Then he wanted to see his mother. The only problem was, Janice Burroughs was high up in Section 410 in North Arena 2 of the ExCeL Centre. Between them stood a waist-high wall, several rows of stands, and hundreds of screaming people. And yet Burroughs, now the Olympic champion in the middleweight division, would not be denied. He jumped over the wall into the swarm of fans and then waded through fist pumps and back slaps until he finally reached Janice standing in front of seat 291, more than halfway up the stands. LONDON – At the moment the gold medal and a $250,000 bonus was won, American wrestler Jordan Burroughs jumped in the air. He ran around the ring. He stood on the medal stand even though the medal ceremony wouldn't happen for another half hour. Wrestling to the winner of any Olympic gold medal. The reward comes from something called the Living the Dream Medal Fund, and it exists to inspire American wrestlers to win gold. Not that Jordan Burroughs needed a bonus to win a gold medal. He has a Twitter account that has suddenly drawn attention. The name of the account is @alliseeisgold. On the account he wrote he was going to win the gold. With a boast like that, what choice did he have but to win? United States, even while some of its bigger Olympic stars in recent years have been wrestlers. The bonus fund is a way to inspire and entice gold-medal-caliber talent. And maybe a big check is something U.S. wrestlers need to motivate them. It just doesn't appear to be the thing that drives Burroughs. While he said he could use the money, no longer having to pick between food and gas when his college scholarship check arrives, he also has spoken of nothing but the Olympic gold for as long as his mother or college coach can remember. The medal has been the important thing. Not a bonus.
[ Related: Iranian wrestler throws coach to celebrate gold ]"If the queen of England came onto the mat, I would probably double-leg her," he said. Later he held his gold medal again. He rubbed it. He said people rolled their eyes when he won the World Championships last year. He said people told him he was lucky. They said he would not win in the Olympics, though it was hard to know exactly who these people are, because Burroughs came to London as a favorite to win a medal. "They aren't laughing now," he said. Janice Burroughs says people have the wrong idea about her son. She said he is not boastful or cocky at all. She seems surprised they think so. He's actually quite humble, she said. She cringes when the Twitter account comes up. Then she laughs. "He said, 'No one can see me behind the Twitter page,'" she said. As she said this, her son was walking back to the medal stand – this time for the real ceremony. Music played. Someone handed Jordan Burroughs a bouquet. Then they put the medal around his neck. The "Star-Spangled Banner" played. The American flag climbed toward the ceiling.
[ Photos: Awkward wrestling moments ]As it did, the man who could see only gold stood on a podium he was always certain would be his. "I would have had to change my Twitter name if I lost," he said. And that was worth a lot more in respect than a $250,000 check. More Olympics coverage on Yahoo! Sports:
Related Olympics coverage on Yahoo! Sports:
• Oscar Pistorius shows heart and fulfills his competitive dream
• Video: British words that stump Americans
• What's next for 10 of the biggest stars of the London Olympics?
- Sports & Recreation
- Jordan Burroughs
- Olympic gold medal