Top 15 Most Delusional Professional Athletes

Professional athletes earn an extraordinary amount of public attention, money, and adulation, so it's no surprise that this goes to the heads of certain athletes. Over the course of time, an athlete that has earned his way into the hearts of fans can turn over a new eccentric leaf, where the athlete does as he or she pleases and expects the public to understand. While some of these exploits have given us interesting or funny stories, in many other cases they have been damaging behaviors that have cost these individuals dearly.

It is no surprise that the constant hounding of the media, demands on their time, and the enormous personal wealth at their disposal can eventually lead to delusional behavior. These athletes spend the majority of their lives in a bubble, where their every action is heavily scrutinized. When they make public appearances, they can be hounded by adoring fans or the paparazzi, who can make the simplest everyday tasks into a huge spectacle.

Lindsey Lohan and Amanda Bynes are not the only ones who have gone off the deep end as a result of this relentless attention, it can happen to some of the most intimidating physical specimens on Earth. It all makes sense that if you hang out in an environment for long enough, while occasionally suffering brain trauma, then eventually some delusional thoughts will begin to develop. In some cases these may be attempts to recapture the spotlight by an athlete who sees their star fading, but in other cases they are the latest in a line of erratic behavior.

15 15. Terrell Owens

Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

14 14. Ray Lewis

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

13 13. Alex Rodriguez

Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

12 12. Jose Canseco

Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

11 11. Floyd Mayweather Jr.

Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

10 10. Sidney Crosby

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

9 9. Stephon Marbury


8 8. Jack Johnson

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

7 7. Jon Jones

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

6 6. Jonathan “War Machine” Koppenhaver


5 5. Michael Phelps

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

4 4. Wanderlei Silva


3 3. Nick Young

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

2 2. Brandon Jennings

Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

1 1. Curt Schilling

David Manning-USA TODAY Sports

Curt Schilling is one of the best post-season performers in the history of Major League Baseball. He was an integral part of World Series winning teams with Boston and Arizona, and the central figure of the famous “Bloody Sock” game. Schilling was not chosen to be a part of the 2015 Baseball Hall of Fame class, while Randy Johnson, Craig Biggio, Pedro Martinez, and John Smoltz made it in. Schilling finished eighth overall in the voting, but believed that his lack of inclusion was due to his conservative political beliefs. Schilling finished 35% away from qualifying for the Hall in his second year of eligibility, and while he should eventually get in, his pithiness in this situation may not help him in the future.

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Top 15 Most Delusional Professional Athletes