Wheaties Box Athletes
Former Wheaties Box Athlete
Michael Phelps Former Wheaties Box Athlete
Now, don't be shocked by this news... but, Michael Phelps has decided not to choose to be a Wheaties Box Athlete this year.
Don't all athletes want to be on the Wheaties Box?
Although Cheerios is reported as the best selling cereal in the US, followed by Kellogg’s Frosted Flakes, Honey Nut Cheerios, Honey Bunches of Oats, and Cinnamon Toast Crunch, the favored placement for any red blooded American athlete is to be found on the box of the ever famous Wheaties cereal.
The beginning of the Corn Flakes and Wheaties Box Battle.
Breakfast cereal has an interesting history, starting its debut as a healthy meal in the morning. The American Seventh Day Adventists formed the Western Health Reform Institute in the 1860’s, which was later named the Battle Creek Sanitarium because of its location in Battle Creek, Michigan. It was there that the Adventists manufactured and sold wholesome cereals and promoted the healthy start.
In 1906 Will Keith Kellogg, in an attempt to improve the diet of hospital patients by increasing their grain intake and finding a healthy bread substitute, accidentally came up with a tasty wheat flake cereal. Kellogg became the cereal industry giant and inventor of the corn flakes.
Wheaties Is Bran News
Wheaties The Breakfast of Champions
However, according to the Wheaties website, the cereal called Wheaties was created as a further development of the accidental flake, by George Cormack, who perfected the process of producing the flakes themselves. He was the head miller for the Washburn Crosby Company, or the predecessor of General Mills. The name “Wheaties” was given to the cereal as a result of an employee contest to name the cereal, won by Jane Bausman, the wife of a company executive.
Wheaties, who has always sold itself as the “healthy way to start your day”, is famous for becoming the “breakfast of champions” and traditionally placing famous athletes on the cover of their bright orange box. Making one ask, "have you had your Wheaties today?"
Wheaties Box Athlete Lou Gehrig
Lou Gehrig, the first Wheaties Box Athlete
The first Wheaties box athlete to gain the spot on the cover of the box was the famous Yankee slugger, Lou Gehrig in 1934. Following Lou Gehrig the years have seen many famous athletes donning the cover of the Wheaties box, but only seven have been chosen as “official Wheaties spokespersons” for the cereal. They were not only chosen for their champion skills in their sport, but also for the inspirational role they have played in their community as models of champions in charitable endeavors as well. The seven athletes have served the US by contributing their never ending leadership skills to benefit the youth of America.
Wheaties Spokesperson Bob Richards
The first spokesperson was chosen in 1958 and was Bob Richards. Richards has promoted physical fitness and athletic participation through the organization known as the Wheaties Sports Federation.
Wheaties Box Athlete Bob Richards
Wheaties Spokesperson, Bruce Jenner
In 1976 Bruce Jenner became the second Wheaties spokesperson and has tirelessly promoted physical fitness across the nation. Jenner is also a loyal supporter of the Special Olympics as well as numerous other charitable organizations.
Bruce Jenner Wheaties Box Athlete
First Women Wheaties Spokesperson, Mary Lou Retton
The third spokesperson for Wheaties is a woman, the famous gymnast Mary Lou Retton who captured the hearts of America for her performance in the 1984 Olympic Games. Retton continues to touch the lives of millions through her charitable work with the Children’s Miracle Network.
Wheaties Box Athlete Mary Lou Retton
Wheaties Box Athlete
Wheaties Box Athlete
Walter Payton, Another Wheaties Spokesperson
In 1986 football legend Walter Payton became the fourth Wheaties spokesperson. Peyton established the The Walter Payton Foundation in order to provide support for children’s educational programs as well as programs for abused and neglected children, and although Peyton has passed away his foundation continues to offer help and support to millions of children across America.
Chris Evert Another Wheaties Spokeperson who is a women.
The fifth Wheaties spokesperson to be named was Chris Evert. This spectacular tennis superstar was the winner of over 157 women’s single titles, including 18 Grand Slam events. Evert has been involved in numerous causes for children and has formed Chris Evert Charities, Inc., a nonprofit organization designed to help improve the lives of children, preserve and strengthen families, and promote healthy, drug-free lifestyles
Michael Jordan Wheaties Sixth Spokesperson
Michael Jordan, basketball legend and holder of six NBA Championship rings, five regular-season MVP awards and six NBA finals MVP crowns became the sixth Wheaties spokesperson. Jordan has supported numerous charitable organizations including the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, UNCF (United Negro College Fund), Ronald McDonald House and the Special Olympics.
Michael Jordan Ate His Wheaties
Wheaties Box Athlete Tiger Woods
Tiger Woods Rounds Out the Wheaties Box Spokespersons
The seventh Wheaties box sensation and spokesperson to join this elite list is Tiger Woods, the golf sensation. In fact, Woods could easily be considered to be the greatest golfer of all times. Woods established the Tiger Woods Foundation in 1996 to help empower young people through the game of golf. The foundation awards numerous scholarships and organizes minority youth golf clinics in cities throughout the country.
Is the cover of the Wheaties Box up for grabs?
Although being a spokesperson for Wheaties is quite an honor, just being considered to be on the cover of the Wheaties box is something that is sought after by many athletes today. The list of past athletes includes many who are respected and honored in their field of expertise. After the 2004 Olympics Michael Phelps achieved the “Wheaties Box Athlete” fame, but for 2008 he has moved on to the original flake cereal, Corn Flakes.
I guess that leaves the Wheaties Box Athlete up for grabs for this Olympic year?
I nominate Bryan Clay for the new Wheaties Box Athlete!
The 2008 Olympic Gold medal Decathlon winner was from the US, a position that has been elusive for the US in recent years. This incredible athlete who competed in ten different track and field events over a period of two days is Bryan Clay. Clay joins the ranks with Bob Mathias, Rafer Jonnson, Bruce Jenner and DanO’Brien.
Gold Medal Olympic Decathlon Winner Bryan Clay
Have you had your Wheaties?
Clay just wants to be a Wheaties Box Athlete.
"I would love for the Wheaties box to happen," the 28-year-old Clay mused “that would be the next dream. But it's a different time now than it was when Jenner and those guys competed. In most countries, they know who the decathlon champion is, but in the US it's been pushed to the back burner. Hopefully, this will be a spark to the fire."
Phelps who has won the bill as the “greatest Olympic athlete” won eight gold medals competing in eight events. Clay won one gold medal competing in 10 events-the 100, long jump, shot put, high jump, 400, 110 hurdles, discus, pole vault, javelin, and 1,500.
That is quite an impressive group of events, don’t you think?
The Hardest Thing Bryan Clay Has Ever Done
"It was brutal, it was just brutal," testified Clay. "It probably was the hardest decathlon I've ever done in my life, through all the extremes and weather conditions."
"Michael Phelps has got nothing on me," he declared. "Just kidding."
Make Bryan Clay a Wheaties Box Athlete!
All kidding aside, the Decathlon has been termed the event that produces “the greatest athlete in the world.” I believe that, if for nothing else but for that reason alone, Bryan Clay should be found among the ranks of the Wheaties Box Athletes.
What do you think?