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  • 03/07/13--07:45: THE CURIOUS INDEX, 3/7/2013
  • Screen_shot_2013-03-07_at_10

    COLORADO FOOTBALL HAS A NEW ATTITUDE AND ALSO LAV MIKES

    CU is making a multi-part series out of Mike MacIntyre's first year in Boulder. Watch it for a few things:

    • Oooh pretty mountain-ness
    • BUFFALO HEADS EVERYWHERE
    • The part at the 5:40 mark or so where a player goes "Hamlet. Yeah, lessgo get it."
    • The weight room when viewed in comparison to say, Alabama's
    • People on a football team who almost look like normal humans, and not the collections of giant Gamorrean guards you see on your larger market successful FBS college football teams.

    More than anything, though? Someone at Colorado clearly listened to our pleas and made LENTICULAR CLOUD AND MOUNTAIN EROTICA. Bout time you embraced your strengths, Colorado. #weed

    IMAGINE THAT HEAD TRAUMA IS BAD. Even at the sub-concussive level, per a new study. Dr. Michael Felder has been saying this for years, but go ahead and take credit for it, "science." But we're sure those at the top of the sport's hierarchy wouldn't just be lying their asses off in public the day before about this and shit okay maybe that just happened.

    YOU PROBABLY WANT TO BE AN AD. Nice work if you can get it, particularly if you're David Williams of Vanderbilt, whose $3 million plus salary is deceptive due to his playing multiple roles at the university. (He's a tenured law prof, general counsel for the university and the med school, and a vice chancellor for university affairs in addition to his duties as Vandy's de facto AD since they technically don't have an athletic department.) There are other notables in there, including Barry Alvarez pulling down a cool million plus ("Barry, nice job, Barry,") and the hilarity of Jay Jacobs at Auburn being paid six hundred thousand dollars to suck at his job.

    SMART FOOTBALL IS SMART. The Solid Verbal had Chris Brown on, and just let him talk because that's the right thing to do. It's particularly interesting listening to the bit about Manziel, and whether success so early could keep him from getting better as time goes on.

    ROCK ON, LOUISVILLE. Leave it up to Kentucky to lead the way toward civilization.

    VIRGINIA TECH IS VERY CONFIDENT ABOUT ITS ABILITY TO TALK ABOUT BEATING ALABAMA. Later, when Virginia Tech lies shattered in pieces of the turf of the Georgia Dome, Antone Exum can blame the meds for this.

    BUT WHAT IF IT WAS A BASE PLAY? Shakin' the Southland explains the hook and lateral, sometimes known by the misheard variant "hook and ladder" pronunciation. Sure, it's not a base play of an offense [hits bong] BUT WHAT IF YOU RAN IT EVERY PLAY, MAN?

    OUR GREATEST SHIRTLESS COACHES. That's a fine listicle, but it doesn't include Kirk Ferentz shirtless, and that's a shame because his sultry post-polar plunge sensuality is literally the only reason he has not been fired at Iowa. (And the Mother of all Buyouts. But also teh #ANF tingly sexy, too.) Related: you can never erase this from your mind once seen, so please, by all means, feel free not to click on it.

    ABOUT THAT SHIRTLESS MAN. Iowa's reviewing the hire of his future son-in-law to, um, do something at the University, something he is probably totally qualified for because nepotism.

    ETC: A tribute to Hans Moleman.


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    Screen_shot_2013-03-07_at_1

    The NCAA Rules Committee spends each offseason carefully weighing the rules of college football, examining on-field issues from the previous season, and then producing a random series of new rules complicating the already impossible job of enforcing a full-contact sport's rules in real time. Unlike any of their student-athletes, they also enjoy a hot lunch courtesy of the NCAA.

    This year's batch contains a rule that is delightful if you've ever wanted to see what your third-string safety looks like:

    The Playing Rules Oversight Panel approved a new football rule that requires players who target and contact defenseless players above the shoulders to be ejected, effective for the 2013 season.

    If you are concerned about this creating another subjective officiating point that could possibly alter the entire course of a football game, you're being alarmist. These decisions are subject to review, and players will not be ejected if conclusive evidence can be presented to the contrary, like "It's his ball,""He can beat all of us up, and I didn't bring my gun," and "Our third string safety, who will replace the other two safeties we just ejected, is a wallaby wearing shoulder pads."

