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Which individuals are the greatest athletes ever?


robert
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We talked about this from a sports perspective, but what about the individuals themselves?

 

Names like Michael Jordan, Wayne Gretzky, Tiger Woods and Lance Armstrong are always mentioned in these terms.

 

Any others who stand out?

 

Mr. Phelps?

 

Carl Lewis?

 

Who do you think are some of the greatest athletes ever? Why?

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Dan Gable

Career

Undefeated in 64 prep matches,

Collegiate record 118-1. His only collegiate defeat was in his final match where he lost to Larry Owings of the University of Washington.

In 1972, he won a gold medal at the Summer Olympics without surrendering a point to any of his opponents.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dan_Gable

 

Alexander Karelin- 6 foot, 4 inch 286-lbs

Alexander Karelin won gold medals at the 1988, 1992, and 1996 Olympic Games.

Undefeated in international competition (spanning from 1987 until 2000),

Karelin went the last six years of his unbeaten streak without giving up a point.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexander_Karelin

 

Jim Brown-6 foot 2 inches 232lbs

College career

Brown attended Syracuse University. As a sophomore, Brown was the second leading rusher on the team. That winter, he was Syracuse's second leading scorer in basketball, averaging 15 points. He also earned a letter in track that spring. As a junior, he rushed for 666 yards (5.2 per carry), averaged 11.3 points in basketball and was named a second-team All-American in lacrosse. In his senior year, Brown was first-team All-American in both football and lacrosse (43 goals in 10 games to tie for the national scoring championship). He averaged 6.2 yards in running for 986 yards -- third most in the country despite Syracuse playing only eight games -- and scored 14 touchdowns. In the regular-season finale, a 61-7 rout of Colgate, he rushed for 197 yards, scored six touchdowns and kicked seven extra points for 43 points. Then in the Cotton Bowl, he rushed for 132 yards, scored three touchdowns and kicked three extra points. But a blocked extra point after Syracuse's third touchdown was the difference as TCU won 28-27.

 

Professional Career

He departed as the NFL record holder for both single-season (1,863 in 1963) and career rushing (12,312 yards), as well as the all-time leader in rushing touchdowns (106), total touchdowns (126), and all-purpose yards (15,549). He was the first player ever to reach the 100-rushing-touchdowns milestone, and only a few others have done so since, despite the league's expansion to a 16-game season in 1978 (Brown's first four seasons were only 12 games, and his last five were 14 games). Brown also set a record by reaching the 100-touchdown milestone in only 93 games, which stood until LaDainian Tomlinson reached it in 89 games during the 2006 season. total seasons leading the NFL in all-purpose yards (5: 1958-1961, 1964), and is the only rusher in NFL history to average over 100 yards per game for a career.

 

Lacrosse

Brown was every bit as good a lacrosse player, with the National Lacrosse Hall of Fame stating that he was "widely considered to be the greatest lacrosse player ever." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jim_Brown

 

At Syracuse University, Brown's all-around athletic ability became evident, as he lettered in four sports and was voted the school's Athlete of the Year in 1956-57. Brown was a Second Team All-American Selection in 1956, and earned First Team Honors in 1957, finishing second in the nation in scoring his senior year. Many believe his last game was his greatest moment as a lacrosse player, as Brown scored five goals in one-half of play against the nation's top players in the 1957 Collegiate North/South All-Star game.

http://www.lacrosse.org/museum/halloffame/view_profile.php?prof_id=35

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Who do you think are some of the greatest athletes ever? Why?
The why.

 

Dan Gable and Alexander Karelin competition records and domination of an individual sport where you cannot rely on teamates to win speaks for its self. Gable only lost one wrestling match in high school and college combined 182 in a row and didn't lose a point during the 1972 olympics.

 

Karelin went undefeated in international competition for 13 straight years and didn't lose a point for 6 straight years. Wrestlers are some of the best conditioned athletes in the world. Wrestling requires both muscle strength, muscle endurance and stamina. Wrestlers are moving their own bodyweight around all the time.

 

Jim Brown is in the Lacrosse and Pro Football Hall of Fame. Brown excelled in both sports and is arguably one of the best athletes to play both sports. Brown retired from the NFL in 1965 after only 9 seasons. His career rushing record stood for 20 years until Walter Payton broke it in 1984. Payton played 13 NFL seasons. Brown's 126 career total touchdowns in the NFL still ranks 5th all-time amongst running backs only behind Emmitt Smith, Marcus Allen, Marshall Faulk, and LaDainian Tomlinson, who each played in 16 game regular seasons for their entire careers, by the end of the 2007. Brown played four 12 game and five 14 games seasons, 118 games total, and retired 43 years ago. Wide recievers Jerry Rice, Terrell Owens, and Cris Carter are the only other players in NFL history with more career touchdowns than Brown.

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What, no Wilt Chamberlain love?

 

That man was such an unstoppable force that the NBA had to change it's rules when he entered the league (they widened the lane, for one. They also said you can't just get a running start and jump from the free throw line to lay it in. ). Dude was crazy.

 

Here, I found a bio: http://www.nba.com/history/players/chamberlain_bio.html

 

Hehe, the first line calls him an unstoppable force.

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What, no Wilt Chamberlain love?

 

That man was such an unstoppable force that the NBA had to change it's rules when he entered the league (they widened the lane, for one. They also said you can't just get a running start and jump from the free throw line to lay it in. ). Dude was crazy.

 

Here, I found a bio: http://www.nba.com/history/players/chamberlain_bio.html

 

Hehe, the first line calls him an unstoppable force.

Wilt ran a marathon at his size.
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Alot of athletes use drugs.

That doesn't make it right.

If they use them too close to competition, they are banned.

They should be banned regardless of whether the doping is occuring during the off-season or during the track calendar. Are you suggesting it's OK to dope so long as it's done far enough in advance of the track season?

It should be stated that his drug use is only confirmed in 1988. We wouldn't want to taint his vegan years starting in 1990.

That doesn't make it right either. Whether he was doping in '83/'84 or not until '88 doesn't alter the fact that he was a drugs cheat. Nor should the fact that someone may have been vegan for a period of their life make them immune from just criticism. You cheat then you taint yourself and deserve all the criticism you get.

PS - Can drugs actually make you run faster?

IMO yes.

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