Now that my brackets are so much smoldering wreckage, it is time for a big dose of what the original purpose of this blog was: a profanity-filled tirade about shit I don’t like. This promises to be a particularly nasty edition since for the first time in the history of my filling out brackets, I’ve lost both teams I had playing on Monday Night in the first weekend tournament. So, since I can’t like this tournament anymore, here comes the bile…
In alpha-suck-abetical order:
Why You Shouldn’t Cheer For Duke: Largely Because Thanks to Lehigh, You Can’t…And Mike Krzyzewski Is a Dick
First of all, Duke sucks. Even when they don’t suck, Duke sucks.
Second of all, I honestly didn’t think I would have to write my annual “Fuck Duke” post until next weekend, but thanks to the Mountain Hawks of Lehigh University, now that annual screed becomes more of a Blue Devil post-mortem. I went into this tournament thinking Duke was over-rated as a two-seed, but even I didn’t have them going out in the first round (check out my bracket destruction at Sport Blog Movement).
So, having said that, let’s take a look at why I thought Duke was over-rated:
- They have no inside presence
- They rely to much on perimeter shooting
- They can’t defend against speed
All three of those thing congealed to end Duke’s season early. But a big part of the problem with this season’s team is that it traveled too far on a reputation that it couldn’t back up, and a big part of that problem is the complete sham that is the reputation of Mike Krzyzewski.
What I’ve never understood about Krzyzewski is that he’s a known disciple of Bobby Knight, and carries on just as much as Knight did, but Krzyzewski never gets called out for being such an unconscionable asshole. Sure, he doesn’t throw chairs during games, nor does he have outbursts at press conferences, but all the other signs are there.
Raise your hand if you are tired of watching Krzyzewski scream unrepentantly at officials until every call goes Duke’s way. Raise your hand if you wonder why the media has never exposed Krzyzewski for being every bit the abusive tyrant his mentor Bobby Knight was. Raise your hand if you don’t get why nobody has ever noticed the Paterno-like ring of sycophants willing to lay down their lives for him. Raise your hand if you wonder when Krzyzewski and Dick Vitale are going to pick out a china pattern together.
Naturally, that last sentence explains a lot about why none of these questions ever get asked; resident ESPN analyst and personal Krzyzewski fellatrix Dick Vitale just can’t understand why there is all this Duke hatred out there. Let’s see if I can clear this up for Dicky V. While Knight may have been an asshole, at least he was an honest asshole. It is one thing to be an asshole; it is an entirely other thing to spend thirty years hiding you are an asshole.
The definitive rundown on this attitude toward Krzyzewski comes from a work called Duke Sucks authored Reed Tucker and Andy Bagwell. It is described by the good people at Deadspin as “a thorough charge-by-charge frisking of the worst college basketball program known to man.” The following excerpt gives a detailing of the tone of this work, and if you still don’t get it, we here at Dubsism will break it down for you.
Charge #9: [This charge has been redacted for fear that Coach K might call us and scorch the earth with f-bombs for twenty minutes.]
There’s really no way to sugarcoat this for sensitive palates, so we’re just going to come out and say it. Coach K is probably not the sweet hoops coach/business genius/grandfather-of-five that he, the media, the Duke basketball information office, Nike, Chevy, and American Express would like you to believe he is. In truth, he’s probably kind of a jerk. Or a nickname-for-Richard. Take your pick.
Of all the high-profile coaches in the games, is there one you’d less like to spend a night drinking beer and playing Boggle with?
Okay, Rick Barnes, but after that? Really think about it for a minute.
Well, Bob Huggins always looked to me like he might be in the Russian mafia, especially when he took to wearing the track suits. Not to mention, Frank Martin from K-State..well, if he’s not a KGB agent in the off-season is just a fucking scary dude. But, I digress…
On the likeability index, Coach K rates somewhere between Chris Brown and whoever runs Uzbekistan’s intelligence agency. Krzyzewski is prickly. He takes himself way too seriously. His ego is inflated. He must be a little paranoid—a fingerprint scan is required to open the elevator doors to his office. No one would describe his sense of humor as “winning.” He seems constantly in a bad mood and is quick to anger. He once told the media that he agreed with a player’s assessment that his teammates were all a bunch of “fucking babies.”
In the Old West, he’d be called “ornery.” He’s like one of those villainous dads from every high-school movie—the retired military man who makes his son’s life miserable because of his unbending code of discipline. Hell, he probably uses military time. (“Practice is at oh-nine-hundred, sharp!”)
That’s a generous rating on the “likeability scale.” In the old west, he’d be the guy who gets ambushed along the trail and left for the buzzards. For a West Point graduate, Krzyzewski is the kind of guy who becomes the Army officer who gets shot in the back of the head by his own troops, precisely because he does little beyond berating them. We’ll come back to this point.
Here’s a fun little exercise you can do yourself. Pull up a Google images search for “Mike Krzyzewski” and look what you come up with. See all those photos of him frowning or yelling? Keep scanning. Do you see any of him smiling? We mean, aside from his official university head shot where they probably ordered him to seem halfway cuddly? Do you see any candid photos of him on the sideline, out in the real world or at a press conference smiling? You don’t. He looks downright constipated in most of the pictures.
But so what? He’s an intense guy, we get it. That’s probably, in part, how he’s able to win so many games.
And that would be just fine, except that like so much when it comes to Duke, there’s an element of hypocrisy here. You don’t have to look too deep into Coach K before you realize that there’s a huge disconnect between the guy’s public image and the real person. Here’s a man who theSporting News dubbed “what’s right about sports.” Here’s a man who’s beatified during practically every telecast. Here’s a man who smugly intoned during his awful American Express TV commercial a few years ago, “I don’t look at myself as a basketball coach. I look at myself as a leader who happens to coach basketball.”
How easy is it to dislike someone who exemplifies the most human characteristics of a rat all while being a two-faced elitist scumbag? This is Krzyzewski’s major contribution to Duke; he is the titular head of the Hypocritical Douchebag Committee. At once, the Duke athletic culture (led by Krzyzewski) has developed a drum-beat, party-line rhetoric about creating scholar-athletes at a private university, which Krzyzewski seems to believe is the sacred ground for all that is holy in college athletics. This becomes more important later.
And when it comes to leadership, this guy is clearly more Dick Nixon than George H. W. Bush.
“I guess the thing that surprised me the most was you don’t realize how much he curses and how much he’s on the refs all the time,” says former UNC guard Bobby Frasor. “I remember someone telling me about [former Duke player] Taylor King during his freshman year and how he thought his name was ‘motherfucker,’ because that’s how Coach K got his attention. I don’t know how true it is. I mean, he’s a great coach and I’m not going to deny that at all, but the way he handles his players or acts with the refs and media, sometimes it kind of rubs people the wrong way.”
Here’s the part where you have to understand the difference between a leader who happens to be a dick (Bobby Knight), and a dick who is in a leadership role (Krzyzewski). While Knight had a reputation for being harsh with players, when he got the “bum’s rush” out of Indiana, there were tons of former players who came forward in his defense. Again, he was an asshole, but he was an honest asshole. I get the feeling Krzyzewski would not get the same brand of loyalty, if for no other reason he has a huge case of “ivory tower syndrome,” which is just a nice way of saying “complete hypocrisy.”
Knight built a winning program and graduated his players at a public university, which Krzyzewski clearly has contempt for. What Duke and Krzyzewski simply don’t get is that they have created a culture which mirrors all of the false idolatry which has gotten so many other people into trouble, yet stick their collective heads in the sand clinging to the “can’t happen here” mentality with the false belief that Duke’s ivory towers have some sort of shielding capability.
Duke and Krzyzewski in many respects have built each other. The Duke campus is rife with things named for Krzyzewski, there’s a tightly knit culture in the program funded by wealthy donors and protected by an unwritten code about “keeping family business in the family.”
Krzyzewski said it himself. In his 2007 book To Hate Like This Is to Be Happy Forever, Will Blythe quotes Coach K as saying “Let’s say at Ohio State that we did what we have done at Duke. There would be statues. There would never be anybody looking for anything wrong with what you did.”
In retrospect, that’s a chilling statement. While he uses Ohio State as his example of a large, public university with a brobdingnagian athletic department where a “Penn State” style problem can exist, there’s no denying that Penn State completely fits the description he offers. Even worse are the suppositions hidden in that statement. Krzyzewski believes himself, and wants you to believe that such idolatry can only happen in a big, public-school setting, and that it is only because of private-school envy that people begrudge him in his success. Pot calling the kettle black, pure and simple.
So, how does that sort of hypocrisy affect one’s leadership style? Well, for starters, it allows you to breed a culture of hypocrisy.
A New York Post reporter, sitting behind Duke’s bench during a 2005 game, described the proceedings during a team huddle thusly:
“Krzyzewski himself was an unfiltered Chris Rock concert for much of the day, but one of his assistants was worse. During one timeout, with the starters sitting on the bench, gulping Gatorade, this was his idea of “coaching” them: “You’re a bleep, and you’re a bleep, and you’re a bleeping bleep-bleeper of a bleeper-bleeper. You bleepers don’t bleeping deserve to wear the bleeping colors of Duke University! Bleep! Are you bleeping bleeping me? Bleep all of you. Get out of my bleeping faces.”
“At which point, he was replaced by Krzyzewski, whose assessment was far more succinct: “You bleeping make me bleeping sick.”
That’s more bleeps than a Source Awards telecast.
“His mouth is terrible. He has that reputation. You don’t want kids sitting behind the bench, that’s for sure,” says former UNC guard Dewey Burke. “It takes a certain kind of player to deal with that over the course of four years. As players sitting around, yeah, we’ll talk about how I don’t know how I could play for a guy like that.”
Of course, to really build such a culture, you have to let it spill down beyond the coaching ranks.
One of Coach K’s tried-and-true motivating tactics is reportedly to completely blast the freshmen and other weak-link players during practice, only to later send a senior over to the player’s room to explain why he was so angry.
After a particularly poor 2005 workout, during which Coach K reamed his players in front of more than two hundred invited guests, including NCAA president Myles Brand, forward Lee Melchionni told Sports Illustrated, “That’s one thing about the Duke program: You’re always going to get the absolute truth from Coach. You may go back to your dorm room and cry, but you’re going to come back the next day and be better because of it.”
This is the part where Dukies will try to tell me Krzyzewski gets loyalty from players. Sure they do, as long as they are still on the team. Krzyzewski is an unquestioned ruler, and you have two choices in Durham-istan; you can either toe the party line, or you can get shipped off to Siberia in a cattle car. I don’t care how much hate mail I get for this, but I’m convinced Mike Krzyzewski is like the church minister who secretly likes little boys. He’s got all the respect of the people who could out him, but none of them do because, after all, he is the minister. Besides, he’s also that hypocritical asshole who preaches about character and discipline, then stomps around on the sideline like the biggest petulant shithead out there.
Oh, and then there’s the fact that he treats everybody with a complete lack of respect.
And it’s not just his players that he can be peevish with. It’s also members of the media, whose existence Coach K seems to barely tolerate.
How many other head coaches won’t deign to spend fifteen seconds with the designated TV sideline reporter at halftime, dispatching a lowly assistant instead?
“I don’t agree with coaches doing that. It’s a philosophical thing,” Coach K has said. “The only people I should talk to are my players.”
