15 Actors Who Played Sports
It comes as a surprise when you find out that your favorite celebrity could have been famous for something other than what they do now. Many actors stumbled upon acting and found that they were good at it, and made it a full time career. There is a long list of actors who have worked weird and humbling jobs before getting their big break. A few of those actors also played sports. It’s easy to tell that some actors have an athletic background by some of the roles they are choose to play, others will surprise you.
Tom Selleck You may know Tom Selleck as Thomas Magnum or Dr. Richard Burke. Selleck was one of the biggest T.V. stars in the 80’sand 90’s. Before his mustache made him so famous, Selleck was a golden boy growing up in Sherman Oaks, CA. After high school, he juggled a modeling career and USC, where he went on a basketball scholarship in the 1960’s.
Matthew Fox Mattew Fox is known for his roles in Party of Five and the T.V. series Lost. Matthew Fox has had a long-lasting career in cult T.V. shows. Fox grew up in Wyoming then moved to Deerfield Academy in Massachusetts after graduating high school. From there, he went on to Columbia University. He played football for the prestigious school, going 0-30 for a combined three seasons. I never said these guys were good, I just said that they played sports.
Forest Whitaker This one may come as a shocker. Forest Whitaker is one of the most versatile actors working right now. Forest Whitaker has taken on thrillers like Phone Booth and Panic Room, and Academy-Award winning dramas such as The Last King of Scotland. Beyond acting, Whitaker can sing opera, too. Whitaker was a music major in college at USC, but what many people don’t know is that he got into college on a football scholarship. He left USC for UC Berkeley to pursue acting, on another scholarship.
Dwayne Johnson Dwayne Johnson was first introduced to the public as the The Rock. He was a slick talking wrestler for the WWF and was one of their most popular characters. He reinvented himself and his career to becoming a serious and respected actor. Before all the acting gigs and body slams, Johnson helped his University of Miami football team take the national championship in 1991. After graduating, he played two seasons in the Canadian Football League, but then turned to professional wrestling after he was cut from the team.
Jim Caviezel Jim Caviezel is Jesus, or he at least played Jesus in Mel Gibson’s Passion film. You have to be a pretty special guy to be chosen to play the savior of man. Caviezel actually had roles in lots of great movies and TV shows, before Passion, from The Wonder Years and Murder She Wrote to The Thin Red Line and Pay It Forward. Before he got into acting, Caviezel was a high school basketball star in Seattle. He also played in community college, although a foot injury dashed his hopes of making it to the NBA.
Dean Cain Long before Dean Cain became the host of the show Ripley’s Believe It or Not, and filled the shoes of Christopher Reeve and became Superman, he was a football star at Princeton University. Cain, was a defensive back and set a national record for interceptions with 12 in a single season in 1987. He later signed with the Buffalo Bills before hurting his knee, which was the end of his athletic career.
Bill Cosby Bill Cosby was once a beloved comedian and actor. He was the creator and star of The Cosby Show. Before the movies, the television shows and sexual assault scandal Cosby attended Temple University on a track and field scholarship. He ran track and played fullback for the Owls football team in the early 1960’s, after his time in the Navy.
John Goodman John Goodman is a longtime actor who has had famous roles in the television sitcom Rosanne and in movies like The Blues Brothers 2, The Big Lewbowski, and O Brother, Where Art Thou?. He even played famous baseball player, Babe Ruth in the biopic, The Babe. Before he got into acting, John Goodman attended Southwest Missouri State, now known as just Missouri State in the 1970’s. He played football there before getting hurt.
Mark Harmon Mark Harmon is now known as the wise veteran of his team on the television show NCIS. Before acting, Harmon was a college football player. He was a good one at that. Harmon was the starting quarterback for UCLA in 1972 and 1973. He led the Bruins to 17 wins in 22 games. Football was in Harmon’s blood. His father, Tom, won the Heisman Trophy in 1940 at Michigan.
Tommy Lee Jones Academy Award winner Tommy Lee Jones played football at the prestigious Harvard University, where he graduated cum laude. He played offensive guard and was apart of Harvard’s undefeated 1968 varsity football team. Jones was an all-league offensive guard in the 1960’s and he also shares a room on campus with Al Gore. In 1068, Jones was part of the played in a classic season-ending tie between unbeaten rivals Yale that.
Ed O’Neill Ed O’Neill was introduced to many as Al Bundy, the dim-witted shoe salesman and father in the show Married With Children. Before his acting career kicked off he played college football Youngstown State in Ohio. O’Neill went to school on a scholarship as a defensive lineman. O’Neill became an actor sometime after the Pittsburgh Steelers cut him in 1969.
Ashton Kutcher With one look at Ashton Kutcher you wouldn’t believe that he was once a football player. Before becoming the star of the popular That 70’s Show and, creating and hosting MTV’s Punk’d, he played football for Clear Creek Amana High School in Homestead, Iowa. He went to the University of Iowa but did not finish, due to getting a modeling contract. He now coaches at the high school level when he isn’t filming.
Jamie Foxx Jamie Foxx is an Academy Award-winning actor and star of films like Stealth, Jar Head, Ray and the most recent remake of Annie. Jamie Foxx received his start as an actor on the variety show In Living Color. Before that he played basketball and football in high school. I don’t know if Foxx was better at basketball than football or vice versa, but seeing as he played the role of quarterback Willie Beaman in Any Given Sunday, I’m betting he was better at football.
Terry Crews Funny man Terry Crews has made a name for himself playing comedy roles in movies like White Chicks, Friday After Next and on the television shoe Everybody Hates Chris. After high school, Crews received a full-ride athletic scholarship for football at Western Michigan University. As a defensive end for the WMU Broncos, Crews earned All-Conference honors and helped his team win the Mid-American Conference Championship in 1988. Crews was drafted by the Los Angeles Rams in the 11th round of the 1991 NFL Draft. His NFL career included stints with the Rams, the San Diego Chargers, the Washington Redskins, and the Philadelphia Eagles.
Will Ferrell We know that Will Ferrell is one of the funniest men alive, and we know that he’s a huge sports fan, with perhaps his greatest allegiance being to the USC Trojans. Ferrell’s love of sports does not stop in the bleachers. He was once on the field. During his senior year of high school, Ferrell was a place kicker. He kicked 14 field goals and made 41 of 50 extra points that year.