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The Sexiest Female Athletes...the winners and losers
by: Shawn Griffin from
Pg 1 of 1

In yet another merging of sports and entertainment, US magazine and ESPN are getting together to bring you "The World's Sexiest Athlete," which will air on January 27 at 8PM EST. Although this contest includes both men and women, I am going to focus on the women in this column. 

What a surprise, huh?

Needless to say, being a stupid, testosterone-filled male, this contest caught my attention as I was perusing the other day. I clicked right on the link and was brought to a page with a March Madness-style bracket system where the athletes go head-to-head, with us fans voting for our favorites. As the voting goes, so do the athletes. The sexiest players stay when the finalists are revealed in January -- the rest go home.

Let's move on and break down the field. I am not going to go over all 30, rather, I am going to take a look at the contenders, pretenders, long shots, and a few of the "stinkers." 

Contenders (odds in parentheses)

Anna Kournikova:
The clear-cut favorite. She would probably win a "sexiest woman, period" contest, let alone "athlete." This is like having a "greatest movie" contest pitting the Godfather against the likes of "Dude, Where's my Car"…I mean, have you looked at her lately? She seems to get better-looking every time I see her on the front of a magazine or on television. Speaking of magazines, why do I always see scantily-clad major female stars on the front of foreign mags at Barnes and Nobles, but they are dressed up like nuns on the front of the American magazines (FHM and Maxim are the exceptions)? It's like when actors make commercials for Japanese companies but never would even consider making a commercial for American television. Do they think we won't know they did this stuff simply because it wasn't in the United States? That being said, if Anna doesn't win, this contest is more corrupt than NFL referees.

Gabrielle Reece:
Gabrielle tips the scales at 160 pounds. Normally, I would say that weighing over 125 pounds would automatically disqualify a woman from winning anything with the title "sexy" in it. However, the 31-year-old beach volleyball player stands 6'3. And if any of you saw her in Playboy, you can attest to the fact that she carries this weight VERY well. She has also been the cover girl for magazines like Shape, Elle, Harper's Bazaar, Women's Sports and Fitness. She is a sexy athlete who deserves consideration as the sexiest. 

Jelona Dokic:
Jelena is an 18-year-old tennis player who has been compared to Anna. Calm down, breath deeply, relax. There are some differences. Unlike Anna, she owns three career singles titles. She also won the 1999 Hopman Cup with partner Mark Philippoussis. She has blond hair and stands 5'8. Very nice. She will compete with Anna for this title sooner rather than later, but she has to do something to brand her into the male psyche. Being photographed on a sun-drenched nude beach and acting like she is not aware of it would be a good start.

Mia Hamm:
Mia is on the short list because just about everybody has heard of her. And no, she is not the one who ripped off her shirt after winning the World Cup a few years back. You are thinking of Brandi Chastain, who is also one of the contestants. Mia is 5'5 and rock-solid. She is in excellent shape, as soccer players do a lot of running back and forth. She is widely considered the best female soccer player in the world. This has to count for something.

Lokelani McMichael:
Few have heard of her, which won't help. But one look at the 5'8, 24-year-old tri-athlete and you will see why I put her on this list as one of the contenders. She is stunning. According to ESPN, at the age of 18, Lokelani became the youngest female ever to participate in the Ironman competition. She's been participating for six years now and plans to keep going into her 80s. Go ahead and re-read that last part. She plans to keep participating in triathlons INTO HER 80s. Do you know what that means? You can marry her and NEVER worry about her getting fat. That is a HUGE plus. She's my personal favorite. Choosing between her and Anna, though, is like being offered a choice of filet mignon or lobster. Either way, you win. 


Amanda Coetzer:
Yet another tennis player on the list. I think I may start following the women's tour a little more closely this tennis season. The 5-2, 30 year old Amanda owns 16 career titles, with her highest ranking coming in 1997 when she peaked at #3 in the world. The cute blonde's nickname is the "little assassin." She is very nice looking, and with her on the court qualifications, she may get a fair amount of votes. Watch out for this little one with the killer looks. The "Little Assassin." That nickname alone will get her some votes.

Dominique Dawes:
The 5 foot 2 and ˝ inch, 110-pound, 25-year-old gymnast is a former Olympian who won bronze and gold medals. The important part of that last sentence is the fact that she's a gymnast. That automatically puts her in the running for the title, in my eyes. She has appeared on Broadway and in a Prince video. Appearing in a Prince video is a big plus…I mean, Prince only has hot chicks in his videos. Dominique definitely meets the requirements and I wouldn't mind seeing her come away with the title.

