BISMARCK, N.D. (KXNET) — Many people dream of becoming a pro athlete in their favorite sports, but it’s always important to remember that doing so is an extremely difficult goal to achieve. Even with practice, networking, and raw skill, very few are actually able to make the cut and be signed to a professional league. And as new information shows, this idea remains the same in North Dakota — especially when it comes to specific sports.

In an attempt to discover which states have the highest odds of making professional athletes, studied how many men were born in each state, as well as the number of professional athletes in all fields who hailed from these areas. During the study, the website took the total number of current athletes from each state from Sports Reference, which were added together to calculate the total number across the four major sports leagues from each state. This number was then divided into the number of male births in each respective territory using their most recent data available.

As one might expect, the chances of anyone becoming a professional athlete are low wherever you are, and the same can be said here in ND. The odds of a North Dakotan making the pro league are rather low in all categories, but especially so in the NBA, MLB, NHL, and Boxing/MMA fields.

NBA OddsNFL OddsMLB OddsNHL OddsSoccer OddsGold OddsBoxing/MMA OddsTennis OddsOlympian OddsTotal Odds
01 in 261001 in 50561 in 505601 in 50561 in 50561 in 281

In total, the chances of a North Dakota male born going into professional fields is approximately one 281. These odds, while implying that there is at least a possibility of going pro in North Dakota, are not nearly as high as those in certain other states. In particular, northeastern states like Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, and especially Rhode Island are noted to have the highest number of male births who have made the big leagues.

SportTop StateAnnual Male BirthsNumber of Sports StarsNumber of Sports Stars per 1,000 Births
SoccerRhode Island5,232183.44
GolfRhode Island5,232101.91
BoxersRhode Island5,23210.19
OlympiansNew Hampshire6,313121.90
TennisRhode Island5,23220.38

While North Dakota may not be the best place for those looking to take their athletic careers to the next level, it’s also not the worst. Generally, according to the study, states like Idaho, Florida, and the Carolinas see the lowest number of sports stars born within their borders.

SportBottom StateAnnual Male BirthsNumber of Sports StarsNumber of Sports Stars per 1,000 Births
NBANew York105,37160.06
NHLNorth Carolina60,23320.03
OlympiansNew Mexico10,69610.09
TennisSouth Carolina28,59310.03

Despite what some may think, it isn’t just talent that takes one to the professional league — a mixture of practice, hard work, natural skill, and high physical fitness are required for any athlete. In order to learn how to remain healthy and safe during athletic training or exercise, visit this page on the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons’ website.’s full story is available here.