Faces in the Crowd (Sports Illustrated)

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Faces in the Crowd is a long-running segment from Sports Illustrated. Starting in the January 9, 1956, issue, the segment was originally titled These Faces in the Crowd.[1] The predecessor to These Faces... was a segment called Pat on the Back. It differed in that it did not just focus on unknown or amateur athletes. Contrary to Faces in the Crowd, it featured professional athletes who set milestones and celebrities who undertook an athletic endeavor. From 1956 to 2006, a total of 15,672 athletes have been featured.[2]

Video Faces in the Crowd[edit]

Video Faces in the Crowd is segment from Sports Illustrated and TAKKLE.com, which features up-and-coming high school athletes and their sports videos. The athletes are featured in the Sports Illustrated magazine, on the Sports Illustrated website and on the TAKKLE website.

Famous Faces in the Crowd[edit]

The 1950s

Athlete Sport SI Cover Date Special Notes
Bobby Fischer Chess April 30, 1956 At age 15, became youngest International Grandmaster
Althea Gibson Tennis/Golf May 21, 1956 Became first African American to win Wimbledon, and later became the first African American on the LPGA tour
Wilma Rudolph Track and Field September 3, 1956 First African American woman to win three gold medals in one Olympics
Jack Nicklaus Golf September 2, 1957 Winner of 18 professional golf majors, plus 8 senior majors
Elgin Baylor Basketball February 10, 1958 Named in 1996 as one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History. Later became general manager of the Los Angeles Clippers
Kris Kristofferson Rugby, Football, Boxing March 31, 1958 (published as Kristoffer Kristofferson)
Al Oerter Track and Field April 14, 1958 First of only two track and field athletes to win the same event in four consecutive Olympics
Bobby Unser Motor Sports July 14, 1958 Won the Indianapolis 500 three times

The 1960s

Athlete Sport SI Cover Date Special Notes
Marv Levy Football February 15, 1960 Member of Pro Football Hall of Fame
Arthur Ashe Tennis December 12, 1960 Only African American man to win the U.S. Open, Australian Open, or Wimbledon
Billie Jean King Tennis July 17, 1961 (published as Billie Jean Moffitt) Won 12 Grand Slam singles titles, 19 Grand Slam women's doubles titles, and 11 Grand Slam mixed doubles titles. Also won a combined 20 titles at Wimbledon.
Evonne Goolagong Tennis February 3, 1964 Won seven Grand Slam singles titles
Lew Alcindor (later Kareem Abdul-Jabbar) Basketball April 27, 1964 Won three NCAA titles and six NBA championships
Lanny Wadkins Golf July 20, 1964 Won 21 times on the PGA Tour, including one PGA Championship
Johnny Miller Golf August 24, 1964 Won 25 times on the PGA Tour, including one U.S. Open (with a final-round 63) and one Open Championship
Rollie Fingers Baseball September 14, 1964 Had 341 career saves
Bob Beamon Track and Field May 10, 1965 Won the gold medal in the long jump at the 1968 Olympics by setting a world record that would stand for over 20 years
Terry Bradshaw Football April 11, 1966 Quarterbacked the Pittsburgh Steelers to four Super Bowl wins
Vera Wang Figure Skating January 8, 1968 Became a world-famous fashion designer
Hubert Green Golf April 22, 1968 Won 19 times on the PGA Tour, including one U.S. Open and one PGA Championship
Chris Evert Tennis April 14, 1969 Won 18 Grand Slam singles titles
Earnie Shavers Boxing May 5, 1969 Heavyweight contender in the late 1970s; regarded as one of the hardest punchers ever
Steve Prefontaine Track and Field June 2, 1969 Movies Prefontaine and Without Limits were based on his life
Nancy Lopez Golf September 15, 1969 Won 48 times on the LPGA tour, including three majors. Married to World Series MVP Ray Knight.

