When it comes to Olympic medals, Ryan Millar is hoping that the third time is a charm.
The former collegiate player of the year who led BYU to its first NCAA championship as a senior in 1999, Millar is making his third Olympics appearance this summer at the Beijing Summer Games.
He made his Olympic debut in 2000 in Sydney, as the United States went winless in pool play and finished tied for last with Egypt in the final standings.
"I was really naive," said Miller of his first Games go-around. "I played as hard as I could, but the results were not that great. Still, it was a good learning experience, knowing what it took."
The last Olympic time out, Millar and the United States fell one step short of a medal, falling in the 2004 Athens semifinals to Brazil and then in the bronze-medal match to Russia.
"There were different dynamics and some great matches," he said. "We achieved some of our goals and made it to the medal match. Hopefully it helps us and puts us over the edge to not only get back to the medal matches but to bring home a medal."
Millar, who returned to international play after taking 2007 off to help out at his alma mater as interim co-head coach, is among several Games veterans on the U.S. squad, with fellow middle blocker Tom Hoff also returning for his third Olympics and captain and setter Lloy Ball back for his fourth time.
So, is Millar expecting Beijing to be his Olympic swan song? Or is he eyeing a return for 2012 in London?"I feel great I wouldn't be surprised," he said wanting to prolong his Games career. "I'm still OK I feel like I'm in the middle top of my game."