It is easy to see why. The events are not simply sport (whatever that might mean). IPE is ultimately the study of values. The "universal values" that the games are supposed to represent come into conflict with national interests, commercial interests and also quite obviously the interests and ambitions of the individuals involved. The games would make a great topic for an IPE senior thesis.
Or at least that's what Greg Groggel (IPE 2006) thought. He wrote his senior thesis about the IPE of global sports and received a Watson Fellowship to study the lasting effect of the Olympic games on host cities. Here's a video that was recorded in Beijing, the last stop on his year-long quest, "Chasing the Flame." Greg now works for NBC Sports covering the Olympics behind the scenes. His work on the Beijing games earned an Emmy.
It just goes to show where an IPE degree can take you!
Note: The photo shows Holden Sapp (IPE '10) representing Puget Sound recently at the intercollegiate regional ski championships. Think Snow. Think IPE.