Yes, usually jocks are just dumb
. But this jock is different. This jock just made the Dean's List and has to choose between an academic scholarship to a prestigious Ivy League
school, or the football scholarship in the Big 12. In other words it's what you get when you combined a well toned mind with well toned muscles.
This character is much more likely to be female than male, even though the sports being played are traditional male sports. This is probably done as a mix of Passionate Sports Girl
and Higher Education Is for Women
. If there's a contrast between two girls, this one will be firmly the Tomboy
in Tomboy and Girly Girl
because of how independent she is. Sensitive Guy and Manly Man
on the other hand are less likely to use this as the sensitive guy is more likely to be academic and the manly man is more likely to be athletic.
They don't have a Dumb Muscle
look to them, neither a smart one
but sporty look, somewhere between casual and tough.
Can overlap with Renaissance Man
if the Academic Athlete
has more than just the two skills, especially if he has artistic ones.
Compare Genius Bruiser
, Badass Bookworm
, Adventurer Archaeologist
, and the duo
of Brains and Brawn
Anime and Manga
- Azumanga Daioh's Koyomi Mizuhara is an honors student, second only to Chiyo academically. She's also an outstanding athlete and usually does well during their school's annual sports fest.
- Sakaki, likewise, is the best athlete at the school, and also excels in her studies, scoring just under after Chiyo and Yomi.
- In Kare Kano, Miyazawa and Arima are always near the top of the school's exam rankings, and Arima wins nationally at kendo. For Miyazawa, only other characters praise her sports ability, though.
- Natsumi Hinata from Keroro Gunso is both the top athlete in school and near the top of her class in grades as well. She is contrasted with her little brother Fuyuki who is both un-athletic and more interested in his hobby than his studies. The Gag Dub naturally exaggerates both of these tendencies.
- Hinagiku Katsura of Hayate the Combat Butler is the Student Council President with the highest grades whenever they are mentioned (her treasurer is second-highest and her secretary third) as well as the Captain of the rarely-ever-mentioned Kendo Team. As seen in the school's athletic festival and marathon race, she trumps just about everyone at school with the possible exceptions of Hayate himself and her older sister Yukiji (although Yukiji is nowhere near as smart as her and Hayate eventually studies to get near her level but has yet to surpass her).
- In Revolutionary Girl Utena, the rose-seal duelists are not only the prettiest and most popular students (generally composed of the Absurdly Powerful Student Council and Utena) but they are also all excellent students to complete the perfect appearance. Given the nature of the series this sense of perfection is the source of both speculation and dramatic tension.
- All the good quarterbacks in Eyeshield 21 are this trope. So are Devil-Bats lineman Jumonji, sociopathic Jerk Jock Agon, and too many other examples to count. Generally the series likes avoiding Dumb Jock as much as possible.
- Agon actually took a sports scholarship to Shinryuuji, even though he qualified for an academic scholarship, simply because he didn't like the other guy up for it.
- Tezuka and Atobe from The Prince of Tennis are both the captain of their teams and the Student Council Presidents. Tezuka is so smart that he can even correct teachers sometimes.
- Akemi Homura from Puella Magi Madoka Magica is one of the smartest and best at sports in her class. Which makes the contrast with her initial role as being neither good at academics nor able to do gym class at all in Timeline 1 that much more jarring.
- Takenori Akagi from Slam Dunk is both the captain of the basketball team and one of the smartest students in Shohoku. Hilariously lampshaded when Sakuragi and Miyagi imagine him at class... as a gorilla with glasses. It's a plot point in the "gym fight" episodes, as he's stuck in an advanced class when Mitsui and his gang attempt to destroy the basketball team.
- Fate Testarossa of Lyrical Nanoha is shown in side-materials to be this as a student. She gets perfect marks in nearly every subject (except for Japanese language) in school and being so good at math that she helps Nanoha's older sister with her math homework. On the other end, even without using her powers, she's second to only resident Passionate Sports Girl Suzuka in terms of athletics. The same is true for most practicing mages in the Nanohaverse: as explained in the A's manga, the series' Magitek basically relies on crunching numbers really fast in your head, while the constant channeling of Mana makes a mage's body superhumanly strong and durable. Fate does stand out even among mages, however, thanks to her natural diligence and studiousness.
- Parodied with Miyu Edelfelt of Fate/kaleid liner PRISMA☆ILLYA - on her first day in elementary school she uses high-school-level math to solve a geometry problem, while her attempt at the 50 meter dash smashes world records.
- Sayumi Takanashi of When Supernatural Battles Became Commonplace is second best at studies in the school and has two black belts.
- Haruhi Suzumiya is excellent at P.E. and does her homework effortlessly.
- Shana of Shakugan no Shana fame is shown as being hypercompetent at both, which is in part justified by her being a superhuman.
