Anthony Ervin is not a Physical Freak. He is more like your average human than any other male sprinter in history. He is 6’2” (at best) 165 pounds. His average completion is about 6’6” 210-220. Michael Phelps has the torso of a man 6’8” and reach of a man 6’7”, with short legs and huge hands and feet. Michael Phelps is a Physical Specimen; Anthony Ervin is physically close to your average Joe. We can relate to him.
Anthony Ervin is Faster in Freestyle than Michael Phelps. On a pure speed basis Anthony Ervin is Faster than Michael Phelps and almost all swimmers in history.
He donated his only Gold Medal to raise funds for Tsunami Relief. Besides this unselfish Act, he is involved with inner city youth swimming, and has been inducted into the Boys and Girls Club Alumni Hall of fame.
He participated in poor lifestyle choices and has bounced back from difficult times: Anthony was out of swimming at the age of 23 and went through personal issues. He was able to overcome these and bounce back. Phelps did also! It is part of the human spirit; over coming adversity.
He is an Inspiration for older swimmers: 34 years old and competing at the highest level of swimming. He gives us no excuses to use age as a limitation.
He went to college and obtained his degree (took longer than most) and began working on a Masters Degree. He realizes the importance of education and the college experience. He had an opportunity to go pro after the 2000 Olympics; he stayed in school.
He was/is a great teammate: He chose to stay in collage because he enjoyed the team atmosphere. He is also one of the best relay swimmers in NCAA history. He wanted to do well for his teammates. Michael Phelps is also a great teammate.
He is a Musician: He was a member of a band, played guitar and appreciates different types of music.
He is diverse: You cannot put him in one box; he is Jewish, Native American and African American. Diversity tends to lead to a broader worldview and appreciation for all people. This is a great lesson for kids.
He has tattoos, and every tattoo tells a story. Stories are interesting, personal and can make a more significant impact than remembering a message. Are you ready to hear a great story!