This article lists famous sports quotes from writers, sportswriters, coaches, and athletes. The quotes cover various sports and include humorous and inspirational statements. The list is focused on sports in the United States but can be applied universally.
Many different people have made important statements on the subject of sports and it can be difficult to select just a few famous sports quotes. The list below identifies some popular speakers from a couple of different domains. Writers and poets make up the first grouping. These people typically make their comments outside the realm of direct play or self-involvement, and as such often have more of an onlooker’s or bystander’s point of view. Then come some famous sports quotes from sportswriters and analysts. These people typically spend a lot of time studying athletics and their comments often reflect this view. Coaches and coaches generally also have a lot to say on the subject, and of course, no list would be complete without at least a few quotes from the athletes themselves. This list is mostly focused on sports in the United States, but it could be applied more universally as well.
Golf is a nice pampered walk.
–Mark Twain, American science fiction writer
Basketball, a game that won’t suit people until they’ve lifted the basket to their navels and brought the giraffes back to the zoo.
–Ogden Nash, American poet
So miserable is the man who will tire even without any cause for tiredness… and so frivolous is he that, though full of a thousand reasons for tiredness, the slightest thing, like playing billiards or hitting a ball, is enough to amuse him.
–Blaise Pascal, French philosopher
Sports commentators and journalists
Professionalism in tennis…has only resulted in ill-behaved children making billionaires, producing an onslaught of moody deserters and many kids with hair that looks as if bats are sleeping on it…Meanwhile, my head is spinning at the thought that I have seen tennis progress from Don Budge and Alice Marble to Farrah Fawcett becoming the mother-in-law of John McEnroe.
–Dan Jenkins, American author and sportscaster
The two most important jobs in America are held by foreigners: room service and goal kicking.
–Beano Cook, American television sportscaster
When Mike Tyson gets angry, you don’t need a referee, you need a priest.
–Jim Murray, sports columnist for the American newspaper
Coaches and trainers
When you say you’re a father, people ask when you became a parent. When you say you are a cardinal they tell you to work hard because the next step is the pope. But when you say you’re a Dodger, everyone knows you’re in the major leagues.
–Tommy LaSorda, Major League Baseball coach
I was young and fearless at the time, but always enjoyed going to Cartmel. They called me ‘Cartmellor’, probably because I came back on a stretcher.
Stan Mellor, American jockey and trainer
If you want to know what you’ll look like in ten years, look in the mirror after running a marathon.
–Jeff Scaff, American cardiologist and advocate of running for exercise
There are three things you can do in a baseball game: you can win, you can lose, or it can rain.
–Charles ‘Casey’ Stengel, American major league baseball coach
From the athletes themselves
Champions are not made in gyms. Champions are made of something they hold deep inside: a desire, a dream, a vision.
–Muhammad Ali, American boxer
You win some, you lose some, you destroy some.
–Dale Earnhardt Sr., American racing driver
An athlete cannot run with money in his pocket. He has to run with hope in his heart and dreams in his head.
— Emil Zatopek, Czech runner
When I enter the field I don’t have to think about anything. If I have a problem off the pitch, I find after playing my mind is clearer and I can come up with a better solution. It’s like therapy. It relaxes me and allows me to solve problems.
–Michael Jordan, American basketball player
Doctors and scientists said it was impossible to pass the four-minute mile, that one would die trying. So when I got off the track after collapsing at the finish line, I thought I was dead.
–Roger Bannister, American runner