Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Good Luck, Caroline

TigerBlog mentioned yesterday a picture of live tiger that was on the back cover of a football media guide.

The picture was the work of Nick Donatiello, the former Princeton sports information director who passed away last week.

TigerBlog tried to find the picture yesterday and could not. He's pretty sure it's on the back cover of the 1993 media guide, since he saw the ones from pretty much every other year during that time except for 19993, which he couldn't find.

Isn't that how it always works?

That picture has to be someplace else. In a file or something. He'll find it at some point, maybe.

If not, then there's only one obvious solution - find another live tiger and take another picture.

In addition to talking tigers yesterday, TigerBlog also mentioned that some current Tigers were very successful at the U23 World Rowing Championships. By the way, that event was held in Poznan, Poland.

Speaking of Princeton rowers who have had success on the international level, there is of course Caroline Lind, the two-time Olympic gold medalist. Lind won gold with the United States 8+ in 2008 and 2012.

Lind graduated in 2006 after helping Princeton to the NCAA championship before carrying over her success to the Olympics.

Princeton rowing won its first Olympic medal in 1964 in Tokyo, when Seymore Cromwell of the Class of 1965 won silver before his senior year. Since then, Tiger rowers have continued to do well on the biggest stage, with four gold medals, 11 silver medals and three bronze medals.

Princeton athletes have combined to win 66 Olympic medals. Of that number, there were 29 that were won prior to the 1964 Games.

That leaves 37 Olympic medals that have been won from 1964 on, which is when rowers won their first. If you're doing the math, that means that 18 of the 29 medals Princetonians have won since 1964, or 62 percent, have been won by rowers.

The four rowing golds belong to Mike Evans (1980) and Chris Ahrens (2004), both in men's 8s. And of course Lind, who is the only Princeton rower, male or female, to win two Olympic gold medals.

Actually, if you want to extend that further, Lind is also:
* the only Princeton female to win two Olympic gold medals
* the only Princeton alum to compete in what currently is a varsity sport here ever to win two Olympic gold medals
* one of three Princetonians ever to win more than one gold medal (the other two are Karl Frederick, who won three golds in shooting in Antwerp in 1920 and Herman Wilton, who won gold in sailing in 1948 in London and 1952 in Helsinki)

Interestingly, by the way, Wilton competed in the 1928 Games as well and then did not compete for 20 more years after that (there were no Olympics in 1940 or 1944 because of World War II). Also interestingly, Frederick won his three gold medals 17 years after he graduated with the Class of 1903.

TigerBlog has often asked the question of who the best Princeton woman athlete of all time is. He's also brought up the question of which Princeton athletes, male and female, have had the best careers post-Princeton.

On the women's side, he'd put Caroline Lind up there with any female athlete Princeton has ever had, on both questions. He'd also put Ashleigh Johnson on that list.

If TB had to describe Caroline Lind in one word, it would be "unassuming." Maybe "easy-going." Maybe simply "nice."

For the purposes of this conversation, he'll stick with "unassuming."

Yeah, she has two gold medals, but you'd never know that from the way she talks or carries herself. She's a very down-to-earth person who, as far as TigerBlog was able to tell, has little to no ego.

The most recent time he saw her was at the Friends of Lacrosse golf outing. Caroline was there in her role with the Athletic Friends Group.

As she was introduced to the group of lacrosse alums who were about to go play at Springdale, it was mentioned that she was a two-time Olympic gold medalist.

This was followed by a few oohs and ahhs, and then the question of "what sport?"

TigerBlog thinks that the golf outing was her last in her role with the Friends Group. She left Princeton to relocate with her husband to California, driving across the country with, among other things, her two Olympic golds.

TigerBlog would have been remiss if he didn't mention Caroline Lind now that she's leaving Princeton. He wishes her the best.

She'll be missed by many.

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