- Played for Laughs in Tintin, where Professor Calculus claims to be this. Haddock uses "complete athlete" (i.e., Dumb Jock) during one of his rants a short while after.
- Andre in Necessary Roughness. He got into Texas State on a football/chemistry scholarship, and by his third year has nearly completed his PhD and is teaching classes. He quit football to focus on academics his freshman year, but he steps up when the school's program is in danger and the team needs players. Other than the QB, he's the only one on the team who's ever played before
- Spoofed in The Comebacks, where the eponymous college football team is, to a man, on the Dean's list. Their coach, however, is upset upon hearing this, as it doesn't fit with the dumb, irresponsible jock stereotype. He encourages them to slack off and party more often.
- Jess of Bridge to Terabithia thinks highly of Leslie Burke because she beat all the fifth grade boys in their race and she can impress teachers with her imaginative essays and ability to appear focused in class.
- The Dear America book With The Might of Angels has Dawnie who has the highest grades in the elementary division of her school but more than anything she wants to be part of the All-American Girls Baseball League.
- Kristin Amanda “Kristy” Thomas from The Baby-Sitters Club has the management skills to create the club and be it's president. Her sport is softball and she even starts a kids' team. It's also mentioned that she consistently earns straight As.
- In A Certain Magical Index, Mikoto Misaka is better at academics than Touma (despite being a few years younger than him) and also highly athletic. Most of this is justified by Mikoto being a high-level esper, meaning she receives much better tuition than Touma and has limited Super Intelligence as a Required Secondary Power - in her spinoff series the presence of her classmates makes it far less notable.
- Basketball star Mary Camden from 7th Heaven will occasionally tutor other characters.
- Samantha “Sam” Kepler from Wishbone participates in every sport her male friends do and is picked for her class team captain spelling bee because she's always reading.
- Laura Ingalls Wilder from Little House on the Prairie will get dirty and play baseball as a child but at sixteen she becomes more elegant and gets her first teaching job.
- Jane Vaughan of Degrassi is a skilled football player and the Valedictorian of her class. Her plan is to become a lawyer. This is also the same case for Katie, who is not only on the soccer team, but is in karate, the school newspaper, and is student council president.
- Spencer Hastings of Pretty Little Liars isn't just into field hockey, lacrosse and tennis, but also one of the better students in her class and a potential captain of the academic decathalon team.
- Captain of the cheerleading squad on Series/Glee, Quinn, is not just an award winning athlete but also maintains a 4.0 GPA while getting pregnant and giving birth to a girl, all while being an active member of the Glee club. she later continues maintaining said GPA after going through a car accudent that left her temporarily handicapped, just so she can win home coming queen. Broken Ace, anyone?
- On Daria, Mack is a generally intelligent student, while the rest of the football team are all Dumb Jocks. Jodie is also on the tennis team, though you could be forgiven for missing that given all the other activities she's involved in.
- New York 1, a major cable news channel in The Big Apple offers a "Scholar Athlete of the Month Award" to one high-achieving high school student, in a praise-heavy featurette.
- Truth in Television for how some well-educated American athletes appear to Europeans where sports is not typically tied to academics but often involves dropping out of school early to pursue one's sports career full-time.
- A recent example is Myron Rolle, Rhodes Scholar recipient in 2008. He was an all-ACC defensive back for the Florida State Seminoles and was good enough to get drafted in the NFL in 2010. He is currently back at Florida State studying medicine.
- On the other hand, this is an outright Enforced Trope in Europe; since college sports are considered a purely amateur affair that brings in negligible revenue for the institution, there's no incentive to give a brilliant athlete any leeway where academic performance is concerned like certain less reputable US colleges have been accused of.
- A few schools have a reputation for specifically being uncompromising. Probably the best-known example would be Stanford University, a member of the Pac-12, one of the five premier athletic conferences (and #2 all-time in NCAA championships won across allsports, behind UCLA), but also the "Harvard of the West" that demands high academic standards from all of its students, even the athletes. To a lesser degree, Duke University.
- Collegiate athletes are required to maintain a certain grade point average, usually a C, but the toughest coaches want more.
- Dr. Benjamin Spock was an Olympic rower in 1924.
- Ken Dryden. Drafted by the Bruins, had his rights traded due to his desire to attend college. Played hockey for four years at Cornell, won championships. Went to law school while playing in the minor leagues. Sat out a year in the "NHL" on a contract dispute, and did his law clerking instead. Played 8 seasons in the NHL around that and won 6 Stanley Cups as the goaltender for the powerhouse 70s Montreal Canadiens. Hall of Famer AND author of one of the best sports memoirs ever, "The Game". Later became a Member of the Canadian Parliament from 2004-2011.
- Italian professional cyclist Domenico Pozzovivo has a PhD in economy.
- Most students at military academies. They are Badass Bookworms in training, after all.