Throughout my childhood, teachers, parents, and various other respected figures constantly told me that two European traditions would soon be adopted in the United States: the metric system and a nation-wide love of soccer.
Well, I'm no longer a child, and my ruler still reads in inches, not meters.
And soccer, while its popularity has been slowly blossoming, is still, at best, our nation's sixth favorite sport.
While listening to ESPN.com's Bill Simmons' B.S. Report podcast, Simmons wondered aloud how great certain NBA players could be if they stepped off the basketball court and onto the soccer field.
Interesting concept, right?
Well, with the World Cup less than 24 hours away, I found myself wanting to expand the idea past the NBA.
Who are the top athletes who could make United States soccer perennial World Cup favorites?
What athletes have the correct combination of speed, size, toughness, and coordination to create a great soccer player?
When pondering, these are the ten athletes that kept popping in my head...