About the only time anyone gets access to the coach is during the postgame press conference, which can often turn churlish.
“Obviously, you didn’t see the game tonight, okay?” Krzyzewski snapped, interrupting a journalist who was asking about Duke losing a lead during a 2004 game versus UConn. “Which question would you want me to answer?” he later barked.
During a 2008 press session for the U.S. Olympic team, the coach ridiculed a foreign journalist who asked in hesitant English whether the American team was showing off by dunking too much.
“There was no showing off,” K said defensively, glaring at the journalist. “You dunk when you have to dunk. Maybe it’s a difference in our languages. Maybe in your language playing hard means showing off.”
And then there was Krzyzewski’s most infamous run-in with the media—the student media, that is. In 1990, the coach blew his stack after a student sports reporter in the university newspaper dared to give his team a B+ midseason grade.
He summoned ten newspaper staffers to the locker room and let loose with an eight-minute profanity-laced tirade that would have given a gentler man a stroke.
Unbeknownst to K, one of the reporters secretly recorded the blowup with a tape recorder hidden in his bag.
Coach K began by calling the midseason report card “full of shit,” and went on to whine, “I just wonder where your mindset is that you don’t appreciate the kids in this locker room. I’m not looking for puff pieces or anything like that, but you’re whacked out and you don’t appreciate what the fuck is going on and it pisses me off—I’m suggesting that if you want to appreciate what’s going on—get your head out of your ass and start looking out for what’s actually happening.”
Another coach might have been fired for a blue-streaked outburst against—again—student reporters. And not only students, but ones at his own school. But Coach K’s reputation took only the slightest ding. Dick Vitale was probably on the air that very night gushing about how much K does for charity.
Are you starting to get the picture here? Lot’s of other coaches would have at least been called on the carpet for such behavior. But not Krzyzewski, because he is the head of the Politburo in Durham-istan. That means he can get away with being a derogatory ass-hat, which by the way, is NOT a quality associated with great leaders. Nor is being a petulant cry-baby.
But let’s face facts. The dude is just plain mean.
When Nick Collison, who was heavily recruited by Duke, called Krzyzewski to tell him he was going to Kansas, K didn’t exactly wish him well. Or even pretend to. “He was like, ‘I don’t care. We got a commitment from Casey Sanders anyway,'” Collison told Kusports.com. (Sanders, a six-foot-eleven center, averaged 2.7 points for his career. Collison, meanwhile, currently plays for the Oklahoma City Thunder.)
During a 2005 Duke–North Carolina game at Chapel Hill, Coach K became incensed by a fan who yelled, “You’ve got [referee] Larry Rose in your pocket!” The coach had security move the fan farther away from the bench, according to the New York Post. The fan later turned out to be Scott Williams, son of UNC coach Roy Williams. Oops.
Anyone want to hire this guy to entertain children at a birthday party?
Why don’t Krzyzewski’s accomplishments come with a big, fat, shiny asterisk? Why does the man continue to be canonized in the media, while his surly side gets buried? Does winning basketball games make him that bulletproof?
No one is asking Coach K to become soft and cuddly, or even to clean up his language. His players, at least the ones that don’t transfer, seem to like—or at least tolerate—his raw approach, and far be it from us to question that. But why can’t a fuller picture of the coach be presented, so that we, the public, can form our own opinions, free of all the manufactured BS that Duke, Coach K, the media, and the advertisers want to shove down our throats?
When Yankees owner George Steinbrenner—another sports figure who was known to be demanding and prickly—died in 2010, his obituaries presented him as he was, warts and all. The New York Times recounted his felony conviction and the way he had been “overbearing and even verbally abusive” toward his children.
We can hope for nothing less for Coach K. But why wait until he passes away? No time like the present to start setting the record straight.
Verdict: What’s former VP Cheney’s first name again?
Frankly, to me, hating Duke always seemed so self-evident. It doesn’t require Jim Rockford or the NASA supercomputer to figure out why. All you have to do is watch watch Coach Krzyzewski on the sidelines.
-Dubsism is a proud member of Sports Blog Movement
Everybody loves to put together lists of useless stuff, and certainly we here at Dubsism are no exception. This collection sprung from some holiday conversation revolving around which schools could really put together the best all-time team. See, the catalyst for all of this is there are Kansas fans in this group, and we all know the Dubsism position on Jayhawk basketball.
For comparative purposes, this led to a listing of possible “All-Time” teams from the schools which have won 3 or more NCAA championships. This gave us an odd number, so we added the team with the most wins which was not on that list (Syracuse). Then to make it really interesting, we added teams comprised of some miscellaneous categories.
Peruse the list and let us know what you think. Just remember, this is a true “All-Time” list, not the kind that ESPN does which only means the last 25 years or so. Many of you born after 1985 may very well have never heard of some of these players. If you find yourself in that position, do yourself a favor and do some research. After all, somebody has to teach the children about George Mikan.
- C – Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
- F – Kiki Vandeweghe
- F – Jamaal Wilkes
- G – Reggie Miller
- G – Gail Goodrich
- Bill Walton
- Baron Davis
- Marques Johnson
- John Wooden
- C – Sam Bowie
- C/F – Dan Issel
- F – Antoine Walker
- F/G – Cliff Hagan
- G – Rex Chapman
- Jamal Mashburn
- Rajon Rondo
- Tayshaun Prince
- Adolph Rupp
- C – Walt Bellamy
- F – George McGinnis
- F – Calbert Cheaney
- G – Isaiah Thomas
- G – Dick Van Arsdale
- Tom Van Arsdale
- Mike Woodson
- Kent Benson
- Bobby Knight
4) North Carolina
- C/F – Bob McAdoo
- F- James Worthy
- F/G – Vince Carter
- G – Michael Jordan
- G – Walter Davis
- Jerry Stackhouse
- Billy Cunningham
- Rasheed Wallace
- Dean Smith
- C – Mike Gminski
- F – Christian Laettner
- F – Elton Brand
- G – Grant Hill
- G – Jeff Mullins
- Corey Maggette
- Jack Marin
- Carlos Boozer
- Mike Kryzewzki
- C/F – Emeka Okafor
- F – Clifford Robinson
- F – Caron Butler
- F/G – Richard Hamilton
- G – Ray Allen
- Donyell Marshall
- Caron Butler
- Rudy Gay
- Jim Calhoun
- C- Wilt Chamberlain
- F- Clyde Lovelette
- F- Danny Manning
- F/G – Paul Pierce
- G – Jo Jo White
- Dave Robisch
- Kirk Hinrich
- Bill Bridges
- Phog Allen
8 ) Syracuse
- C- Rony Seikaly
- F- Carmelo Anthony
- F – Derrick Coleman
- G – Dave Bing
- G – Sherman Douglas
- Danny Schayes
- Billy Owens
- Hakim Warrick
- Jim Boeheim
9) The “All Never Went To College” Team
- C – Moses Malone
- F – Kevin Garnett
- F – LeBron James
- G – Kobe Bryant
- G – Monta Ellis
- Darryl Dawkins
- Tyson Chandler
- A’mare Stoudamire
- Lawrence Frank (who never played high school, college, or pro basketball)
10) The “All Small School” Team
- C – Bill Russell (San Francisco)
- F – Karl Malone (Louisiana Tech)
- F – Larry Bird (Indiana State)
- G – John Stockton (Gonzaga)
- G – Bob Cousy (Holy Cross)
- David Robinson (Navy)
- George Mikan (DePaul)
- Walt Frazier (Southern Illinois)
- Phil Jackson (University of North Dakota)
11) The “All Europe” Team
- C – Arvydas Sabonis
- C/F – Vlade Divac
- F – Dirk Nowitzki
- G – Peja Stojakavic
- G – Drazen Petrovic
- Andrei Kirilenko
- Pau Gasol
- Toni Kukoc
- Borislav Stankovic
12) The All “Non-North America or Europe” Team
- C – Yao Ming
- C/F – Hakeem Alajuwon
- F – Andrew Bogut
- F – Serge Ibaka
- G – Manu Ginobili
- Dikembe Mutombo
- Manute Bol
- Anderson Varejao
- Togo Renan Soares
13) The “All Didn’t Make Any Other Lists” Team
- C – Patrick Ewing
- F- Julius Erving
- F – Charles Barkley
- G – Pete Maravich
- G – Reggie Miller
- George Gervin
- Dominique Wilkins
- Nate Thurmond
- Lenny Wilkens
14) The “Overall #1 Draft Picks” Team
- C – Shaquille O’Neal
- C/F – Tim Duncan
- F – Chris Webber
- G – Oscar Robertson
- G – Magic Johnson
- Elgin Baylor
- Bob Lanier
- Allen Iverson
- Doug Collins
We only included three bench players so that we would have plenty of room to add guys which you are sure to point out that we overlooked. Hell, if you feel so inclined, add a team all your own.
Last night, Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski became college basketball’s all-time winningest coach, notching his 903rd career victory. This is a accomplishment worthy of note, and Coach K deserves the accolades being heaped upon him today.
But before you think I am one of those willing to put him on a pedestal, you might want to consider that my view of what Krzyzewski has created at Duke has changed immeasurably five years ago. For all his success on the court, Krzyzewski has been guilty of a major failure; one that has many similarities with scandal currently embroiling Penn State.
The scandal that enveloped the Duke lacrosse team a few years back served as a very nice “preview of coming attractions” for what’s happeing at Penn State today.
Walk through the following steps if you don’t belieive that.
Mike Krzyzewski himself. I get that he is a disciple of Bobby Knight, but there is a major difference. It is one thing to be an asshole; it is an entirely other thing to spend thirty years hiding you are an asshole. Naturally, resident ESPN analyst and personal Krzyzewski fellatrix Dick Vitale just can’t understand why there is all this Duke hatred out there. Let’s see if I can clear this up for Dicky V.
Raise your hand if you are tired of watching Coach K scream unrepentantly at officials until every call goes Duke’s way. Raise your hand if you wonder why the media has never exposed Krzyzewski for being every bit the abusive tyrant his mentor Bobby Knight was. Raise your hand if you don’t get why nobody has ever noticed the Paterno-like ring of sycophants willing to lay down their lives for Coach K. Raise your hand if you wonder when Coach K and Dick Vitale are going to pick out a china pattern together?
Crushing Hypocrisy. How easy is it to dislike someone who exemplifies the most human characteristics of a rat all while being a two-faced elitist scumbag? This is Krzyzewski’s major contribution to Duke; he is the titular head of the Hypocritical Douchebag Committee. At once, the Duke athletic culture (led by Krzyzewski) has developed a drum-beat, party-line rhetoric about creating scholar-athletes at a private university, which Krzyzewski seems to believe is the sacred ground for all that is holy in college athletics. This becomes more important later.
Complete Elitism. Duke pretends it is a great place to send your sheltered, privileged kids all while it is located in an exceptionally dangerous neighborhood. The aforementioned hypocrisy not only feeds this faux elitism, but allows it to grow into the worst possible kind of elitism, the kind that has no ability for introspection and no proclivity for perspective.
What Duke and Krzyzewski simply don’t get is that they have created a culture which mirrors all of the false idolatry which has gotten so many other people into trouble, yet stick their collective heads in the sand clinging to the “can’t happen here” mentality with the false belief that Duke’s ivory towers have some sort of shielding capability.
