Athletics is a huge aspect of Survivor, and contestants often find it important to keep their tribes physically strong in order for them to perform well in challenges. Tribes with former professional athletes generally keep those players in the early stages of the game with the goal of eliminating them before the individual immunity challenges begin.
Upon SurvivorFor more than 40 seasons, professional soccer, basketball, baseball, hockey and soccer players have competed, as well as some Olympians. They have gone from being the first starter of a season to winning the game and the title of Sole Survivor, but all were attacked at one point or another for their athletic past.
Survivor: Africa Winner Ethan Zohn first competed on the show at age 27. He returned a few years later to All the stars, and returned nearly two decades later for the iconic Winners in war.
Before his first appearance on the show, Ethan was best known for being a professional soccer player. He was goalkeeper for the Hawaii Tsunami and the Cape Cod Crusaders in the United States, and played for Highlanders FC in Zimbabwe before founding Grassroots Soccer.
Gary Hogeboom was best known in his Survivor race to lie about who he was – he told his fellow tribesmen his name was Gary Hawkins – and maintain that he was and always had been a landscaper. He also found the first hidden immunity idol and used it correctly.
Unbeknownst to his fellow castaways, Gary played football for Central Michigan University and later was a quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys, Indianapolis Colts and the Phoenix Cardinals. The other contestants quickly discovered his identity and singled him out for being a physical and social threat.
Ashley Massaro was the second person voted out of Survivor: China, so viewers did not get a chance to see it. Survivor the story unfolds on their television screens. However, she already had a large television presence as a WWE Diva.
Ashley wrestled professionally for nearly four years, returning to the scene briefly in 2017. She was on the popular wrestling show. Slap! as a commentator after winning the Raw Diva Search in 2005. He died in 2019 less than two weeks before his 40th birthday.
Crystal Cox was best known for her fun confessionals on Survivor: Gabon and his all-season rivalry with fellow castaway Randy Bailey. She was in sixth place and ended up serving as a member of the jury.
Despite being criticized by her tribe for her weak challenge performances, Crystal was an Olympian years before competing on the show. Crystal ran track and field at the 2004 Olympics and won a gold medal, but was later stripped of it after admitting she was doping.
Steve Wright received the unfortunate letters of being in a tribe with notorious Survivor villain Russell Hantz as captain in season 22 of Survivor. Boston Rob and his allies brought him out Pagong-style, but he was a member of the jury.
In the 1980s, Steve played in the National Football League for various teams, including the Dallas Cowboys, the Indianapolis Colts, and the Los Angeles Raiders. He was an offensive tackle and played briefly with a future Survivor student Gary Hogeboom when they were both in the Cowboys.
Upon Survivor: Island of Redemption, Grant Mattos became a fan favorite Survivor Player “Boston Rob” Mariano’s right-hand man before being shocked by the legend.
Like his co-star Steve Wright, Grant played professional soccer. He was a wide receiver and had a four-year career in which he played for the San Diego Chargers, Denver Broncos and Tennessee Titans before retiring in 2006 due to knee injuries.
Jeff Kent was bitterly voted Survivor: Philippines for the alliance of Lisa and Michael right after the merger. He became the second juror and ultimately voted for Denise to become the sole survivor.
Jeff was one of the most famous and notable professional athletes to appear on the reality show. He played second base for six teams over the course of his major league career, playing his longest stint with a club like the San Francisco Giant.
Julia Landauer was in the tribe of “fans” for the second edition of Fans vs. favorites. Her tribe was wiped out fairly quickly by the “favorites,” and she was the victim of a re-vote after a tie at a pre-merger tribal council.
Julia was only 21 when she competed in Survivor but he had already been racing stock cars for several years. After her appearance on the reality show, she became a NASCAR host and motivational speaker.
Brad Culpepper was a divisive character both times he appeared in Survivor. The first time, he was known as Monica’s husband and the enemy of several other castaways. His second time, he made it to the final tribal council and even racked up a few votes after having a great redemption arc.
