I was going to do a blog on the impending 1/4/10 smorgasboard of wrestling, but this kinda takes precedence. Sorta.
Mike Leach. Here's a guy who reminded us that the state of Texas is not just limited to mentioning Texas and Texas A&M. He took Texas Tech from obscurity to being labeled the Little School That Almost last year, rising as far as #2 in the polls last year before OU out Texas Tech'd them. Apparently, as a testament to how pussified the world around us is getting, Mike Leach was suspended for his treatment of Adam James. Who's Adam James? Big play wideout filling in for the absence of Michael Crabtree? No. Perhaps a slot guy who was...no, no, NO. Let me put it this way...the most famous part about this guy, is his daddy. Craig James, ya may have heard of him? Part of the famous "Pony Express" during SMU's glory days in the early 80s, the last time that school was relevant before hit with the dreaded "Death Sentence" by the No Crap Athletic Association. Now mind you, this has been a banner year for headhunting coaches who take "tough love" just a little too far. Mark Mangino was given Das Boot in KU for being overly hard on his players, but since KU's breakout season two seasons ago...they've done nothing since.
Mike Leach was to college football what Mike Martz's system was to the NFL in the early half of this decade for the Rams. 8 times since he took the helm, a Red Raider QB has led the nation in passing. EIGHT OUT OF TEN. There's no question that he was effective at implementing his system and getting players who could fit his system (coughs Rich Rodriguez coughs). Meanwhile in places like Ann Arbor, men like Rich Rod are still struggling to implement their system. Hell, maybe Michigan might want to look into hiring Leach. So now, the Alamo Bowl has all but turned into the Bad Boy Bowl. Michigan State's got suspended players, Texas Tech has a fired coach.
Another graduate of the ESPN School of Interoffice Relationships
Apparently the "appropriate interactions with co-workers" section of the Disney employee manual doesn't get read much at ESPN. We've seen Harold Reynolds and his version of "let's hug it out, bitch", Sean Salisbury displaying his shortcomings via cell phone, and now we can add former Mets GM and (for-the-moment) current Baseball Tonightmoron commentator Steve Phillips to the list.
Once again proving his complete ineptitude at judging character, Phillips had a brief affair with an ESPN production assistant--who turned out to be a psycho chick a la Glenn Close in "Fatal Attraction". She's made threatening calls to his wife, tried to pose as a high-school student in order to get in touch with his son, and crashed her car trying to avoid being caught after leaving a letter at his house bragging about the affair. No word as to whether or not any animals have been harmed in the process.
Way to go, Steve; three weeks of summer love have now cost you your home, your marriage and possibly your job. On the bright side, your reputation for being an idiot remains intact.
UPDATE: I called it--on Sunday, Oct.25, ESPN announced that Phillips is no longer working for them. His ability to be an effective representative for ESPN has been significantly and irreparably damaged, and it became evident it was time to part ways. Lessons learned:
1. Apparently being a moron is considered an effective way to represent ESPN, as long as you don't screw the help.
2. You embarrass The Mouse, you're dead in the water.
Expect to see Phillips pop up on FoxSports sometime in the future. They like the sloppy seconds.
HELLO THERE READERS OF SPORTSBASTARDS DOT COM. I AM STEPHEN A SMITH, AND I HAVE NOW BECOME ONE OF YOU.
YES, THAT IS RIGHT. I HAVE QUIT MY POSITION AT THE PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER AND HAVE STARTED MY OWN BLOG, WHICH YOU CAN GO LOOK AT BY GOING TO STEPHENABLOG.TYPEPAD.COM. PLEASE CLICK THAT BLUE UNDERLINED TEXT TO VISIT MY NEW HOME ON THE INTERNET. I FIND THIS VERY EXCITING!!! (SMILE)
NO, UNLIKE THE GENIUS THAT IS RON, I HAVE NOT BEEN BLOGGING LONG ENOUGH TO REALIZE THAT TYPEPAD IS NOT AS GOOD AS WORDPRESS, BLOGGER, NUCLEUS, OR EVERYTHING OTHER THAN NETGENIE.
WHILE I WILL NOT BE RETURNING TO MY HIT SHOW, QUITE FRANKLY, I WILL BE LAUNCHING A NEW SHOW IN WHICH I INTERVIEW WILD ANIMALS IN A CROCODILE HUNTER-STYLE MANNER. ANIMALS SEEM TO LOVE STEPHEN A SMITH. PERHAPS IT IS THE SOOTHING AND MELODIOUS SOUND OF MY VOICE THAT LULLS THEM INTO A SENSE OF SECURITY, BUT KNOW THIS! SHOULD ANY WILD ANIMAL GET ANYWHERE NEAR MY DELICIOUS CHEEZY DOODLES, AND I WILL BEAT IT TO DEATH WITH A SACK FULL OF DOORKNOBS!!!! PLEASE BELIEVE THAT!!!
