2 Chainz the basketball player, Dwayne Johnson the football player, Dean Cain the volleyball captain… sound odd? It shouldn’t. These stars and more performed first not as entertainers, but as college atheletes. Which of your favorite stars were sports stars back before their fame?
- Tauheeps Epps (2 Chainz)
Epps attended Alabama State University, majored in psychology, and played as a guard for the basketball team. He attended the college on an athletic scholarship and was reportedly a standout player.
- John Wayne
Loooooong ago, Wayne was a guard for the University of Southern California’s football team. After a year on the team, Wayne sustained an injury bodysurfing off of Newport Beach. He hid the ailment from his coach and try to play through the pain, but was eventually cut from the team in his second year.
- Matthew Fox
This Lost star attended Columbia University and played wide receiver for their football team. Apparently, the team itself wasn’t anything exceptional and Fox ended his college career with a win-loss record of only 2-38.
- Mark Harmon
Long before this actor was solving crimes for the navy on NCIS, he was the starting quarterback for the UCLA Bruins. One year, he received the Nation Football Foundation Award for All-Around Excellence for his outstanding performance and, during his two year playing career, the team only lost five games.
- Meg Whitman
The new CEO of Hewlitt-Packard is remarkable in terms of her professional success, but that's not all that she's good at it. The powerful woman also played squash and lacrosse during her time at Princeton University. The lessons she learned from her athletic background have also carried over to her career, and it seems like she's winning.
- Dean Cain
Before he was Superman, Cain was attending Princeton University on an athletic scholarship. He was captain of the volleyball team, but shined as a football player (he set an NCAA record for 12 interceptions in just one season). After graduation, he signed with the Buffalo Bills, but suffered a knee injury in training camp that would end his athletic career.
- Dwayne Johnson (The Rock)
This one might not surprise you: The Rock played football growing up. He attended the University of Miami on a full athletic scholarship and played defensive tackle for their football team. The now-famous entertainer even helped the team win the National Championship back in 1991.
- Burt Reynolds
Reynolds went to Florida State University on a full scholarship and played halfback for the football team. Unfortunately, he suffered an injury in his first game as a member of the team. Later that season, a car accident would further aggravate the injury and force Reynolds to give up the sport.
- Forest Whitaker
Here’s another case of injury ending a promising sports career. After receiving a football scholarship to Cal. State Polytechnic University in Pomona, Whitaker soon suffered a back injury that would no longer allow him to play. This is when his focus switched to music and acting (silver lining).
- Carl Weathers
Before fighting Rocky as Apollo Creed, Weathers played linebacker for Long Beach City College and then San Diego State University. This was all before he moved on to the professional level and played for the Oakland Raiders and then the BC Lions in the CFL. In total, Weathers played in 26 professional games over the course of four years.
- Channing Tatum
In 22 Jump Street, Tatum plays college football very believably. That might have something to do with his background as an actual college football player. The movie star attended Glenville State College in West Virginia on an athletic scholarship before becoming a household name as an actor.
- Elsa Hosk
The 24 year old Victoria's Secret model has taken the world by storm, but she used to storm the court back in her home country, Sweden. Before modeling Hosk was a professional basketball player (yes, she was just that good), and she was even the team capatin.
- Phil Robertson
The patriarch of everyone's favorite country clan didn't always focus on the the call of the ducks. Long before Duck Dynasty, Robertson played starting quarterback at Louisiana Tech for two years. When he chose to leave football to hunt fulltime he was replaced with Terry Bradshaw (who ended up winning four Superbowls.