When his wife Monica first appeared on A world, people acknowledged that she was married to former NFL player Brad Culpepper. Brad was a defensive tackle for nearly 10 years, playing for teams like the Minnesota Vikings, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Chicago Bears.
Cliff Robinson had a legendary Survivor He bromances with martial arts instructor Woo Hwang before being caught off guard at the first tribal council his tribe attended in season 28.
Cliff and Woo bonded over their love of sports and competition, something Cliff knew well as he played professional basketball for 18 seasons. He played for five different teams throughout his career and was named an NBA All-Star in 1994. Sadly, Cliff died in 2020 after battling lymphoma. He was 53 years old.
John Rocker was a bit hotheaded when he appeared on season 29 of Survivor with his then-girlfriend Julie McGee, so it came as no surprise when he was eliminated third from the game. Julie then quit Survivor because he felt that John’s reputation was hurting his game.
John’s tribemates recognized him as a relief pitcher in MLB for several years. He played for teams like the Braves, Indians, Rangers, and Devil Rays during his professional career.
Tyler Frederickson was placed in the “white collar” tribe by Survivor: Worlds Apart, falling victim to eventual winner Mike Holloway’s idol play sometime after the merger.
Before being on the island, Tyler was a kicker on eight different NFL teams. Unlike other professional soccer players who appeared on the show, Tyler never started in a regular season game and was primarily a member of the practice team on the teams he signed with.
Scot Pollard was famously surprised by Survivor: Kaoh Rong after Tai Trang refused to join forces with him to activate their shared super idol in the tribal council.
Scot played in the NBA for 11 years, first with the Detroit Pistons before playing for Sacramento, Indiana, Cleveland and Boston. He retired in 2008 after winning a championship.
Alan Ball was ranked 15th in season 35 of Survivor. He was eliminated on the 11th when a tribe swap did not go in his favor after he was originally placed in the “heroes” tribe.
Before your Survivor On the surface, Alan was a soccer cornerback for several teams, including the Cowboys, Texans, Jaguars, Bears, and Cardinals. He was released in 2016 after a foot injury the previous season.
Katrina Radkte was unlucky during her time at Survivor, as he was the first person to be voted out of season 35. When it comes to professional athletes, he had the worst placement of all to appear on the reality series.
Despite this, Katrina had an impressive professional swimming career. He was on the USA team for the 1988 Olympics and won two gold metals at the 1985 and 1987 Pan Pacific Championships.
John Hennigan was a member of the great alliance of season 37, the “Brochachos”, in which he and his partner Dan, a member of the “Goliath” tribe, aligned themselves with the member of the tribe “David” and were very nice . Survivor castaway Christian Hubicki.
Originally born John Hennigan, John adopted the stage name John Morrison as well as the nickname “Mayor of Slamtown” on the professional wrestling scene. He has won multiple WWE championships over the course of his two-decade career.
Bi Nguyen’s weather in Survivor was interrupted due to a knee injury that led her to withdraw from the game to protect her career.
Bi was an MMA fighter when she competed on the show, something she continued to pursue after leaving the game. His knee injury took months to heal, causing him to miss his firstSurvivor match. She goes by the wrestling name Killer Bee.
Elizabeth Biesel was the third Olympian to compete in Survivor, and he did well in challenges due to his excellence in swimming.
Although she did not achieve gold on the show, Elizabeth has accumulated many medals throughout her career. He attended the Olympics in 2008, 2012 and 2016, specializing in individual and backstroke swimming medleys.
Tom Laidlaw competed in season 39 of Survivor as a member of the Lairo tribe. He created strong connections with his fellow tribesmen early on, but was voted in after a travel exchange.
Tom was best known for his professional hockey career that spanned 12 years. He played defense for the New York Rangers and the Los Angeles Raiders before becoming a motivational speaker.
Danny McCray is the latest professional athlete to compete in Survivor, making its appearance in the Survivor 41, which host Jeff Probst declared as a new era for the reality series.
While Danny’s fate on the show has yet to be determined, he has appeared on television screens before. He was safety in the NFL for six years, playing for teams like the Dallas Cowboys and Chicago Bears after graduating from Louisiana State University.