Jonah Freedman of SI.com recently released Sports Illustrated’s 4th annual Fortunate 50. The list documents America’s top 50 money-making athletes for the past year (includes money made by actually playing the sport plus any off-the-field money…endorsements, appearances, etc.). Jonah also released the International 20, which highlights the top 20 money grossing athletes in the world (excluding Americans).
Notes on The Fortunate 50:
- Tiger Woods (#1 on the list) almost made twice as much as the 2nd highest earner, Oscar de la Hoya, who makes little from endorsement and appearance fees. Car companies would rather have a golfer represent their products.
- Michelle Wie is the only woman on the list (if you do not count Maria Sharapova, who is listed on the International 20). She makes a lot of her money from endorsements. Once again, we see that there are a lot of opportunities for golfers to make big money outside of the sport that they play.
- It’s really a telling story for golf. #3 on the list is Phil Mickelson. Marketing experts should start flocking over to the golf arena this second.
- 4th-7th are basketball players, and 8th (Derek Jeter) and 9th (Alex Rodriguez) are Yankees. The big money seems to be in golf, basketball, and one baseball team (