I got a chance to trail Ryan Seacrest and the U.S. Women's gymnastics team as they visited the NBC studios to do media with the Today Show and snap some pics along with the official photographer.
Ryan showed up to lunch with the girls. Not ugly.
The girls were trying to enjoy a super private, cozy lunch. Or not.
Considering the fact that when they entered the comissary, a HUGE cheer went up as someone announced them ("Ladies and gentlemen, the women's gymnastics team!"), they were remarkably composed. It's not that they were ignoring what was going on around them, they were just very focused on the task at hand - which was lunch. (salad, sandwiches and fruit)
I'm not sure if they were expecting Ryan to be there or not - they knew they were doing an interview with him - but I'm not sure if they thought he would crash their lunch. But they took it in stride - just as they seemed to take everything.
After their conversation (giving the cameras enough time to grab footage for the Today Show segment with Ryan and Savannah Guthrie tomorrow), one of the girls asked Ryan if they could get a picture with him. He cheerfully obliged (which, impressive considering he's one busy dude)
After they'd posed for a few pictures, Ryan said, "hey! let's all do the splits!" The girls giggled and thought he was kidding but he persisted, even starting to demonstrate what he wanted to do. Again, the girls totally went with it.
Here he is showing that he's totally serious about everyone doing the splits.
McKayla found it hilarious
He's got pretty good flexibility for a tv show host. He must do a lot of Pilates. And Zumba. (a couple of the girls actually tweeted out the pic I took - I felt twitter cool. Which is different from real cool in that it just doesn't matter.)
And then it was time to get down to business. The girls were herded throughout the NBC compound to do various interviews. Not easy to stay focused on when you've got your biggest athletic challenge coming in two days. But they looked SO strong in podium training today, it's hard to imagine that this had any sort of effect on them - negative OR positive. They're as cool as can be right now.
They whipped through their vault rotation so quickly and fiercely today during podium training that it was almost scary. Just insanely huge and difficult vaults, one after the other. They were putting on a clinic of vault excellence and it was only training! They are on fire right now. Just praying, wishing, hoping and sacrificing chickens that they pull it all together when it counts.
Because if they lose this team title - it will be a travesty.
Love this pic of the girls on the monitors as they shot their segment.
The NBCOlympics.com photo gallery