Ask a guy who his man crush is (I asked many for this slide show), and few will admit they have one. Or he might try to cover and say, “I don’t have a man crush, but if I did, it would be on…”
Every man has crossed the line from sports fan, to sports man crush at least once. The man crush is an unspoken, yet intimate, relationship between a male and his sports hero. The further the star athlete’s talent surpasses the regular male’s own ability, the deeper the extent of the man crush.
Nothing sexual, the man crush is more a form of devoted admiration, leading to fantasies of actually being friends and hanging out at a BBQ together.
Even the superstars have crushes of their own. Whether it be a pair of star-crossed NFL roommates, or the rapper who waits outside Derek Jeter’s dressing room—the man crush is alive and well.
Here is a list of the 10 best man crushes in sports.
This Dallas quarterback and his favorite tight end give a whole new meaning to tight. As one of Romo’s most trusted receivers, Witten is also his roommate on the road.
There had been talk of Romo and Witten taking their relationship too far with “secret meetings” and crafting their own plays. This sparked criticism from former Cowboy Terrell Owens, who appeared to be left out of the love triangle.
Recently, Witten and Romo have been seen shopping together for protective Kevlar vests. This, they hope, will avoid another man crush on Romo’s broken rib.
Washington Redskins' Chris Cooley is not shy about his man crush on Washington Capitals' Alexander Ovechkin. Cooley reported on his own blog that he invited Ovi and friends to a UFC match and waited outside in the freezing cold for his limo to arrive.
Cooley even defends Russia's greatest love machine in the face of criticism over a supposedly over-indulgent lifestyle. Cooley's response to the haters is that Ovi "plays his balls off" on the ice.
Only a true man crush loves the other, even without his balls.
This undisputed Welterweight Champion of the UFC reminds the world that Canadian men are not nice guys all the time. One of the best pound-for-pound fighters, Georges St. Pierre has men living vicariously through everything, from his choke hold to his six pack.
St. Pierre puts on a great performance, fueling man crushes around the world.
A bloody showdown in a cage is male bonding that rivals a group of women at a baby shower. Apparently, GSP also has his own figurine available at Walmart.
Good news for the guys devoted enough to play Barbies.
This three-way man crush was on display at a recent Dolphins-Patriots game. Dwyane Wade, Will Smith and Marc Anthony (part Dolphins owner) celebrated Anthony's birthday in his luxury box.
The trio appeared to be genuinely enjoying their bromantic night out. This man crush may even be strong enough to overcome the rumors of Anthony getting jiggy with Smith’s Fresh Princess Jada.
This couple has a serious mutual crush, bringing them together in business, at clubs and even at home.
50 Cent sits front row at Floyd Mayweather fights, and even steps into the ring afterwards.
Mayweather, who made at least $25 million off the win against Ortiz in Las Vegas, gave his do-rag-loving man crush a shiny new Hublot watch as a gift. “Look what my boy @FloydMayweather got for me,” 50 tweeted.
The two BFFs were seen on HBO 24/7 chatting on a pretend phone made of $20 thousand wads of cash.
Clearly, they are made for each other.
One of the world’s greatest golfers and the king of tennis have the perfect makings of a bromance. When Tiger announced that he and Federer text each other “daily,” heads were turning.
The pair say they share a common drive to succeed and regularly ping each other words of encouragement for key matches. Both have had sponsorships with Gillette, are represented by the same agency and are known to celebrate together with champagne after a big win.
Tiger is only sorry that his ex picked up so many pointers from Roger’s backhand.
Shh! Can you hear the "man cheers" after the Minka-Jeter break-up? Men and boys everywhere are falling hard for Mr. 3000. He's a legend with a suspected spray-tan, who has inspired a generation.
Even Jay-Z waited like a school boy outside Derek Jeter's dressing room to congratulate DJ-3K on his record-setting hit.
When a rapper waits in line for anything, that's one serious man crush.
Hockey fans' youngest man crush plays for Pittsburgh. Crosby is the only player in North American professional sports history to win a scoring title as a teenager.
After one Stanley Cup and Olympic gold, men are lining up to carry around this little Penguin in a Baby Bjorn.
Sorry guys, Mario Lemieux has dibs on caring for Sid the Kid. Under the nurturing eye of his own man crush, Sidney lived in Lemieux’s home for five years.
Let's hope Sidney makes a full recovery from his concussion, so men everywhere can stop moping and go back to cheering for him on the ice.
One guy told us that he would hand his wife over to Tom Brady for a night, in exchange for an autograph. (That deal is totally working out better for the wife, but don't tell).
Star quarterback, with a supermodel wife and stunning looks, Tom Brady is ripe man crush meat.
Even star golfer Keegan Bradley had a near coronary when Brady, a fellow New England boy, sent him a text to congratulate him on the PGA win. At least it wasn't a voice mail from Tiger.
Mark Messier has played more NHL regular season and playoff games than anyone in history. The mature choice for a man crush, one of Messier’s greatest moments was leading the New York Rangers to their first Stanley Cup win in 54 years.
Beyond New York, Messier draws ovations wherever he goes – Edmonton, where he won five Stanley Cups and even Toronto, where he was entered into the Hall of Fame.
Messier’s signature ear-to-ear smile paired with fierce intensity on the ice, are key to his man crush mystique.