Krzyzewski created a culture of false idolatry and denies he did it. Duke and Krzyzewski in many respects have built each other. The Duke campus is rife with things named for Krzyzewski, there’s a tightly knit culture in the program funded by wealthy donors and protected by an unwritten code about “keeping family business in the family.”
Now for the punch in the gut for you Dukies…re-read the previous paragraph and replace the word “Krzyzewski” with “Paterno,” and replace the word “Duke” with “Penn State.”
Now before you take pen to paper and write some sort of bile-spewing invective to which you Dukies are prone telling me how the Penn State and Duke athletic departments have nothing in common, consider the following points:
Krzyzewski said it himself. In his 2007 book To Hate Like This Is to Be Happy Forever, Will Blythe quotes Coach K as saying “Let’s say at Ohio State that we did what we have done at Duke. There would be statues. There would never be anybody looking for anything wrong with what you did.”
In retrospect, that’s a chilling statement. While he uses Ohio State as his example of a large, public university with a brobdingnagian athletic department where a “Penn State” style problem can exist, there’s no denying that Penn State completely fits the description he offers. Even worse are the suppositions hidden in that statement. Krzyzewski believes himself, and wants you to believe that such idolatry can only happen in a big, public-school setting, and that it is only because of private-school envy that people begrudge him in his success.
It gets even worse when you stop to consider the timing of these comments. These comments were made in the wake of Duke’s own scandal surrounding the men’s LaCrosse team. Granted, those allegations turned out to be false, but nobody knew that at the time these comments were made, and regardless of the veracity of the allegations, all kinds of Duke dirty laundry got publicly aired, and lots of people’s lives were ruined.
In other words, Dukies and Krzyzewski got lucky their accuser was lying. Despite that, nobody at Duke took this for the warning sign that it was. Nobody in Durham seems to want to remember the first few weeks of the lacrosse scandal played out pretty much like the current situation at Penn State. For months, you couldn’t pick up a newspaper without seeing a new sordid detail in Durham, and State College will be no different.
Duke ignored it’s warning sign, and Penn State ignored its warning sign as well. This isn’t Penn State’s first go-round with a sexually charged scandal. Back in 2005, the Nittany Lions athletic department fell under scrutiny when a women’s basketball player accused longtime Lady Lions coach Rene Portland of sexual discrimination by running the player off the team for being perceived as a lesbian.
Naturally, an internal investigation followed, and in 2006 the university found against against Portland. The university issued a written reprimand, a $10,000 fine and a warning to cease a pattern of sexual discriminatory behavior or risk being fired. But on the same day the university announced its actions, Portland responded to the results of the investigation at her own press conference, calling the university findings “flawed,” and that she would return the next season.
Incredulously, the university let her get away with that, and she held on to her job before resigning following the next season. It shouldn’t really surprise anybody that despite the announced resignation in 2007, rumors abounded that Athletic Director Tim Curley and President Graham Spanier had actually forced Portland out. So, not only did Penn State bungle the handling of that situation, they replicated it again a few years later, the irony being the same people willing to throw an anti-lesbian under the bus had no problem protecting a pedophile.
To see the similarities with Duke, all you have to do is look at the culture. University presidents, athletic directors, and players come and go, but when you get facilites and statues named after you, there’s no denying that you control the culture of the athletic department. Paterno built a culture that allowed the protection of a child-raping monster, and Krzyzewski built one that closed ranks in a similar fashion given a similar scandal.
Denying the vibe that allowed the Penn State situation to happen is present in the Duke athletic department is pure denial. Not only have we already seen it in action with the lacrosse situation, its just plain to see if you are looking for it. Check out the irony in this comment I made about Krzyzewski in an article I wrote a year ago about programs I suspected of being dirty.
“I don’t care how much hate mail I get for this, but I’m convinced Mike Krzyzewski is like the church minister who secretly likes little boys. He’s got all the respect of the people who could out him, but none of them do because, after all, he is the minister. Besides, he’s also that hypocritical asshole who preaches about character and discipline, then stomps around on the sideline like the biggest petulant shithead out there.”
In all honesty, this is the part that tipped me off to the whole connection. I can’t deny I’m a Penn Stater, but in light of recent events I refuse to be one of those who is a blind apologist for Joe Paterno. I see in retrospect the warning signs I glossed over, and there’s no way I’m not going to point out these things when I see them.
Paterno used to stomp around on the sidelines in the same way Coach K does, and he never once got called out for it because he had been elevated to an immune status. That immunity allowed him to create and control a culture which eventually digested itself, and the same culture exists in Durham.
Krzyzewski and the “Cameron Crazies” enable each other, just like Paterno and the Penn State fan base did. On the surface, this may be the most obvious reason America hates Duke. Frankly, it always seemed so self-evident. It doesn’t require Jim Rockford or NASA supercomputer to figure out why. All you have to do is watch Duke play, watch Coach Krzyzewski on the sidelines, and watch their fans. They are all obnoxious in their own way.
This leaves us with the upscale rabble known as the ”Cameron Crazies.” Somehow, they’ve become the gold standard in fandom over the years, and it’s the most annoying Duke myth of them all. Duke fans are the worst kind; they are impossibly loud, they disappear if the team isn’t winning, and most importantly, what they actually know about basketball you could squeeze into their ass and have plenty of room left for their brains. You know the type; the people who love sports just because it’s an excuse to get dressed up and yell, but don’t actually understand the game (think Minnesota Viking fans and you get the picture).
Rather than being basketball fans, Duke supporters tend to be pompous elitists who love to roll in the delight of their own feces and are hopelessly ultimate superiority. All one has to do is quote the following Duke fan confronting Elton Brand about his decision to leave Duke after his sophomore year, the first underclassmen to leave early during Krzyzewski’s tenure at Duke.
From: Taylor, Jennifer
Sent: Friday, April 16, 1999 2:55 PM
To: Brand, Elton
Subject: Leaving Duke
I graduated from Duke last May and just wanted to express my disgust for your decision to leave the Duke program after only two years. As an alum, not only do I hold the school in high regard, but the basketball program as well, especially since both have deservedly garnered such a great deal of respect for their accomplishments.
As part of our basketball program, you represent Duke as a whole. We are first and foremost an academic school, you clearly did not belong at Duke in the first place if this was the extent of your commitment to Duke and a college education in general. You have not only insulted the current students who are putting in four years at a school they love, but also the thousands of alumni who have realized the value of a Duke education and what an honor and privilege it was to be there for four years.
If you do not realize the opportunity you have in front of you to play for Coach K and at the same time attain a Duke diploma, then that is certainly your loss. I just wish that you has spared us the notion that you were continuing in the tradition of being a Duke student-athlete, in emphasizing excellence in both academics and athletics. You will not be considered part of the Duke family, in my mind as well as many others. You have by no means proved yourself worthy of that title.
Now, never mind that Elton Brand was the best player to come through Duke University since Grant Hill. Forget that he was selected first overall in that year’s NBA Draft. It isn’t even important that it took a lifetime of dedication and hard work for Brand to get to that point. What matters is the attitude of this snotty little bitch who is all pissed off because he left her school. To Duke fans, it’s never about great players like Brand; it’s the system that made them successful.
Now compare that to this quote from an anonymous letter I received from a Penn State fan who doesn’t believe I should be criticizing his beloved Coach Paterno.
“You are probably to stupid to realize this, but you are the reason a great university lost a great football coach. You call yourself a Penn Stater, yet you are amongst the ones who forgot about loyalty to the Penn State family. It is at a time like this that families stand together and protect each other. Instead, you chose to take the coward’s route and point fingers at your own kind.”
The rest of that letter becomes both profane and deranged, and ultimately ends with a death threat. But that quote speaks volumes to the mindset of the respective fan bases. Everything is about protecting what is “mine” and how the situation in question affects “me.” Both have such a complete inability to see a larger picture that both need to be summarily dismissed. In other words, the people who are willing to remain blind always add to the damage caused strictly to protect the idolatry in which they feel personally invested.
Two weeks ago, I was one of those people. I thought Paterno was above reproach, and I was wrong. But there is no amount of loyalty to a sport that will make me obviate right and wrong. Paterno was an unquestioned ruler, and when the court became corrupt, it was incumbent on him to do something about it, and he did not.
Krzyzewski is also an unquestioned ruler, and we’ve already seen that Duke is not immune to scandal. While it is too soon to see what Penn State will learn from this, it is clear that Duke did not heed the wake up call they recieved five years ago. As the lord of the athletic department manor, it was up to Krzyzewski to show the leadership needed to change the culture he created, and he did not. Much like Paterno, no amount of wins can change that.
This blog really has its genesis in my response to a post over at TheSportsKraze (he’s done a great job with that blog, and you should read it…after you are done reading Dubsism, of course). His premise is that Texas A&M was “rejected” by the SEC, and as much as I like his work, I couldn’t disagree with him more.
It was a done deal. The SEC vote was simply a formality. Texas A&M was ready to leave the mighty Big 12, get out from the shadow of the Longhorns, and head to the best football conference in America. Think again.
A&M got rejected. And for the time being, the Aggies program as a whole must be embarrassed by recent events. I am not sure if any of you have seen the movie “She’s Out of My League.” But this recent chain of events is reminiscent of a scene in that movie. During the movie, the protagonist is on an airplane with his family. Realizing that he no longer wants to go on the family vacation and wants to go after his old (very hot) girl, he lets his family have it. He scolds them in front of all the passengers on the airplane. After the dramatic speech, he gets up to leave; only he can’t leave. The plane is ready for takeoff. So the protagonist puts his head down and sits down right next to his family that he just reamed.
A&M didn’t get rejected; this relationship is going to be consummated at some point. To understand why, let’s flip TheSportsKraze’s model; let’s make Texas A&M the “hot chick” being pursued by the SEC.
Make no mistake; Texas A&M is undeniably a “hot chick” in the eyes of the SEC. Make no mistake again, all this recent conference re-alignment is about TV markets. The Big Ten has its own network, the SEC has its own network, and schools are all looking for the Big 12’s emergency exits because Texas is getting their own. Getting your network carried on the cable/satellite providers in a major market is bigger than JaMarcus Russell’s plate at Golden Corral, and the fact that A&M would bring a presence in two Top-10 TV markets (DallasFort Worth, 5th and Houston, 10th) gives the SEC folks a hard-on you could cut diamonds with.
Just look at a map while keeping conference alignments in mind. The Pac-10 grabbed Denver and Salt Lake City. Admittedly, those may not be the biggest markets (18th and 33rd respectively), but they are the two best available options which make geographic sense for the conference. The Big East now has a presence in Dallas/Fort Worth, and the fact that others are looking to get their tentacles into Texas is precisely why the members of the Big 12 who aren’t Texas are getting a wandering eye.
Look at that map again, this time focusing on Big 12 territory. Look at how many major TV markets there are outside of Texas…now that Denver is a Pac-10 market, the only other “major” market left is Kansas City (#31st).
This is exactly why Nebraska jumped quick to the Big Ten…they are a “money program” without a major market and they knew their value plummets if they are in a conference that is merely the Big 12′s leftovers. Once one of the major markets (Denver) left, the Big 12 became a slow-mo version of Musical Chairs; Texas has its own chair and the scramble is on for everybody else.
This is also why the SEC would love to get schools from one of two other “target states,” Virginia or North Carolina; in other words, states which would offer the exposure to a major TV market where they currently do not have a presence. Of course, if that were to happen, that would mean a major change to the ACC, which in turn would start another cascade of conference-jumping.
