‘Do you believe in miracles?’

The Chicago Cubs ended a 108 -year-long championship drought in 2016.

The Chicago Cubs ended a 108 -year-long championship drought in 2016.

Haley McCoy, Editorials Editor

      As sure as God made green apples, the Chicago Cubs won the World Series.

      Sure, that’s not how the infamous Harry Caray quote goes, but it’s true. The Chicago Cubs reached the World Series for the first time in 73 years, and emerged victorious as World Champions for the first time in 108 years. As if that momentous feat was not enough, the series was surmised of a 3-1 series comeback, a game seven, extra-innings, rain-delay victory. Even William Shakespeare, a man known for his tragedies, couldn’t have written a better story.

      While the ending of a century of heartbreak was remarkably noteworthy, it was not the only bizarre and unexpected finale in the sports world this year. Villanova, the New England Patriots, Leicester City, the Pittsburgh Penguins, the Cleveland Cavaliers – the champions of 2016 will be remembered for years to come.

       Kris Jenkins, the Villanova big man, was the last person expected to sink the game-winning shot in the NCAA Championship game last spring. Yet, Jenkins was the trailer left open on the press-break, and sure enough, he took the three-point shot that would turn into the buzzer beater that gave a small Pennsylvania school it’s first championship since 1985.

      Tom Brady definitively proved Roger Goodell wrong whilst reminding the football world that he and his team are indeed the best team in the National Football League. The New England Patriots overcame a 25-point deficit against the Atlanta Falcons to win yet another championship. This amounted to the largest comeback in Super Bowl history, a feat that seemed impossible after a half that saw the Patriots dead in the water.

      The Cubs have been the long shot to win for the longest time, but maybe the biggest upset of 2016 came from England. The Foxes of the Leicester City Football Club overcame 5000/1 odds to win the Premier League. The Premier League is the top tier of English football, otherwise known as soccer. Leicester City won the Premier League with a 23-12-3 record, finishing the season over powerhouses such as Arsenal, Tottenham, and both Manchester City and Manchester United.

      The Cleveland Cavaliers, too, overcame a 3-1 series deficit to win the first championship for the city of Cleveland since 1964. 52 years isn’t quite as egregious as 108 years, but it is notable nonetheless. The Golden State Warriors were primed to win their second-straight championship when the Cavaliers, led by homegrown hero LeBron James and Kyrie Irving, led a comeback that Ohio will not soon forget. The exclamation point was the block from behind that James delivered on Draymond Green, and the three that Irving sank to seal the victory for Cleveland.

      Of course, November came and the Cleveland Indians gave up a 3-1 series lead and failed to end 68 years without a championship, but alas we digress.

      The final unexpected breakthrough of this sports year came, yet again, from Chicago. The Northwestern Wildcats were named the an eight seed in the NCAA March Madness tournament, qualifying for the first time in school history. Northwestern held the first tournament back in 1939. Then started the drought. The team hasn’t won anything, but the qualification is history. This is akin to the Cubs having never even made the playoffs in 73 years.

      So, yes, history.

      History in sports happened time and time again in 2016, moving into 2017. It was bizarre and unexpected and, surprisingly enough, the world of sports is primed to have another thrilling year.