Although the title "World's Greatest Athlete " seems a natural fit for these two events, its traditional association with the decathlon/heptathlon officially began with Jim Thorpe . During the 1912 Olympics in Stockholm, Sweden, Thorpe won the gold medal in the Decathlon (among others). Thorpe notably also competed professionally in soccer , baseball , American Football , and basketball ; and competed collegiately in track and field , soccer , baseball , lacrosse , and did ballroom dancing . King Gustav V of Sweden , while awarding Thorpe the decathlon gold said: "You, sir, are the greatest athlete in the world." That title has become associated with the decathlon event ever since.
Recent stars who have connected with FCA have included Josh Hamilton , Adam Wainwright , Brian Roberts , Tim Tebow ,  Tamika Catchings ,  Jennie Finch , Andy Pettitte , Tommy Tuberville , Jim Kelly , John Harbaugh ,  Leah O'Brien Amico,  John Smoltz ,  Mark Richt , Colt McCoy ,  Andrew McCutchen  and a number of public figures outside the world of sports such as comedian Jeff Foxworthy ,  former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee and Duck Dynasty star Willie Robertson .  Influential Christian leaders such as Billy Graham , Chip Ingram , Anne Graham Lotz and Tommy Nelson also have participated in FCA through resource development, camps or events.
Research suggests that people who respond to intrinsic motives are more committed, enjoy their activities more, and are more persistent when they confront failure (Agbor-Baiyee, 1997). While this research examined student behavior, research examining athletes found similar results (Vallerand & Losier, 1999). Close to intrinsic motivation is a concept called interest (Wigfield, Eccles, & Rodriguez, 1998). People who engage in activities simply for the fact that they like doing it and expect no external reward can be said to have an interest in that activity. A primary objective for all coaches should be to encourage athletes to develop a genuine interest in their sport.