15 Top Athletes Who Never Won The Big One

Published: Tuesday, April 5 2011 4:46 p.m. MDT

Mike Terry, Deseret News
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Alpine, UT

They were beaten by MJ, the Bulls and the refs!

Richard Saunders
Provo, UT

This list doesn't make much since. Gordon Hayward actually went to the NCAA finals, but you don't include him on the list. Deron Williams too. Let's face it, Jimmer Fredette will probably never be Derron Williams good. It's time to stop the Jimmer worship and recognize him for who he is. A great college player who may or may not make it at the next level. Nothing more, nothing less.

Howard S.
Taylorsville, UT

"You didn't think we could do a list without Jimmer did you?"


No Mike, it never really occurred to me that you would leave Jimmer off such a list.

However, it did occur to me that the reason for list in the first place was to justify Jimmer's inability to lift his team to victory in the biggest game, on the biggest stage of his college career.

Riverton Cougar
Riverton, Utah

Howard, I could be wrong, but I thought the point of this list was to illistrate that someone's skill can't be measured by number of championships. For example, in the NBA, San Antonio's Parker and Duncan are both good players and have championship rings. However, there is no way they are better than Stockton and Malone.

Stockton and Malone shouln't even be on this list. Peter is right; if those games were fairly officiated, the Jazz would have two championships (or at least one).

Mount Olympus
Salt Lake, UT

Most of these guys at least got close to winning the big one. At least the final game or semi-final game.
Some not so close...

sports fan
Provo, UT

seriously quit finding excuses to keep Jimmers name in the paper, this is getting embarrassing.

Cottonwood Heights, UT

You can tell it is basketball season. You are you mixing local college kids with high profile professional athletes. But you forgot one other that was both...the late Merlin Olsen.

Ogden, UT

Yeah, I don't think you can really put guys like Andre Miller and Jimmer in the same sentence as Dan Marino and Ken Griffy Jr., guys that are considered the "best" at their sport, not just their respective college teams.

Super Ki Yi
West Jordan, UT

Worst list ever!!!

Eagle Mountain, UT

Funny Howard;

Can't stand to see a chance go by to get some anti-Jimmer garbage published. These athletes failed to win the big one despite stellar careers with awards ProvinG that they were the top athletes in thier respective sport at their level. Stockton and Malone on the NBA level and Fredette on the NCAA level. Jimmer has or will win every worthwhile MVP trophy awarded by the NCAAA for which he was elegible. That makes him the best by national consent.(we don't count your vote). Like it or not, Jimmer is the biggest thing to happen to NCAA basketball for years.
Move on!

Beaverton, OR

Every one of those MALE athletes are truly worthy to have won "the big one", but it seems that their teams also let them down. They just seemed to stop short of the finish line, all burned out.

How about the top 15 FEMALE athletes that almost made it? It seems that people think that sports revolves around the guys, when there are truly capable women out there as well. (Love Mia Hamm and Gabby Reece!)

Orem, UT

what about lebron?

Lincoln, NE

So let me get this straight: Guys like Ted Williams and Dan Marino, who are among the best to ever play at their respective positions, are on the same list with guys like Andre Miller and Jimmer Fredette, guys who will be forgotten the second they stop playing, if not sooner? Would other sportswriters agree with the picks on this list? Probably, except for the obvious: Van Horn, Miller, and Fredette. When I say the title of this list, I laughed, because I knew it was just another way to metion Jimmer's name in the newspaper. I have an idea for you guys at the Deseret News. How about this list: Athlete's who breathe oxygen? Or how about this one: Athletes who live on planet Earth. Come on guys, let it die already. Jimmer was fun to watch. Good. Time to move on.

Saint Louis, MO

Game six against MJ was very "mysterious". With the game on the line, Shannon Anderson had a breakaway. Pippen could not catch him so he slammed the backboard to vibrate it so that the layup spun out. There was no call. The Bulls won with the next game to be in Utah. Again, very mysterious.

Salt Lake City, UT

Weird list! Mixed with local players and national players and both amateur and professional. Don't really think a star even of Jimmer's caliber would make such a list. There are too many before even him.

The top 15 would have a lot bigger names than what we have here. Just a weird article and list all together. Not sure it makes much sense.