The 1970s

Athlete Sport SI Cover Date Special Notes
Tony Dungy Football/Basketball/Track January 26, 1970 Coached Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Indianapolis Colts; became the first African American coach to win a Super Bowl in 2007
Bill Walton Basketball January 26, 1970 Won two NCAA titles and two NBA titles
Quinn Buckner Basketball April 17, 1972 Won NCAA title and Olympic gold medal in 1976
Tracy Austin Tennis October 15, 1973 Won the US Open twice
Wilbert Montgomery Football November 12, 1973 [3] Philadelphia Eagles starting running back in Super Bowl XV; running backs coach for two Super Bowl championship teams (St. Louis Rams in XXXIV, Baltimore Ravens in XLVII).
Bill Cartwright Basketball February 4, 1974 Won five NBA championships with the Chicago Bulls—three as a player and two as an assistant coach
Bart Conner Gymnastics April 29, 1974 Won gold medal in parallel bars at the 1979 World Championships and gold medal with Team USA at the 1984 Olympics. Married to Romanian gymnastics great Nadia Comaneci since 1996.
Brad Faxon Golf September 20, 1976 Played on the PGA Tour
John McEnroe Tennis November 8, 1976 Won 7 Grand Slam singles titles
Earvin Johnson Basketball May 23, 1977 Won 1979 NCAA title and 5 NBA Championships
Jackie Joyner-Kersee Track and Field August 29, 1977 Three-time Olympic gold medalist, and holder of the top six performances to date in the heptathlon
Carl Lewis Track and Field February 6, 1978 Won four gold medals at the 1984 Olympics, and the only other track and field athlete (after Oerter) to win the same event at four consecutive Olympics
Gary Kubiak Football November 6, 1978 Played for Denver Broncos and now is the head coach of the Denver Broncos where he won Super Bowl 50.
Sam Bowie Basketball January 29, 1979 Second overall pick of 1984 NBA Draft
Don Mattingly Baseball July 16, 1979 6 Time A.L All Star, and 1985 A.L. MVP
Payne Stewart Golf July 16, 1979 Won 11 times on the PGA Tour, including two US Opens and one PGA Championship
Herschel Walker Track and Field/Football September 10, 1979 Played in USFL and NFL
Greg LeMond Cycling November 12, 1979 Won Tour de France three times

The 1980s

Athlete Sport SI Cover Date Special Notes
Marcus Dupree Football October 27, 1980 Played in USFL and NFL
Cheryl Miller Basketball March 9, 1981 Winner of Olympic Gold Medal and two NCAA titles
Michael Andretti Motor Sports June 8, 1981 Longtime CART driver and winner of 1991 CART title; now owner of the successful Andretti Green Racing team in the IRL
Shawon Dunston Baseball June 7, 1982 Played with the Cubs and the Giants
Spud Webb Basketball May 24, 1982 Won NBA Slam Dunk Competition
Darrell Green Football July 5, 1982 Super Bowl Champion who won the NFL's Fastest Man competition
Vince Coleman Baseball/Football July 12, 1982 Played in 1985 World Series
Rodney Peete Football December 20, 1982 Host of The Best Damn Sports Show Period
Steve Alford Basketball February 21, 1983 Won one NCAA title, played four years in the NBA, now head coach at UCLA
Pernell Whitaker Boxing May 16, 1983 Gold medalist at the 1984 Olympics, and world champion in four weight classes as a professional
Jesse Jackson, Jr. Football February 13, 1984 Son of Jesse Jackson, and United States Representative 1995-2012
Al Leiter Baseball June 4, 1984 Won World Series with Toronto Blue Jays
Emmitt Smith[4] Football January 13, 1986 All-time leading rusher in NFL History
Jennifer Capriati Tennis March 30, 1987 Won gold medal at 1992 Olympics, and came back from personal problems to win three Grand Slam events in the 2000s
Kristi Yamaguchi Figure Skating February 1, 1988 Won gold at 1992 Olympics
Raghib Ismail Football/Track and Field July 25, 1988 Won national championship with Notre Dame and the Grey Cup with the Toronto Argonauts
John Olerud Baseball August 15, 1988 Winner of two World Series
Dorsey Levens Football October 24, 1988 Played with the Green Bay Packers
Michelle Akers Soccer March 13, 1989 Winner of Olympic gold medal with Team USA in 1996 Olympics, winner of 1991 and 1999 FIFA Women's World Cups with Team USA, and one of only two women named to the FIFA 100 list of the 125 greatest living soccer players in 2004
Dominique Dawes Gymnastics December 25, 1989 Member of the gold-medal winning USA team at the 1996 Olympics

