10. UCONN Women’s Basketball – John Wooden’s legendary UCLA College Basketball teams set a record of 88 consecutive wins. Until this year, it was thought to be unbreakable. The UCONN Huskies women’s basketball team won their 89th week with a 93-62 win over Florida State.
9. Heisman Trophy Troubles – The NCAA has come under fire for their harsh rules in controlling the benefits that their “Student Athletes” receive. Despite making billions off their backs, players have been suspended for selling jerseys, rings and most recently getting free tattoos. This year Reggie Bush returned his 2005 Heisman Trophy after the NCAA handed down sanctions on Bush and USC for receiving cash and a house from an agent. This year’s winner Cam Newton was investigated after a story broke that his father was shopping him to colleges for $200,000. The NCAA in a moment of clarity decided not to suspend Newton as they were confident he had no prior knowledge of his father’s dealings. That and I’m sure they knew the National title game would be a ratings disaster if Newton didn’t start for this Auburn Tigers in that title game.
8. Olympic Hockey – Like soccer, hockey isn’t part of most American’s collective conscience but the performance of team USA had American’s glued to their televisions. The 27.6 Million Americans who watched the Gold Medal game against Canada was second only to the 1980 Lake Placid Olympics Miracle on Ice final two games. In a country where football dominates, the game outdrew the Rose Bowl.
7. San Francisco Giants win the World Series – 2010 was the summer of the pitcher. With steroids out of baseball, the pitchers dominated. In 2010, five pitchers threw six no hitters which included two perfect games and another that was robbed by a bad call at first base. The San Francisco Giants didn’t throw a no-hitter but their rotation dominated down the stretch and was lights out when the playoffs began. The Giants won their first World Series since 1954 when the franchise was in Brooklyn.
6. World Cup – The World Cup is big news every four years in North America but it was even bigger in North America in 2010. 2010 was the United States soccer teams’ third most successful world cup after 1930 when they reached the Semis and 2002 where they reach the quarterfinals. In 2010, the US won their group for the first time before a 2-1 extra time loss to Ghana ended their hopes in the round of 16. Despite the loss, most Americans knew the name of US Hero Landon Donovan, which makes him the most famous American male soccer player in history.
The top North American Sports stories will be out December 25th