The Matchups That Make You Turn Your Head: Top 5 Sports Rivalries

Tommy MarcusCorrespondent ISeptember 23, 2008

Throughout the broad and unique history of sports, all sports, sports teams, and athletes have shared one special feeling - passion. Usually, when one thinks of passion, a few words come to mind - love, effort, and the ability to care. While all of these words do describe passion, the word is described otherwise in sports.

In sports, passion does mean love, effort, and the ability to care. However, what comes with the love, effort, and care, is hatred and rivalry.

Rivalry is what opens the eyes of sports fans, and the greatest rivalries in sports provide an incredible amount of excitement to the game that nothing else can bring.

The best of the best rivalries are what get fans going, the players fighting, and media blabbing.

In this article you will find The Best 5 Rivalries in all of Sports. 

Please Note: Besides The Number 1 and 2 Rivalries, I struggled to put the rivalries in good order. So, feel free to bash me, but this is how I thought best fit.

5. Army vs. Navy

The Army and Navy are rivals out of sports, and in sports. While they are rivals in the military over the "who's more valuable" argument, they are also bitter rivals in college football, among all other college sports. Army and Navy play an annual game every year in college football, and ever since 1890 have viciously fought in a battle for pride - and have been almost dead even. Since 1890 (the start of the annual game), The Navy holds a slight edge on Army, holding a 52-49-7 record. Although neither team usually is that big of a competitor in bowl games, this game and rivalry goes so deep into sports history that it just can't be left off of this list.

4. Los Angeles Lakers vs. Boston Celtics

From Magic and Bird, to Pierce and Kobe, the Lakers-Celtics rivalry is without a doubt the greatest NBA rivalry ever. If two teams meet 11 different times in a little under 50 years, there are bound to be rivalries. Larry Bird and Magic Johnson had one of the most heated rivalries in the history of basketball, and after the rivalry began to fade in the 2000s, The Celtics Dream Team came back and revived the rivalry. The Lakers and Celtics will always have one of the best and most heated rivalries ever.

3. Michigan vs. Ohio State

Michigan and Ohio State go without saying. If you know just the tiniest bit about college football (like I do), you know that if Michigan and Ohio State are in the same sentence that there's bound to be trouble. From the Bo Schembechler days to the Rich Rodriguez days in Michigan, Ohio State has always been hated. From the Woody Hayes days to the Jim Tressel days in Ohio State, Michigan has always been hated. There is a hatred that the two teams and fans have for each other that just can't happen in anything other than sports. The Ohio State and Michigan Rivalry is one of the best in sports, and the best ever in college football.

2. Duke vs. North Carolina

Duke University and North Carolina have the most bitter rivalry in all of college sports. Every meeting between the two colleges, most notably in basketball, almost always results in a brawl. Between the best teams in the country, best players in the country, and best coaches in the country, since 1920, Tobacco Road has provided some of the best games, fights, and moments in college basketball history.

1. Yankees vs. Red Sox

On January 3rd, 1920, Red Sox owner Harry Frazee sold Babe Ruth to the Yankees. While the White Sox offered Shoeless Joe Jackson and $60,000 - the Yankees owners offered Frazee $125,000 (which he used to finance a Broadway play) - Less Than 1/5 of the amount of money it now costs to have front row seats at Yankee Stadium. This is what started it all - the now extinct "Curse of the Bambino" and the bitter rivalry that would follow it. The Yankees and Red Sox have shown you the most memorable fights (take Don Zimmer getting knocked out by Pedro Martinez, Jason Varitek fighting A-Rod, and many others), the most memorable moments (Aaron Boone hitting the walk off home run to go to the World Series), and the most memorable series (2004 ALCS). Altogether, the Yankees and Red Sox rivalry is the best in baseball, and in all of sports.