Jim Thorpe was raised in Oklahoma and sent to the Carlisle Indian Industrial School in Pennsylvania in 1907. At the school, he played football under the legendary coach Pop Warner. In 1908, he left the school to play professional baseball in the Eastern Carolina League, returning in 1911 to Carlisle. Thorpe was named to Walter Camp's All-America football team in both 1911 and 1912.
At the 1912 Olympic Summer Games in Stockholm, Thorpe won both the decathlon and pentathlon. Because of his previous status as a professional athlete, his medals and records were not recognized. They were restored posthumously in 1973. Following the Olympics, Thorpe played both professional baseball and football. He was the first president of the American Professional Football Association, now the National Football League.