Karen Owen, Duke, and the Top Athlete Sex Scandals Ever

Bailey Brautigan@BBrautiganFeatured ColumnistOctober 1, 2010

Karen Owen, Duke, and the Top Athlete Sex Scandals Ever

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    Jared Wickerham/Getty Images

    Duke University student Karen Owen's well-documented sexcapades have created yet another sex scandal for the Blue Devils, and this story is reminiscent of highly-publicized sexual encounters of the past.

    Even though Owen describes hookups with 13 different Duke athletes, this is far from the first time that elite athletes have been involved with less-than-desirable sexual predicaments.

    With the fame and fortune that comes with being a professional athlete (or the potential fame and fortune that comes with being a college athlete) come women.

    Beautiful women. Tricky women.

    Being a famous athlete means living in the public eye. For the most part, sports figures have learned to be on their best behavior.

    But sometimes they mess up big time, and all of us have to hear about it.

    Here are the most infamous sex scandals in sports.

14. Eugene Robinson

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    The night before Super Bowl XXXIII, Atlanta Falcons head coach Dan Reeves received a disturbing phone call.

    Safety Eugene Robinson had been arrested for soliciting a prostitute. Unfortunately, the woman was an undercover police officer.

    Robinson ended up playing in the game, but the Broncos were gunning for him. Wouldn't you?

    Needless to say, the Falcons fell to the Broncos 34-19, and Robinson's performance was definitely a contributing factor.

    The best part?

    That day, Robinson had been awarded the Bart Starr Award for being a person of high-moral character.

13. Alex Rodriguez

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    Apparently, Alex Rodriguez really loves strip clubs.

    And strippers.

    A-Rod is reported to have slept with several exotic dancers while married to Cynthia Rodriguez, frequenting gentlemen's clubs whenever he had a road game, and making no attempt to be subtle about it.

    Cynthia stood by her man for years, but then A-Rod was linked to Madonna.

    She could deal with trashy strippers, but Alex's relationship with Madonna appeared to be something more.

    And Cynthia got the hell out of there.

12. Ronaldo

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    While in Rio de Janeiro, Ronaldo was involved in a scandal involving three prostitutes. Now, prostitution is legal in Rio, but that's not the issue here.

    Ronaldo reportedly brought three hookers back to his hotel room where he realized...


    He offered each of them money to leave, but one "lady" demanded more money than Ronaldo was willing to pay.

    The prostitute kept receipts as proof of Ronaldo's "transactions," making it very difficult for Ronaldo to defend himself.

    My question: How did he not know this was a transvestite?

11. David Beckham

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    David Beckham has definitely had his share of sex scandals, but most recently, he has been accused of paying $10,000 for sex with a prostitute.

    After cheating on his wife with his personal assistant, other women came out of the woodwork, claiming to have been sexually involved with this soccer star.

    Read more about the latest scandal here.

10. Steve Phillips

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    Phillips had to take some time off from his Mets general manager duties after sexual harassment allegations came out regarding a woman named Rosa Rodriguez.

    He admitted to having sex with this woman, but he denied any harassment charges. The suit was settled out of court, and even Rodriguez's attorney believed Phillips to be innocent.

9. Tiki Barber

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    After 11 years of marriage, Tiki Barber separated from his wife to move onto greener pastures.

    The scandal here is that Barber had been carrying on a long sexual affair with former NBC intern Traci Lynn Johnson, who had also been a babysitter for the couple.

8. Tiger Woods

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    In perhaps the biggest sex scandal in recent history, Tiger Woods has been linked to over a dozen different women while married to his now ex-wife Elin Nordegren.

    To make matters worse, most of these women were very trashy, and some were even porn stars.

    Poor Elin.

7. Wayne Rooney

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    Wayne Rooney also makes our list for soliciting prostitutes.

    When Rooney was younger, he had slept with a few "ladies of the night," but his then girlfriend (now wife) had forgiven him because they had not yet taken their relationship to a sexual level.

    But just this year, Rooney has made headlines for paying Jennifer Thompson for sex, and even bringing her in public with him.

    Why do these guys insist on paying for sex?

    Aren't there enough jersey-chasers to go around?

6. Kobe Bryant

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    Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

    In 2003, Kobe Bryant was arrested by Colorado police on sexual assault charges filed by a 19-year-old hotel employee.

    Kobe admitted to having sex with this woman, but he denied any rape allegations.

    The hotel employee, Katelyn Faber, refused to testify in court, so criminal charges were dropped against Bryant, and the civil case was settled out of court.

5. Ben Roethlisberger

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    Ben Roethlisberger is currently serving a four-game suspension from the NFL after the Pittsburgh quarterback found himself facing sexual assault charges.

    In two separate incidents, Roethlisberger was accused of sexual assault. Charges in Lake Tahoe were dropped after his alleged victim was said to be trying to run into Big Ben in order to try and get pregnant with a "little Roethlisberger."

    Ben found himself in trouble again after a sexual encounter in a bar bathroom turned into another rape accusation. County prosecutor cited lack of evidence, and decided not to charge Roethlisberger. 

4. Karen Owen

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    Now we come to the story that sparked this trip down memory lane: Karen Owen's "thesis."

    Owen documented sexual encounters with several Duke University athletes, and she sent a PowerPoint presentation of her sexscapades to several friends.

    Owen has since apologized, saying that she never meant to hurt any of these athletes, but now 13 men will have to endure the humiliation and media attention surrounding Owen's memoir.

3. Minnesota Vikings

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    In 2005, many Minnesota Vikings players allegedly threw a boat party on Lake Minnesota.

    Prostitutes were flown in from Atlanta and Florida to perform sex acts while on the "Booze Cruise."

    This party came to light after a local woman called the police, reporting that "seven black men" were urinating in her yard.

    The group left several used condoms and sex toy wrappers on the boat after engaging in sex acts in front of crew members.

2. Duke Lacrosse

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    Mitchell Layton/Getty Images

    In 2006, a woman by the name of Crystal Gail Mangum falsely accused three Duke lacrosse players of raping her at a party.

    After dragging these students' names through the mud, the prosecutor of the case was disbarred for "dishonesty, fraud, deceit, and misrepresentation."

1. Mike Tyson

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    Ethan Miller/Getty Images

    In 1992, Mike Tyson was convicted of raping an 18-year-old woman by the name of Desiree Washington. 

    Tyson claimed that the sex had been consensual, but the jury found him to be extremely unlikable due to his defensive, arrogant answers on the witness stand.

    Tyson served three years in prison, and he was released in 1995.