Fork 'em over in Rio

Four current Arizona State students are among 27 Sun Devils headed to Olympics


ASU swimmer under water

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Editor's note: This story is being highlighted in ASU Now's year in review. To read more top stories from 2016, click here.

As the 2016 Summer Olympics kick off in Rio de Janeiro on Friday night, Arizona State University will be well represented.

There are 27 Sun Devils going to Rio, representing 15 countries in nine sports. That’s the most since 1996, when there were 30 athletes and coaches with ASU ties.

Four of the Rio-bound Sun Devils are current students:


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    Here's a sampling of some of the current and former Sun Devils who will be at the Rio Olympics (see complete list at the bottom of this story). Water polo player Vivianne Bahia will represent Brazil.


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    Track and field athlete Chris Benard will represent the U.S. in the triple jump.


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    Diver Constantin Blaha (right) will compete for Austria in the 3-meter springboard.


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    Richard Bohus will swim for Hungary in the 100-meter freestyle.


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    ASU head swimming coach Bob Bowman is the U.S. men’s swimming coach and also the personal coach of Michael Phelps, competing in his fifth Olympics after training at ASU last year.


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    Basketball player Ike Diogu will be competing on the court for Nigeria.


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    Track and field athlete Marcus Duncan (left) will represent Trinidad and Tobago in the 4x100 relay.


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    Cliff English is the coach of the new women’s triathlon team, which he will leave for a few days to be the personal coach for two Olympic triathletes in Rio.


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    Track and field athlete Shelby Houlihan will run the 5,000-meter for the U.S.


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    Golfer Giulia Molinaro will play for Italy.


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    Golfer Azahara Munoz will tee up for Spain.


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    Golfer Miriam Nagl will represent Olympic host Brazil.


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    Long jumper Christabel Nettey will compete for Canada.


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    Golfer Anna Nordqvist will hit the links for Sweden.


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    Track and field athlete Donald Sanford will run the 400-meter for Israel.


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    Swimmer Katarina Simonovic (also pictured at the top of this story) will represent Serbia in the 200-meter freestyle.

    Photo by Deanna Dent/ASU Now


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  • Richard Bohus, a swimmer, will be a senior in digital culture in the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts.
  • Izabella Chiappini, a water polo player, will be a senior in design at the Herberger Institute.
  • Anna Olasz, a swimmer, will be a senior in business communications the W. P. Carey School of Business.
  • Katarina Simonovic, a swimmer, will be a senior in the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication.

Olasz, representing Hungary, didn’t find out she was going to the Olympics until July 25, when a Russian swimmer was disqualified from competing and Olasz was awarded the spot just three weeks before the open-swim event.

Two of the Rio-bound Sun Devils are current coaches. Bob Bowman, the ASU head swimming coach, is the U.S. men’s swimming coach and also the personal coach of Michael Phelps, who is competing in his fifth Olympics after training at ASU the past year. Cliff English is the coach of the new women’s triathlon team, which he will leave for a few days to be the personal coach for two Olympic triathletes in Rio.

Also, Keenan Robinson will be the head trainer for the U.S. swim team. At ASU, he is the head of high-performance services for aquatic sports.

There are 20 former ASU student-athletes competing, including five women’s golfers.

Here’s the rundown:

Name Country represented Sport (*athlete was at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London) About the athlete
Vivianne Bahia Brazil Women’s water polo ASU water polo, 2014-2015
Chris Benard USA Track and field triple jump ASU track and field, 2010- 2012
Mickey Benedetti Italy Diving 3-meter springboard * ASU diving, 2006-2009
Constantin Blaha Austria Diving 3-meter springboard ASU diving, 2009-2012, and 2012 ASU graduate
Richard Bohus Hungary Swimming 100m free * Current student, will be a senior in digital culture with a concentration in art at the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts; ASU swimming past 3 seasons
Bob Bowman USA Men’s swimming head coach Current ASU head swimming coach
Izabella Chiappini Brazil Women’s water polo Current student, will be a senior in design at the Herberger Institute, ASU water polo, 2013-2014, 2014-2015
Carolota Ciganda Spain Women’s golf ASU Women’s golf, 2009, 2010
Amy Cragg Hastings USA Women’s marathon ASU cross country, 2002-2005
Ike Diogu Nigeria Men’s basketball * ASU men’s basketball, 2003, 2004
Marcus Duncan Trinidad and Tobago Track and field 4x100 relay ASU track and field, 2008
Cliff English Costa Rica/Australia Individual coach for 2 triathletes Current head coach for ASU women’s triathlon
Ariana Hilborn Latvia Women’s marathon 2003 ASU graduate
Shelby Houlihan USA Track and field 5000m ASU track and field, 2012-2015, and 2015 ASU graduate
Desiree Davila Linden USA Women’s marathon * ASU cross country and track and field, 2001-2004, and 2006 ASU graduate
Giulia Molinaro Italy Women’s golf ASU women’s golf, 2007-2012, and 2012 ASU graduate
Azahara Munoz Spain Women’s golf ASU women’s golf 2005-2009, and 2009 ASU graduate
Miriam Nagl Brazil Women’s golf ASU women’s golf, 2000
Christabel Nettey Canada Track and field long jump ASU long jump, 2010-2013
Gal Nevo Israel Men’s swimming 200m IM * ASU men’s swimming, 2005-2007
Anna Nordqvist Sweden Women’s golf ASU women’s golf, 2006-2008
Anna Olasz Hungary Open-water swimming Current student, will be a senior in the W. P. Carey School of Business, ASU swimming the past 3 seasons
Keenan Robinson USA Head trainer for swimming
Donald Sanford Israel Track and field 400m * ASU track and field, 2010
Katarina Simonovic Serbia Women’s swimming 200m freestyle Current student, will be a senior in the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication, ASU swimming the past 3 seasons
Jay Shi USA Men’s shooting 50m pistol 2004 ASU graduate
Rowie Webster Australia Women’s water polo * ASU water polo, 2006

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