But much like the above picture of the Texas A&M girls, the SEC is having that “two hot chicks” fantasy. There is a very practical reason for this; an odd-number of teams makes scheduling virtually impossible. This is why breaking the ice will take two; A&M needs a partner to fulfill the SEC’s three-way desires. So, let’s look at the other “hot chicks” the SEC is eyeing.
1) Virginia Tech
Upside: VT offers the 9th largest TV market (Washington D.C.), makes geographic sense, and brings a perennial Top-25 football program to the table.
Downside: May actually lower the SEC’s “redneck” factor (if that’s even possible).
2) North Carolina
Upside: Comes with the 24th (Charlotte) and 27th (Raleigh-Durham) largest TV markets, makes even more geographic sense than VT, and they are already used to being investigated.
Downside: SEC basketball programs would have another team to worry about besides Kentucky.
Upside: This is another school which would bring two TV markets (St. Louis #21, and Kansas City #31), there would be less entanglement to queer the deal (unlike the ACC schools; the Big 12 is already imploding), and the ever-present “makes geographic sense.”
Downside: Missouri isn’t exactly a “big-time” program in anything.
Upside: Oklahoma is a storied program in football, does basketball well, and has an athletic department plumbed with hot and cold running money.
Downside: Doesn’t bring a Top-40 TV market with it.
Upside: Like North Carolina, Duke would bring the same TV markets and a basketball power, plus, somebody’s gotta worry about grade point averages, right?
Downside: Duke sucks in football, and SEC fans like Mississippi State as their pigskin “whipping boy.”
Whenever there is a pursuit of “hot chicks,” there’s the girls left in the bar at closing time. In this case, those would be Clemson, Georgia Tech, Florida State, and Miami. The SEC might pick one these if it must, but they don’t offer anything since they are all in states in which the SEC is well-established; therefore there is no growth potential for the SEC TV network.
However it shakes out remains to be seen, but make no mistake, what happened this past week was not a rejection. The detail that is delaying this consumation is the SEC is in the midst of a “two chicks” fantasy, and as hot as Texas A&M is, she’s still only one.
Let’s face it, college programs cheat. There’s an old saying in college sports, “If you ain’t cheating, you ain’t trying.” Recently, we here at Dubsism hung a tag of “dirty program” on Auburn, but to be fair, they are far from the only one. Hell, they probably are all dirty; just because your school may not have been caught lately just means they are more discreet.
Plus, let’s be honest…getting away with it is a hell of a lot easier for some schools than others. If you doubt that, all you have to do is look at the NCAA’s precedent of deferring punishment for for moneymakers during money-making season; of course this refers to the bullshit punishments postponed until next season for Jim Tressel and Jim Calhoun. Plus, if you look at the following list, you’re going to notice a distinct lack of the real power-players in college sports.
10) Wisconsin Basketball and Football — Major Infractions: 7 Just months after its basketball program reached the Final Four in 2000, the Wisconsin athletic department imploded when 26 football players were suspended prior to the season opener after the NCAA uncovered that members of the Badgers’ football and basketball teams were given special credit arrangements at a shoe store (this “free shoes” tactic will appear again on this list). The Badgers were handed five years of probation, including the loss of scholarships in both football and basketball.
9) Memphis Basketball — Major Infractions:7 The program at Memphis has has two trips into the NCAA doghouse. The Final Four run in 1985 dissolved the following year when head coach Dana Kirk was fired after the NCAA uncovered recruiting violations and vacated the appearance. Then came John Calipari, who had the Tigers positioned to win the national title, but that later evaporated when Memphis got hit with three years of probation for Derrick Rose’s fraudulent SAT score and the $1,700 in free travel and lodging provided to his brother. Before penalties were levied, Calipari slithered off to Kentucky, which could soon find its way onto this list as the athletic program has six major infractions and the basketball program narrowly escaped the death penalty in 1989.
8 ) Florida State — Major Infractions: 7 Former Florida Gator coach Steve Spurrier once referred to FSU as “Free Shoes University,” which was really a reference to a 1993 scandal in which nine Florida State players went on an agent-funded shopping spree at Foot Locker. Then, in 1999 during a national championship run, Peter Warrick and Laveranues Coles were charged with felony grand theft for receiving $412.38-worth of clothes.
And in the sweetest moment ever, in 2009 Bobby “The Anti-Christ” Bowden was forced to vacate 12 victories because of an academic cheating scandal that also involved the men’s and women’s basketball, baseball, softball and men’s track and field programs. This not only is the best example of a program so corrupted it even torched the sports nobody cares about (a 2007 men’s track national championship was vacated), but these vacated wins meant Bowden would never catch Joe Paterno as the FBS’s all-time winningest coach.
7) Wichita State Baseball and Basketball — Major Infractions: 7 Wichita State’s baseball and basketball programs have flourished, largely because they can cheat with the big boys. The baseball program has been one of the most successful in recent history, winning the 1989 College World Series and finishing second in 1982, 1991, and 1993. The basketball program reached the Final Four in 1965, Elite Eight in 1981 and Sweet Sixteen in 2006. Of the seven infractions, mentioned here, my favorite involved the basketball team getting punted out of any tournaments after the Elite Eight run in 1981. Seems that the following year, WSU got caught handing out cash payments and and freebie airline tickets. The best part, at the time the penalties were imposed, Wichita State led the NCAA in major infractions. Suck on that, big boys.
6) Oklahoma Football — Major Infractions:7 If you have a program on probation, and you would like to see it stay that way, just hire Barry Switzer. Oklahoma forfeited nine games from the 1972 season because of violations that resulted from the alteration of players’ transcripts; and when Switzer left in 1988, the program was again on probation. Hard to imagine how one gets the the tag of “outlaw program,” considering there was the probation, oh, and a stretch in which there was a shooting and rape in athletic dorm, one player attempted to sell drugs to undercover agent, and another even player robbed Switzer’s home. In his defense, he likely robbed his own coach because he wasn’t in on the gravy train resulting from being paid by personal checks from Switzer, the scalping of game tickets, getting free airline tickets, or the usual money-pump stemming from the usual bidding wars during recruitment.
BONUS – Oklahoma basketball, brought to you by the scumbag formerly known as Kelvin Sampson. Kelvin Sampson, the same guy who later crippled the Indiana basketball program due to unethical recruiting practices, made 550 illegal calls to 17 different recruits, and that’s only what they could prove…but then again, cash is always hard to trace.
5) Texas A&M Football — Major Infractions: 7 They really should name an award for corruption after the old Southwest Conference. Between just SMU and Texas A&M, the SWC could have been the most corrupt entity in the history of college sports. Cheating was compulsory in the SWC during the 1980s; the theory was if you weren’t cheating, you didn’t matter. Hence, this is the reason why the Jackie Sherrill era in College Station was quite successful. It’s also no coincidence the Sherrill era ended in 1988 when Sherrill resigned after the NCAA discovered that assistant coaches and boosters were providing improper benefits to recruits — one was given a sports car and another’s father was offered medical treatment. When a booster was found paying players for “do-nothing” jobs in 1994, A&M was considered for the “Death Penalty” as well.
4 ) Auburn Football — Major Infractions: 7 At least for now, because this doesn’t even include whatever may stem from the Cam Newton situation. Nonetheless, Auburn has a reputation for “kicking one on to the fairway” with not such infrequent occasion. The best was in 1991, when 60 Minutes aired recordings of head football coach Pat Dye arranging a loan for a player. That bought Auburn two-year bowl ban, one-year television-free, and the loss of 13 scholarships over a four-year period.
3) Minnesota Basketball — Major Infractions: 7 This is what happens when your whole program hinges on a low-level clerical worker who decides she wants more money to do everybody’s homework, and you piss her off. For Gopher basketball fans, the name Jan Gangelhoff is forever tied to that of Coach Clem Haskins. Haskins literally had the majority of his career scratched from the books because he thought his players didn’t need to hit theirs. During his stint as Minnesota’s head basketball coach, Clem Haskins oversaw runs to the Elite Eight, Final Four and an NIT Championship. Today, however, only the Elite Eight appearance remains in the NCAA record books, as everything Haskins accomplished from 1993-1994 forward was vacated.
See, the problem is that prior to the Golden Gophers’ appearance in the 1999 NCAA tournament, Gangelhoff ratted out everybody. She sang a song about writing more than 400 papers for numerous basketball players over several years. That proved to be just the tip of the iceberg, Haskins was accused of paying players, persuading professors to inflate players’ grades and ignoring sexual harassment concerns. The NCAA administered massive sanctions, notably docking five scholarships over three seasons and instituting recruiting limitations. The entire athletic department suffered, as the Athletic Director, Associate Athletic Director, Vice President for Student Development and Athletics, and the Academic Counselor were all forced to resign due to the scandal.
The moral of the story – if you are going to cheat, PAY THE HELP! No wonder Gangelhoff rolled over on the whole scheme – for writing over 400 papers, she was paid the heft sum of $3,000 for her work.
2) SMU Football— Major Infractions: 8 Two words – Death Penalty. This is why SMU football is still the poster child for corruption in college sports. You just can’t have a secret fund to pay players; from 1974 to 1985, the school was penalized on five separate occasions. Because SMU was under such intense scrutiny from the NCAA, the powers that be had little choice but to levy the harshest penalty. As a result, the entire 1987 season was canceled, SMU was forced to cancel the 1988 season, 55 scholarships were smoked and the team was permitted to hire just five full-time assistant coaches instead of the regular nine.
1) Arizona State Baseball— Major Infractions: 9. The classic example of the NCAA flexing its muscle on a program that largely doesn’t matter because it isn’t a huge revenue generator. Arizona State is primarily known for its baseball program, which has won five national championships and produced legends such as Reggie Jackson and fittingly, Barry Bonds. Last December, it was penalized for major secondary violations, resulting in three years probation and a one-year ban from the NCAA post-season. The NCAA Division I Committee on Infractions cited the athletic program for improperly recruiting one player and giving improper benefits to several others. In 2005, ASU was given two years probation for a “lack of institutional control” (Have you read that phrase enough in this piece?) and giving illegal financial aid.
Remember the aforementioned “lack of power player?” It’s that lack that makes me cast an eye at the following; if for no other reason that the “If you ain’t cheating, you ain’t trying” rule.
Ohio State – The crap-storm now surrounding the football program and head coach Cheatypants McSweatervest doesn’t surprise me, in fact it validates a long-held belief of mine that Ohio States’ success in so many sports had to be coming at the expense of the NCAA rule book. See the Florida State Entry. Not to mention, guys like Maurice Clarett should be a warning sign.
Duke – I don’t care how much hate mail I get for this, but I’m convinced Mike Krzyzewski is like the church minister who secretly like little boys. He’s got all the respect of the people who could out him, but none of them do because, after all, he is the minister. Besides, he’s also that hypocritical asshole who preaches about character and discipline, then stomps around on the sideline like the biggest petulant shithead out there. Face it, how the hell else does this school now attract the “one and done” talent they now bitch about?
Alabama – I think the following picture speaks for itself.
USC – What’s happening now is just for openers. I would bet money there are skeletons in the Trojan closet we may never know about.