Amy Acuff:
This 26-year-old high jumper stands tall at 6-2 and 145 pounds. Amy is a two-time Olympian, a three-time U.S. Outdoor Champ, the 2001 U.S. Indoor champ, a three-time NCAA Indoor champ and a two-time NCAA Outdoor Champ. She has appeared in Vogue, Rolling Stone and Glamour AND she did a commercial for Fruit of the Loom UNDERWEAR. She also helped to organize a calendar in which she and some of her other female track mates all posed nude to publicize her sport. That's right. She was naked. It worked for me. Go AMY!


The Williams Sisters:
Not only are they not good-looking, they have a psycho father who would kick your ass (that's all he would do if you were lucky) if you brought them home past curfew. They are great tennis players, no doubt about that. Sexy? Not in a gazillion years. They shouldn't even be on the same page with the likes of Anna, Amanda and Martina. It's like putting Jim Mora on a list of the greatest head coaches in NFL history. It just doesn't work.

Monica Seles:
I can't think of what's worse -- having to look at her while she plays tennis or hearing the gut-wrenching shills she utters while returning a shot. She doesn't belong anywhere near this list. She makes the Williams sisters look like Miss Universe contestants. If they ever show a tennis match between Monica Seles and Anna, the cameraman should simply focus the lens on Anna the whole time. If he doesn't, I am not watching. 

WNBA Players:
There is a slew of WNBA players on the list of 30 candidates. Why? I have no idea. They are all big and ugly. The joke is up. We know they are not women. Just as male figure skaters are not real men, WNBA players are something other than women. It's time to come clean with it, whoever the commissioner of the WNBA is….

Downright scary:

WNBA Players 

See above.

Laila Ali

Laila is the daughter of Muhammed Ali. She is 5-10 and weighs 160 pounds. She could kick my ass, and probably yours. That being said, the more I look at her, the sexier she gets…until I think of her beating me like a drum. Scary stuff.

Holly McPeak

Holly is a beach volleyball player. Check out her picture. Her face totally invaded the lens. She looks more masculine than most men. She scares me. She is 5-7 and looks like she would spike you if you said anything to make her mad. 

Lucia Rijker

She's a kick boxer. Imagine what she would do to you if she was mad. Need I say more?

Here are some other general observations of mine regarding this "extravaganza"....

~The introduction states, "Through tireless research, we've found the 64 sexiest athletes on Earth." Didn't any of this tireless research lead you fools to women's figure skating? It's just a matter of time, in my opinion, before they start wearing thongs underneath those skirts. Trust me on this one. The only people who watch figure skating are women; make them wear thongs, and the ratings will quadruple. I don't watch figure skating, but I will if there is some 20-year-old chick prancing around on the ice in a thong. It's a disgrace that none of these beauties were put on this list. 

~Why are there so many WNBA players on the list? Out of 30 choices, four are WNBA players. The NBA propping up the WNBA is getting just a little bit old. I mean, outside of the membership of NOW (National Organization for Women -- scary bunch in their own right), does anybody else go to these games? 

~What does the winner get? I think this should depend on who wins. Anna would get a tournament championship. The inline skater would get cash and weed. The WNBA player would get a date with Ellen Degeneres.

~Why do all of the female soccer players marry or date their coaches? 

~Monica Seles is downright ugly. 

~Anna is downright hot.

~The photos just show their faces -- how about some body shots?

~The host of this show, Molly Simms, would give Anna a run for her money if she was a contestant. She is very hot.

~When is Anna going to pose for Playboy? I say within three years. 

~Speaking of Playboy, I wouldn't want to see about half the field in it. That's how sorry this collection of the so-called "sexiest" athletes is.

~Why don't they have one of these contests with female sports personalities? Suzy Kolber, Hannah Storm, Pam Oliver…, THAT would be an entertaining evening. 

~What is it with the sexy tennis players? After growing up in the 1970s and 80s watching the likes of Martina Navratilova and Billie Jean King, this is a nice change.

There you have it. Don't forget to watch -- I sure won't. Make sure you have the remote handy, though, because when they show the stinkers, you'll have to go channel surfing.

See more of Shawn's columns at!

Other Columns By Shawn Griffin

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