When the Olympic Games Los Angeles 2028 get underway, viewers will notice five sports have been added to the program.
At a session Monday in Mumbai, India, the LA28 Organizing Committee and the International Olympic Committee voted to add baseball/softball, flag football, cricket, lacrosse and squash.
This will be the first time ever that flag football has been a part of the Olympic Games. Baseball and softball have been featured at several additions of the Games, most recently at Tokyo 2020.
Cricket hasn't been on the Olympic stage since the 1900 Games in Paris. Lacrosse was featured at St. Louis in 1904 and London in 1908, so the 2028 Games will have a different feel.
"The choice of these five new sports is in line with the American sports culture and will showcase iconic American sports to the world, while bringing international sports to the United States," IOC President Thomas Bach said. "These sports will make the Olympic Games LA28 unique."
Team USA's Olympic baseball and softball teams both took silver at the 2020 Tokyo Games. The baseball team left nine runners on base in a 2-0 loss to Japan, finishing with a 4-2 record. The softball squad also fell to Japan 2-1, despite having the nearly unbeatable combination of Cat Osterman, Monica Abbott and Ally Carda. It was the second straight loss to the Japanese in Olympic softball competition after coming up short in the 2008 Games.
Despite those defeats, USA Softball has been the most decorated program in history with five Olympic medal finishes, nine Pan American championships and 12 WBSC World Championship gold medals. They have advanced to every Olympic gold medal game in the sport's history, claiming three consecutive gold medals in 1996, 2000 and 2004.
Perhaps the most intriguing sport added to the LA28 Games is flag football. Several current and former NFL players have expressed interest in a quest to win gold, including retired tight end Rob Gronkowski and Miami Dolphins wide receiver Tyreek Hill.
— Ty Hill (@cheetah) October 9, 2023
"Calling all NFL guys let's bring one home," Hill posted on X, meaning a gold medal.
OK, flag football as an Olympic sport may seem silly to purist football fans. However, imagine a U.S. flag football dream team dominating the way the U.S. Olympic Basketball Dream Team did in the 1990s. Hill, Gronkowski, Lamar Jackson — the possibilities are endless. Heck, why not get Tom Brady involved while we're at it? Maybe he has one more championship left in him, even five years from now. One can dream, right?
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