We don’t know whom you are watching the Super Bowl with, but you’d probably rather be watching it with Aiko Christine. A former Gonzaga cheerleader-turned-model, Aiko is beautiful, intelligent and knows sports. The Seattle resident would be able to tell your whole Super Bowl party why Russell Wilson had a better rookie season than Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III, while you just fetched more seven-layer-dip.
When Aiko, 26, isn’t modeling fashion, fitness wear or swimwear, the 5’2″ beauty can be found digging into the sports scene in the Northwest, such as the possible transformation of the Sacramento Kings into the long-lost Seattle SuperSonics.
“…It was definitely a blow to the city of Seattle for (the Sonics) to get sold (to Oklahoma City), so it means a lot to us to have them return,” she said. “One of my favorite sports memories is the Sonics vs. the Utah Jazz in the playoffs in the 90s, so I am very nostalgic about this team.”
We asked Aiko five questions (plus another that will help you win the March Madness pool at your office). And, yes, she sent pictures of her modeling work.
This has been a tough month for your teams. What was your reaction to the final seconds of the Gonzaga-Butler game a few weeks ago, and was it worse than the Seahawks’ playoff loss the week before?
“Although an essentially half-court buzzer shot at the last second of the game is upsetting…I would have to say the Seahawks losing. I was so excited and proud of (Seahawks quarterback) Russell Wilson’s rookie season, and to have it cut short over a field goal was semi-traumatic.
Russell just seems like a genuine, hard-working, down-to-earth guy, and I would’ve loved to see him play a legend like Ray Lewis at the Super Bowl. It would be a great match-up —Rookie vs Legend — sad it didn’t come to fruition.”
What is your craziest cheerleading story from your Gonzaga days?
“Definitely being on ESPN’s ‘College GameDay!’ It was so fun to be on national TV, and the energy that day in the Kennel was intense. It was when Adam Morrison and J.J. Reddick were battling for position of NCAA MVP, and Adam had that mustache, so the whole crowd was wearing fake mustaches; it was pretty funny.”
Does the Gonzaga men’s basketball team have groupies, and if you were dating Kelly Olynyk, would you ask him to cut his hair?
“Definitely a ton of groupies. I think every season with new recruits, people pick who they are gonna be a super fan of. So, a lot of the players definitely have a bunch of super fans specifically for them. On the topic of Kelly, I know he is doing Locks of Love, so, yes, I would tell him to cut his hair, but only when it’s long enough to donate.”
F, Marry, Kill. Your choices are Mark Few, Pete Carroll and Sean Kemp.
“There is no right answer for this one. I think I would have a lot of angry Northwest sports fans on me if I killed any of these people.”
Which athlete – can be college or pro – do you find the sexiest and why?
“(I) don’t mean to be too predictable, but definitely Russell Wilson. He is intelligent, hardworking and incredibly good-looking. He also does a lot for the Seattle community.”
Bonus Question: We know you’re biased, but give us your 2013 Final Four picks.
Indiana, Michigan, Syracuse and Gonzaga.