The 15 best American Summer Olympic athletes ever

The countdown clock to the Rio Olympics is counting down, which means it's time to look back at the heroes of Olympics past.

SEE MORE: Check out full coverage of Rio 2016

From old-time legends like Jesse Owens, to former record holders like Mark Spitz, to today's legends like Michael Phelps, Team USA has had its fair share of terrific performers.

Above, we ranked the 15 best performances by Olympic athletes in Summer Olympic games. Click through to see what we think, and watch the video below for the latest news out of Rio.

TWO BIG NAMES PULL OUT OF TEAM USA BASKETBALL
TWO BIG NAMES PULL OUT OF TEAM USA BASKETBALL