One of the more popular Olympic athletes on Twitter, Lolo Jones will be profiled on the next edition of ESPN Films’ “SEC Storied” series. You may remember back in 2008 as the heavy favorite for the women’s 100 meter hurdles, Lolo was on her way to win the gold medal when she hit hurdle 9 and stumbled to the ground losing her chance at glory.
Since then, Jones has battled injuries in her attempts to return to the Olympics in London.
But the documentary doesn’t just focus on her athletic struggles, it looks at some of the life struggles she’s had to endure including growing up homeless. We have the press release and a video preview of the documentary.
SEC “Storied” Film, Lolo, Chronicles the Track and Field Athlete’s Victories and Struggles
Olympic athlete Lori “Lolo” Jones is an expert at overcoming hurdles—both on the track and in life. ESPN Films’ Lolo, the latest installment in the new SEC “Storied” documentary series, will explore Jones’ trying journey thus far; rising from poverty and homelessness to be catapulted into world stardom, including a spot on the USA Olympic Track and Field team and celebrity status. Lolo will premiere on May 21 at 7 p.m. ET on ESPNU.
Lolo Jones began chasing her dream in high school. After years of living in poverty and an unstable home life she was determined to be the first in her family to go to college. Constantly looking to improve, Lolo earned a scholarship from the famed Louisiana State University Track and Field program and fought to become the best, among the best.
With the help of coach Dennis Shaver, Lolo became one of the most dominant athletes in the history of the LSU Women’s Track and Field dynasty, winning three NCAA Titles and 11 All-American honors, most notably in the hurdles. After failing to qualifying for the 2004 Olympics, Lolo turned again to Shaver for inspiration to continue fighting for her dream.
After four years of intense training, Lolo found herself right where she wanted to be—on the 2008 US Olympic team and favored to win gold in the 100 Meter Hurdles. But on the verge of reaching that dream, she suffered a heartbreaking stumble at the final hurdle, costing her the biggest race of her life.
Still determined to win an Olympic gold medal, Lolo went through with a risky spinal surgery and another four years of training to prepare for what is now her next hurdle – making the 2012 Olympic team and winning gold this time.
Directed by Rory Karpf with NASCAR Media Group, Lolo features personal interviews from Lolo Jones, her parents, siblings, coaches, teammates and Olympic gold medalist Jackie Joyner-Kersee, along with never-before-seen footage of Lolo in high school and during her 2011 surgery.
Quotes from Lolo
Lolo’s mother, Lori Counter-Jones, on being homeless: “You end up staying with family or friends. At one time we even stayed at the Salvation Army shelter because I was riding around in the car with all 5 of my kids with nowhere to go and they thought we were just going to the park and just taking a ride… because I didn’t tell them that we really didn’t have anywhere to go.”
Lolo on how she started running: “I was running with my dad because we didn’t have a car. As my mom would shift from place to place or dad would be in and out of my life, running was like the friend that never left. It was just always there. I’d say it was the only constant thing in my life.”
Lolo’s sister, Angelia Jefferson, on how Lolo was after 2008 Olympics: “She looked as if she did not just lose the biggest race of her life. I knew that she maybe had 30 minutes of sleep but she looked as if she was OK. But I knew in her heart that she was broken, that her heart was broken and the defeat that she felt and the failure that she felt… I was like, ‘Oh gosh, another knock’.”
Lolo on her outlook for the future: “I feel as if I have so much that is in me and I need to just finally close this chapter. I have gone through so many battles to get there. I’m focused I’m ready to do the work… Really making a conscious effort to focus on every detail to perfection.”
Here’s the video preview.
ESPN Films’ “SEC Storied: Lolo” airs next Monday, May 21 at 7 p.m. ET on ESPNU.