The other day, Duke uber-stud Kyrie Irving announced that he is leaving the hallowed halls in Durham for the Franklin-green pastures of the NBA. Of course, this led some Coach-K-turd-swallowing dickface at The Chronicle (Dukes’ campus newspaper) to pen what has to be the purest, most uncut essence of what every self-respecting person in America knows about Duke. In short, Duke is merely a repository for the prototypical pompous, pain-in-the-ass, over-privileged white kid whose parents’ money has kept him insulated from reality to such a point that he has no idea how much real people hate him.
For those of you who don’t yet know what an asshole factory Duke really is, we here at Dubsism will breakdown this open letter from The Chronicle so that you can understand that which the rest of us already know.
Seriously. Declare for the NBA draft, hire an agent, pick out a nice suit and start practicing to look surprised when your name is one of the first to be called by Commissioner David Stern in June.
I mean, what’s there to lose?
Sure, some of the Cameron Crazies will implore you to consider your legacy as a Blue Devil, to remember the history of the great Duke players before you who went on to successful NBA careers. They’ll probably name drop the likes of Carlos Boozer, Grant Hill and Shane Battier, all guys who won NCAA titles before noteworthy careers in the pros (in spite of playing three seasons or more under one of basketball’s greatest coaches). Don’t follow in the footsteps of William Avery, you’ll be warned; he made the wise decision to leave Duke after his sophomore year, and use the NBA as a stepping stone to an illustrious career in Europe. Don’t let those comparisons get you down, though, even if Avery did get the privilege of watching from the sidelines as his former college teammates celebrated a national championship.
Plus, sticking around and winning a fifth national title for the Blue Devils is just selfish, even if you haven’t ever won one yourself. Think about it: Cameron is already full of national championship banners, and adding one of your own would ruin the symmetry in the rafters. Sure, you’ll give up your chance to be remembered as one of Duke’s all-time greatest basketball players, but I bet if you asked Christian Laettner, he would tell you that fans don’t remember collegiate legacies anyway. Well, at least until he tries to visit Kentucky, where his likeness is still routinely burned in effigy on the anniversary of “The Shot.”
If you haven’t already figured out what a miserable little shitbag the author is, let me show you the dead-giveaways. First of all, he doesn’t even wait three sentences before he invokes the most-bile-spewing thing about Dukies, that so-called bullshit “legacy as a Blue Devil.” Sure, he cherry-picks William Avery because he left Duke early, and because he was considered to be a “draft bust.” I say he cherry-picks because he doesn’t mention other Dukies who split town ahead of schedule. Where’s the hate for Luol Deng? Where’s the hate for Avery’s teammates like Elton Brand and Corey Maggette? Oh, that’s right, leaving Duke clearly wasn’t a mistake for those guys.
As long as we are talking about “the Blue Devil legacy,” what about the guys who stayed for all four years and it didn’t help them. How about Avery’s teammate Trajan Langdon? What good did Duke do him? If you go with this author’s logic, Avery would not have ended up hooping in Europe had he stayed at Duke. Langdon did, and where is he now? Playing for CSKA Moscow.
Then, there’s the whole Laettner thing. See that picture above? Know how I found about that picture. I was listening to the Dan Patrick Show a few weeks ago and Laettner himself pointed out the existence of these shirts in Kentucky. I understand you were aiming for satire in that “Laettner doesn’t think collegiate legacies matter” quip, but getting quality satire out of a Chronicle writer is like getting great NBA talent out of a Dukie…we’ll come back to that point in a bit.
And if you’re still not convinced, remember that if you go pro, you might not even have to play next year! Who really wants to play, anyway? Sure, you won’t get paid any of that major contract that you’d sign as a top draft pick, but at least you won’t have to endure the grind of professional sports. Some of those same haters from before will probably call it a wasted season, as Europe will probably be the only place to play in the interim, but that won’t affect your NBA salary. As long as the rookie salary structure stays the same, that is.
Plus, just think of the NBA franchises you could possibly play for! While the NBA Draft lottery hasn’t happened yet, the Cleveland Cavaliers are the frontrunners after enduring an NBA-record 26-game losing streak this season. With the Cavs, your most talented teammate would be center Anderson Varejao, the real-life equivalent of Sideshow Bob, whose curly locks will be a comedic distraction from his lack of on-court ability. Trust me, you’ll need to actively search for reasons to smile playing on the perimeter with an overweight Baron Davis, who was shipped out of Los Angeles because he was so out of shape that his owner started heckling him.
Usually, there’s a fine line between satire and being a douche-nozzle, but this guy blew right through it. If I’m a guy extolling the virtues of being a Dukie, the last thing I want to get into is picking on guys who aren’t great NBA players, since nobody has produced more big-name, small-game players than Duke has. Doubt that? Check out this list of mediocrity:
- Grant Hill
- Luol Deng
- Elton Brand
- Shane Battier
- Carlos Boozer
- Chris Duhon
- Mike Dunleavy
- Dahntay Jones
- Corey Maggette
- Shavlik Randolph
- JJ Redick
- Shelden Williams
- Alaa Abdelnaby
- Mark Alarie
- William Avery
- Gene Banks
- Chris Carrawell
- Johnny Dawkins
- Brian Davis
- Kenny Dennard
- Daniel Ewing
- Danny Ferry
- Mike Gminski
- Dave Henderson
- Nick Horvath
- Bobby Hurley
- Nate James
- Christian Laettner
- Antonio Lang
- Trajan Langdon
- Roshown Mcleod
- Lee Melchionni
- Tony Moore
- Martin Nessley
- Greg Newton
- Cherokee Parks
- Ricky Price
- Casey Sanders
- Vince Taylor
- Jay Williams
It would be easier to mention the guys on that list that didn’t suck in the NBA, because there’s about six of them at the most.
Or you could end up in Toronto, affectionately dubbed years ago The City Where Basketball was Single-Handedly Killed by Vince Carter. In fact, the Raptors’ website is already looking forward to your debut season, advertising the “lowest season seat prices ever” in 2011-12. Playing for the Sacramento Kings is another option, though I hear the franchise is still preoccupied with getting their Tim Donaghy-scandalized 2003 Western Conference title back from the Lakers.
You’re really going to tell me that being in some working-class, southern shit-hole like Durham is better than pretty much anywhere in the NBA? Granted, the NBA plays in some pretty rotten cities like Chicago, Detroit, and (for now) New Orleans, but even those places have more to offer than Skeeter’s Bait Hut and the Annual Lacrosse Rape-o-Rama. Durham is know as the “Medicine City,” largely because if you were a physician intending to give the state of North Carolina an enema, Durham is where you would place the nozzle.
That’s all there is to consider. Rest assured, you’ll never regret leaving Duke after just one year, never wonder what might have been if you stuck around to play with the nation’s No. 2-ranked recruiting class, which by the way includes your longtime friend and teammate Austin Rivers. It’s really a no-brainer.
I look forward to your announcement, even if you ignore my advice and stay in school, er, I mean, go pro.
I almost don’t know where to start with a response to that last bit. There’s so much stupidity in those last few sentences reading them was like cutting into an onion of stupidity and the stupid fumes burnt out my eyes. It’s almost as if you don’t understand that guys who play professional basketball, even if only in Europe GET PAID. It’s bad enough you expect these guys to be grateful for being in an unflushed toilet like Durham, it’s bad enough to subject real basketball talent to a career-destroyer like Mike Krzyzewski (seriously, where are the hoardes of Hall-of-Famers that were coached by “one of basketball’s greatest coaches?”), and it’s bad enough that they have to live through all this shit under the auspices of a bunch of completely self-absorbed, sniveling little ass-wipes like you, Mr. Cusack. To top it all off, you then spew this kind of shit when they decide it is time to head for greener pastures.
I’m guessing that you are at Duke preparing for a career as some sort of journalist. If I’m correct, eventually you will have learned what you can at Duke, and set off to ply your trade out in the non-Duke world. So, why is it such a big problem for you that some basketball player does the same thing? Is it because a) you are a self-centered hypocrite for whom other people only exist to serve your whims b) you believe basketball players exist solely for your entertainment and they should be grateful for even being allowed into your Dukie ivory tower c) you view athletes as intellectually inferior and you are pissed off because a guy like Irving will make more money on one signature than you ever will in your entire life or d) all of the above.
Now for the really stupid part. Irving isn’t the first guy to leave early and get this kind of bullshit out the Dukies; he won’t be the last. But if you folks at Duke don’t understand that this attitude is part of the reason why players leave, eventually they will simply not come to Duke in the first place. Your sainted Coach K is in his mid-60’s; whether you want to admit it or not, his best days are likely behind him. This means your incredibly petulant attitude which is currently just really fucking annoying will sooner than you think become a serious detriment to recruiting. Even now, a Duke diploma is only useful if you intend to go to law school; fora basketball player it might as well be printed on a roll.
The beauty is even a dullard like you, Mr. Cusack, figured out right away you had stepped in it big time, judging by this follow-up posted on The Chronicle’s website mere hours later.
I’d like to respond personally to some of the claims made about my column today.
“Because I thought it was totally cool when my inbox had 600 e-mails in it instead of the normal 2, until I realized that all 600 of them threatened to break all my fingers.”
First, I sincerely apologize to everyone who was offended by its content; it was my intention to be satirical, not hateful. My original intent was simply to show that there are valid reasons to stay in college in an admittedly less-than-original format, through the caricatured mind of a Duke fan, not to imply that Kyrie Irving ‘owes’ Duke students another year, or anything of the sort.
I’ve already made mention of the fact that Cusack simply isn’t a talented enough writer to pull of satire. He should probably stick to things like Hallmark cards and DMV manuals, because even his attempt at an apology is horrible. First, he tries to lay the blame for his bullshit on the “less-than-original” format, then he tells all his readers he was mocking THEM! In a really fucked up way it makes sense, because the only people who are dumb enough to believe he doesn’t think Kyrie Irving owes something to dumb Duke fans are dumb Duke fans.
Second, I regret deeply that this column was interpreted as having racial undertones. That was, of course, not my intention: I would have written this article about any potential one-and-done player, especially one as talented as Irving.
I have to be fair here, the only people who saw anything racist in this are the people who believe saying anything about a black person is racist. Frankly, there was about as much racism in this piece as there was satire.
Third, there is nothing I would enjoy more than to see Irving achieve success wherever he plays. I did not mean to imply that he should put off a huge NBA contract to satisfy Duke students and fans, nor insinuate that in leaving for the pros he would forfeit what he has already accomplished in Durham. I simply intended to highlight some of the reasons for staying, with a little bit of humor thrown in. His decision should be based only on what is best for him and his family, not the opinion of this writer.
Read that last paragraph and say it back to yourself, except in the complete opposite, and you will get a hefty dose of the truth. He would love to see Irving snap a femur in his first NBA game and never recover. He firmly believes Irving’s place is at Duke providing entertainment to him and the rest of the Cameron Cuntfaces.
At the end of the day, some idiot took it upon himself to speak for the attitude that runs just under the surface at Duke, and then when he got called on it, he made up some bullshit excuses to hide behind. He says his intention was to show “there are valid reasons to stay in college…through the caricatured mind of a Duke fan.” It is really important to note that Cusack never denies these attitudes exist amongst the Dukies, in fact you can tell he wrote that piece fulling intending to stroll the campus getting a never-ending series of “high-fives” for reminding that basketball player where his place is.
