Saturday, June 30, 2007

1992 Classic World Class Athletes - Carl Lewis

Today I'm going to focus on the greatest athlete to come out of the University of Houston. That's quite a bold, definitive statement. I wouldn't say that about the best basketball player to come out of UH or the best football player. But I can be confident about this statement because I'm talking about what many consider the greatest athlete in history. Of course I'm talking about Carl Lewis.

Most people are aware of his Olympic history: 10 Olympic medals including 9 gold. Some people are aware of his World Championship history: 10 medals including 8 gold. But let's look at his time at the University of Houston.

Carl selected the University of Houston over Tennessee. As a freshman in 1980, he won the Southwest Conference indoor long jump as well as the NCAA indoor and outdoor long jump competitions. He qualified for the Olympics (although the USA did not compete due to the boycott) and was ranked number 5 in the world.

In 1981, he won the NCAA indoor and outdoor long jump championships as well as the NCAA 100 meters. Being rated number one in the world in the long jump and 100 meters on top of being the NCAA champion, he had nothing left to prove in college and decided not to pursue his final two years of eligibility. He also won the Sullivan Award as the USA Amateur Athlete of the Year.

Today's cards are from the 1992 Classic World Class Athletes set. This set featured 60 cards if athletes from a variety of sports. The set primarily focused on Olympic athletes, but it also featured NBA players, tennis players, football players, and boxers. The set also features another UH track great, Leroy Burrell.

Carl Lewis is featured on card #1 in the set as well as card #58. He was also featured on a promo card.

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