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Nov 06 2008

My Picks for the Top 16 Sports Movie Villains of All Time

Published by at 3:20 am under Movies,Sports

Sports Movie Villains

In case you guys aren’t aware, it’s Rocky week on AMC.   They are playing Rocky’s I through V.  So naturally I’m very pumped to be seeing Rocky IV tonight.  As a sidenote, I’m 99% sure I’ve seen Rocky III over 100 times making it my most seen movie ever.  Back to the topic.

It’s my opinion that Clubber Lang is easily one of the best if not the best sports movie villains of all time.  And it got me thinking.  Have there been any sports villain lists?  Yeah, there have.   Joesportsfan came out with one a while back which I thought was decent.  However, they included Teen Wolf.  Is that really a sports movie?

Plus I think they forgot some key ones that I’ve included.  And was Apollo really a villain in Rocky?  He was more of a villain in Rocky II.  Definitely took on more of an enemy tone.  In the first one he was actually diplomatic (even though it was an act).

In any event, here’s my list of sports movie villains, all 16 of them.

This list is in no particular order.

Judge Smails in Caddyshack

Sports Movie Villains

Played by Ted Knight.  “I guess you don’t, I guess you don’t.”  Man I love when he says “How about a Fresca?”  You just can’t beat Ted Knight in this role.  He’s absolutely amazing.  Just his waspy, snotty way.  It’s so perfect for a country club spoof movie.  The movie never would have made it without him.

The Duke (Duke Temple) in Major League

Sports Movie Villains

Played by Steve Yeager. Headhunting relief pitcher Duke.   Definitely intimating, and definitely scary.

Rod in Breaking Away

Sports Movie Villains

Played by Hart Bochner.  Really?   His name is Hart Bochner?  You might also remember this guy as the cocaine sniffer in Die Hard.   In Breaking Away he plays the prick rich boy Indiana student who harasses the main characters calling them “cutters.”  Great scene is when he swims against Dennis Quaid.  That and when he loses the bike race at the end.

*I tried getting a pic from the movie, even a screenshot, but couldn’t find one.

Ivan Drago in Rocky IV

Sports Movie Villains

Played by Dolph Lundgren.  “If he dies, he dies.”  Enough said.  OK fine.  “I must break you.”

Charles Comiskey in Eight Men Out

Sports Movie Villains

Played by Clifton James.  It’s a toss up between this guy, Rachel Phelps, and The Judge (both featured in this list) for who is the scummiest baseball team owner.  It’s definitely a close race. This movie made Comiskey out to be the cheapest bastard in history.

*I tried getting a pic from the movie, even a screenshot, but couldn’t find one.

Bull Hurley in Over the Top

Sports Movie Villains

Played by Rick Zumwalt. Yeah, like that little over the top move would really work against this guy.  Come on guys.  Still though, his character absolutely kicks ass.  “I ownnnnnnn you!!!!”

Racki in Youngblood

Sports Movie Villains

Played by George C. Finn.  For some reason I always call him Carl Racki.   It just sounds right.  Best line from him? “I’m gonna shove that stick right up your ass.”  But he says it with a really thick Canadian accent.  It’s priceless.  I love how he actually gets beat up by Rob Lowe.  Come on! You also gotta love that Keanu Reeves played the goalie in that movie.

Apollo Creed in Rocky II

Sports Movie Villains

As I said in the beginning, I don’t think Creed was really a villain until the second movie.  In the first, Creed appears to have sympathy in giving an unknown a shot.  He’s not mean to Rocky until the sequel.

Clue Haywood in Major League

Sports Movie Villains

Played by Peter Vuckovich.  “How’s your wife and my kids?”  Haywood was the Indian killer throughout the movie until Sheen shuts him down at the end.

Johnny Lawrence in Karate Kid

Sports Movie Villains

Played by William Zabka.  A description just couldn’t do justice to describe all that is Zabka.  If you want to consider Back to School a diving movie then we can throw him in there as well.

Rachel Phelps in Major League

Sports Movie Villains

Played by Margaret Whitton.  You gotta admit.  She was a cold hearted bitch in this flick.  And she certainly deserves the title of villain.  “You should feel lucky I can still afford to pay your salary.”  “I hate this “f*cking song.”

Happy in Blue Chips

Sports Movie Villains

Played by JT Walsh.  “We owe it to him!”  “Pete…..I own you.”  The sadistic, hot chick getting alumni wants Pete Bell (Nick Nolte) to get with the program and buy kids into the basketball team.  The whole movie you can tell what a slimeball he is.  Incredibly well played by Walsh.

The Judge in The Natural

Sports Movie Villains

Played by Robert Prosky.  One of the downright dirtiest executives in baseball movie history.  The guy paid off more than half of his players to lose.  Not even Rachel Phelps did that.

*I tried getting a pic from the movie, even a screenshot, but couldn’t find one.

Shooter McGavin in Happy Gilmore

Sports Movie Villains

I could have showed a pic from the movie but this one’s way better.

Played by Christopher McDonald.   I think this about sums it up….

