We're No. 1!
Of course, we have known that all along, but now someone who could make that official has done so: Sporting News has ranked Dallas-Fort Worth No. 1 in its annual list of top sports cities.
DFW jumped from No. 5 last year to replace Chicago in the top spot. It's the first time DFW has been selected No. 1 since the publication began its rankings in 1993.
The award comes for the time period from summer 2010 to summer 2011. Rankings are based on point values assigned to categories that include teams' records, postseason appearances, power ratings and attendance.
"I think this is really exciting," Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price said. "This whole area in terms of sports and supporters is great, and we have great teams, from TMS to TCU to the Rangers, all of them, and the Dallas Cowboys, in Arlington. This is a great place for sports."
In awarding DFW its top ranking, the publication cited the Dallas Mavericks' NBA championship, the Texas Rangers' American League championship, TCU's undefeated Rose Bowl championship season, FC Dallas' MLS runner-up season and the presence of Texas Motor Speedway, Cowboys Stadium, college football bowl games and high school football.
After Dallas-Fort Worth were Boston, Philadelphia, Chicago-Evanston and New York.
"It's an outstanding honor for TCU to be mentioned alongside the Mavericks and Rangers," TCU athletic director Chris Del Conte said.
"We are proud to be part of such a passionate area for sports and one where our local college and pro teams have done well. It's exciting to see DFW recognized as the best in the nation."
Sporting News' cover illustration, which will be on newsstands this week, features the Rangers' Michael Young wearing a black cowboy hat and holding the American League championship trophy, Mavericks owner Mark Cuban posing with the NBA championship trophy and TCU mascot SuperFrog holding a bouquet of roses.
Although Tarrant County teams represent two-thirds of the illustration, the cover headline reads, "Don't Mess with Dallas." The secondary headline does include Fort Worth: "With an NBA title, World Series appearance and Rose Bowl win, there's nothin' bigger than Dallas-Fort Worth."
Sporting News understood the perils of mentioning only Dallas in the main headline, guaranteeing in its summary article that the headline would "frost some pumpkins in Fort Worth."
"The whole of the athletic area exceeds the sum of its sports parts, and in these parts it's all about winning," Sporting News wrote. "The Cowboys' collapse and Stars' ownership struggles were merely the quarter-teaspoon of lemon that heightened the sweetness of championships won."
At least there is always next year for Sporting News to find room for Fort Worth in the biggest headline when the Metroplex repeats its No. 1 ranking. Right?
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David Thomas, 817-390-7697