Aug 7, 2012; London, United Kingdom; April Ross (USA), left, and Jennifer Kessy (USA) celebrate after a point against Larissa Franca (BRA) and Juliana Silva (BRA) in the women's semifinal match during the London 2012 Olympic Games at Horse Guards Parade. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports
Team sports almost never show up in NBC's prime time, since they're seen as, well, too sportsy for huge prime-time audiences that have lots of viewers who don't follow sports. But U.S. team success so far in has provided a sort of under-the-radar reason for Americans to stay tuned to the Games.
And NBC prime time Wednesday will feature beach volleyball. But you can guess why: It's a chance to show Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh before they - who knows? - show next week up as new co-hosts of NBC's Today show. Here are some tips on what to watch (all times ET):
NBC at 11 a.m.: The U.S. men's volleyball team, in elimination play, meets Italy in live coverage. Let's hope Americans don't resort to trash-talking about Italy needing Euro Zone bailouts.
NBC at 12:45 p.m.: Four gold medal kayak-canoe races, or at least highlights of them, crammed into a half-hour of coverage. Catch TV canoeing while you can.
NBC at 3 p.m.: Live coverage of U.S. men's water polo team, which is going for its first gold in 108 years and faces a tough team in the elimination round: Croatia, which has given up 29 goals and gone 5-0. And in case you're completely unfamiliar with this sport, horses aren't involved.
MSNBC at 4 p.m.: A half-hour of taped coverage squeezes in two finals in one of those sports you won't see much on TV after the Games: women's wrestling. Freestyle finals in two weight classes - 48kg and 63kg - will presumably offer some of the best female wrestlers, pound-for-pound, that this planet has to offer.
NBC prime time at 8 p.m.: NBC will build the show - and its Olympic prime time is meant to be a show more than to be TV sports - around the women's beach volleyball final, the men's 110-meter hurdles final and women's platform diving.
Michael Hiestand, USA TODAY