Shooter: You’re in big trouble pal. I eat pieces of sh*t like you for breakfast.
Happy: (starts laughing) You eat pieces of sh*t for breakfast?
Shooter: (flustered) …..NO!!

Clubber Lang in Rocky III

Sports Movie Villains

Played by Mr. T.  “I’m gonna bust you up.”   “Predictions?……Pain.”  And while these lines are incredible it’s amazing when he taunts Rocky at the unveiling of the statue.  “Why don’t come over to my apartment tonight, and I’ll show you a real man.”  You know Adrienne liked it.  In real life Rocky wouldn’t have had a chance against this guy.  He’s all man.

Coach Kilmer in Varsity Blues

Sports Movie Villains

Played by Jon Voight.  Man was he a prick in this.  Great work Mr. Voight.

Honorable mention to Flat Top in Necessary Roughness.  And speaking of sports movies, how about this guy as a villain? And how about a tennis villain?   Would that not be pretty damned funny?

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42 responses so far

  • Hayes

    I saw Zabka in LA. He works a a valet at the hotel my work sets me up in. The whole time , I yell to him ” Put him in a bodybag Jonny” He’s cool, he actually laughs everytime I come

  • Pingback: The Top 16 Sports Movie Villains of All Time « THE FIRE WIRE

  • http://www.hulkster.com Hulkster

    Where is Zeus from No Holds Barred!?!?!?!

  • rfk

    What about the one and only “Oggie” Oglethorp from “Slap Shot”

  • jody rope

    Be nice if someone writing about movies had seen a movie released before 1980. You need to watch a LOT more film, beebop.

  • John

    Three villains from Major League? Give me a break!

    You left out the coach from One on One (starring Robbie Benson!), played by GD Spradlin, Warden Hazen from the Longest Yard (played by Eddie Albert), the Yankees from Bad News Bears, or just Vic Morrow’s character as the coach of the Yankees, how about a semi sport movie: Mick McAllister from Teen Wolf.


  • PaulW

    Zabka’s working as a valet?!?!?!?! That can’t be right, it’s gotta be his stunt double or something…

    There is some incredible f-cking injustice to that if Hollywood can’t find decent villainous roles for him…

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  • Natty

    Hey Jody, isn’t it time for your afternoon nap?

  • Jake Smyth

    The Eddie Albert character as the warden in the original longest yard. Far and away the best sports villian.

  • td

    How about BOB SUGAR, jerry mcguire

  • tim

    Clubber Lang isn’t inviting Rocky over to his apartment that night – he’s inviting Adrienne.

  • Corey

    About Clue Haywood: “He leads the league in most offensive categories, including nose-hair.”

  • Natty

    Tim, I guess it was implied. I spelled it out a little clearer, happy?

    I’ve seen the movie 100 times dude. I know who he says it to.

  • mike

    The correct answer was Spike from Little Giants

  • RobertLoggia

    Two glaring omissions…

    Clyde Torkle… Owner of the Clyde Torkle Chicken Pit Special in Stroker Ace.

    The Denny’s Yankees.

    And Marty Kove’s character from the Karate Kid is more of a villain than Billy Zabka’s… Johnny Lawrence sort of gets a heart at the end of the film… Sensei John Kleese never waivers from No Mercy.

  • http://drunkjaysfans.blogspot.com/2008/10/completely-unsubstantiated-rumour.html Stoeten

    RFK nailed it. TOTALLY needs some Slap Shot… but otherwise a good list.

  • Me

    What about Shute from Vision Quest

  • Natty

    Best call of the day, now I’m really pissed at myself for missing that. Damnet!

  • Brent

    Where the hell is Chong Li from Bloodsport? I get three from Major League and none from Bloodsport….you should be ashamed.

  • Neumanium

    You put all the best villians from Major League on, but forgot Major League II. Jack Parkman was by far the most hated guy in that whole series, even when he was on the Indians…

  • Rick

    Coach Jack Reilly from The Mighty Ducks, The Icelandic Hockey Coach from D2,

  • Sean

    How is Ernie McCracken from Kingpin not #1 on this list

  • http://whatifsports.com Tony

    Duke Temple has a few glaring errors. 1..It’s Duke Simpson, not Temple 2..Steve Yeager played Temple the 3rd base coach for the Indians. Other than being almost completly wrong, it’s not a bad choice.

  • Keeter

    Nice list; will spur some great replies & discussion as well !

    Some others:

    - Eddie Martel (The Replacements) the egotistical QB
    - Any of the Executives (like Dabney Coleman) from ‘North Dallas 40′
    - Those pesky Russian hockey players in ‘Miracle’ !! :-)
    - Tonya Harding in her own, ahem, ‘video’……….
    - “The Stomach” (Meatballs)
    - David Simms (Don Johnson) from ‘Tin Cup’

  • http://fourhorsementattoo.com Steelhead

    “Mick” from TeenWolf has to make the cut…….Never has a villain shined on a bigger stage, with the exception of Billy Zabka’s characters in Karate Kid and Back to School.