    That wallaby's going to see real playing time this fall, and we're pretty excited about it. There are a thousand little unintended side effects of this rule, not the least of which is the cancellation and redaction of the following players' careers in their entirety. (Twitter: you helped with this, and for that we thank you.)

    • Taylor Mays
    • Major Wright
    • Matt Elam
    • Reggie Nelson
    • Junior Rosegreen
    • Vontaze Burfict
    • Nick Fairley
    • William Gholston
    • Laron Landry
    • Dwayne Slay
    • Brandon Spikes
    • Taylor Mays (worth a double ban)

    Just for fun, try to enforce that rule on this disaster of a meeting between Jamar Wall and Zac Robinson. If you remember these two names and this hit, your testicles have already shrunken into you body out of sheer terror.

    Wall clearly makes helmet-to-helmet contact, but so does the rest of his body with all the damage being done without leaving his feet. It's a shoulder shiver thrown into a moving target, and nothing like an attempt at a tackle. It's a hit, and that's the fundamentals problem football has from the lowest level up to the NFL. (Then again, he's supposed to tackle a man lowering his head at him at full speed, and who doesn't love the possibility of going low to make the tackle, finding your target's knees striking your helmet, and then on impact concussing you in the process?)

    The point: it's going to be a difficult call to make, and when someone's arms flop out in that sick, fixed posting position on national television in front of a horrified live audience, it will be very, very difficult to be judicious in evaluating the offending object's intentions in a real-time scenario. They'll get ejected every time, without fail.

    That said, it is a necessary attempt at a rule. It's also going to be unevenly applied from the start because of the game's basic speed and the desire to hit, punish, and obliterate rather than simply tackle.* We feel bad for the players--especially defenders-- that will revert to instinct and lead with the helmet in a big game, and for the officials who will have to risk getting their cars pipe-bombed when they eject said player for doing what he's been coached to do for years.

    It's a shit situation all around, and that's why the rule should be suspension upon review from the conference after the game, not midstream when emotions are running high and reviews happen in the chaos of a live event. It's still subjective, but there's no way in hell anyone in the middle of a game is making a sound, composed decision about it--flawed, human officials already working with a giant rulebook included.

    *Not that the two don't overlap at times, and not that we don't feel a deep guilty bloodlust in watching thunderous hitting. But if you want to mitigate the violence of football--and those pesky brain-related side effects down the road--then you start by writing the rules to discourage it. We'll miss it, we really will, but not nearly as much as a.) players will miss brain function, and b.) we'd miss football in a scenario when it turned into boxing or bear-baiting. Football will get less physical and involve less violence in the future because it is hurting people's brains. "Stop being a pussy" is not a counter-argument. No one wants to see Reggie Brown facedown on the turf again and think "I just watched someone die on the field."

    There is also a rule that you have to spike the ball before the three second mark in order to stop the clock at the end of a game, mercifully saving referees from the pesky trouble of having to count to three at the end of games. Thank you so much for listening to the demands of football fans who clamored for more basketball-esque rules in our football.


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    157183440

    Do you really need a new stadium considering the Georgia Dome is as old as Taylor Lautner and Caribou Coffee? No. No we do not.

    Then why is it happening? The honest answer is probably this: that the Falcons want to increase their revenue share and control over "the Gameday experience," i.e. reduce the role the Georgia World Congress Center plays in their operations. They accomplish this task by building a new stadium they control on the GWCC's turf, reduce the cut they pay to other people, and in turn get the shiny new toy every NFL franchise wants. In return, Atlanta gets a new stadium with something amounting to 80/20 funding. In theory.

    Is working with the state of Georgia a bad thing? Like, bad enough to demand a new stadium in order to do it? Read back those questions to yourself out loud. Now see if you need to ask either of them again. (Answer: you do not.)

    Are there any other reasons this is happening? In Atlanta we tear down anything that's been here for longer than 20 years, which is why I have to move in seven years and then return after a probationary period. It's just what we do.

    Since this is an NFL stadium deal, how much blatant robbery of public money occurred here? A bit, but that's money long since stolen via the hotel tax, which by law must go towards “Promoting tourism, conventions, and trade shows." There are local costs to it, as there are with any tax, but the direct amount of money in theory is coming from tourism taxes levied on hapless conventioneers breezing through town.

