- On January 1, Alabama defeats Arkansas, 24-9, in the Sugar Bowl and is later voted the national champion of college football for 1979.
- On January 7, the Philadelphia Flyers' National Hockey League (NHL) record-setting streak of thirty-five games without a loss comes to an end when they are beaten by the Minnesota North Stars, 7-1.
- On January 20, the Pittsburgh Steelers win their fourth Super Bowl in six years with a 31-19 victory over the Los Angeles Rams; also, the United States announces that it will not participate in the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow in protest of the Soviet Union's invasion of Afghanistan.
- On February 12, the XXIII Winter Olympic Games open in Lake Placid, New York. Bobsledders Willie Davenport and Jeff Gadley become the first African American athletes to represent the United States in the Winter Olympics.
- On February 22, the United States Olympic ice hockey team...
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