    Honorable mention:

    Bart Taylor – Rad
    Ogre – Revenge of the Nerds
    Shute – Vision Quest
    Flat Top – Necessary Roughness
    Coach Darwell – Wildcats

  • Le Bron Mexico

    Here’s the answer to Stoeten’s prayers and UnCoached.com’s disturbing lack of research:

    Ned Dowd as the menacing, sociopathic, CaucAfro-sporting Ogie Ogilthorpe in “Slapshot”.

    Pure, unadulterated thuggery.

  • Doc W

    How about the Head Coach of the North Dallas Bulls in North Dallas Forty, BA Strothers? Or the Dabney Coleman character, one of the biggest dicks of all time, Emmett Hunter.

  • Chris

    The list is pretty good, but………

    What about Don Johnson from Tin Cup?

    Or Brett Cullen (played Eddie Martel) from The Replacements?

    The Warden from either of the Longest Yard Movies?

    Sasha Baren Cohen from Talladega Nights?

    “Rowdy Burns” from Days of Thunder?

    Ben Stiller in Dodgeball?

    Since the Karate Kid was mentioned, what about Martin Kove (Sensei Kreese)?

    Eh, just some thoughts, they were all kick ass villans, but, all in all the list was pretty good

  • Gary Amistad

    How about the guy who plays Mike Barnes from the Karate Kid III movie? He was a bigger a-hole than Johnny. Tom Berenger as Bear Bryant from the Junction Boys? The guy who played Darrell Waltrip in that cheesy-ass Dale Earnhardt movie made by ESPN. Ha!

  • phil

    yea how can u forget ben stiller from dodgeball thats unheard of

  • Munsoned

    Where is Big Ernie McCracken from Kingpin!?!

  • Gue

    How about the dickhead pro quarterback from The Replacements?

  • Munson

    I agree with some of the posts. Very good list though. Of the POSTS that I have seen so far I would add the following in order:

    9. Martlett QB on The Replacements
    8. Bart Taylor in Rad – (this has to be one of my favorite worst sport movies of all time next to Airborne)
    7. Ben Stiller in Dodgeball
    6. Don Johnson in Tin Cup
    5. Johnny from Karate Kid
    4. Chong Li from Bloodsport
    3. Sasha Baron Cohen from Talladega Nights
    2. Oggie Oglethorp from Slapshot
    1. The ultimate evil guy NOT on this list is: Carl Racci in Youngblood

    Forget about Karate Kid 3, Ogre in ROTN was not “playing” any sports in the movie – and some of the comments are invalid because they are not actors. I think they have to be shown in the movie playing the sport to be included……..

  • Anthony

    I am astonished no one mentioned coach Devine from Rudy

  • http://fourhorsementattoo.com Steelhead

    Racci is on the list. Try reading it before climbing on a soapbox next time.

  • mb

    Jerry Reed in The Water Boy

  • jody rope

    Hey, Natty, being clueless and born yesterday gives you no right to insult people with expertise on a subject. No “Raging Bull”? No “The Set Up”? No “On The Waterfront”? “No Champion” ? No “The Easy Life”? No “This Sporting Life”? No horse racing movies? No sci-fi? “Rollerball”? “The Running man”? What about classic comedies like “Horsefeathers”? This should have been called, “The worst movie villains I’ve seen in Rocky movies and Major League movies and some stuff on tv.”

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  • Biggin

    I would have to agree with Munsoned…

    Big Ernie McCracken deserves to be on that list…

  • Long winded nonsense

    Wesley Snipes in WHite Man Can’t Jump! He’s such an arrogant dick in that movie. Sure,he and Woody H turn out to be friends in the end but will BEE-LLEY really be able to trust him after stealing Rosie’s jeopardy money?

    I’m forgetting the plot actually and trying way to hard to be funny… but I think you get what I’m saying.

    Here’s a gray area… is Arnold the hero or the villain in Pumping Iron? If you’re Louie Ferrigno he is absolutely the villain. It is a documentary so maybe he doesn’t make the list for this reason.

    my other idea doesn’t reallly fall under sports movie per se, but Tom Kisanske (A.k.a. ICEman from Top Gun). Like I said, Top Gun isn’t a traditional sports movie, but it definitely blows as a war movie; so it must fall somewhere between the spectrum, right?… honorable mention should be warranted nonetheless.

    I absolutely agree Big Ern, the Slapshot villain, and Zeus from No Holds Barred should be on this list. but after a certain point we’re all just trying to think of a sport movie not mentioned her and its corresponding villain. This list should be longer than 16 if we’re talking all-time… and it should have some sort of ranking. While being slightly flawed in these respects, it is still a pretty damn good thought exercise for which hunting the worst of the worst evildoers of sports movies.

    People who shouldn’t be on this list would be Sasha Baron Cohen-Talladega Nights, Christopher Walken- Balls of Fury, Robert Stack- Caddyshack 2… just lameness all around. But B. Stiller, again, is a must for the list. Its all about the Performances!
    I love the idea of this list.

  • Rich Standart

    The relief pitcher for the Yankees in the movie Major Legue is Willie Mueller-Steve Yeager was the 3rd base coach for the Indians in the movie named Duke Temple-can someone confirm this, thanks



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