Almost everybody plays sports as a kid in some form or fashion. You might play tee-ball or basketball and it may only last one season, but most of us have played a sport at some time in our life. During these early years, we discover if sports are for us, as well as which sports we enjoy. Despite your parents hoping you will play a certain one they enjoyed, you may enjoy something else that they never played. Eventually, athletes will pursue their sport and play through elementary school, middle school, and high school, and for many that is the end of their athletic career, with a select few going on to play at the next level. That can mean college or pros, but when it comes to living in Idaho, which sport should your child play to give them the best chance at being a professional athlete one day?

Professional Athletes from Idaho

Credit: Andre Hunter on Unsplash
Credit: Andre Hunter on Unsplash
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Becoming a professional athlete is a dream that many kids and many parents have for their kids, but very few see this dream come true. There can be tons of factors that prevent children from realizing this goal, but when pursuing the career of a professional athlete, which sport gives kids the best chance in Idaho? There aren't a ton of athletes to come out of Idaho, but some of the bigger names include names like former NFL quarterback Jake Plummer, former MLB All-Star Harmen Killebrew, former running back Merril Hoge, and former MLB pitcher Larry Jackson. All of these athletes played football and baseball but other sports have seen success from Idahoans as well. 

The Best Sport to Become a Pro Athlete in Idaho

Credit: David Lee
Credit: David Lee
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Where you live shouldn't dictate if you become a professional athlete, but when looking into the top athletes to come out of Idaho, there is one sport that sticks out more than most. I recently looked at a list of the top 50 athletes to ever come out of Idaho, and after adding up which sports they were pros in, the results were eye-opening. Of the top 50 athletes from Idaho on the list, 0 were hockey players, only 4 were professional basketball players, 5 were baseball players, and 19 were miscellaneous, with a few jockeys, wrestlers, skiers, and a golfer mixed in. The sport that dominated the most was football with almost half of the top 50, with 22 athletes making it to the NFL. Some made the league for a year or two, while others were pro-bowlers and hall of famers.

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While pushing your kid to play football won't guarantee them getting a scholarship or becoming a professional, the numbers back up that in Idaho it is the best chance to get there. There are exceptions to every rule, and if your child works hard and is dedicated they can make it in other sports too. Bull riding, hunting, fishing, and other outdoor sports are not included in this list, and we know Idahoans thrive at them. Support your children the best you can and make sure they practice, practice, practice, and perhaps they could be the next pro athlete to come out of Idaho.

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