National Heroes

The 12 Greatest NPC National Champions of All Time

Darren Burns



IFBB contest wins: 11

Number of Mr. Olympia apperances: 9

Highest Mr. Olympia placing: 1st

The first Nationals champ was also the youngest at just 22 years old. In his rookie pro season in 1983, Haney competed in seven contests, winning two and placing no lower than third in the other five, including a third-place finish in his Mr. Olympia debut. He won the Sandow the following year and kept it for the next seven to set the new all-time high with eight (tied by Ronnie Coleman in 2005). Throughout his reign, the 5'11" Haney stood a head taller than the competition, with notable exceptions being Mike Christian and Gary Strydom, but with neither big men able to bring their best to the Olympia stage, the task of dethroning the Totalee Awesome One fell first to Rich Gaspari (5'8") and then later to Lee Labrada (5'3"). His combination of aesthetics and size—complete with one of the best backs in history and a chest and shoulders that certainly rank in the top three of all time—made for a physique that epitomized classic bodybuilding at its finest. There will never be another quite like the Totalee Awesome One.


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