DON'T BELIEVE WHAT THOSE BASTARDS AT DEADSPIN HAVE SAID. I WAS NOT FIRED. I DID NOT ABANDON MY JOB IN PHILLY FOR MY CAREER AS A HIGHLY PAID, WELL DRESSED NETWORK ANALYST. I SUBMITTED MY COLUMNS VIA BLACKBERRY LIKE I ALWAYS DID, BUT FOR SOME REASON THEY DID NOT GO THROUGH. I AM NOT DISTRESSED BY THIS NEWS, AS I HAVE ALWAYS WANTED TO SIT IN MY MOTHER'S BASEMENT IN SOUTH PHILLY IN MY UNDERWEAR AND SPEW THE UNFILTERED, UNEDITED STEPHEN A SMITH YOU KNOW AND LOVE DIRECTLY INTO THE WORLD WIDE INTERNET!!!
PEACE, LOVE, AND CHEEZY DOODLES,
YOUR FRIEND STEPHEN A SMITH.
CLICK THE JUMP TO SEE MY ACTUAL BLOGGING, AND NOT SOME SLAVA MED-VE-DEN-KO CRACKER MAKING FUN OF ME!
I dont know why ESPN wants me to cry during the middle of the day so badly, but the easiest way to make my office significantly dusty is to play Jim Valvanos speech at the ESPYs from March 1993. Even now, 12 years later, it gets me. It's like if Brian Piccolo has to go shoot Old Yeller.
Go donate some money to the V Foundation or participate in ESPN Radios online auction. This'll probably be the classiest thing they'll do all year, so let's help out.
Jason Whitlock "So, I'm going to be perfectly honest with you. I was actually at that same strip club two weeks before [the Pacman Jones incident]. We were trying to go to Sapphire's instead, actually, but our cab driver hustled us into going to Minxx. I think he got like $60 a person for bringing people there."
Audience Member "Did you make it rain?"
Whitlock "We made it sprinkle."
Quotes like these are why I like Jason Whitlock. Also, this will probably be the only time I ever link to The Harvard Crimson, unless of course their lacrosse team gangbangs a black stripper. Dont let me down Havaad.
While our beloved Jaime first commented on NASCARs efforts to pay tribute to the victims of the Gunfight at the Hokie Corral, Uni Watch blogger Paul Lukas, who never responded to my email asking him to link up to us (unlike Dan Shanoff, who replied to the letter but didnt link us), has a fullish listing of the tribute efforts so far.
Suffice it to say, lots of class all around when it comes to the memorials.
Time to join the Underground Train plowing into Colin Cowshit.
Alright, as most of you know, I like Colon Cocksucker about as much as 50 Cent loves Ja Rule. In other words, I think an eternity of getting a pineapple shoved up his ass is too good for the fucking Schrutebag. In his oh so cool douchebag way, he ordered his minions to DNS our fellow haters over at the Big Lead.
This is even though Deadspin, KSK, Pacifist Viking, The Babes, and probably Flash Warner (everyone's favorite angry hottie) have said millions of things worse than what they'd come up with. Hell, after Eddie Guerrero's death, that was fun. It's the one time all the staffers here contributed to one large voodoo doll for Colin. (Oh, how's that eternal pain in your back, you fuck. I hope Jaime keeps that large dagger in, and possibly shoves said dagger even deeper every time she has a bad day.)
Anyhow, TBL was picked by random, because they "annoyed" Colon. They annoyed him, a man who does more annoying than 95 percent of the whores I used to date. right...
Then he tells the trolls to kill the site. And Michigan Zone has the clip in living color. Oh, Colon, fucking busted, faggot.
And so you know who to look for, Colin, when you're fired from ESPN, and you want to take out one of the bloggers. I'll give you a picture to look for. Which by the way, I was trained to kick ass by Uncle Sam's Angry Fellows aka the Army. I'll be the pissed off Mexican around Nashville. Good luck finding me...
Oh, and if you're feeling ready to test out the new Ombudswoman, have a go at this link. Be calm and very respectful. She's taking time out of her day to read your comments. So, don't give her a hard time. In fact, respect is the key word here. Show her respect, and she'll be sure to respectfully tell ESPN what their moronic radio host is doing.
