Some Topps Olympic autos already look golden


By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor | Commentary

A half-dozen or so U. S. Olympians featured on Topps cards already have captured the hearts of more than a few Americans more than two months before the opening of the 2012 Olympic Games in London.

How do we know? They’re already going for gold.

It’s apparent just by looking at the values of their autograph cards found in packs of 2012 Topps U.S. Olympic Team as the basic autographs for seven cards (showcasing six athletes) have reached or topped the $100 plateau since the product’s release. (Need a checklist or OPG to find out what your cards are worth? Click here.) And that’s not including rarer parallel cards.

The leader so far among the standard autograph set is U.S. Women’s Soccer star Alex Morgan, whose autograph card has sold for as much as $250, according to the prices tabulated by Beckett Media (ranges based on actual sales prices, not current asking prices — which are rather stout in online auctions). Coming in second is medalist record-holder Michael Phelps at $200 (or less), while his Champions (insert) autograph has sold for as much as $300 and sprinter Carl Lewis‘ autograph from the set has sold for as much as $150.

Gymnast Shawn Johnson checks in at $150, while teammate Jordyn Wieber has gone for as much as $100. The final notable card (so far) is of swimmer Ryan Lochte also at $100.

In all, the basic 50-card autograph set is commanding more than $2,000 with the real potential action not coming until the Olympics themselves. In the last Summer Games, Phelps’ few autographs commanded several-hundred bucks after languishing after release in previous years.

(Watch the Box Busters episode here.)

Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Sports Card Monthly magazine. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an email to him at Follow him on Twitter by clicking here.


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  1. Richard 17 May, 2012 at 18:32

    I’d take all of this with a grain of salt.
    The FIRST auto of each tends to go high and fast.
    Consider Junior Seau auto cards. The first ones on Ebay post death were
    going for $100+ on a regular basis for a while, but now those same cards
    have dropped down to just a bit over what they were getting pre death.

    Given that there is a production of about 150+ for each of the Champions autos,
    I expect them to continue to drop over the next month. Then, they will stabilize
    and eventually rise to whatever their appropriate level is.

    I expect that none of the autos, except Phelps, will be above $100 for the champions
    set, unless they do something exceptionally note worthy during the upcoming Olympics.
    Phelps, as the current gold medal record holder, and reasonably likely to add to that
    collection, will continue to be popular at least until the next time he is found in a picture
    doing something stupid. :-)

  2. Stevie Nixx 18 May, 2012 at 10:53

    I think Hope Solo and Alex Morgan are popular enough to stay in demand. Anyone who buys cards as an investment will likely end up on the losing end. Collect sets and athletes you like, have fun.

  3. Adam 22 June, 2012 at 03:19

    Most people are holding their hits (ie: autos, relics, patches) till the Olympics start…….I myself pulled the Lolo Jones 1/1 Gold Rainbow Autograph out of a $20 blaster box from my local Target!! =]

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