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w2 GOAT Olympics Jim Thorpe


Jim Thorpe 1887 – 1953.   James Francis Thorpe Wa-Tho-Huk, translated as “Bright Path” (Sac and Fox Nation) Oklahoma.

Considered one of the most versatile athletes of modern sports!

Attended Carlisle Indian Industrial School, Pennsylvania, x2 All-American football under coach Pop Warner (1871–1954).  Recorded records in 1907 in track & field, football, baseball, lacrosse, and ballroom dancing, 1912 won the intercollegiate ballroom dancing championship  Played collegiate and professional, football, baseball, and basketball.  Thorpe scored 4 field goals in an 18–15 1st upset of top ranked Harvard. 11–1 season in 1912 Carlisle won the national collegiate championship.

Attended the 1912 Summer Olympics, Stockholm Sweden.  1st Native American to win 2 GOLD metals for the United States (5 event pentathlon and 10 event decathlon). Won 8 of the 15 events. Someone stole his shoes just before the competition, he ran in a mismatched pair including one from a trash can and won the gold medal.

In 1913 the International Olympic Committee (IOC) stripped his metals for violating amateurism rules, getting paid room and board for a summer playing summer baseball.  In 1983, 30 years after his death, the IOC restored his Olympic medals and titles and in 2022, relisted as the sole champion in both events.

In 1913-19, Thorpe signed with the New York Giants, played  6 seasons. 1915, Thorpe joined the American football team Canton Bulldogs, helping them win 3 professional championships as a running back, defensive back, placekicker and punter.  Full records are not available it is reported scoring 27 touchdowns and 224 points during the season,  rushing 191 times for 1,869 yards.

1st President of the American Professional Football Association, (NFL 1922).

(AP) Associated Press ranked him as the “greatest athlete” from the first 50 years of the 20th century,

Pro Football Hall of Fame inaugural class in 1963,

Jim Thorpe, Pennsylvania  named in his honor.

Appeared in several films, portrayed by Burt Lancaster 1951 Jim Thorpe – All-American. In the 1912 Olympics Thorpe also received two challenge prizes, donated by King Gustav V of Sweden for the decathlon and Czar Nicholas II of Russia for the pentathlon. Receiving his prize, King Gustav said, “You, sir, are the greatest athlete in the world”, to which Thorpe replied, “Thanks, King”.

Looking Up to Bright Path… w2

Copyright: Willis Whiteside 2023 All Rights Reserved.

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