The 1990s

Athlete Sport SI Cover Date Special Notes
Tiger Woods[5] Golf Sept. 24, 1990 Winner of 57 PGA Tour events to date, including 14 majors. Also the only person to hold all four professional major titles simultaneously.
Corliss Williamson Basketball April 20, 1992 Drafted by the Sacramento Kings
Marion Jones Track and Field June 22, 1992 Won three gold medals at the Sydney Olympics
Brad Friedel Soccer February 22, 1993 Played in three FIFA World Cups with the United States, and was included in the Premier League PFA Team of the Year 2002/03.
Michelle Kwan Figure Skating February 22, 1993 Winner of nine U.S. Championships and five World Championships. Appeared on cover of Sports Illustrated in 1998.
Shaun Alexander Football January 10, 1994 Three-time Pro Bowler, 2005 NFL MVP
Raef LaFrentz Basketball March 14, 1994 Has played in the NBA since 1998
Tamika Catchings Basketball May 23, 1994 2002 WNBA Rookie of the Year, twice WNBA Defensive Player of the Year
Chamique Holdsclaw Basketball January 16, 1995 1999 WNBA Rookie of the Year, six-time All-Star
Vince Carter Basketball February 13, 1995 1999 NBA Rookie of the Year, eight-time NBA All-Star
Antawn Jamison Basketball February 20, 1995 Has played in the NBA since 1998; 2004 Sixth Man Award. Traded for Vince Carter
Tim Thomas Basketball March 13, 1995 Played in the NBA
Paul Pierce Basketball April 24, 1995 Set a playoff record with 21 straight free throws made in a game
Travis Henry Football October 9, 1995 Played for Buffalo Bills
Mike Bibby Basketball June 3, 1996 Has played in the NBA since 1998
Stacy Dragila Track and Field July 22, 1996 Gold medalist in the pole vault at 1999 World Championships, 2000 Olympics, and 2001 World Championships
Ron Dayne[6] Track and Field September 16, 1996 Won Heisman Trophy December 12, 1999
Charles Howell III[7] Golf December 2, 1996 Two-time winner on the PGA Tour
Andy Roddick Tennis December 30, 1996 Won the 2003 US Open
Kerri Walsh Volleyball January 13, 1997 Gold medalist at 2004 Athens Olympics
Owen Hargreaves Soccer May 26, 1997 Player in two World Cups with England. Two time Champions League winner with Bayern Munich and Manchester United
Shane Battier Basketball June 2, 1997 Has played in the NBA since 2001
James Chico Hernandez Sombo October 21, 1997 Won World FIAS Silver and appeared on Wheaties box
Shawn Marion[8] Basketball August 3, 1998 Four-time NBA All-Star and twice on the All-NBA third team
Ben Roethlisberger[9] Football December 6, 1999 Two-time Super Bowl winning quarterback (XL and XLIII) for the Pittsburgh Steelers.

The 2000s

Athlete Sport SI Cover Date Special Notes
Joe Mauer Baseball, was featured for football December 25, 2000 American League batting champion in 2006 and 2008. 2009 American League Most Valuable Player.
Ben Gordon Basketball March 19, 2001 First-round selection of the Chicago Bulls
Allyson Felix Track and Field August 13, 2001 Gold medalist in 200 meters at the 2005 World Championships
Michelle Wie Golf August 13, 2001 Became youngest winner of any adult USGA title
Zach Parise[10] Hockey February 18, 2002 Hockey player with the Minnesota Wild.
Jennie Finch Softball March 25, 2002 Gold medalist with Team USA in 2004 Olympics. Appeared in Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue, and hosted segments on This Week in Baseball.
Tim Tebow[11] Football December 20, 2004 Won 2007 Heisman Trophy, the first sophomore ever to do so, accounted for more rushing touchdowns in 2007-8 than 51 of 118 teams other than Florida in Division 1-A.
Mike Rio Wrestling March 27, 2006 157-pounder at Lindenwood University, was the only wrestler to defend a national title, pinned all five of his opponents, was named the most outstanding wrestler of the meet.
Christian McCaffrey Football January 19, 2009 and November 25, 2013 NCAA single-season all-purpose yards record holder, AP College Football player of the year, Heisman runner-up in 2015.
Summer Ross Volleyball October 4, 2010 FIVB 2010 Youth Under-19 and Junior Under-21 world champion, the only athlete, male or female, to win both events in the same year.

See also[edit]


External links[edit]