The only one coming out of the 2008 Olympics with anything close to Michael Phelps' star power was his mother, Debbie Phelps.
Caught repeatedly on camera at the sidelines rooting for her son -- and tearing up unselfconsciously as he inched closer to Olympics history, Debbie Phelps, a full-time middle school principal, became America's Everymom, and ended the event not only with a book deal, but an arrangement to promote her favorite clothing store, Chico's.
Heading into this summer's London Olympics, it remains to be seen what Michael Phelps will do. But his mom's still got it, as evidenced by a new Subway ad that just started airing this week.
The commercial opens with Michael Phelps in a gym working out -- in Under Armour gear, of course, another of his many endorsements.
"To perform your best," a narrator says, "training's got to be a lifelong passion, fueled by a footlong passion."
"Michael," Debbie Phelps yells, almost over the announcer's voice. She's standing by the side of the pool holding a sub, dressed to the nines in a magenta jacket, black pants and perfectly coordinated scarf. Chico's perchance?
"Only one?" the athlete with the notoriously massive appetite says, pulling himself up out of the pool and smiling goofily.
"Michaaaael," mom groans with faux frustration, giving him a loving push back into the water.
The commercial says that Phelps' "fave" variety of Subway is a turkey/bacon/avocado with extra jalapeno.
The 30-second ad closes with the Mama Phelps saying something that isn't her son's name -- that Subway is the "official training restaurant of the Phelps family." Michael, by the way, is in another Under Armour outfit and his mother also has a change to another jacket/scarf/pants ensemble.