In other words, he showed us all what an astonishing lack of character it takes to be a Duke fan, therefore reminding us all why hating Duke should be an American birthright. For that, Mr. Cusack, we all owe you a tip of our collective caps.
Now that my brackets are so much smoldering wreckage, and now that my teams are out, it is time for a big dose of what the original purpose of this blog was: a profanity-filled triade about shit I don’t like. And since I can’t like this tournament anymore…
Know what a “VCU” is? Fifteen years ago, it was that machine my post-stroke grandmother thought played movies, but instead constantly blinked “12:00,” as if it were mocking her inability to drool out “VCR.”Worse yet, if you make the mistake of asking anybody at VCU what that acronym actually means, you will get a 25-minute lecture on how the “C” stands for “Commonwealth,” because Virginia is technically a “commonwealth” and not a “state.” Of course, the people who say that are simply trying to pretend they don’t go a state school that by law has to admit every resident mouth-breather who can drop a Skoal-loogie on the correct spot on the application.
Here’s a fun, yet useless fact I’ve been hearing all week: there are as many schools from Richmond, VA in the tournament as there are from the whole Big East (2). Here’s a more accurate statement. There are as many teams from Richmond that anybody gives a shit about as there are from the whole Big East (0).
Besides, how can anybody have any respect for a team whose mascot John Goodman knew how to eliminate 20 years ago?
Thanks to the movie “Hoosiers,” Larry Fucking Bird, and now you assholes, everybody thinks any little piss-ant school from Indiana means something when it comes to basketball. Let’s do a rundown of the D-I basketball schools from Hoosierland and you tell me which ones matter.
- Butler – A private, liberal arts college which is best-known for its dance program. This means there are two types of Butler students: meth heads whose daddies have too much money for Indiana State, and Daddy’s Little Fruitcup who will spend four years auditioning for “So You Think You Can Dance?”
- Indiana – The school that brought you both the burly, masculine assholery of Bobby Knight and the sheer once-a-month-crampy bitchiness of Myles Brand. Once a proud program, but hasn’t been relevant in nearly a decade.
- Purdue – Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon, was a Purdue alum. This shows how far people will go to get the fuck out of West Lafayette.
- Notre Dame – A great school with a great tradition, especially if you want to be gang-raped by drunken football players or sent careening to your death off a 70-foot scissor lift. If you happen to get gang-raped while falling off a scissor-lift, you will be honored by having your name etched on one of the mosaic tiles that forms “Touchdown Jesus'” ball-sack.
- Indiana State – Located in beautiful Terre Haute, ISU competes for local talent along with two prisons and a mental institution. This is precisely why if you want to major in schizophrenia, meth production, or pumping out bastard children, ISU is for you.
- Ball State – Too easy…Insert your own joke here. Better make sure those jokes are funny, because this
walk-in VD clinicschool has produced such comedy titans as Jim Davis, Joyce DeWitt, and David Letterman (who was funny once, but not since the Civil War).
- Evansville – Another small liberal arts college; this one is known for its physical therapy and theatre departments. So, when the therapist who is helpinbg you after your stroke insists on putting his thumb in your ass, chances are he went to Evansville.
- Valparaiso – Not even people who live in Valparaiso can tell you where the hell the campus is, and they sure as hell can’t tell you why it even exists.
Can somebody explain to me why people in this town think women’s basketball is such a great thing? Between these assholes and those shit-eating, inbred, hillbillies in Knoxville who think Pat Summitt is actually a woman, they have convinced a disturbingly large enough segment of the sports-watching population that womens’ basketball ISN’T a bunch of six-and-a-half foot tall lesbians who can’t play basketball while looking like a boys’ high-school team somebody cut the nuts off of five years ago.
Do you know why Wisconsin is home to so many great serial killers? Because somehow Wisconsinites have taken two great things like sports and booze and managed to completely fuck them up. As far as the University of Wisconsin is concerned, the sport they really are the best at is hockey, which is why they play every other sport like the are on the ice. Badger football is like an old-school NHL game; they get a big offensive line and just beat you into the boards for sixty minutes, Bucky hoop is like watching that adapted version of floor hockey they let the retarded kids play; lots of passes so bad they look like shots, and shots so bad they look like passes. Even the girls teams only change their pads every three periods.
Worse yet is their coach, Bo Ryan. Now that Bruce Pearl is toast at Tennessee, Ryan is the only guy left who makes it a point to color coordinate his blazers in some awful school color. This is a fact only made worse by his extreme resemblance to a modern-art nightmare.
You know what the worst part of this college basketball season was? It wasn’t the fact that somehow you turned some nearly-albino virgin kid into the biggest white-guy basketball sensation outside of Duke. It was the fact that I had to defend your silly-ass honor code. I don’t have a beef with your having an honor code. I don’t even have a beef with you kicking that kid off the team over violating it. He knew the drill when he signed up, nobody put a gun to his head when he made the commitment to follow it, and nobody forced him to stick his dick in his girlfriend and screw his teammates by breaking the commitment he voluntarily made.
But what pisses me off to no end is the fact that you as a university made it a point to run out in front of the press and shout this story from the mountain top. You didn’t have to tell the whole world the story; there’s some real honor in keeping “family business” inside the family. Instead, you decided you needed to show the whole world how honorable you are through humiliating this kid needlessly by putting his business in the street, and for that I offer you my heartiest of FUCK YOUs.
This place ought to be renamed The University of Gutless. Marquette’s basketball team used to be known as the Warriors, until every member of their board of trustees grew multiple vaginas and decided AGAINST the will of the student body and the alumni that the nickname was “insensitive to Native Americans.” Of course, this completely ignores the fact that a “warrior” is defined as a person experienced in or capable of engaging in combat or warfare, especially within the context of a tribal or clan-based society that recognizes a separate combatant class. There’s a whole range of cultures to which that applies, ranging from the Bushido Samurai to the Spartans. Yet, the pointy-heads at Marquette decided it could only apply to those who when they cash their government checks get blind-drunk on the “firewater,” then build casinos.
This begs another important question. Since when does the Catholic Church give a flying fuck about political correctness? Don’t forget that Marquette is a Jesuit school, and the Jesuits aren’t just garden-variety papists; they are the Waffen-SS of Catholicism. They can show up in any diocese and do whatever the fuck they want, and the local bishop can’t say shit to them. In other words, these aren’t exactly the guys who cower at a bunch of soccer moms who think “we might be being mean to the Indians.”
If that weren’t enough, the Catholic Church as a whole isn’t exactly the “canary in the coal mine” when it comes to being sensitive to public opinion. In fact, their only recent change on the position of contraception is it is acceptable to use a condom only when the altar boy has diarrhea.
You should be fucking embarrassed that a low-rent school like this represents your sorry-ass conference. With all the blather you spew about what “hallowed” basketball institutions other members like Duke and North Carolina are, you have the unmitigated gall to subject us to the likes of the Seminoles. What can you say about Florida State that can’t be summed up in the phrase “FSU: The strip mall of universities.”
If it weren’t for Florida State, Florida would be the Sunshine State’s’ supposedly “academic” collection Kool-Aid and cheap vodka drinkers, jean-short wearers, and hillbilly rapists. If you’ve ever been to UF, then you know exactly what the statement “It took Tallahassee to make Gainesville look good” means.
I used to have nothing good to say about Kansas until I read that one of their state legislators actually proposed controlling the illegal immigrant population in the same manner they use for feral hogs; picking them off with rifles from helicopters. Once you get past the monstrous racism in that comment, you are struck with the realization that even its crushing stupidity, this represents a “man landing on the moon” advance in Kansan-type thinking. The only thing that is funnier is the people who think this guy gives Kansans a bad name; like they didn’t already have one.
Oh, and I’m pretty sure Bill Self molests collies.
Even though he was a football guy, nobody was a more loyal Buckeye than Kirk Herbstreit, and even he was giving double-birds out the window on his way out the the shit-hole formerly known as Columbus. In other words, even he had to split town because he only fellated the statue of Woody Hayes once a day rather than the expected thrice. This is exactly the problem with Buckeye fans; they have so little else that unless you swear your undying devotion and back it up on an hourly basis, they declare you a heretic and kill your house pets. In all honesty, the best description I’ve ever read about Ohio came from the good people at Deadspin:
“We make fun of Ohio here at Deadspin an awful lot, and with good reason. If you placed an electrified cupcake in the center of the state, half the population would be dead by morning. And the other half would be asking for extra sprinkles.”
What else can you say? These are the people who expect perfection while investing only idiocy; the kind of people who try to “return” foster children after they’ve raped them. Buckeye fans belong in that same circle of hell reserved for pederasts, people who run scams on the elderly, and deadbeat fathers.
Kentucky tears me. On the one hand, I believe Kentucky bourbon is the definition of “manna from heaven;” single drinking-handedly I’m probably 40% of the economy of the Bluegrass State. If you ever see me on one of those “Intervention” shows, dump your stock in Jim Beam. Don’t wait to call your stock broker in the morning, break into his house that night and get your money the fuck out NOW. But on the other hand, when it comes to basketball, these people still revere that racist asshole Adolph Rupp. They ran Tubby Smith out of town for no real reason, and brought in a snail-trail-leaver like John Calipari. The person who roots for Kentucky basketball also likely roots for the New York Yankees, the bad guys from the “Karate Kid,” and Moammar Khadafy.
Once again, I will quote the good people at Deadspin since I can’t improve on the accuracy of their assesment.
No school has benefited more from having an archrival who happens to be even more haughty and douchetastic. I’m onto you, Tarheels. You think just because you hate Duke that you can sneak by without anyone hating your fucking guts. But you are WRONG. But the truth is that, if Duke didn’t exist, YOU would be Duke. You’d be the most hated program in the country, what with your gross sense of entitlement and Dickie V lapping up Roy Williams’ seminal fluid like it’s cereal milk. You people owe Duke a steak dinner for covering up so much of what makes you despicable.
FACT: Every three seconds, a person in the North Carolina wilderness is being raped. I drove through the state once, and you see the forests on the side of the road and you just know, twenty feet in, someone has a penis inside them that they don’t want inside them. North Carolina is also the only state where it’s legal to rape someone and fish at the same time.
At once, I agree with the above statement about North Carolina and yet need to infuse it with my own hatred of Duke. Oh, Duke, how do I hate thee; let me count the ways. Here’s two good ones.
- Mike Krzyzewski himself. I get that he is a disciple of Bobby Knight, but there is a major difference. It is one thing to be an asshole; it is an entirely other thing to spend thirty years hiding you are an asshole.
- Duke pretends it is a great place to send your sheltered, privileged kids all while it is located in an exceptionally dangerous neighborhood.
San Diego State:
San Diego is a wonderful town, but there are two things about it you cant trust: mid-westerners who move to southern California thinking it is a panacea, and any of its sports teams. The common problem is the beach…there is no such thing as a town that has both a fierce sporting tradition and a desirable beach. The only exceptions are the Miami Dolphins of the early 70’s and the Los Angeles Lakers of forever, both of whom are/were supported largely by transplants from other locales who are old enough to where beaches just present a source of irritating sand in various artificial joints and/or ostomy ports.
