Posted: Wednesday February 2, 2011 2:09PM ; Updated: Wednesday February 2, 2011 2:26PM
Frank Deford
Frank Deford>VIEWPOINT

Even during the Super Bowl, Dallas has its eyes on the Olympic Games

Story Highlights

Despite hosting Super Bowl, NBA All-Star Game, Dallas wants 2020 Olympics

Dallas has a lot going for it: the vibrant, metropolitan area is packed with facilities

But it will have to fight an anti-U.S. bias and the Texas heat to win the Games

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If it won the rights to the 2020 Olympics, Dallas would be the fifth U.S. city to host the Summer Games.
Tom Pennington/Getty Images

Even as the Dallas area bursts its buttons, hosting the Super Bowl for the first time in Jerry Jones' new American coliseum, the city itself has developed an even greater itch it wants to scratch.

OK, here we go again.

The International Olympic Committee may have dismissively rejected New York and Chicago in recent Olympic competitions, and FIFA may have chose little Qatar over the U.S. for the 2022 World Cup, but Dallas is growing ever more determined to declare its candidacy for the 2020 Olympic Games.

Is that masochistic? Are we just the giant sugar daddy nobody in sport loves? When the vote is taken in 2013, will Dallas even have a chance against other presumed old world contenders like Rome, Madrid, Istanbul -- especially now that Turkey is sort of the "it" country -- or Dubai, the luxurious Oz of the Persian Gulf?

The fact is that the IOC's Europhile members prefer to take our musty television money, while giving the glamorous Games to somebody else.

The U.S. has hosted the Summer Olympics four times, but on three of those occasions -- St. Louis in 1904 and Los Angeles in 1932 and '84 -- no foreign city bid for the Games. The IOC just had to hold its nose and let its precious show go to America. Then, when Atlanta did win in 1996, foreigners found it by far the most unattractive of all modern Olympics.

Poor Salt Lake City won the 2002 Winter Games and then was caught up in a scandal that embarrassed the IOC. Never mind that Olympic corruption was endemic, and Salt Lake just happened to get caught in a rare fit of Olympic honesty.

For all that Dallas has going for it -- the nation's fourth-largest metropolitan area is already jam-packed with existing stadium and arena facilities -- it still faces an uphill battle for the Games. The vibrantly growing city will have to fight the bias against the United States; the ugly memory of Atlanta's so-called T-shirt Games; the fact that the U.S. Olympic Committee has been both a dope and a patsy; and its own disastrously torrid summer climate. To hold the Olympics in the relatively milder period around the beginning of June, Dallas would need a dispensation from the IOC, which lists a weather window from July 15 to Aug. 31.

So Dallas has so much to overcome in what seems almost a quixotic quest to try to make the United States a sports destination again. Well, anyway, we can be grateful that one of our cities hasn't given up the ghost -- and if the woebegone Cowboys can't be America's team anymore, at least Dallas can be our last forlorn Olympic hope.

 
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