From Lambeau Leap To The Dance FloorFriday, March 23, 2012 By Margaret Faller
It was not Monday night football but the Monday night season premiere of Dancing with the Stars that directed the attention of Green Bay Packer fans to their television sets as their favorite wide receiver, Donald Driver, began competition for the coveted mirror ball trophy. Paired with partner, pro dancer Peta Murgatroyd, Driver danced a ‘cha cha’ with the hopes of wining a high score on the season premiere’s opening night. Driver is not the first athlete to participate in the dancing reality show. He follows pro athletes Emmitt Smith, Kristi Yamaguchi, Shawn Johnson, Hines Ward, and Apolo Anton Ohno, and joining Driver in this season’s competition is former tennis legend Martina Navratilova. According to the New York Daily News , Driver was selected after New York Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz passed on a chance to compete for the mirror ball trophy. The last athlete who won Dancing with the Stars was Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Hines Ward and pro dancer Kym Johnson who took home the mirror ball trophy in May 2011. This is the 14 th season of the elimination dance show competition and the first exit is scheduled for March 27 th . Driver’s participation drew an audience that typically does not watch the dance competition. “I only watched the premiere because of Donald Driver,” said Notre Dame Academy senior Matt Meyer, “otherwise the dancing isn’t really my thing. I was expecting higher scores and they were pretty weak,” Meyer added. “All I have been hearing about has been Donald Driver on Dancing with the Stars,” said Notre Dame Academy senior Nathan Krcma. “I saw a clip of the dance, and I will have to tune in next week.” As to Driver’s chances for winning the coveted mirror ball, fans are hopeful. “He is in the top three predicted to win and I think he can do it,” said Meyer. “He has a great fan base of course.” “I feel like Donald Driver has a large fan base especially with the Packers, and I feel like he will make it past a few weeks with the support from his fans, but he will need to improve his dance moves to win it all,” said Notre Dame Academy senior Anne Marie McKenzie. For all the Green Bay Packer fans watching, Donald Driver can perform on the dance floor as well as the football field and like his fellow competitors has an eye on the mirror ball trophy. “I think he has great charisma with the audience, and he showcased some of his awesome dance moves,” added McKenzie. Earning 21 out of 30 points on the season premiere of Dancing with the Stars, Driver and his partner technically have their work cut out for them. Dancing with the Stars is not only a dance competition but also a popularity contest. Driver will need to show his charisma to the audience with his million-dollar smile complementing his dancing feet if he hopes to grab votes in the weeks to come.