Major sports headlines of 2019 from every state
Do you ever stop to think about what the sports fans in your state will be talking about one year, five years, or even 10 years down the road? At any moment while watching the big game, a spectator might be in the middle of history in the making—or, at the least, an event that captures national headlines and hearts.
With so many teams and players from the NCAA to professionals in the United States, it may be hard to keep everything straight. Even the most avid sports followers—conscious of every score of every game—may not be aware of something as obscure as dog sled racing, for example. Whether you’re from a large state with several professional teams or a smaller state where little league is king, pride in your state’s sports is inherently, well, American.
Stacker rounded up some of the greatest moments for sports in all 50 states from 2019 so far: From overcoming impossible odds to shocking trades that took even the players by surprise, to an unforgettable, once-in-a-lifetime moment for a small-town.
Friendly rivalries, family traditions, and die-hard fandoms all provoke and excite memories that last lifetimes; regardless of the winners, that’s hard to beat. When entire neighborhoods, states, and even countries are brought together through the struggle and triumph of sporting events, everyone wins.
From the college football to NASCAR and everything in between, see how your state made headlines in the world of sports during 2019. As all sports fans know, it doesn’t get any better than a live event, and reliving great moments can sometimes be just as exhilarating as watching them in person.
Here’s a look at some of the more memorable major sports headlines of 2019 from every state.
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Alabama: Auburn men’s basketball team goes to the Final Four for the first time in history
After a 77-71 win in overtime against the Kentucky Wildcats in April, the Auburn Tigers clinched the Midwest Region title in the Elite Eight. The historic win made Auburn the first team from the state of Alabama to reach the Final Four of the NCAA.
Alaska: Iditarod organizes the World Series of sled dog racing
While there aren’t any professional sports teams hailing from Alaska, the 49th state is still known for cold-weather sports like hunting, fishing, and sled dog racing. In mid-October, Alaska’s famous Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race announced a new global partnership aimed at bringing more fans to the sport. The QRILL Pet Arctic World Series, or “QPAWS,” will have its inaugural event in 2020 and promises to become the World Series of long-distance sled dog racing.
Arizona: Diamondbacks set the record for longest game at Chase Field
A baseball game going into extra innings is always exciting, but in September the Arizona Diamondbacks and the St. Louis Cardinals got way more than they bargained for at Chase Field. The game lasted a whopping 19 innings for a total of 6 hours and 53 minutes, beating the record for the longest game in the history of the stadium—by both innings and time.
Arkansas: Razorbacks are at all-time low after former coach Bobby Petrino’s apology
Every University of Arkansas fan remembers coach Bobby Petrino’s dramatic firing in 2012, and in September, he made headlines again when he publicly apologized for the scandal that led to his termination. The apology came at a fragile time for Arkansas fans, who have had to watch their team sink lower and lower in the rankings since coach Petrino’s departure, hitting an all-time low when the Razorbacks lost at home to San Jose State, a team who had previously won only two FBS matchups since the beginning of 2017.
California: Golden State Warriors lose to Toronto Raptors in NBA Finals
Colorado: Colorado becomes the 19th state to legalize sports betting
Colorado’s House of Representatives passed a bill to legalize sports gambling in the state in April 2019, and Colorado citizens narrowly voted to approve it in November. In a 50.8% to 49.2% lead with 90% of the votes in, this made Colorado the 19th state in the country to legalize sports betting.
Connecticut: UConn leaves AAC to join Big East Conference but doesn’t include football
In June 2019, the University of Connecticut officially announced its move from the American Athletic Conference to the Big East Conference for 2020–21. But the real kicker came when it was revealed that the move wouldn’t include football, meaning the team could be forced to play as an independent if it couldn’t find a way into another conference. UConn football fans were scrambling to ensure that football would not be eliminated from the school completely, especially given the massive popularity of college sports in the state.
Delaware: Blue Hens Football get 700th win in triple-overtime game against Rhode Island
The most exciting game in Delaware sports occurred in September, when the Delaware Blue Hens went into triple overtime against Rhode Island. Career and school records were broken, with a thrilling fourth-down interception sealing the deal for the program’s historic 700th win.
Florida: Florida native wins his second Daytona 500, dedicates win to J. D. Gibbs
A big win in Daytona by a Florida native is exciting enough in itself, but Denny Hamlin’s win in February was extra emotional due to the death of J. D. Gibbs a month prior; Gibbs first discovered Hamlin, who dedicated the win to the man who made his career possible.
Georgia: Tiger Woods receives record payout at 2019 Masters at Augusta2018 All rights reserved.