All of the Olympians are amazing. However, there are a chosen few who shined a little more than their competition during the 2012 Summer Olympics. Here are E!'s choice for the seven top stars.
Nathan Adrian caught attention for his fine physique, cute dimples and winning smile before he even began any Olympic competition. However, he proved he wasn't just a pretty face and great body when he won gold for the 100-meter freestyle. He set himself up as a reckoning force. So, when teammate Ryan Lochte bungled the 4x100-meter relay, Nathan pulled out all the stops to take home a silver medal in that group too.
Chad de Clos did something no one thought possible. He stood out in Olympic aquatics. That was hard to do with Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte stealing most of the attention. However, the South African wouldn't be denied. In fact, he stripped Phelps of his chance at a third consecutive gold medal by taking the 200-meter butterfly from him. Then he endeared himself further by pronouncing Phelps his "hero". As it turns out, the American became a fan of his as well.
Gabby Douglas came from a tough background. Her family was dealing with financial problems. Still, they found a way to keep her in training for the Summer Games. That's why the tiny Virginia native couldn't let them down. She didn't. Instead, she became one of the Summer Games' shining stars. The talent, combined with her winning smile, was impossible to ignore. She took both team and individual gold medals for gymnastics. While she wished she won the other two categories for which she qualified, it really didn't matter. She was already unforgettable.
Ashton Eaton set out to win gold in one of the toughest sport categories at the Olympics -- the decathlon. The Portland, Oregon athlete racked up an amazing 8,869 points in the 10-event competition. He blew away the judges, the competition and his teammates; many of whom dubbed him the greatest athlete in the world. Even Usain Bolt, who considers himself the world's best athlete, couldn't deny Eaton's unmatched talent. "...To do 10 events, especially the 1500 (meters)," said Bolt. "I gotta give it to him." Everyone does. The man's a walking miracle.
Missy Franklin swam her way into the hearts of people all over the world. That's despite entering the games with a lot of expectation placed squarely on her slim physique. America pinned its hopes on the swimmer; a big burden to bear, but Missy came through. In the 200-meter backstroke, she set a new world-record. She joined with team members to set another one in the 4x100-meter relay. She was nearly unstoppable. What's not to love?
Alex Morgan often took second place to teammate Hope Solo, aka the glamorous goalie, Carli Lloyd and Abby Wambach, the amazing vets, and youngest team member Sydney Leroux. However, that didn't mean she wouldn't grab attention too with important assists throughout the Olympic women's soccer competition. Then, she sealed her place in history by scoring the winning goal and keep the team in competition against the Canadians.
Claressa Shields did something no American woman has ever done before. She took home an Olympic medal in boxing. But she didn't just medal, she took the top spot and gold in women's middleweight boxing. While the men floundered and failed in the same group, Claressa set herself apart. That's doubly impressive when one considers the fact she's still in high school.
With the Summer Games come and gone, many athletes will be forgotten. However, these seven stars will always shine.