He's got a long way to go to meet their accomplishments but the Mets say they're going to develop him as a player
Nothing is surprising when it comes to the life and athletic career of Tim Tebow. Despite New York Mets general manager Sandy Alderson's statement that Tebow’s signing to the organization’s instructional league was a baseball decision, and was not a driven by marketing considerations, 29-year-olds who haven’t played organized baseball in over a decade typically don’t sign minor league contracts.
Nevertheless, it’s Tebow Time once again for the former Heisman Trophy winner who now joins another New York professional sports organization, having spent the 2012 NFL season with the New York Jets. The Empire State has previously served as home for some high-profile and accomplished athletes in at least one of their two sports (or more). Let’s take a look.
Deion Sanders -- New York Yankees
The Pro Football Hall of Fame defensive back is the only athlete to do a number of things, including appearing in a Super Bowl (XXIX and XXX) and a World Series (1992). He’s also the only athlete to to hit a home run and score a touchdown in the same one-week span (with the Falcons and Yankees in 1989). Prime Time was made for the New York spotlight but ended up leaving while he was still trying to figure out how to juggle baseball and his burgeoning football career.
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Dave DeBusschere -- New York Knicks
DeBusschere, Walt Frazier, Willis Reed, Earl Monroe, Bill Bradley, Phil Jackson and rest of the Knickerbockers of the 1970s helped entrench Madison Square Garden as the “Mecca of Basketball.” Debusschere spent the latter half of his career in New York (1968-1974) after splitting his time with baseball as a pitcher for the Chicago White Sox from 1962-1963. A Hall of Famer in basketball, DeBusschere was no slouch on the mound where he compiled a 2.90 ERA over 102 innings pitched, mainly as a reliever.
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Jim Thorpe -- New York Giants
That’s both the New York Football Giants and the baseball team. Regarded by many as the greatest athlete of all time, the Olympic gold medalist (decathlon and pentathlon) played in the outfield for the Giants from 1913-19. Meanwhile, his Hall of Fame football career also took him to New York in 1925.
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Charlie Ward -- New York Knicks
The longtime New York Knicks point guard had a heck of a collegiate football career as quarterback for 1993 National Champion Florida State. Because of doubts that he would play football professionally, in favor of a career in the NBA, he was not drafted by an NFL team. The Knicks took Ward at 26 overall in 1994 and he went on to a respectable but not standout career mainly as a bench player.
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Jim Brown -- Syracuse Orange
The former Cleveland Browns running back was one of the greatest and most feared football players of all time and an All-American lacrosse player, and it all started in upstate New York at Syracuse. While he didn’t play for a professional New York sports team, it would feel wrong to not mention the multisport dynamo who also played baseball, basketball and ran track.