track and field
A member of the United States track and field team at the 2000 Sydney Olympics, Bloom finished in fourth place in the shot put (20.87-meters).
Bloom originally got into throwing (both the shot put and discus) the same way many others have. He said, "I was trying to stay in shape for football...I went out for track because that [was] the only way to get into the weight room in the spring." At Wake Forest University, Andy broke his right hand in January 1996, but came back to win both the shot put and discus at the NCAA Championships that year (he became only the eighth man in history to accomplish that throwing double).
At the 1996 U.S. Olympic Trials, Andy just missed making the Olympic team in the discus throw, finishing fourth. Still, he was not disappointed and said afterwards, "At 22, it was a good experience for me...I've always seen 2000 as my team." Leading up to the 2000 U.S. Olympic Trials, Bloom continued to improve in both the discus and shot put. At the 1999 World Championships, he finished fourth in the shot put (20.95-meters), and twelfth in the discus. Andy also placed ninth in the shot put at the 1999 World Indoor Championships, and finished first in the shot put at the 1999 World University Games. Andy won the national indoor championships in the shot put in 1999 and 2000, and finished second in the discus at the 1998 Goodwill Games.
At the 2000 U.S. Olympic Trials, Andy moved from fifth to second place on his last throw of the shot put, a personal best of 21.61-meters (70'10 3/4"). He eventually finished in third place, and qualified for the Olympic team. Eventually, Andy wants to become a teacher (he got his master's degree in education from Wake Forest in 1998), but is currently concentrating on throwing. With regard to competing in both events, Andy said, "If someone put a gun to my head and made me choose, I'd have to say the discus is my favorite. I believe I'll eventually be more successful in the discus. But I've learned a great deal from doing both. Now I'm starting to see the magic of 70-feet in the shot, and I don't want to give that up."
Andy is one of only two Americans who consistently compete at a world-class level in both the shot put and discus (the other is John Godina). In 2001, Bloom finished second at the Milrose Games and then took third place in the U.S. National Indoor Championships (67'1-1/4"). At the World Championships, however, Bloom suffered from injuries and only competed in the discus throw, finishing 24th overall (56.32-meters).
In 2002, Bloom finished fourth in the shot put at the U.S. Indoor Championships (20.02-meters) and seventh in the shot put at the U.S. Outdoor Championships (20.16-meters). An assistant track and field coach at the University of California-Davis, Bloom was ranked No. 19 in the world in the shot put as of May 13, 2003. At the 2003 U.S. Championships, Bloom finished 13th in the discus throw with a distance of 186'10" (56.95-meters).
Birth and Death Dates:
b. Aug. 11, 1973