Olympic stars head to late-night: Let the (talk-show) games begin!

Ryan-Lochte

Image Credit: Warrick Page/NBC

Two weeks ago, you hardly knew Ryan Lochte, and you most likely would’ve walked right past Missy Franklin and Gabrielle Douglas without flinching unless they were wearing gold medals around their necks. But the Olympics have made them huge celebrities — albeit the rare breed of celebrity that only blooms once every four years. But before they begin to wilt in the shade, you can expect to see them take their victory laps on the talk-show circuit, beginning tonight. Douglas will sit down with Jay Leno, while David Letterman welcomes decathlon champ Ashton Eaton. The entire women’s gymnastics team will visit Letterman tomorrow, and Leno will host Missy Franklin and Ryan Lochte later this week.

For these athletes, these close-ups are almost as crucial as their Olympic performances themselves, for America is now watching to see if their favorite Olympian has the aura and magnetism to appear in lackluster movies, dance in a reality show contest, or become a morning-show correspondent. America truly loves its heroes.

For an entire TV schedule of gold-medal guest stars, click below:

Monday, Aug. 13
Gymnast Gabrielle Douglas, The Tonight Show
Decathlete Ashton Eaton, The Late Show

Tuesday, Aug. 14
Wrestler Jordan Burroughs, The Tonight Show
Gymnasts Gabrielle Douglas, Jordyn Wieber, McKayla Maroney, Kyla Ross and Alexandra Raisman, The Late Show
Volleyball player Misty May-Treanor, The Daily Show

Wednesday, Aug. 15
Swimmer Missy Franklin, The Tonight Show
Swimmer Dana Vollmer, The Late Show
Soccer goalie Hope Solo, Late Night

Thursday, Aug. 16
Swimmer Ryan Lochte, The Tonight Show
High-jumper Erik Kynard, The Late Show

Friday, Aug. 17
Sprinter Alysson Felix, The Tonight Show

Read more:
Who is the All-Around Stud of the 2012 Olympics?
Gallery: Olympic Studs of the Day
PopWatch Confessional: What’s the craziest thing the Olympics have inspired you to do?

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