Missy says college-pro decision is harder
Four-time London Olympic gold medalist Missy Franklin says she is still leaning toward college over cash.
The 17-year-old American said Saturday that she's still leaning toward entering college in 2013 – while acknowledging that her decision has gotten tougher after seeing what opportunities are out there for those who forgo their amateur eligibility and turn professional.
"For right now, I still believe that college is what's going to make me the happiest girl," Franklin said at a U.S. Olympic Committee news conference to start wrapping up the London Games, which close on Sunday. "I know what my parents and my friends and my teammates and my coaches want.
By turning pro, Franklin would be eligible to grab endorsement deals that could be worth millions, but would cost her the chance of swimming at the collegiate level. She's been asked about her future often in London, especially after winning five medals – golds in the 100- and 200-meter backstroke events, relay golds in the 4×100-meter medley and 4×200-meter freestyle, and a bronze in the 4×100-meter freestyle relay.
Of the 10,500 or so athletes at the London Games, only one by Saturday had claimed more medals than Franklin: Michael Phelps won six.
Not bad company.
"I think that my experience here has done two very different things for my decision," Franklin said. "I think it's made my decision a lot more difficult because I've been able to see the benefits and everything and how people get these sponsorships and what it's like for them and how much fun they're having and seeing those and kind of wanting that, wanting to be a part of it and having it be so hard to turn it down."