The Smartest Professional Athletes People In Sports
Ultimate List
4  reranks 6,098 votes 943 voters 67,308 views more info

The Smartest Professional Athletes

List Criteria: Vote up the pro athletes you know (or believe) to be the smartest in the leagues

The smartest professional athletes include Rhodes Scholars, 1580 SAT scorers and Ivy League standouts whose book smarts and pure intelligence is equally as impressive as their athletic ability. Smart athletes come from all sports with members of the NFL, NHL, NBA and MLB among those who could easily be doctors, lawyers and very successful businessmen.

While typically athletes are stereotyped as meatheads or big dumb animals, these athletes from football, basketball, hockey and baseball have nearly as many accomplishments off the field as they do on. These are not the athletes who skipped college or left early for the promise of big bucks playing professional sports. These are the athletes who made the tough decision to stay in school and earn a degree to carry them once their professional career ended.

Take NFL safety Myron Rolle for example. He didn't just graduate premed from Florida State University in 2 1/2 years but went on to earn a master's from Oxford. He's far from the only smarty pants in the NFL though. Ryan Fitzpatrick isn't just the fifth quarterback to throw for 300-plus yards in his debut but also the 2004 Ivy League MVP while pursuing an economics degree at Harvard.

As if we didn't need another reason to hate be jealous of professional athletes with their fame, fortune and hot wives, these highly successful athletes are also way smarter than us. Some guys have all the luck!
List is ranked by a combination of each item's votes & positioning in reranks
  • 4 ReRanks
    • Women
    • Men
    • Age
    • Region
  • See list ranked by
</> Rerank List
Score
  1. 1
    Up 244
    Down 91
    1972 More
    87
  2. 2
    Up 269
    Down 117
    1988 More
    84
  3. 3
    Up 306
    Down 157
    1976 More
    83
  4. 4
    Up 256
    Down 124
    1974 More
    83
  5. 5
    Up 193
    Down 108
    1978 More
    83
  6. 6
    Up 161
    Down 126

    most listed
    Tom Brady

    1977 More
    80
    added by: qzsp
  7. 7
    Up 92
    Down 50
    1979 More
    71
    added by: hookstyler
  8. 8
    Up 91
    Down 42
    1961 More
    67
    added by: hookstyler
  9. 9
    Up 70
    Down 46
    1966 More
    67
    added by: hookstyler
  10. 10
    Up 134
    Down 104
    1982 More
    63
  11. 11
    Up 94
    Down 108
    1984 More
    58
  12. 12
    Up 45
    Down 85
    1969 More
    53
  13. 13
    Up 68
    Down 96
    1986 More
    53
  14. 14
    Up 56
    Down 62
    1949 More
    52
    added by: zxray
  15. 15
    Up 86
    Down 112
    1980 More
    51
  16. 16
    Up 33
    Down 40
    1951 More
    49
    added by: DavidBrands
    For his time there was no quarterback who could read defenses and surgically connect on passes ... more
  17. 17
    Up 57
    Down 102
    1978 More
    49
  18. 18
    Up 50
    Down 76
    1976 More
    46
  19. 19
    Up 40
    Down 79
    1980 More
    45
  20. 20
    Up 12
    Down 19
    1927 More
    45
    added by: zxray
  21. 21
    Up 11
    Down 18
    1960 More
    44
    added by: vijaymohanp
  22. 22
    Up 31
    Down 72
    1970 More
    44
  23. 23
    Up 33
    Down 4

    ranked low on reranks
    David Robinson

    1965 More
    44
    added by: username001
    Widely considered one of the greatest centers in both college and NBA history. Robinson scored ... more
  24. 24
    Up 18
    Down 35

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Mike Marshall

    1943 More
    42
    added by: Rat Calabrese
  25. 25
    Up 32
    Down 10

    ranked low on reranks
    Bruce Lee

    1940 More
    40
    added by: zxray
  26. 26
    Up 25
    Down 77

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Chris Young

    1979 More
    40
  27. 27
    Up 17
    Down 40
    1954 More
    40
    added by: Rat Calabrese
  28. 28
    Up 50
    Down 31

    ranked low on reranks
    Magic Johnson

    40
    added by: jc.osen96
    The most creative passer in the game of Basketball 
  29. 29
    Up 30
    Down 12

    ranked low on reranks
    Julius Erving

    1950 More
    39
    added by: charlieup2
  30. 30
    Up 32
    Down 74
    1979 More
    39
  31. 31
    Up 25
    Down 67
    1982 More
    38
  32. 32
    Up 24
    Down 61
    1988 More
    37
  33. 33
    Up 23
    Down 68
    1980 More
    36
  34. 34
    Up 39
    Down 35
    1945 More
    34
    added by: Rat Calabrese
  35. 35
    Up 20
    Down 70

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Douglas Murray

    1980 More
    34
  36. 36
    Up 18
    Down 63

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Michael Doleac

    1977 More
    34
  37. 37
    Up 17
    Down 9
    1940 More
    34
    added by: zxray
  38. 38
    Up 10
    Down 2
    1976 More
    33
    added by: BenjaminFarias
  39. 39
    Up 17
    Down 11
    1943 More
    33
    added by: charlieup2
  40. 40
    Up 21
    Down 17
    1939 More
    32
    added by: zxray
  41. 41
    Up 15
    Down 10
    1952 More
    32
    added by: zxray
  42. 42
    Up 68
    Down 85

    Kobe Bryant

    32
    added by: JimmyCooper
  43. 43
    Up 15
    Down 62
    1981 More
    32
  44. 44
    Up 16
    Down 70
    1988 More
    31
  45. 45
    Up 17
    Down 75

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Jody Gerut

    1977 More
    31
  46. 46
    Up 6
    Down 12
    1965 More
    30
    added by: jschro1861
  47. 47
    Up 19
    Down 21
    1948 More
    30
    added by: zxray
  48. 48
    Up 7
    Down 5
    1905 More
    29
    added by: bfrank53
    Became owner of Coca-Cola of Western Europe
  49. 49
    Up 7
    Down 5

    Novak Đoković

    06.08.1987 More
    29
    added by: vulovic
  50. 50
    Up 6
    Down 5
    No image
    1953 More
    29
    added by: bfrank53
    Only perfect Wanderlic score ever.
  51. 53 +

    Something missing? Add it!

Is this list missing something?
RANKERS WHO ADDED ITEMS + 6 MORE

items 1 - 50 of 52

think you can do better?

Rerank This List
why?

got a blog or website?

embed this list
why?

viewers of this list also saw

more popular lists