Watchworthy

The Best Sports Competition Series Ever 

Ranker TV
Updated July 9, 2020 224 votes 54 voters 3.2k views 32 items

List Rules Vote up the best reality and competition shows about sports and athletes that have aired on television

Sporting events have the ability to capture the attention of a nation. It only makes sense that reality TV would try to get in on the trend by releasing show after show following the exploits of people training their bodies to be the very best. From boxing to golfing, there are all kinds of shows that have aired over the years that centered around some sport. Some of the shows on this list are still on the air while others are a distant memory. They are not all competing against each other for the title of best sports reality series. 

The Ultimate Fighter is an American show that focuses on mixed martial arts. Each season, the show follows a group of MMA fighters as they train together and ultimately compete to win a contract with the UFC. The Big Break was a popular show that aired on The Golf Channel from 2003 to 2015. The show followed aspiring golfers as they trained to compete in the big leagues. That is the common theme among many sports reality TV series. 

Which of these shows did you find yourself binging all the time? Vote for the ones you are a fan of to see which show takes home the gold. 

 

Data-driven recommendations based on voting from over 40 million monthly visits to Ranker. Try the free app
list ordered by
1
BattleBots is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever
Alison Haislip, Jessica Chobot, Fon Davis

Premiered: 2000

BattleBots is an American competition reality television series. Competitors designed and operated remote-controlled armed and armored machines designed to fight in an arena combat elimination ...more
2
American Gladiators is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever
Mike Adamle, Joe Theismann, Todd Christensen

Premiered: 1989

American Gladiators is an American competition television program that aired weekly in syndication from September 1989 to May 1996. The series matched a cast of amateur athletes against each ...more
3
Ninja Warrior is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever
Ninja Warrior

Premiered: 2006

4
Hard Knocks is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever
Hard Knocks Zach Thomas, Darren Woodson, Eddie Kennison

Premiered: 2001

Hard Knocks is a reality sports documentary television series produced by NFL Films and HBO. The show was first broadcast in 2001, and the current 2014 season is the ninth. Each season, it ...more
5
Pros vs. Joes is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever
Pros vs. Joes Michael Strahan, Jay Glazer

Premiered: 2006

Pros vs. Joes is an American physical reality game show that airs on Spike TV. The show features male amateur contestants matching themselves against professional athletes in a series of ...more
6
The Ultimate Fighter is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever
Dana White, Mike Rowe, Herb Dean

Premiered: 2005

The Ultimate Fighter is an American reality television series and mixed martial arts competition produced by Fox Sports 1 and the Ultimate Fighting Championship. It previously aired for fourteen ...more
7
Nickelodeon Guts is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever
Felicia Day, Ryon Day

Premiered: 1992

Nickelodeon Guts was an American television "action sports" competition series hosted by actor/comedian Mike O'Malley and officiated by British actress Moira "Mo" Quirk. The ...more
8
Sports Illustrated Swims... is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever
Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Model Search Shantel VanSanten, Roshumba Williams, Alicia Hall

Premiered: 2005

The Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Model Search is a reality TV show produced by NBC that debuted in January 2005, prior to the launch of that year's Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. The purpose ...more
9
Two-A-Days is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever
Two-A-Days Rush Propst

Premiered: 2006

Two-A-Days is a show on the United States cable television channel MTV. The show chronicled the lives of teens at Hoover High School in Hoover, Alabama, a suburb of nearby Birmingham. It focused ...more
10
WWE Tough Enough is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever
John Cena, Trish Stratus, The Miz

Premiered: 2001

WWE Tough Enough is a professional wrestling reality television program produced by WWE where in participants undergo professional wrestling training and compete for a contract with WWE. There ...more
11
The Big Break is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever
The Big Break Stephanie Sparks, Vince Cellini

Premiered: 2003

The Big Break is the Golf Channel's reality television program. The show's premise is to award an aspiring professional golfer exemptions into selected events on certain tours. Starting 2014, a ...more
12
The Contender is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever
Sugar Ray Leonard, Sergio Mora, Jeff Fraza

Premiered: 2005

The Contender is a reality television series that follows a group of boxers as they compete with one another in an elimination-style competition, while their lives and relationships with each ...more
13
Knight School is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever
Knight School Bob Knight

Premiered: 2006

Knight School is a television documentary produced by ESPN about a group of sixteen Texas Tech University students trying to make the Bob Knight coached Texas Tech Red Raiders basketball team as ...more
14
4th and Long is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever
4th and Long

Premiered: 2009

4th and Long is a reality television series hosted by Michael Irvin that premiered on Spike on May 18, 2009. The winner of the show earned a spot at the Dallas Cowboys training camp - with a ...more
15
Skating with the Stars ... is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever

Premiered: 2010

Skating with the Stars is an American reality competition that aired on ABC from November 22, to December 21, 2010. Skating with the Stars features celebrities paired with professionals from the ...more
16
Jump City: Seattle is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever
Jump City: Seattle

Premiered: 2011

Jump City: Seattle is an American television series that formerly aired on G4. It features four of the top freerunning and parkour teams in the United States all coming together for the first ...more
17
WWE Diva Search is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever
WWE Diva Search
WWE Diva Search is a talent competition held by WWE. The first winner was Jaime Koeppe, but she did not receive a contract like subsequent winners of the contest. Other winners included Christy ...more
18
TKO: Total Knock Out is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever
Kevin Hart
TKO: Total Knock Out (CBS, 2018) is an American obstacle course competition series hosted by Kevin Hart. One contestant runs through the course, facing challenging obstacles they must pass, ...more
19
The Bachelor Winter Game... is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever
Chris Harrison
The Bachelor Winter Games (ABC, 2018) is a winter sports-themed reality competition television series. Previous contestants from The Bachelor and The Bachelorette compete in various winter ...more
20
Fastest Car is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever
Fastest Car (Netflix, 2018) is a documentary series. In a quarter mile drag race, drivers of exotic supercars go up against sleeper cars built and modified by dedicated gearheads.
21
Ultimate Tag is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever
Carrie Bernans, Travis DesLaurier, The Horse

Premiered: 2020

Ultimate Tag (Fox, 2020) is an obstacle course competition television series hosted by J.J. Watt and Derek Watt. Competitors who must vault, dodge, tumble and dive their way through several ...more
22
Karma is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever
Michelle Khare

Premiered: 2020

Karma (HBO Max, 2020) is an adventure competition family series created by J.D Roth and Scooter Braun and hosted by Michelle Khare. Karma takes sixteen contestants, ranging in age from 12 to 15, ...more
23
Let's Bowl is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever
Let's Bowl

Premiered: 2001

Let's Bowl is a short-lived bowling game show that aired on the Comedy Central television network from 2001 to 2002 after a brief run on several TV stations across the U.S. in the mid-1990s, the ...more
24
Fight Girls is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever
Fight Girls Gina Carano

Premiered: 2007

Fight Girls is an Oxygen original reality television series that spun off from a 2006 special which documented seven female fighters' attempts at winning a championship. The initial special ...more
25
Maximum Drive is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Sports Competition Series Ever
Joe Fowler, Brian Vermeire, Mercedes Colon

Premiered: 1994

Maximum Drive was a children's competition show hosted by Joe Fowler with co-hosts Brian Vermeire and Mercedes Colon that aired on The Family Channel from August 29 to November 25, 1994. On each ...more