Edit 1: A note of props. Awful Annonuncing, one of our boys who helped us out in the early days, he's leading a photoshop contest with caps of the live show. Yes, Schrutebag has a webcam. Doesn't that now make him a gay camwhore? Anyhow, participate if you want, I won't stop you. In fact, I fucking encourage you ar-teests to get in on it.
Edit 2: Now he's managed to offend Amy's hometown of Cincinattica. So, I think Colin's managed to piss off the Rust Belt, El Paso, and now Cincinattica. The South doesn't listen to you for being too metrosexual, and we hate being called homers and booger pickers. You've also pissed off Louisiana with your comments about Frank Robinson. I guess that leaves you with Hartford to be safe in, right...
World Ending...: CSTB is also aboard the Schrutebag hate train. World is now ending, lock up the valuables, place head between legs, kiss ass goodbye...
Everyone was quick to blame the lack of chemistry on ESPNs Monday Night Football broadcasts last year on Tony Kornheiser. After all, hes the one who carried the burden of being entertaining, while Mike Tirico did the play-by-play and Glass Joe Theismann did the analysis. Ideally, thats how a three man announce team should work: funny color, serious analysis, and play-by-play.
Of course, when your analyst has absolutely no sense of humor and no grasp of sarcasm, then it makes your color guys job that much harder. The blame here doesnt rest with Kornheiser. After all, hes great on Pardon the Interruption and he hosts one of the best radio shows on the planet, so obviously he has it in him to be entertaining and informative at the same time. After all, as hed be the first to admit, hes not on TV for his gorgeous face and not on the radio for his incredible singing voice.
So that means the problem is Theismann (or Tirico, but since Tirico doesnt suck and Theismann kind of does, well ). Despite having been on ESPN since 1988, Ive never once found him to be particularly insightful or amusing. Hell, hes not even really annoying! Theismann is unflavored Quaker oatmeal: bland and pasty, but with a known name.
Jaws is a tremendous upgrade in the announcing booth. Hes more informative, has an actual sense of comic timing, and has chemistry with Tirico and Kornheiser. Theismann is the anti-Ron Jaworski (who Id like even if he didnt have a great first name). Jaws is great on PTI and on NFL Countdown, and he was good when pressed into service earlier in the year on Monday Night Footballs B-team. Id imagine hell continue to be good on the A-team, too.
As for Theismann, I imagine hell be stuck in Jaworskis old spot on the kick-off show. Not that hed be great at it, but at least wed see him a lot less. Of course, the ideal replacement for Ron Jaworski would be Michael Smith doing the Jaws impersonation hes known for on Around the Horn. If you cant keep real Jaws, at least you could get fake Jaws.
Come to think of it, Richard Kiel is not doing anything these days neither is Frank Welker.
Ahh, Michael Irvin, we hardly knew ye before ye were so cruelly fired from ESPN the Television Network. However, Michael, in our short time together, you've provided us with so much goodness that I really struggle to find a place to begin. However, I can try. Excuse me if I get a little misty-eyed here, folks. There's a lot of white powder flying through the air.
Click below for the grandmother of all mixed-race retrospectives from the man who makes Jimmy the Greek look racially sensitive.
Hey, Michael Irvin! Sure you just got in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, but you might also be getting fired!
Edited on 2/17: Seriously, anyone who wasn't so black and famous would've been fired the moment that 'Tony Romo's got slave blood' comment left his lips, if they'd even make it onto network TV after being busted with hookers and cocaine so many times. Marv Albert bites his girlfriend and loses his job, but we can't get rid of Michael Irvin, no matter how many lines of marching powder he snorts up his nose.
So ESPN did either the bravest or the dumbest thing in the history of things: they've opened up commentary on posts from readers. Needless to say, Bill Simmons was immediately gang-raped by the Deadspin crew, but poor Jemele Hill was ignored for the most part. At least until someone with more balls than brains posted this little tidbit.
UncleSkanko (2/1/2007 at 7:23 PM) Edit Delete Report
Okay, this is a serious question for Jemele. No, seriously. You've written about groupies, sex, hooking up with athletes, and now you've written about prostitutes. Every article of yours talks about sex. Are these topics your idea, or is it the ESPN brass who seem dead-set on making you look like a #### (slut)?
That question has been on Rich's mind ever since she blew him in the parking lot of a Denny's wrote her first ESPN Page 2 article.