Texas stands as the country’s largest sporting powerhouse, where the legacy of athletic excellence is as diverse as the vast Texan landscape. From the gridiron gladiators of the NFL to the diamond heroes of MLB, the dynamic kicks of MLS, and the hardwood finesse of the NBA, Texas boasts a roster of teams that have etched their stories into the annals of American sports history. No other state has such a prominent culture of sports where fanaticism reaches as far as the high school level, yet Texas has managed to not only sustain the interest in sports, but grow it and expand it across many different genres over time.
With the NFL being America’s darling and Texas being the biggest state, Texas boasts two formidable contenders. Fittingly, The Dallas Cowboys, often hailed as “America’s Team,” have left an indelible mark since their inception in 1960. With a storied history that includes five Super Bowl victories, the Cowboys’ iconic star shines brightly in the NFL constellation.
A relative newcomer to the league, the Houston Texans, established in 2002, have quickly become a force to be reckoned with. While a Super Bowl title has eluded them and there have been some recent issues with quarterbacks, the team seems on the upswing with rookie QB CJ Stroud. According to Betting TX, this is likely the reason why their odds to win the Super Bowl has rapidly dropped over the last couple of weeks.
The crack of the bat echoes through Texas, where Major League Baseball (MLB) holds a special place in the hearts of fans. The Houston Astros, founded in 1962, have seen their fair share of triumphs and tribulations. The Astros’ journey culminated in a historic World Series title in 2017, a crowning achievement that solidified their status in the MLB pantheon.
On the other side of the diamond, the Texas Rangers, established in 1972, have ridden the waves of baseball fortunes. Despite the absence of a championship, the Rangers have consistently been a force, with several playoff appearances capturing the imaginations of their devoted fan base.
Soccer, the world’s game, has found a fervent home in Texas through Major League Soccer (MLS). FC Dallas, founded in 1995, has been a standard-bearer for Texan soccer excellence. With a commitment to developing homegrown talent, FC Dallas has carved a niche in the MLS landscape.
Adding to the Texan soccer narrative is the Houston Dynamo, established in 2005. In a relatively short span, the Dynamo claimed back-to-back MLS Cup titles in their first two seasons, a testament to the franchise’s rapid ascent and the growing prominence of soccer in the state.
Basketball courts across Texas resonate with the dribble and swish of the NBA, where three teams have left an indelible mark. The Dallas Mavericks, founded in 1980, etched their name in NBA lore with a memorable championship victory in 2011, led by the legendary Dirk Nowitzki and has since become synonymous with Mark Cuban. Although Cuban just sold the franchise, the team saw a revitalization and became vastly more successful under his management.
The Houston Rockets, established in 1967, boast a legacy of high-flying moments, with two NBA championships in the mid-’90s and a commitment to excellence that keeps them in perennial contention.
Down in San Antonio, the Spurs stand as a paragon of consistency and success. Founded in 1967 as the Dallas Chaparrals and later moving to San Antonio in 1973, the Spurs have secured five NBA championships, with a distinctive brand of team-first basketball that has become their hallmark.
While most people tend to keep their eyes on sports teams that extend past college, we felt that an honorable mention was needed due to the culture of college sports in Texas. At the top of this list sits the Longhorns, who are perhaps the most historical franchise in Texas college sport history. Next, we have Aggies who have remained a perennial contender in both college football but have also been formidable in basketball as of late. Lastly, the TCU Frogs are easily the least recognizable out of the three and the dismal season the team has experienced in 2023 has not helped their case. Still, with the help of Max Duggan, the team is the latest out of the trio to reach the National Championship and therefore has had the most recent success.