High schooler Leon Purvis asks Gabby Douglas to his senior prom (Video)

Leon-Purvis-Gabby-Douglas-promBefore the London Olympics, US gold medalist Gabby Douglas had to overcome obstacles like being bullied by gymnasts she trained with. Now, Douglas is the first African-American gymnast in American history to win gold in the women’s all-around and the first American gymast to win gold in both the individual all-around and team competition at the same Olympic Games. She also has random high schoolers asking her to their senior prom.

A young man by the name of Leon Purvis had recently been tweeting at Douglas in an attempt to convince her to be his date to the senior prom next May. When the tweets were ignored, he decided to step his game up and record the YouTube video you see above.

Purvis is hoping to get the answer this Joe Haden fan got rather than the snubbing this Tim Tebow fan or this Ricky Rubio fan received. I’m certainly rooting for him, but I’m kind of wondering how Purvis’ date from last year feels about this video. It’s one thing to be the friend who ends up as the rebound prom date, but do we need to share that info with the entire internet? Personally, that makes me feel more sorry for last year’s date than I do for Leon.

H/T With Leather

Gabby Douglas overcame gymnastics bullies, was called ‘slave’

Olympic gold medalist Gabby Douglas joined Oprah Winfrey’s “Oprah’s Next Chapter” and opened up about the bullying and racism she faced in gymnastics.

Douglas, who became the first American gymnast to win gold in the all-around and team competition at the same Olympiad, wanted to quit the sport because she felt so uncomfortable training at her Virginia Beach, Va., gym.

“I felt being bullied and isolated from the group,” Douglas told Winfrey. “They treated me not how they would treat their other teammates.

“I was just, you know, kind of getting racist jokes, kind of being isolated from the group. So it was definitely hard. I would come home at night and just cry my eyes out,” Douglas said, per the NY Daily News.

“One of my teammates was like, ‘Could you scrape the bar?’” she remembered. “And they were like, ‘Why doesn’t Gabby do it, she’s our slave?’

“I was the only African-American at that gym,” Gabby went on. “I definitely felt isolated. Why am I deserving this? Is it because I’m black? — those thoughts were going through my mind.”

Douglas says she felt these ways when she was about 14. It was also revealed in July that the 16-year-old came close to quitting gymnastics months before the Olympics. It’s a good thing the best all-around female gymnast in the world didn’t get too discouraged and that she managed to stick with it.

Hopefully Douglas’ success will inspire many young African-American children to compete in gymnastics, and hopefully the new generation of athletes won’t feel out of place in a gym thanks to Gabby’s success.

Gabby Douglas gets hair makeover from celebrity stylist (Picture)

One of the most inane controversies of the London Olympics was about Gabby Douglas’ hair. While the 16-year-old was busy competing for gold medals, she was being trashed on social media by some for what they perceived to be an embarrassing hairstyle. I didn’t see any of the criticism because obviously I’m not following the right people on Twitter, but it was pretty rampant.

Hairstyle is apparently a source of pride among African-American women, so while many of them won’t ever be famous or compete for gold medals, the one area they think they can top Douglas is in the style department. Let’s put aside how misplaced the priorities of the women who spend $200 at the salon while falling behind on their bills are, and ignore how pathetic it is to criticize a 16-year-old who’s competing in athletics for unkempt hair. Why? Because those women now no longer have ammunition.

Douglas, her agent, and manager got together with celebrity stylist Ted Gibson and asked him to give the gymnast a hair makeover. Gibson, who charges $950 per haircut, happily obliged. He also lashed out at Douglas’ critics.

“I couldn’t believe it and still can’t,’’ Gibson said of the criticism, according to The Daily Beast. “You have this young girl doing amazing things, and the conversation becomes about her hair? It was ridiculous and shameful.”

Gibson said he wanted to create a hairstyle for Douglas that wouldn’t make her look older than her age.

“I hope we can create something that’s easy and looks great no matter what she’s doing or where she is. I hope to create something that makes her feel good about herself as well,” he said.

Most people would agree that Douglas looks great with the new ‘do. Hopefully this will end the chatter about the silly matter.

Photo via Gabby Douglas on Twitter

Gabby Douglas honored with mural in Virginia Beach (Video)

Two-time Olympic gold medalist Gabby Douglas was honored in her hometown of Virginia Beach, Virginia, with a mural on the side of a sports bar.

The mural was painted on the side of AJ Gator’s Sports Bar & Grill in Virginia Beach and took four days to complete, according to The Virginian-Pilot.

Brothers Todd and Eric Lindbergh painted the 30 feet by 8 feet mural and included the words “Way to go Gabby” in gold capital letters. Douglas is painted in excellent detail and depicted smiling while holding a gold medal, with an American flag in the background.

It’s safe to say Gabby was a fan. She tweeted to say she was “so honored” by the mural:

[Read more...]

Gabby Douglas reveals Ian Somerhalder is her celebrity crush

Nearly everything has been going perfectly for Gabby Douglas, who won the gold medal in the individual women’s all-around gymnastics and team competition at the London Games. But there is one thing that isn’t working out as she hoped — her celebrity crush.

On Wednesday, Douglas shared with US Weekly 25 things that most people don’t know about her. Number 20 on the list was that actor Ian Somerhalder is her celebrity crush.

Somerhalder, who stars on “The Vampire Diaries,” and the rest of the show’s cast filmed a message expressing their support of Douglas after learning that she was a fan of the show:

[Read more...]

Gabby Douglas gets Corn Flakes box (Picture)

Gabby Douglas went from being a relatively unknown gymnast to being one of the most recognizable female athletes in the country in a matter of months. The 16-year-old became the first woman to win gold in the individual all-around and team competition in the same Olympics, and she’s already picking up endorsement deals.

Kellogg’s announced that they would be putting the gold-medal winner on Corn Flakes boxes in the fall. This is the second major endorsement deal for Douglas, who signed with Procter & Gamble after the Olympic Trials.

Sports business reporter Darren Rovell says a gymnastics all-around gold medal winner generally earns around $2 million a year in endorsements, so Douglas should be financial set for the rest of her life.

Below is an up-close look at the Gabby Douglas Corn Flakes box:

[Read more...]

Gabby Douglas almost quit gymnastics months before Olympics

What would you say if I told you that the best female gymnast in the world nearly quit the sport a few months ago? It would be hard to believe, right? But that’s actually what happened with Gabby Douglas.

Douglas, who won the gold medal in the women’s all-around gymnastics competition at the Olympics on Thursday, had some struggles before making the Olympic team.

The 16-year-old moved to Iowa when she was 14 to train with Liang Chow, the coach of former gold medalist Shawn Johnson. Douglas had many things on her mind, including issues unrelated to gymnastics.

“Just had bad days in the gym, thinking about my dad,” Douglas told NBC’s Rock Center last month.

Douglas’ father, Timothy Douglas, served six months in Afghanistan with the Air Force. He returned home and saw his daughter for the first time in nearly two years when he surprised her at the Olympic Trials in June.

She says she would worry about him frequently.

[Read more...]