Nick Sokoloski

Just because you have a disadvantage doesn't mean you can't succeed

The Watsons go to Birmingham 1963 - Brother vs. Brother

Many times, there may be two people or things that are similar but one of them might have a disadvantage so they are the underdogs. In the book The Watsons go to Birmingham - 1963, Kenny is the underdog compared to his brother Byron because he is smaller, younger, and gets picked on by him. In the text, page 9 states, “Byron and Buphead each grabbed one of my arms and one of my legs and swung me between them going, Wooo, Blizzard warnings! Blizzard warnings! Wooo! Take cover!” This proves that Kenny is the underdog here because Byron is bigger than him and is picking on him. Although Kenny is the underdog, he perseveres and later gets a laugh of his own. Page 90 states, “That’s right, ma’am, Five Forty-one is just waiting for the executioner to get home… Why is this so funny to you, Kenny”. This shows that when Byron is getting into trouble, Kenny is laughing and is the succeeding underdog. Although Kenny and Byron have their similarities and differences, Kenny is the underdog because he has a disadvantage but he persevered and ended up succeeding.

The Miracle on Ice

The U.S. Men's National hockey team proved in 1980 that you can still be successful as an underdog by beating the USSR team in an upset game. Earlier, before the Olympics, the USSR team beat them 10-3 in an exhibition so they were heavily favored coming into this game. To start the game, the U.S. We're trailing the game 2-1 but late in the first, they scored a surprising goal to tie the game at 2. Then in the second period, the USSR scored 1 goal but then the U.S. came back and scored 1 in the 3rd. Finally, with time running down, the U. S. Team scored an astonishing underdog goal to win the game 4-3! The U.S. team proved that as an underdog you can still persevere and be successful after they beat the Soviet Union in a miracle game.
1980 USA Miracle on Ice. Best Quality.


Bullying is a major problem all over that involves a victim who is the underdog and the bully is the person with the advantage. The person who is bullying is usually bigger and stronger or just had an advantage in some way. The underdog tends to be smaller but is also sometimes smarter than the bully and has a disadvantage, usually physically. One way for the underdog to win the battle is, tell and adult. If they do this, the adult will talk to the bully and they will likely not be mean to you anymore. Another way is, trying to make the bully nice by talking to them in a friendly manner. If you do this, they will not pick on you and may actually turn for the better. A lot of the time bully's do what they do for different reasons such as for power, as a joke, for revenge, or due to insecurities. Underdogs can succeed against bullies, as long as they persevere and overcome their meanness.
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Catching Kayla

Catching Kayla is a story about a girl who faces adversities and becomes the underdog when she gets a disability and has struggles when running track. Kayla wants to run track but gets diagnosed with the disease MS so it becomes hard for her to run. Because she got the disability, she at first became discouraged and it was hard for her to run. She kept on fighting to become the best even with the disease after her coach Patrick Cromwell helped her. He told her to keep fighting and she did just that. She was the underdog because she couldn’t feel her legs during races and at the end, she fell over in exhaustion but she kept on trying to persevere. Kayla was diagnosed with MS but due to her fearlessness and her coach helping her out, she became a great runner and moved on to win trophies and championships in track.

The Smallest Dragonboy

The Smallest Dragonboy by Anne McCaffrey shows a character named Keevan who is the underdog persevering and becoming very successful. In the beginning, Keevan is really determined to be a dragonrider to show everybody that being small isn’t holding him back. Page 253 states, “people were always calling him babe and shooing him away as being too small or too young for this or that”. Then, Beterli as well started being mean saying he was too small. Next, Keevan feels overwhelmed and loses some hope after hearing people at the dinner table say they might not let him attempt to be a dragonrider because of his size. After that, Beterli hits Keevan’s chest knocking him over and Keevan goes unconscious. After his severe injury and being picked on, Keevan still keeps wanting to go to the impression so he puts his resilience to the test and still goes. He opens an egg and to everybody's surprise, a bronze dragon came out. The underdog Keevan persevered and became successful by being the smallest dragonboy.


McCaffrey, Anne, and Linda Albritten. The Smallest Dragonboy. Special Limited Convention ed. Greystones, Ireland: Dragonhold, 1974. Print.

Curtis, Christopher Paul. The Watsons Go to Birmingham--1963. New York: Delacorte, 1995. Print.

"Catching Kayla: Running One Step Ahead Of Multiple Sclerosis." NPR. NPR. Web. 29 May 2015.

"On This Day: US Hockey Beats USSR in "Miracle on Ice"" On This Day: US Hockey Beats USSR in "Miracle on Ice" Web. 29 May 2015.

"What Is Bullying." What Is Bullying. Web. 29 May 2015.