One of the appeals of sport is that in the stands and in the bleachers, all spectators may consider themselves equal. Sure, there are box seats close to the action, and there are nosebleed seats that may or may not require binoculars for some, but as far as witnessing the spirit of competition is concerned, all fans are on the same level. In modern society, many have come to look up to celebrities. Whether a celebrity be an actor or actress, a musician, a politician, or an athlete themselves, they are no exception to the rule that at the ballpark, stadium or arena, they, too, are fans.
We take a look at some of the top celebrity sports fans.
9. Jerry Seinfeld, New York Mets
Despite being nearly 30 years since their last National League pennant, the New York Mets can call comedian Jerry Seinfeld one of their biggest supporters. Seinfeld puts in calls fairly consistently to Steve Somers’ WFAN-AM sports talk show to discuss the Mets, and even took part in broadcasting a few innings of a game in 2010. In April, the Brooklyn Cyclones, a minor league affiliate of the Mets, even hosted their own “Seinfeld” night.
8. Drew Carey, Cleveland Indians
Hands down one of the biggest fans of all teams out of the city of Cleveland, actor and game-show host Drew Carey has thrown out the first pitch before an Indians game and even received an award from the club for being “the greatest Indians fan alive.” The award was a bobblehead made to look to Carey that was given out to fans in the ballpark. Carey later compared the honor to receiving a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. His own show, The Drew Carey Show (1995-2004), also used the song “Cleveland Rocks” as its theme song.
7. Billy Crystal, Los Angeles Clippers
When the Los Angeles Clippers were first said to be up for sale after the controversy surrounding longtime owner Donald Sterling, the first emotional choice from fans to buy the team was actor Billy Crystal. Arguably the most recognizable Clippers fan, there is no one on this Earth who can claim that the “City Slickers” actor is a bandwagon fan. Crystal was present at Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena long before the days of Chris Paul and Blake Griffin, and long before anyone could positively put the words “Clippers” and “playoffs” in the same sentence. It was Crystal who, when controversy threatened to chase fans away from the team, finally on the rise, took to social media to proclaim “They belong to us. Go Clippers!”
6. Alyssa Milano, Los Angeles Dodgers
How many celebrities are so hardcore that they start a clothing line based on their favorite team? In addition to regularly contributing to a baseball blog on the Major League Baseball website, actress Alyssa Milano launched her own clothing line called Touch in 2007. The clothing line is based entirely around Dodgers apparel for women. Milano, in an interview with ESPN in 2010, said she has a ritual at Dodger Stadium, in which she rubs a picture of Jackie Robinson four times, every time she passes it.
5. Spike Lee, New York Knicks
When ESPN produces a 30 for 30 documentary based on an altercation between you, as a fan, and a visiting player, your level of fanhood holds a place of its own. Filmmaker Spike Lee, a tremendous supporter of the New York Knicks, famously took part in an argument with Indiana Pacers star Reggie Miller in Game 5 of the 1994 Eastern Conference Finals in which Miller was instrumental, scoring 39 points in a 93-86 victory. Lee, who sits courtside at nearly all Knicks games, may have been responsible for players signing, or not signing, with the Knicks. In 1997, Lee wrote a book titled Best Seat in the House: A Basketball Memoir.
4. Matthew McConaughey, Texas Longhorns
As the so-dubbed “McConaissance” or the perceived comeback of actor Matthew McConaughey’s career on the big screen continues, more people are learning of his allegiance to the University of Texas athletic department. McConaughey, a native of Texas, receives tweets from coaches, athletes and other celebrities on a regular basis whenever the Longhorns football team accomplishes anything on the field. In the highly anticipated 2006 Rose Bowl between the Longhorns and the USC Trojans, McConaughey took part in a pregame banter video with avid USC fan and fellow actor/comedian Will Ferrell. McConaughey graduated from UT in 1993.
3. Will Ferrell, USC Trojans
On the topic of Will Ferrell, few celebrity sports fans are as involved or are as clearly enthusiastic as Ferrell is over his beloved USC Trojans. Receiving a bachelor’s degree in Sports Information from the university in 1990, Ferrell has been known to lead the famed USC Marching Band, decked out in full Trojan armor. Ferrell, who was a member of the Delta Tau Delta fraternity, has collaborated with former USC head coach Pete Carroll to take part in surprises, pranks and stunts for the football team in past years. After Carroll won his first Super Bowl in 2014 with the Seattle Seahawks, he returned to USC to give a speech. During the speech, Ferrell got on stage began practicing place-kicking a football into the crowd.
2. Bill Murray, Chicago Cubs
One of the most cherished versions of “Take Me Out To The Ball Game” was performed at Wrigley Field by none other than “Ghostbusters” actor and fervent Cubs fan Bill Murray. Once a guest color commentator for the Cubs, Murray traveled to Florida in 2007 during Chicago’s playoff run and was even invited to a party in the clubhouse after the team clinched the NL Central Division. Most famously, Murray participated in a pregame introduction along with announcer Harry Caray before the Cubs’ first-ever night game in 1988. In addition to being a regular ceremonial first-pitch participant at Wrigley Field, Murray was also the subject of a petition by Cubs fans to replace Bob Brenly as the team’s color commentator in 2013.
1. Jack Nicholson, Los Angeles Lakers
‘Jack’ is the undisputed king of celebrity sports fans. Taking his passion for the Lakers to a level unheard of with other celebrity sports fans, it is not unlikely Jack has used his satirical charm to sway the outcome of a number of games. The Academy Award winner is more closely associated with the team than some potentially Hall of Fame players are. Who else has the ability to hassle refs, get into the head of a visiting coach and single-handedly improve a player’s game by looking at him without getting tossed from the arena? Nicholson has sat courtside at nearly every Lakers game for over 25 years. We use the term “sat” rather loosely, as Jack has been known to actually walk on to the court. In a town full of stars, the face of Jack Nicholson on the screens at Staples Center prompts a cheer from the crowd that equals a buzzer-beating game winner. The Laker Girls even presented Jack with a birthday cake during the quarterfinals of the 2007 NBA playoffs.