As far as the midwesterners who make the “fantasy” move, I have far too many examples in my personal life from which to make examples, but all of them sound pretty much the same. The problem is that almost all of them will bitch if they think I’m talking about them, when in reality I don’t give a frog’s watertight ass about them, other than their stories are at the same time predictable and hilarious. These are almost like those “novels” you read as a kid that allowed you to pick your own ending, the trouble the story is fucked up to begin with. For example:
- Boy meets girl in (insert midwestern state here)
- Boy and girl decide for what ever reason to move to SoCal
- The plan works for one and not the other
- If the plan works for the boy, skip to page 32
- If the plan works for the girl, skip to page 48
Boy somehow becomes successful and realizes he has an opportunity to trade up from midwestern girlfriend. He does so, and midwestern girlfriend goes back to (insert midwestern state here), gets some job that pays by the hour and eats her way into a subscription from the Lane Bryant catalog.
Girl falls into a pattern that starts with “look at how cool I am because I live in California” and ends with “I will out spend anybody to maintain my ‘look at how cool I am’ mindset.” Despite what she earns, she outspends it several-fold, until the boyfriend says ‘no mas’ and pulls the rip-cord. He heads back to (insert midwestern state here), while she now invests in a string of “relationships” all of which are designed to continue the life-style choices she has made.
None of these douche-hammers give a shit about sports, which is why San Diego gets no fans for anything.
The sporting world is full of rivalries which engender so much passion there are clear battle lines drawn between the camps. But what happens to those of us who may feel animus toward both sides? Here’s a list of several such examples that make the collective colon here at Dubsism slam shut like a steel bear trap.
12 ) Chicago Cubs vs. Chicago White Sox
It is almost impossible to find two teams that exemplify their shit-hole of a city more. Where better to put the two retarded little brothers of baseball who while steeped in history have accounted for one championship in 90 years than in one of the largest cities in the world that matters the least to anybody?
11) LeBron James vs. the City of Cleveland
Sometimes, you really have to wonder if we have completely succeeded in this country in growing a generation of complete morons we’ve put on pedestals. Nobody in the world would have blamed LeBron James for leaving Cleveland; nobody wants to be in Cleveland. It’s little more than a “Mini-Me” to Chicago; a rust-belt, blue-collar city that nobody wants to be in; Cleveland’s population has been dropping steadily for 80 years. All he had to do was not be a douche-bag about it. It really leaves you in a situation where you can’t figure out who is dumber, LeBron for screwing up a move millions of Clevelanders have made themselves or those same Clevelanders for managing collectively to sound like a bitter ex-wife.
10) Montreal Canadiens vs. Toronto Maple Leafs
Hate is actually too strong a term for this. The problem is the “Rhett Butler” approach is too weak, but it is closer to accurate. Let’s face it; I don’t really give a damn. I spent big chunks of my childhood in Southern California, which isn’t exactly where you develop strong feelings about Canadian hockey teams, and even though I loved the old-school Los Angeles Kings (seriously, we are talking about the pre-Gretzky Kings with the purple and gold uniforms that clothed an NHL retirement home; the Kings of my childhood featured such past-their-prime legends like Butch Goring and Marcel Dionne), you couldn’t watch the 12-team NHL of the 1970’s without knowing these two teams hated each other. All I cared about in those days is that both of these teams arrived at the L.A. Forum with a boatload of Canadians who weren’t past their prime and put as ass-whipping on the Kings. Even to this day, all I can say is “screw both of them; Canada sucks.”
9) Manchester United vs. Manchester City
For those of you not familiar with the English Premier League, picture this rivalry with the Red Devils of Manchester United as the New York Yankees with Manchester City as the old Brooklyn Dodgers. You perhaps didn’t really like the Dodgers, but they made a perfect underdog foil to those goddamn Yankees. But then the Dodgers went Hollywood, started winning and blew their lovability in the process, much like the Los Angeles Dodgers. 15 years ago, Man City was lovable in their feebleness, but then new ownership pumped that team full of money, and now they are every bit as douche-tastic as their cross-town rivals.
8 ) Dallas Cowboys vs. Washington Redskins
As a Philadelphia Eagle fan, this one is really a no-brainer. There’s an old saying that culture in an organization comes from the top down, and Jerry Jones and Daniel Snyder are a marvelous reflection of that. While we here at Dubsism have postulated that Al Davis makes the Oakland Raiders the “North Korea of the NFL,” Jones and Snyder are both in line to ascend to the NFL’s “Crazy Old Man Owner” throne. Thankfully, their leadership (or lack thereof) has made these two franchises combine for a grand total of three playoff wins in the past 15 years.
7) Oklahoma Sooners vs. Texas Longhorns
The way these two preen over that silly Saturday in October…well, it really is sad to think either of these two believe anybody gives a shit about them or their “make-believe” rivalry. It’s really sad that a couple of goofy-ass schools like Nebraska and Colorado are the ones who figured out the Big 12 is a repository for football nobody cares about.
6) Green Bay Packers vs. Minnesota Vikings vs. Chicago Bears
This is much like the “love triangle” situation outline in the 1980 J. Geils’ Band hit “Love Stinks.” The Vikings think the Packers are their main rival, The Packers think the Bears are their main rival, and neither the Packers or the Bears even know who the Vikings are.
5) Arsenal vs. Chelsea
More from the English Premier League, so I will make another baseball reference…Earlier I compared Manchester United to the Yankees. Continuing on this theme, Arsenal would be the Red Sox and Chelsea would be the Mets, only if the Mets didn’t suck. They are two of the biggest clubs in the league, and they can buy pretty much any player they want. Whenever these two get together, it is an exercise in dysfunction that somehow manages to be successful, like a photo negative of the Dallas Cowboys.
4) Auburn vs. Alabama
When these two compete in the annual “Iron Bowl,” they are battling for the bragging right for the entire state of Alabama. This is like two bums fighting over the least piss-stained raincoat at Goodwill. Do you know what the best thing that ever came out of the state of Alabama was? An empty bus. Alabama is just a collection of bimbos whose boyfriends still think Bear Bryant is alive, and Auburn thinks it is a real university.
3) Duke vs. North Carolina
What can we say about Duke that we haven’t said before? No matter their record, no matter their talent, no matter anything, Duke sucks. As much as we have beat on Mike Krzyzewski for being a pompous ass-hat, North Carolina’s Roy Williams is in the same league, and not just figuratively. My favorite was last spring when Williams compared having a losing ACC record to the earthquake in Haiti.
“Our massage therapist told me, ‘You know, coach, what happened in Haiti is a catastrophe. What you’re having is a disappointment,’ ” said Williams. “I told her that depends on what chair you’re sitting in. It does feel like a catastrophe to me, because it is my life.”
I’m not sure what the state of North Carolina did to deserve such a pair of pure, uncut assholes, but better them than the rest of us.
2) Boston Red Sox vs. New York Yankees
The Yankees – Red Sox rivalry is one of the oldest, most famous and fiercest rivalries in North American professional sports. For over 100 years, Major League Baseball’s Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees of the American League have been intense rivals. For nearly as long, fans of both teams have thoroughly annoyed the living shit out of the rest of us.
The rivalry is sometimes so polarizing that it is often a heated subject, like religion or politics, in the Northeastern United States. In fact, since ESPN is also based in the Northeastern US, they believe the Yankees and the Red Sox are the only two teams in Major League Baseball, judging by their broadcast schedule.
1) Michigan Wolverines vs. Ohio State Buckeyes
College football gives us the twelve greatest Saturdays of the year, and it also give us the two greatest evils in sports. Ohio State and Michigan both represent all that is wrong with college football, and every evil that it contains. Recent events have shown that Jim Tressel, a.k.a. Cheatypants McSweatervest is a disingenuous, lying prick, and the Michigan fan base just hasn’t come to terms with the fact they are not an elite program anymore. I can only hope and pray that the NCAA grows the balls to make an example out of Ohio State, but they likely won’t, and I hope it takes Michigan at least three more head coaches before they figure out that “elite” programs don’t get man-handled by Purdue.
Let’s just cut to the chase here…everybody else does some sort of “Year End” list, here’s our obligatory ramble on what we consider to be the 15 most significant sporting occurrances in 2010.
Honorable mention: The Vuvuzela
What began as a seemingly harmless noisemaker instead became a symbol of what happens when you hold a world-class sporting event in some third-world toilet. I don’t care if it isn’t “politically correct” to say it, but the fact is South Africa is a crime-ridden shithole and holding the Wold Cup there was a complete disaster. Not only is the country a blight by even “poor nation” standards, but it is a ten-hour flight away from the nearest civilized place. Lets’ be even more honest; the reason why South Africa sucks is because it is inhabited by a bunch of low-rent trashballs ; its like every other country on earth rounded up their “Cousin Eddies” and dropped them in South Africa. This is why they had no problem at all ruining every World Cup telecast with the Vuvuzela, a two-dollar plastic horn which when pressed to the lips of a South African emits a droning cacophony similar to a cat stuffed in a bagpipe caught in a washing machine. It speaks volumes about a country that can make one of the world’s great sporting events almost completely unwatchable.
15) All The (Vi)King’s Men Couldn’t Put The HumptyDome Together Again
What else can you say? Combine a stadium built on the cheap, go even cheaper on the maintenance, and add three decades of Minnesota winters, and who could be surprised when this happens? Just be prepared to see this collapse as a precursor to your new Los Angeles Vikings.
14) Connecticut Almost Convinces Us Women’s Basketball Is A Real Sport
But only almost…thankfully, that winning streak finally ended at 90 games last night. Granted, winning that many games in a row in anything is impressive, even if the sport isn’t particularly so. Think anybody cares about women’s basketball? Then tell me how you did in your women’s basketball bracket at the office last year?
13) The World Shuns America At Its Own Expense
It seems nobody wants to play here, given the failure of US World Cup and Olympic Bids. Honestly, I get the Olympic failure since Obama made himself the face of the Chicago bid, and since nobody internationally has nay respect for him and since Chicago is America’s answer to that third-world shithole known as South Africa. But putting the World Cup in Qatar? Seriously?
So, we’d rather have matches played in an atmosphere of possible sudden-death political instability and 200-degree temperatures rather than to be in a country that would pony up top-dollar for this event? I understand there is some sort of Euro-Chic in hating on Uncle Sam now, but before you get to involved in such behavior, you may want to stop to check how many of those hated American dollars flow into such events, then imagine what those events might look like without any American investment.
12) The So-Called Demise of Tiger Woods
I really have a hard time with calling what happened to Tiger Woods a “demise,” which places me in direct contrast with “mainstream sports media.” I understand the guy went through a huge personal drama, and likely got majorly skinned in his divorce, but calling his drop from the #1 golfer in the world to #2 a “demise” is ludicrous. From Merriam-Webster:
Demise: intransitive verb2: to pass by descent or bequest <the property has demised to the king’s heirs>
So, Tiger Woods didn’t win a tournament this year. Boo-fucking-hoo. Phil Mickelson has made a career out of not winning tournaments. How do I become so “dead” that I still earn $1.3 million dollars? How do I become so “dead” that I likely will be the top golfer in the world again within 1 year?
11) Brett Favre Pisses Away His Legacy
How appropriate is it that the last image of King Brett I as a football player we will have is him splayed out on the deck, knocked cold slap 0ut? As sports fans, we may not have seen such a mythic figure bow out so disgracefully since Muhammad Ali…except “The Greatest of All-Time” didn’t sully his reputation with allegations of texting pictures of his weiner to some bimbo. However, in terms of a great athlete just not knowing when to go away, Favre’s huge career, his folk status, and a big chunk of his legacy with a purple arm and pictures of his “purple-headed warrior” all gets flushed simply because he couldn’t realize when the party was over.
