Sometimes players come along whose greatness will never be matched. Sports give us the unique opportunity to showcase the very best and sometimes we witness greatness. Sometimes someone comes along that does something that will never be equaled. The bar is set so high that everyone will fight to be the second best. Today we showcase 18 of the most unbreakable records in sports.
Secretariat wins the Belmont Stakes by 31 lengths
- Set: June 9, 1973
- 2nd Place: Count Fleet won by 25 lengths in 1943
- What it would take to break it: A once in a lifetime horse and a miracle.
Bill Russell’s 11 Rings
- Set: 1957-1969
- 2nd Place (that wasn’t a member of the Celtics dynasty): Robert Horry with 7
- What it would take to break it: The All Star team becoming a franchise.
Cy Young Career Wins at 511
- Set: 1890-1911
- 2nd place: Walter Johnson 417
- What it would take to break: Over 25 wins a season for 20 years (No one has gotten 25 wins in a season since 1990)
Pete Rose’s 4,256 hits
- Set: 1963-1986
- 2nd Place: Ty Cobb 4,191
- What it would take to break it: Derek Jeter would need 940 more hits or Alex Rodriguez would need 1,317.
Georgia Tech beats Cumberland 222-0
- Set: October 7, 1916
- 2nd Place: Rice beat SMU 146-3 in 1916.
- What it would take to break it: Twelve quarters and no mercy or sportsmanship.
Edwin Moses wins 122 straight races in the 400 meter hurdles.
- Set: – September 2, 1977 to June 4, 1987
- 2nd Place: Emil Zatopek won 75 consecutive log distance races from Sept 26, 1948 to July 11, 1951
- What it would take to beat it: A decade of domination.
Brett Favre’s 321 consecutive starts
- Set: Sept 27, 1992 – December 5, 2010
- 2nd Place: Peyton Manning ended at 227 and Eli Manning still going at 151
- What it would take to beat it: Eli Manning (32) would need to start every game for about 10 more seasons.
Cal Ripken Jr. starts 2,632 consecutive games.
- Set: May 30, 1982 to September 19, 1998
- 2nd Place: Lou Gehrig with 2,130
- What it would take to beat it: The active leader is Prince Fielder (29) and he would have to play nonstop until May 1, 2027 (according to ESPN) to break the record.
Jerry Rice Career Receiving Yards at 22,895
- Set: 1985 – 2004
- 2nd Place: Tim Brown at 14,934 yards
- What it would take to break it: Reggie Wayne (34) needs 9,467 yards which on his current per game average would take him 130 more games. Andre Johnson (32) needs 11,234 yards which would take him 138 games.
John Wooden’s 7 consecutive NCAA Championships
- Set: 1967 – 1973
- 2nd Place: Adolph Rupp and Mike Kryzewski each went back to back.
- What it would take to break it: Never going to happen with the one and done mentality of the best players.
Rickey Henderson Career Stolen Bases at 1,406
- Set: 1979 – 2003
- 2nd Place: Lou Brock with 938
- What it would take to beat it: Active leader, Juan Pierre (36), would need to play for 18 more seasons and continue to average 44 stolen bases a year.
Joe DiMaggio’s 56 game hit streak
- Set: 1941
- 2nd Place: Pete Rose at 44
- What it would take to beat it: No one has even come within three weeks of DiMaggio in 70 years.
Ty Cobb’s .366 Career Batting Average
- Set: 1905-1928
- 2nd Place: Rogers Hornsby at .358 (Ty Cobb played in 776 more games too).
- What it would take to break it: Active leader in batting average is Joe Mauer who bats .323.
Wayne Gretzkey’s 215 Points in a Season.
- Set: 1985-1986
- Second Place: Gretzkey actually holds the top four spots at 215, 212, 208, and 205. The closest person is Mario Lemieux with 199. The closest person not named Mario is Steve Yzerman at 155 in 14th place and Gretzkey’s name appears five more times before that.
- What it would take to beat it: The last time someone broke into the Top 50 was in the 1995-1996 season. The best season by Sidney Crosby was 120 in 2006-2007, Joe Thorton had 125 in 2005-2006, and Alex Ovechkin had 112 in 2007-2008.
Wayne Gretzkey’s 2857 Career Points
- Set: 1978-1999
- Second Place: Mark Messier at 1,887. (Gretzkey has more points just from assists at 1,963)
- What it would take to break it: Never going to happen considering the games biggest stars sit at 179th (Ovechkin) and 226th (Crosby) place.
Wilt Chamberlain’s 23,924 career rebounds
- Set: 1959-1973
- Second Place: Bill Russell at 21,620
- What it would take to beat it: Kevin Garnett needs 10,081, Tim Duncan needs 10,705, and Dwight Howard needs 14,907. If Howard were to play until he was 40 (13 more seasons) he would need to average 1,146 rebounds a year (his best three years were from 2007-2010 where he had 1,161, 1,093, and 1,082 respectively). In Wilt’s best season he grabbed 2,149 rebounds.
John Stockton Career Assists at 15,806
- Set: 1984-2003
- Second Place: Jason Kidd with 12,091
- What it would take to beat it: Steve Nash needs 5,557 and Chris Paul needs to average 863 assists per season over the next 12 seasons (last two seasons: 543 and 678).
Antonio Cromartie’s 109 yard play
- Set: November 4, 2007
- Second Place: Ed Reed at 108 yards
- What it would take to beat it: Someone to catch a ball less than two inches from the back line and then take it all the way.