These moms and dads crossed the line at some point during their kid’s sports career.
The craziest parents in sports have all had strange twists and turns along the way to fame or infamy. Many plotted every step of their childâs life. Others got in the way. Some were successful. Some failed. Every one of them made their kidâs journey a wild ride â for better or worse.
1. Marv Marinovich, father of Todd Marinovich
The undisputed worst sports parent in history, Marv was Dr. Frankenstein of âRobo QBâ son Todd â who was dubbed âAmericaâs first test-tube athleteâ due to Marvâs extreme Eastern Bloc training methods. Only Ivan Drago was more programmed. Every aspect of Toddâs career was choreographed by Marv, who dictated diet, workout and daily routine â going over-the-top at every stop.
Toddâs success in high school and at USC (Marvâs alma mater) resulted in a first-round selection by the L.A. Raiders (Marvâs old team). But after eight games over two seasons, Toddâs NFL career ended with a 50.7 completion percentage, 1,345 yards, eight TDs, nine INTs, a 66.4 passer rating and 3â5 record as a starter.
The sad story of Toddâs post-NFL life has been well-documented. But the key words are heroin addiction, herniated disc, blown-out knee, CFL, Arena League and innocence lost. Oh, and Marv. Most people blame Marv.
2. Minna Wilson, mother of Tony Wilson
Mrs. Wilson remixed the LL Cool J hit âMama Said Knock You Outâ into âMama Said No Knock Out.â When Steve McCarthy trapped Tony Wilson against the ropes, Mama Minna jumped into the ring and took a few swings of her own â resulting in a Wilson Family disqualification.
3. Andrea McDonald, mother of Alex Collins
One of the top running backs in the Class of 2013, South Plantation (Fla.) product Alex Collins could dodge or bulldoze just about anyone in his way â with the notable exception of his mom.
When Collins decided he was de-committing from Miami and heading to Arkansas, not only did Andrea McDonald refuse to sign his letter of intent, she stole the document and hid it before he could fax it in. When Collinsâ dad signed the paperwork instead, McDonald hired The Cochran Firm to represent her. Soo wee! Thatâs overprotective.
4. Richard Williams, father of Venus and Serena
Call Richard crazy like a fox â or crazy like Joe Jackson. Itâs hard to argue with results. Richard coached both of his daughters from the Compton, Calif., public courts all the way to No. 1 world rankings.
An outwardly angry man who, rightfully, made race an outspoken issue on his rise to the top, Richard was questioned by the tennis world for holding his daughters back from the traditional youth tournament circuit. But it worked. His public outbursts, paranoia and media ramblings are no big deal these days.
5. Earl Woods, father of Tiger Woods
âMy first conscious memoryâ¦ is my father crazy-gluing this plastic golf club to my hands. His hair was all messed up, and he had this crazy look in his eye,â Tiger Woods, parodied brilliantly by Tim Meadows, says in a classic skit on Saturday Night Live. Thatâs probably not so far from the truth, consider Earl introduced Tiger to golf before he was age two.
6. William Sanders, father of Barry Sanders
William was an Oklahoma fan who rooted for the Sooners when his Heisman Trophy-winning son Barry was playing for the Oklahoma State Cowboys. Seriously. William was Barryâs presenter at the Pro Football Hall of Fame, at which point he took time out of his sonâs big day to âsay hello to the greatest running back that ever lived, the No. 1 running back that ever lived. Heâs not with us today, I think heâs with his family in Los Angeles â Mr. Jim Brown. So, I want to say hello to him.â
William wrapped up by saying, âI want to introduce you to the third best running back that ever lived, Barry Sanders.â Thanks, dad.
7. Larry Fitzgerald Sr., father of Larry Fitzgerald
Larry Sr. is a sportswriter at the Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder who was both praised and criticized nationally for covering Larry Jr.âs first trip to the Super Bowl as a neutral âjournalistâ in the press box and not as a cheering âparentâ in the stands.
But he didnât stay out of it this season when his sonâs team â which plays roughly 1,600 miles away from Larry Sr.âs beat â went on a nine-game losing streak. âDefinition of team quitting? 9 losses n a row. 9th loss 58-0! Injuries handling of offense worst NFL. Adrian Wilson & Darnell Dockett situations!â he tweeted. ââ¦This is the NFL. Humbling embarrassing frustrating angering disappointing painful. What happens when u quit!â
8. Lynn and Rick Raisman, parents of Aly Raisman
While their little girl Aly had a gold-medal-clinching floor routine, Lynn and Rick Raisman had a national-spotlight-stealing fan routine at the 2012 London Olympics â complete with Team USA Polo uniforms, a flair for the dramatic and a knack for knowing where the cameras were placed. They stuck the landing.
9. Cecil Fielder, father of Prince Fielder
The big beef between historyâs only father-son duo to each hit 50 home runs in a single season â Cecil hit 51 HR for the Detroit Tigers in 1990 and Prince hit 50 HR for the Milwaukee Brewers in 2007 â revolves around Cecil wasting his own money, allegedly stealing six-figures of Princeâs money and calling Prince a fat boy â Iâm sorry, an âobese kid.â Who will be the bigger man?
10. A.P. Indy, sire of 1,119 foals
Arguably the greatest stud in thoroughbred horse racing history, A.P. Indy did not attend a single race of his 1,119 foals â of which 142 were stakes winners.
Sharing bloodlines with both Seattle Slew and Secretariat, A.P. Indy was sold for $2.9 million as a yearling, posted an 8â2â1 record in 11 starts and commanded a $300,000 stud fee during his lengthy heyday, before retiring prior to the 2012 breeding season. Absolutely crazy.