If nothing else, Ashton Eaton was on track to make Olympic fans forget the days of Dan O'Brien and Dave Johnson, who were marketed for their success in 1992 and 1996.
Eaton, along with Americans Trey Hardee and Bryan Clay, were considered the top talents competing to make the Olympic team at last week's track and field trials Saturday. Eaton proved to be the best -- ever.
He set the new decathlon world record, and the 24-year-old bagged more than 9,039 points awarded for his showing in the 10-event competition. He received a bonus as part of his contract with Nike that will pay him $750,000.
"The last 600 meters, I wasn't running on my own legs," he said Saturday.
Eaton won seven of the 10 events, setting event records in the 100 meters, long jump and posting a 1,500-meter time of 4:14.48 to enter London as the gold medal favorite.