Ultimate Athletes Countdown: Babe Didrikson Zaharias

Ultimate Athletes Countdown: Babe Didrikson Zaharias

Ultimate Athlete

Ultimate Athletes Countdown: Babe Didrikson Zaharias


We're counting down the Top 10 male and female all-time Ultimate Athletes. Previously: Lolo Jones, LeBron James, Mary Lou Retton, Michael Jordan, Cheryl Miller, Ray Lewis, Kelly Amonte-Hiller, Allen Iverson, Bonnie Blair, Dave Winfield, Mary Decker Slaney, Jim Brown, Lisa Leslie, Joe Mauer, Mia Hamm, Bo Jackson and Jackie Joyner-Kersee and Jackie Robinson.

1. Babe Didrikson Zaharias

An All-American in track and basketball, won two gold medals at the 1932 Olympics. Was also the first woman to play in a men's PGA event before dominating the Women's Professional Golf Association and Ladies Professional Golf Association.


Why Her: The Associated Press named her the Woman Athlete of the 20th Century, while Sports Illustrated placed her second behind Jackie Joyner-Kersee, who is No. 2 on our list. 

Ultimate Moment: In 1945, Didrikson Zaharias made the cut at the Los Angeles Open. She remains the only woman to make the cut in a PGA Tour event.

Funky Fact: In addition to her dominance in track and field and golf, Didrikson Zaharias was also an accomplished diver, bowler and roller-skater. She was also an accomplished seamstress and made many of the outfits she wore.


More USA TODAY High School Sports