un·​der·​dog ˈən-dər-ˌdȯg How to pronounce underdog (audio)
: a loser or predicted loser in a struggle or contest
: a victim of injustice or persecution

Examples of underdog in a Sentence

I always root for the underdog instead of the favorite. As a lawyer, she consistently represented the underdog.
Recent Examples on the Web But in 2015, Japan were the underdogs and yet pulled off a surprise result against rugby titans South Africa. Patrick Frater, Variety, 11 Sep. 2023 The Blazers are a 6.5-point underdog for the 5 p.m. CT kickoff in the game that will air on ESPN+. Evan Dudley, al, 9 Sep. 2023 The Rebels, of course, are huge underdogs against Michigan, who are opening the 2023 season with four home games. Kevin Skiver, Detroit Free Press, 9 Sep. 2023 Backup quarterback Tavita Pritchard led Stanford, a 41-point underdog against Pete Carroll’s five-time defending conference champion Trojans, to what was the biggest upset in college football history. Thuc Nhi Nguyen, Los Angeles Times, 8 Sep. 2023 Deion Sanders is not playing around with the media, especially after his nearly three-touchdown underdog Colorado team went to Fort Worth, Texas, and upset TCU. Scooby Axson, USA TODAY, 3 Sep. 2023 Colorado The Buffaloes recorded one of the biggest season-opening upsets in conference history, slaying TCU as a 20-point underdog. Jon Wilner | , oregonlive, 3 Sep. 2023 Few things give an underdog the spark that turnovers do. Corey Smith, Dallas News, 30 Aug. 2023 In last year’s Class 5A football state championship game, Wilsonville was viewed as the underdog against top-seeded Summit. Nick Celario | , oregonlive, 28 Aug. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'underdog.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1859, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of underdog was in 1859

Dictionary Entries Near underdog

Cite this Entry

“Underdog.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/underdog. Accessed 22 Sep. 2023.

Kids Definition


un·​der·​dog ˈən-dər-ˌdȯg How to pronounce underdog (audio)
: the loser or predicted loser in a struggle
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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