Gator Great and 12-time Olympic medalist will be the third female to take their turn with the pregame chant. GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Dara Torres’ nanny was a runner at the University of Florida. Torres, as you might have heard, once swam at UF. They are both well-versed in longstanding orange and blue traditions.
Including the “Two Bits” cheer. Dara Torres after the 1992 Olympic Games So close your eyes and picture the scene Monday at the Torres home in Boston, as the 12-time Olympic gold medalist and this week’s honorary “Mr. Two Bits,” took her routine for a test drive while her nanny videoed on her cell phone.
Actually, don’t bother imagining it. Take “Ms. Two Bits'” word for it.
“I started doing the part where I’m quieting the crowd,” Torres explained, “but she was laughing so hard she could barely film it.”
That’s OK. Torres will have plenty of time to get everything polished and make the dash onto Spurrier/Florida Field before the Gators (3-2, 3-1) take on Texas A&M (4-2, 2-1) in Saturday night’s game at the “Swamp.” She’s gone to YouTube and watched the Steve Spurrier , Chris DiMarco and Errict Rhett versions. She’s always been intense and detail-oriented when it comes to training, and that hasn’t changed.
[Note: You can download the “Dara Torres Health & Fitness” app via the App Store]
She’ll be ready.
“It’s weird. I like public speaking and television work, but I don’t like people looking at me,” said Torres, who figures to be performing before in excess of 85,000. “I went to football games at Florida, but the only time I ever ran around in there was to do sprints or run the stadium stairs.”
Bottom line: “I’m going to be a little nervous.”
Here’s betting it’ll pass. Torres (now) at home with daughter Tessa Torres, now 50, won 12 Olympic medals, tying Ryan Lochte for the most by an athlete in UF sports history. Torres won four golds, four silvers and four bronzes at five different Olympics spanning 24 years (1984-2008). In the ’08 Games at Beijing, she anchored the U.S. 4×100-meter freestyle relay time that won a silver medal, and thus, at 41, became the oldest swimmer to medal in Olympic history.
As far as “Two Bits,” she’ll make a little history with that, also. Torres will become just the third female — joining the dueling performances of softball superstars Hannah Rodgers and Stacy Nelson in 2014 — to take their turn since the celebratory tradition was jump-started the year before.
In her days as a UF student (1986-89), she saw the real deal, as in George Edmondson, do his iconic cheer many times as he bopped throughout the stadium on game day.
Her turn won’t be for international acclaim (which she has already), but it will be for Gator Nation, something she still holds dear.”I love how they’re having some women involved in continuing the tradition,” said Torres, who will bring her family (husband Tom, stepson Lucas, daughter Tessa and even her mom for the weekend). “And […]
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