WASHINGTON — It’s time for you to help WTOP decide the greatest sports movies of all time.
After combing through the massive lists of sports titles in Hollywood history, WTOP’s crack staff has narrowed the field to 64, because the only proper way to vote on a sports movie list is with a bracket.
The four regions break down according to what was determined to be the fairest allotment. Baseball and football each snag their own region. We found that neither basketball nor boxing deserved a full 16-seed field, but were deep enough not to be lumped into a general category, so they share the third region.
Everything else — led by hockey and golf — fits into the final region. Say what you will about our selections, but we managed to squeeze billiards, bobsledding, bowling, car racing, cycling, horseracing, martial arts, poker, soccer, skateboarding and track and field titles into the bracket.
To trim the list to 64 involved some tough cuts. No doubt some of you will quibble with our omissions. Titles like “Finding Forrester” and “The Big Lebowski” were left off because of the fact that, while each included a central sport, the narrative did not revolve around it. Others, like “Little Big League,” “The Wrestler” or “The Mighty Ducks,” simply didn’t make the final cut.
You can debate the seeding, too, but ultimately, as in any tournament, the cream will rise to the top.
Before the voting even begins, we can already declare some winners. Dennis Quaid (“Any Given Sunday,” “Breaking Away” and “The Rookie”) appears in three of the four regions. Wesley Snipes does as well, covering baseball (“Major League”), basketball (“White Men Can’t Jump) and football (“Wildcats”). Kevin Costner, meanwhile, has four entries (“Bull Durham,” “Field of Dreams,” “For Love of the Game” and “Tin Cup”) with three titles in the baseball bracket.
Denzel Washington appears three times between two brackets, as a boxer in “The Hurricane,” a basketball father in “He Got Game” and a football coach in “Remember the Titans.” Bill Murray shows up twice, as a deranged groundskeeper in “Caddyshack” and a detestably villainous bowler in “Kingpin.”
Author Michael Lewis also sees two of his books-turned-films make the field, with “Moneyball” in the baseball bracket and “The Blind Side” in the football lot.
But enough with the pomp and circumstance. Let your voices be heard! Vote now and check back every day this week to see if your favorite flicks advanced, and to vote them on another round.
Monday, July 21: Round of 64 Tuesday, July 22: Round of 32 Wednesday, July 23: Sweet 16 Thursday, July 24: Elite 8 Friday, July 25-Sunday, July 27: Final 4 Monday, July 28: Championship