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December 15th
Star Club’s Top 20 Athletes of 2011 (15-11)

Let’s keep it going, Star Club’s best sports performers of this past year!

15) Blake Griffin – Los Angeles Clippers
Some call him “Blake Ops”, some refer to him as “Quake Griffin”. We just like to call him the most thunderous player in the sport of basketball. Harnessing all the power within him, we’ve watched as Blake had a stellar first year in the NBA after coming off of injury and earning himself Rookie of the Year along with and All-Star game berth. He’s got a long way to go, but if the Blakemania exhibited in the past year because of his ground-shattering dunks is any indication, he’s a force soon to NOT be reckoned with. Not to mention he’s got loads of endorsements, we’d say it’s been a good run for Blake so far.

14) Novak Djokovic – Serbia
Climbing the ladder of Tennis glory is not an easy thing by any means, as it’s usually dominated these days by Federer and Nadal.  After being ranked first in the world, he proved his status on American soil by winning the US Open and bringing that prestige back to his homeland of Serbia.

13) Abby Wambach – United States
Lately, the state of US Women’s Soccer has been fluctuating, with a somewhat unpredictable tendency for winning. Luckily, they have Abby Wambach at striker doing her best to bring the Red and Blue some very necessary glory. This past year’s run and a Women’s World Cup found her at the helm of several important headed goals. None more important than her ESPY Play of the Year, 120th-minute, game-tying goal, one of the best in FIFA history. Add that to her being the United States’ leading Women’s World Cup goal scorer and we can easily say she’s had a pretty great year.

12) Cam Newton – Carolina Panthers
It’s like we watched Cameron Newton mature before our eyes, becoming the NFL phenom we know him as today. Much of 2011 has been a transitional period for Newton, from NCAA championship to skeptical rookie predictions to finally smashing all doubts completely, but we know he still has amazing potential to tap into. As a rookie, the dominant Newton has been rushing his way into the rookie record books, firing from all cylinders. He’s the most athletic pigskin-slinger we’ve seen in some time, can he turn it into a winning formula?

11) Derek Jeter – New York Yankees
The late Bernie Mac starred in a film about a special baseball club, deeming himself Mr. 3000. Well it seems that such a feat is not impossible for a slugger of our generation, as Derek Jeter swiftly claimed the rights to the 28-men group of hitting all-stars. This year just provided another notch on the list of accomplishments that has the New York Yankee shortstop catapulting towards the hall of fame. Year in and year out, Jeter sets a consistent standard for the all-around baseball player, but this year was much too special for his legacy.

Stay tuned for the Top 10!