Sports

The Best Short Male Athletes 

Tanner Arnold
Originally by
Updated September 28, 2019 7.1k votes 1.6k voters 31.2k views 111 items

List Rules Professional male athletes under 5'10" from all sports, excluding horse racing

The best short male athletes include World Series champions, Super Bowl winners, Stanley Cup hoisters and Olympic gold medalists but they all share one thing in common, their shorter stature. The best short athletes prove that despite their height, people of all shapes and sizes can be successful professional athletes. All 5'10" or shorter, these athletes are not just the best at their height but also among the best athletes of all time.

For a lot of these athletes, their height can work in their advantage or at least not pose a hindrance on their playing ability. Football players like Barry Sanders, Wes Welker and Ray Rice embrace their height and use it to run fast down the field to rack up yardage and touchdowns. Top boxers, such as the shorter ones like Mike Tyson, Rocky Marciano and Floyd Mayweather, Jr., are the same way with height not much of a factor to their sport.

But for others, being the short guy on the team means you are already at a disadvantage before you even step on the court. That surely didn't stop great short basketball players like Spud Webb, Earl Boykins and Calvin Murphy from having successful careers.

So while these short athletes might have faced adversity and been told that they would never make it, like legendary NFL player Doug Flutie was, they all worked harder and pushed further to achieve their dreams. These best short male athletes really do show that good things definitely do come in small packages.
list ordered by
1
Diego Maradona is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Age: 59
2
Bruce Lee is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Dec. at 33 (1940-1973)
3
Lionel Messi is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Age: 32
4
Barry Sanders is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Age: 51
5
Spud Webb is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Age: 56
6
Muggsy Bogues is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Age: 54
7
Pelé is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Age: 79
8
Rocky Marciano is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Dec. at 46 (1923-1969)
9
Mike Tyson is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Age: 53
10
Andrés Iniesta is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Age: 35
11
Yogi Berra is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Age: 94
12
Walter Payton is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Dec. at 46 (1953-1999)
13
Floyd Mayweather Jr. is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
14
Manny Pacquiáo is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Age: 41
15
Willie Mays is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Age: 88
16
Emmitt Smith is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Age: 50
17
Doug Flutie is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Age: 57
18
Joe Morgan is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Age: 76
19
Wes Welker is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Age: 38
20
Jesse Owens is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Dec. at 67 (1913-1980)
21
Darren Sproles is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Age: 36
22
Martin St. Louis is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
23
Mel Ott is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Dec. at 49 (1909-1958)
24
Dustin Pedroia is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Age: 36
25
Earl Boykins is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Earl Boykins Age: 43