Salt Lake City, UT

Pretty sure that:

Dominique Wilkins
Elgin Baylor
Steve Nash
Patrick Ewing
Bernard King

and countless collegians would make the list before Jimmer and Andre. And that's just basketball. Again, just a very weird list. Not sure what Mr. Sorenson was trying to accomplish here.

Cedar Hills, UT

The fact that Dan Marino is not #1, and that Stockton and Malone are ahead of him is plain homerism.
I have come to expect better from The Deseret News sports team. This is inexcusable.

Fort Worth, TX

There are some pretty intense feelings out there! Everyone calm down, and realize this was written in Utah, for Utah reader and others with ties to the area. To many of us from Utah Stockton and Malone were much bigger than Marino (a state that has no NFL team). And for all of the Jimmer haters, sorry guys, they would not even have thought of this article without him. So just calm down, relax and cut deseret news a break!!!

Provo, UT

Even with the Utah nature of the list, this author has a short memory.

For example, Merlin Olsen (and nobody in his right mind would say that Jimmer, Miller, or Van Horn is in this guys league as an athlete) could be on this list...

Or Rulon Jones who played for Utah State and the Broncos.

Or Kevin Dyson of Clearfield HS/Utah/Tennessee Titans fame.

Or Vance Law of Provo HS/Major League Baseball fame.

Expanding the list a bit from Utah but obvious big ones like Reggie Miller, Fran Tarkenton, Olsen's teammates like Jack Youngblood and even members of the original Fearsome Foursome, Jones teammates like Randy Gradishar, Karl Mecklenburg, Dennis Smith etc. could all be on this list.

Did Eric Dickerson win the big one?

I'm just going to strongly encourage this author to do more research before any more silly lists are published.

Farmington, UT

Other candidates: Pete Maravich, Ty Cobb, Eric Dickerson, Gale Sayers, Dick Butkus, Dan Fouts, Patrick Ewing, Reggie Miller, OJ Simpson.

Danbury, CT

OK, weird list, but you people who think Jimmer has no talent are just plain strange. I'm as disappointed as anyone they didn't make it farther, but what championships have you guys ever won??? I don't see anyone at the top of anything making the criticisms, just mostly us bottom-dwellers.

And how can you predict this guy's future saying he'll never make it at the next level? The NBA players who've played with Jimmer say he's great - who are you to say otherwise??

As for Sour Saunders, I don't "worship" any players, but we admire Jimmer for being a great athlete who played pretty consistently at the top of his game all season AND is a great kid and role model. He represents our values well and I am immensely proud of him and able to talk about what he stands for with most everyone I meet. There aren't too many people on the national or world stage (especially these days) that you can say THAT about.

Ernest T. Bass
Bountiful, UT

Two problems with this:
1-These are all team sports, not individual. If these guys were golfers or tennis players you would have an arguement. Being that football has 21 other starters (offense + defensen) and even more if you count special teams, Bball has 4 other guys and baseball has 8 other guys, you cannot point to one player and say "they" didn't win big.
When it's a team sport it simply doesn't come down to one player.
2-Jimmer isn't even close to any of those other guys. At best he's a backup for a couple of years in the NBA than maybe a nice Euro career. That's it. To lump him with those other guys is insulting to the other guys.

Provo, UT

Not sure if winning the big one goes to college championships old school for this list but Simpson and Ewing were part of National Champion college teams. But I would agree with the list above has more credence then putting guys like Jimmer, Miller and Van Horn on this list.

Cedar City, Ut

Why Jimmer made this list i do not know.

Danbury, CT

Ernest T.

How do you know??? What are YOUR credentials? How good are you at predicting whatever it is you do for your day job? Can you pick stocks too?

I'm sure a few of these other guys would not feel the insult you imagine. I advise you to seek counseling for whatever it is in you that makes you see other people in this way.

Your two points seem to contradict one another - you say it is a team effort and then for Jimmer where he's pulled the team along MUCH farther than they would have gone, you totally discredit him. Are you saying Jimmer scored all those baskets because of Emery or Abuo?

Salt Lake City, UT

Elgin Baylor actually retired nine games into the 71-72 season. The Lakers started 6-3, but Elgin quit after a 2nd straight loss; the Fakers immediately went on their 33 game win streak and then won the title. I've never seen whether his teammates voted him a ring or playoff share.

Provo, UT

that picture of malone with his hand on stockton's head is priceless.

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