The Olympic Games are a competition meant to celebrate teamwork and sportsmanship, to promote good relations and peace. More importantly, the Olympics also provide a great opportunity for Texans to beat the snot out of everyone else, and this year is no different.
In Rio’s first week alone, athletes repping Texas took home thirteen medals: eight gold, three silver, and two bronze. We’ve got best gymnast ever in Spring’s Simone Biles (two golds already, but she’s probably going to rack up three more), and our swimmer Simone Manuel (from Houston) became the first African-American woman to win an individual swimming event, taking gold in the 100-meter freestyle. Be sure to check out her emotional post-race interview. Hell, even the grass on the Olympic golf green is ours (and it dearly misses your gentle Lone Star steps, Jordan Spieth).
Texas accounts for one third of the United States’ medal count. Not to fuel the flames of Texit, but if we were our own country, we’d be good for tenth place, beating out Germany and Canada and scoring more medals than Spain, Brazil, Belgium, Greece, and Argentina combined. Here are our great state’s winners, with a necessary shout-out to the Dallas Morning News for their helpful Texas medal tracker:
The aforementioned Biles won gold in team gymnastics along with Dallasite Madison Kocian. Biles won the all-around individual event too. (She’s quite literally the greatest.) Rio’s been good to Texas Simones, it seems. Her fellow Houston-area Simone, Manuel, won gold in the 100-meter freestyle and silver in the 4×100 meter relay.
Texas took care of business in the pool. University of Texas swimmers Jack Conger, Townley Haas, and Clark Smith all helped the men’s 4X200 freestyle relay team win gold, and University of Texas alum Jimmy Feigen won gold in the 4X100 freestyle relay. Abilene native David Boudia won silver in men’s ten-meter platform synchronized diving.
On the women’s side of the water, Granbury High School grad Dana Vollmer won silver in the women’s 4X100 freestyle relay and earned a bronze all by herself in the 100-meter butterfly. That’s quite an impressive haul considering Vollmer gave birth to her first child 17 months ago, making her the second-ever American mom to medal in the Olympics. Katie Meili, of Carrollton, won bronze in the 100-meter breast stroke.
Remember, that’s just from the first week.
We’re clearly the best at winning medals. But are we the best of the best? To compare, let’s ignore California (you West Coast elites sent almost 100 more athletes to the games than any other state, so if you somehow end up with fewer medals than little old Texas, you should probably consider quitting sports) and examine Maryland, which the Washington Post recently declared to be “dominating the Olympics.”
We’re claiming eight golds for Texas, and Maryland has equal claim to the same amount, thanks largely to swimmers Michael Phelps and Katie Ledecky, who were both blessed with the Midas touch. Phelps has four golds and Ledecky has scored three. So, who’s behind door number eight for Maryland’s gold medal count? the aforementioned UT swimmer Jack Conger, a Rockville, Maryland native.
Screw that. Everyone knows that once you go Texas, you never go back. Conger is a Longhorn for life. He’s ours now, Maryland. Final count: Texas, eight gold medals. Maryland, only seven gold medals. While they’re over there in Maryland eating lame crab cakes, we’re biting our gold medals and enjoying the best barbecue in the world.
There you have it. Texas is the best at the Olympics.