athletes The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film  

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Rocky Balboa. Jake LaMotta. Roy Hobbs. The names are familiar to movie buffs and sports fans alike.The greatest athlete characters in film triumphed in a number of different sports, including boxing, baseball, football, and wrestling. But all of these top athlete characters have won over audiences with their on-screen stories.

Who are some of the best athlete characters in film? Rocky Balboa poured his heart into training – and pummeled his fists into slabs of beef – in the 1976 classic Rocky. This film athlete proved to be so popular that he appeared in seven movies over the course of 40 years. Mickey Rourke's portrayal of washed-up wrestler Randy “The Ram” Robinson in The Wrestler earned him a Golden Globe in 2009. Michael Oher from The Blind Side is another great movie athlete, as well as a real-life inspiration.

But sports films can also be funny, as proven by hilarious athlete characters like Happy Gilmore (Adam Sandler), Ricky Bobby (Will Ferrell), and, of course, Ty Webb (Chevy Chase) from Caddy Shack.

Which movie athlete do you think deserves the number-one spot on this list? Vote the best roles up to the top, and add any characters missing from the list.

1
+ - 42 6
Rocky Balboa is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Rocky Balboa Rocky V, Rocky IV, Rocky II

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2
+ - 31 11
Apollo Creed is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Apollo Creed Rocky IV, Rocky, Rocky II

3
+ - 27 11
Michael Oher is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Michael Oher The Blind Side

4
+ - 28 14
Dottie Hinson is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Dottie Hinson A League of Their Own

5
+ - 20 10
Happy Gilmore is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Happy Gilmore Happy Gilmore

6
+ - 18 9
Daniel Larusso is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Daniel Larusso The Karate Kid, Part II, The Karate Kid

7
+ - 20 13
Roy Hobbs is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Roy Hobbs The Natural

8
+ - 15 9
Ricky 'Wild Thing' Vaughn is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Ricky "Wild Thing" Vaughn Major League II, Major League

9
+ - 15 10
Adonis Creed is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Adonis Creed

10
+ - 19 14
Jake LaMotta is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Jake LaMotta Raging Bull

11
+ - 20 15
Daniel E. 'Rudy' Ruettiger is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film

12
+ - 17 13
Ricky Bobby is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Ricky Bobby Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby

13
+ - 12 8
Willie Mays Hayes is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Willie Mays Hayes Major League, Major League II

14
+ - 15 12
Benjamin Franklin Rodriguez is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film

15
+ - 12 9
Rod Tidwell is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Rod Tidwell Jerry Maguire

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16
+ - 11 8
Peter La Fleur is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Peter La Fleur Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story

17
+ - 13 11
Crash Davis is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Crash Davis Bull Durham

18
+ - 13 11
Jess is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Jess Bhamra Bend It Like Beckham, When Harry Met Sally...

19
+ - 12 10
Ty Webb is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Ty Webb Caddyshack

20
+ - 14 13
Johnny Lawrence is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Johnny Lawrence The Karate Kid

21
+ - 10 9
Shane Falco is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Shane Falco The Replacements

22
+ - 9 8
Ranker Video v
Gordon Bombay D2: The Mighty Ducks, The Mighty Ducks, D3: The Mighty Ducks

23
+ - 12 14
Marla Hooch is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Marla Hooch A League of Their Own

24
+ - 3 4
Al Czervik is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Al Czervik Caddyshack

25
+ - 11 13
Randy Robinson is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Randy Robinson The Wrestler

26
+ - 7 11
Scotty Smalls is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Scotty Smalls The Sandlot

27
+ - 1 5
Judge Elihu Smails is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Judge Elihu Smails Caddyshack

28
+ - 5 10
Minnesota Fats is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Minnesota Fats The Hustler

29
+ - 3 13
Ranker Video v

30
+ - 3 15
Don Billingsley is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Don Billingsley Friday Night Lights

31
+ - 3 15
Jimmy Chitwood is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Athlete Characters in Film
Jimmy Chitwood