Sure the Canadian hockey team won Gold; if they hadn’t, all of the Great White North may have collectively taken their final luge run. Face it, you really couldn’t have a much worse start to the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver. Hours before the Opening Ceremonies, Georgian luger Nodar Kumaritashvili died after crashing during a training run. The lack of padding and protection on the dangerously fast Whistler sliding track was just the most consequential of problems plaguing these games; a mechanical torch malfunctioned during the opening ceremonies, an ice-resurfacing machine broke down at the speedskating venue, and snow had to flown in for the freestyle skiing and snowboarding events.
But once the media stopped fixating on what some dubbed the “Glitch Games,” there was some real drama. Canadian figure skater Joannie Rochette used her long program to clinch a bronze medal. What could be more dramatic than rallying from behind to save the dignity of a nation? Rallying from behind to save the dignity of a nation AND have a freshly-dead mother. ?Two days before the start of the short program, Rochette’s immediate female antecedent suffered a fatal heart attack. Rochette decided to compete anyway, uttering the nearly-standard dead-parent cliche “I know what it’s what my (insert parental reference here) would have wanted me to do.” After skating through her visible grief in the short program, the Canadian fans gave her a rousing ovation.
Why does such syrupy, cliche, quasi-bullshit make the list of such a hard-edged blog like Dubsism? Because after the emotional competition, Rochette pumped 21 words worth of pure truth into the moment when she endearingly eulogized her mother with the quip “even though she is not here any more, I’m not afraid to say sometimes she was a pain in the ass.”
America’s chances for a repeat win in the Ryder Cup looked slimmer than an Ethiopian on P90X, as the Yanks trailed by by three points going into the last day of this year’s prestigious team golf event. But during the singles matches, the Americans mounted a furious comeback against the Europeans. Even Tiger Woods, who was awful iafter his “demise,” throttled his Euro-pponent. The U.S. tied the tournament at 13 ½, with only American Hunter Mahan and Graeme McDowell left on the course. On the 16th hole McDowell was up 1 hole on Mahan. McDowell only needed to cup a 15-foot birdie putt to prevent an epic European collapse. He drained it, and Mahan blew the next hole, which forced him to concede the match.
8 ) The New Orleans Saints Win
Let’s not lie about anything here, if you wanted to define “shitty” in the history of a sports franchise, the New Orleans Saints would be in that conversation. However, they took a step away from that legacy last February’s Super Bowl XLIV. Funny to think how one gamble could payoff so big for a city that really doesn’t deserve it.
At the start of the second half, the New Orleans Saints trailed the Indianapolis Colts 10-6, and the Colts were set to receive the ball to begin the 2nd half. were set to kick-off. But the Saints pulled off an on-side kick; a maneuver that had it back-fired would have given the Colts excellent field position and a chance to put the game out of reach. However, the gamble paid off, the Saints recovered the kick, and the game’s momentum shifted in an instant. New Orleans marched 58 yards downfield for a touchdown, and went on to win the game 31-17.
“Four years ago who ever thought this would be happening when 85 percent of the city was under water from (Hurricane) Katrina,” said New Orleans quarterback Drew Brees, the game’s MVP, who completed 32 of 39 passes, for 289 yards, and threw two touchdown passes for a team that had been a perennial loser for most of its 43 seasons in the league. “Most people not knowing if New Orleans would ever come back or if the organization and the team would come back. … This is the culmination of that belief and that faith.”
Fuck all that Katrina shit. Fuck it with a nuclear-powered, reciprocating fuck stick. I’m so tired of hearing about what a tragedy Katrina was. The real tragedy of Katrina was that there was anything left of that absolute shithole afterward. New Orleans is the rectum of North America, and anybody who says they love that city should be forced to live there. When I was a kid, my dad’s job got transferred to the “Big Shitty” and it took no time at all for him to want to get out of that sleaze pit. The average mope who shows up to get drunk in the French Quarter for a weekend would recoil in horror of their surrounding if they had to get their mail there; most of them would be gone within six months.
If you doubt that, ask yourself a question. Look at all the sports franchises that have relocated in the past 40 years and ask yourself why nobody except for the NBA went to New Orleans. Granted, the NFL was already there. But baseball never went to New Orleans; baseball never even considered the “Big Shitty.” When hockey teams flooded the south, nobody went to New Orleans. Even the aforementioned NBA deserted the city in 1979 when the Jazz decided five years was enough, and the current Hornets franchise has taken seven years to end up being owned by the league and destined to relocate. Not to mention the Saints had to be given a deal to keep from leaving until 2025, although that deal is rumored to be chock full of escape clauses which make it entirely possible they depart for another city in the next five years.
The most memorable moment of the World Cup tournament came from the Uruguay/Ghana match. Near the end of extra time in their quarterfinal match with the game tied 1-1, the safe bet was the teams were headed for penalty kicks. Yet Ghana had one last chance to score, on a free kick, and the set piece was a beauty. The ball was delivered towards the goal box, then headed across four Uruguay defenders before the Uruguay keeper batted it down. On the rebound, a Ghanian had a clear shot at the goal, but Uruguay forward Luis Suarez positioned himself perfectly in front of the net to knock this flick off his leg. This rebound floated to the head of Ghana’s Dominic Adiyiah, who quickly batted it back towards the net. This time, Suarez had no defense but his hand. This intentional foul gave Ghana a penalty kick, and what looked like an improbable win. A World Cup’s worth of suspense and improbability unfolded over these ten seconds in South Africa.
Then things got even more unreal. Ghana’s best player, Asamoah Gyan, shanked the penalty kick that would have sent an African nation to its first World Cup semifinal, breaking a continent’s heart. Uruguay eventually won on penalty kicks, turning Gyan into the World Cup equivalent of Scott Norwood.
The only, and I mean only reason this gets on this list is timing. Blown calls happen all the time, but this one happened to be out #27 of what should have been a perfect game. When Detroit Tigers pitcher Armando Galarraga crossed first base with the ball in his glove in the top of the ninth against the Cleveland Indians on June 2 everyone knew he had just completed a perfect game. Everyone, that is, except the umpire.
To the amazement of everyone watching, Jim Joyce ruled that Cleveland’s Jason Donald had actually just beaten Galarraga to the bag after hitting a grounder to the right of Tigers first baseman Miguel Cabrera. You didn’t need the replay except as validation, it was simply a blown call made at the end of a game. How many perfect games got snuffed by a bad call in the third inning? Nobody knows because nobody pays attention to such an event until the seventh.
Rarely has a half-court heave carried the vanquished hopes of so many underdogs. With 3.6 seconds left in the men’s college basketball championship between perennial power and heavy favorite Duke, and small-school underdog Butler playing in front of hometown fans in Indianapolis — it was a script straight out of the movie Hoosiers — Duke clung to a two-point lead. On a second free throw, Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski ordered Brian Zoubek to miss , since Butler had no timeouts left, and thus wouldn’t be able to set up a last second-play.
Coach K is a bonafide Hall of Famer, but that strategy was atrocious. The intentional miss gave Butler a chance to win, and the Bulldogs took full advantage. Butler’s Gordon Hayward pulled down the rebound, and dribbled toward half-court: teammate Matt Howard delivered a brutal screen on Duke’s Kyle Singler, giving Hayward a clean look at the hoop. Hayward’s running half-court shot seemed to hang in the air forever. When it finally came down, right on line, many a fan’s gut feeling had it going in. But it bounced off the backboard, and jetted past the rim, and Kryzyzewski won his fourth national title on one of the worst decision is his career.
This is an issue that defines the term “double-edged sword.” On one side, you have a definite need to protect players in an era where we are discovering the long-term physical and mental damage caused by football violence. On the other, you have a sports that actively markets such violence. Rather than continue to walk the tightrope, the NFL acted aggressively, telling players that the league would increase fines and issue suspensions for those who violated safety rules which have actually been in place for several years. The problem is that in the process, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell showed himself to be both a hypocrite and an authoritarian, autocratic leader. This change was brought about by complete executive fiat; there was no warning, there was no consideration of the impact, there was just “do it or else.” This led to a lot of cry-babyism from defensive players, however the larger issue is this has proven to be a wedge issue between the players and the league at a time when the league finds itself perilously close to a work stoppage. Making the matter even worse is that these punishments are being levied in the name of player safety, a claim that rings hollow with players as the league threateend to eliminate health coverage for player as part of the new collective bargaining agreement.
Certain sports milestones seem simply unreachable; Joe DiMaggio’s 56-game hitting streak, or Wilt Chamberlain’s 100-point game. In cricket, it’s the one-day double-hundred; no man had ever produced 200 runs for his team during a one-day international match. However, in February, India’s Sachin Tendulkar hit the magic milestone against a powerful South African squad. Tendulkar smacked three “sixes” — the cricket equivalent of a home run — during his epic performance. When he reached 199, the home crowd in Gwalior waved Indian flags, and roared, knowing they were about to witness history. The diminutive Tendulkar, dubbed “The Little Master,” slapped a single past the South African fielders. The world’s 1.5 billion cricket fans had a moment they’d never forget. Tendulkar removed his helmet and raised his arms toward the sky. “Take a bow, master,” said television commentator Ravi Shastri, himself a former cricket star for India. “Aw, you little champion,” his partner, former New Zealand cricketeer Danny Morrison chimed in. “If there was ever one deserving to break this milestone, this Everest, it is certainly Sachin Tendulkar.”
You’ll never a tennis score like it again: 6-4, 3-6, 6-7 (7), 7-6 (3), 70-68. At Wimbledon this June, American John Isner and Nicholas Mahut of France played a fifth set headed for infinity, thanks to Wimbledon’s shunning of fifth-set tiebreakers. In all, their historic first-round match lasted a record 11 hours and five minutes, and had to be played over the course of three days. It was the longest match in tennis history, and during the 138th game of the fifth set, Isner stroked a backhand winner down the line to finally break Mahut’s serve, ending the match.
It says something about Americans’ priorities that one evening in July, some 10 million people tuned into ESPN, dying to know what color uniform a guy would wear next year. As absurd as the spectacle seemed, it was simply the culmination of a year in which the NBA buzzed loudest off the court, as the summer free-agent frenzy sparked endless speculation about where stars like LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh, and Amar’e Stoudemire would land. The homegrown Cleveland Cavalier superstar chose to announce his intention to join buddies Wade and Bosh in Miami on a nationally-televised ESPN special, pompously dubbed “The Decision.” James said he was doing the cable special for charity, donating the show’s advertising revenue to the Boys & Girls Clubs of America.
But after James dumped the Cavs on national television in front of an in-studio audience of kids from the Greenwich, CT Boys and Girls Club, with the now-infamous words “I’m going to take my talents to South Beach,” his popularity took a hefty hit. The backlash was quite stunning, especially since James had made few, if any, public relations errors in his wildly successful career. He did, however, win some sympathy when Cleveland owner Dan Gilbert, within hours of James’ announcement that he was signing with the Heat, released an invective-filled letter to Cavs fans (some of whom were burning LeBron jerseys in the streets), in which he called James “narcissistic” and accused him of “cowardly betrayal.”
For a guy looking to win a championship or two, bailing on the Cavs was probably smart. But LeBron’s “Decision” was a public-relations disaster.