junior.
Kynard, who cleared a height of 7 feet, 7-3/4 inches in winning a silver medal, is the first Kansas State athlete to win an Olympic medal since the 2004 Summer Games in Athens (when graduate student Austria Skujyte won a silver in the heptathlon) and the first Wildcat with remaining eligibility to medal in the Olympics since 1952.
A total of 89 Big 12 athletes, representing 22 countries, qualified in nine different sports for the Games of the XXX Olympiad held for the third time in London. Every Big 12 school when the conference was formed in 1996, with the exception of Baylor, was represented at the London Games.
More than half of the medals won by representatives of Big 12 schools were gold, led by former Texas sprinter Sanya Richard-Ross who won gold in both the women's 400 meters and the 4x400 relay. A fellow Longhorn athlete, Bianca Knight ran one of the legs of 4x100 relay, won by the United States in record-breaking time. The previous world record had stood for 27 years.
Current and former athletes from the University of Texas took home the most medals among Big 12 schools with 13, including six gold. In addition to Richards-Ross, the 2008 Big 12 Swimmer of the Year, Ricky Berens, won a pair of medals in London: gold in the 4x200-meter freestyle relay and a silver for his participation in the qualifying heats of the 4x100 freestyle relay.
Another Longhorn swimmer, Brendan Hansen, won his third consecutive gold medal as a member of the men's 4x100 medley relay. The 14-time NCAA champion also earned a bronze medal in London in the 100-meter breaststroke.
Longhorns also won gold in men's basketball (Kevin Durant, who led the U.S. 2012 Dream Team in scoring with a 19.9 per-game average) and silver medals in the men's decathlon (Trey Harden), women's indoor volleyball (Destinee Hooker) and the men's 1,500-meter run (Leo Manzano).
Demetrius Pinder from Texas A&M and Michael Mathieu of Texas Tech were members of the gold-medal winning Bahamas 4x400-meter relay team that edged the U.S. men for the top spot on the medals stand in London. Other Big 12 athletes who won medals for other countries were Sally Kipyego of Texas Tech, a silver medal in the women's 10,000-meter run for Kenya; Deon Lendore of Texas A&M, a bronze in the 4x400-meter relay for Trinidad & Tobago, and Shereefa Lloyd, from Texas Tech, a silver representing Jamaica in the 4x400 relay.
Big 12 Medal Breakdown At 2012 London Olympics
Jake Varner, USA (Iowa State) - 96kg freestyle wrestling
Diamond Dixon, USA (Kansas) - Women's 4x400m relay (track & field)
Jordan Burroughs, USA (Nebraska) - 74kg freestyle wrestling
Ricky Berens, USA (Texas) - Men's 4x200m relay (swimming)
Kevin Durant, USA (Texas) - Men's basketball
Brendan Hansen, USA (Texas) - Women's 4x100m medley relay (swimming)
Bianca Knight, USA (Texas) - Women's 4x100m relay (track & field)
Sanya Richards-Ross, USA (Texas) - Women's 400m (track & field)
Sanya Richards-Ross, USA (Texas) - Women's 4x400m relay (track & field)
Demetrius Pinder, Bahamas (Texas A&M) - Men's 4x400m relay (track & field)
Breeja Larsen, USA (Texas A&M) - Womens 4x100 medley relay (swimming)
Jeneba Tamoh, USA (Texas A&M) - Women's 4x100m relay (track & field)
Michael Mathieu, Bahamas (Texas Tech) - Men's 4x400m relay (track & field)
Erik Kynard, USA (Kansas State) - High jump
Jordan Larsen, USA (Nebraska) - Men's volleyball
Ricky Berens, USA (Texas) - Men's 4x100m freestyle relay (swimming)
Jimmy Feigen, USA (Texas) - Men's 4x100m freestyle relay (swimming)
Trey Hardee, USA (Texas) - Men's decathlon
Destinee Hooker, USA (Texas) - Women's volleyball
Leo Manzano, USA (Texas) - Men's 1,500m run
Sally Kipyego, Kenya (Texas Tech) - Women's 10,000m run
Troy Dumais, USA (Texas) - Men's 3m synchronized diving
Brendan Hansen, USA (Texas) - Men's 100m breaststroke
Deon Lendore, USA (Trinidad & Tobago) - Men's 4x400m relay (track & field)
Shereefa Lloyd, Jamaica (Texas Tech) - Men's 4x400m relay (track & field)
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