Spartan Spotlight: Erin O'Shea
Issue date: 3/19/10 Section: Sports
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Greg Meyer: Who inspired you to run track?
Erin O'Shea: Jen, my best friend from high school, made me do track with her.
GM: Nothing like peer pressure to help you make bad decisions. What else do you do besides run track?
EO: Eating, cooking, watching sports, painting once in a while if I have time. (I did go to fashion school in NYC when I was 15.)
GM: Last I checked, fashion and painting are two separate arts. Who is your favorite athlete?
EO: It's hard to have just one favorite - Allyson Felix has been one of my favorite runners since I started in high school and I respect Brett Favre a ton - age would tell him to stop, but it's awesome he is still one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL.
GM: Not to mention he is the coolest redneck ever. What is your best track memory?
EO: Running at indoor conferences in 2008 after I had surgery on both my legs. Doctors said I would never run again, and I definitely would never be fast enough to run in college. I loved proving everybody wrong.
GM: Yeah, doctors don't know squat. What is your favorite quote?
EO: Not sure where I got it from: "Great things come to those that wait, but that's usually leftovers from those who hustle."
GM: Sounds like it should be a Hova quote. Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
EO: Working at a hedge fund and living in New York City.
GM: Makin' bank, very nice. What makes track stand out from other sports?
EO: Our sport is every other sport's punishment. It's also nice to have such measurable progress - (in) other sports, maybe you think you're getting stronger or faster. We look at the clock or the measuring tape and we know how good we're getting.
GM: Hey, someone has to be the best at exercising. If you could invite any three people to dinner, living or dead, who would it be and why?
EO: Usain Bolt - he's an awesome runner and apparently a good dancer; Ina Garten, because I use her recipes all the time and I bet she'd cook a feast; and Ellen DeGeneres because I think she's more fun than Oprah.
GM: Bolt is pretty good I guess. Ina has nothing on my girl Paula Deen. If they made a movie about your life, who would you want to play you?
EO: Anne Hathaway. I always loved her. It has to be a Jersey girl. She's from the town next to mine in N.J.; I went on a date with her brother when I was 16.
GM: Well, no one can ever take that away from you. What is your least favorite thing about track?
EO: How mental everything is! I still get really nervous before hard practices. Schwann, my high school coach, used to make us all so nervous for practice that four years later I still get that anxious feeling in my stomach.
GM: OK. I ran track for seven years and all I can remember thinking is "Beat these kids." I think you are over-thinking. If you could be a guy for a day, what would you do?
EO: Play football, Madden, and eat a whole pizza in one sitting. Also, I would like the ability to know the exact details of every single thing that happens on ESPN for the last 10 years.
GM: I never knew there was anything else on television besides ESPN, until they told me to watch something that wasn't on their networks. What goes through your mind during a race?
EO: Hardly anything because the races are so fast! But if I think anything, I usually have Coach (Steve) Rubin's voice in my head, yelling to "Drive, drive, drive," because he says it so often at practice. Or to catch some girl in front of me, and I'm always thinking I don't want to fall. I'm really clumsy and trip in my spikes a lot - still have never fallen in a meet (knock on wood) so it must be working.
GM: Good thing you don't run hurdles. Any insight on how the season is going so far?
EO: Just had indoor conferences while the rest of Case campus ventured to PCB. We had a lot of great performances coming out of the meet, especially from some of the younger kids on the team. I bet outdoor conferences will be an even better showcase of how amazing our team is. The conference won't know what hit 'em come April!
GM: Erin O'Shea, everyone.