    Who got paid? The neighborhoods surrounding the Georgia Dome, who will receive $15 million of Blank Foundation money for community projects in addition to $15 million from the city's tax allocation funds to take to grant-matching attempts with other private donors. This part is pretty close to legitimate business as far as Blank's charitable donation, as the Blank Foundation is one of the city's largest private charities and a dedicated one at that. (Full disclosure: at one time I managed one of their grants for a local charity. They were full-stop great with no qualifiers, and have a good reputation in town for their work.)

    Anyone else? The Falcons, in a sense, since they will have a heavy hand in the control of the new stadium but not end up owning the stadium. That ownership will likely remain with the GWCC in title, but make no mistake: this is Arthur Blank's stadium with a bit of public funding built into it.

    Relatively speaking: how bad is it? Not as bad as it could be by miles (in theory.) Local tax rebellion enthusiasts will still scream at the local hotel tax money going to the Falcons new home, but most likely will do it from the suburbs where they live, and not from the city. The new stadium keeps the SEC title game in town, and lines Atlanta up for all the usual large sporting events that make up a solid chunk of the tourism economy: the Chick-fil-A Bowl, a hypothetical college football playoff game, the Final Four, WrestleMania stop yes WrestleMania is a major sporting event here no stop laughing it is.

    So it doesn't sound too bad, no? No, not in theory. The Falcons get more control and a greater piece of their own pie for at least the next 30 years, the city keeps the team and gets a new stadium out of it with 80/20 private/public financing, and we're not Tampa, Minnesota, or Cincinnati. (Man, we are so not Cincinnati.) More importantly, Arthur Blank is not Jerry Richardson, crying poverty while making a tidy profit and lining up his host city for the bulk of stadium costs. The worst threat the Falcons made was moving out to the suburbs, something literally every person, business, or stray dog in the city of Atlanta has done at one point.

    But that stadium was opened in 1992. It can't even drink yet. That part is still a bit mystifying, honestly, but with the stadium set to open in 2017 the Georgia Dome will have a chance to enjoy a few years of legal consumption. Also, stadiums are inanimate objects and can't drink, and this is a silly question. Blank's not going to live forever, and at 70 years old he probably wanted to secure the home for the Falcons before he got too far into his pajamas-and-brandy years.

    In theory, this sort of works. In theory, yes. A lot could happen in between happy press conference and 2017. Costs could skyrocket. New taxes could somehow become necessary, and then we'll be having the same conversation about Arthur Blank and the Falcons that we have about every other owner and team in the NFL when it comes to stadiums and public financing. For now this doesn't seem too bad, but theory is the easy part. Practice is a whole different matter.


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    1974_players_championship_-_acc

    1974 was a weird time for America, and also for golf promos.

    1974_players_championship_-_acc_medium

    The purse was $250,000, parking was $5, beer was like $2 for a six pack, but the good times at the Atlanta Country Club? Free, man. Free as the wind (after the wind paid a $30 entry fee.) There is an Atlanta Rhythm Section song playing in this photo. It is"Champagne Jam." (HT: HC)


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    Screen_shot_2013-03-11_at_10

    The Harlem Shake storm engulfing our nation has nearly subsided, but as with all disasters there are some inevitable positive side effects. For instance, without the Harlem Shake, we never get this loop of Virginia Tech head coach Frank Beamer dancing.

    Kdtmild_medium

    Proven: they don't let you leave Fancy Gap, Virginia without mastering a few country jigs. (Via)


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    513584eebabc9

    Oh, that lean, Kliff Kingsbury:

    513584eebabc9

    My god that's the luckiest wall in the world, say the ladies of Lubbock. The first bro-in-chief in college football may be the pioneer in wearing expensive sneakers, slim hoodies, and v-necks, but let's be clear on this: as long as Kliff Kingsbury is pushing the envelope of good ol' boy fashion forward, he is merely being a traditionalist.

    Case one: Bear "SWAAAAGGGGG" Bryant.

    Bear-bryant2_medium

    You play to your strengths as a player and as a coach, and clearly Bear Bryant had so much Bama in him it had to bleed into his very clothing. Kingsbury could wear skinny jeans and a smedium organic pickling co-op's shirt on the sidelines and it would pale next to Bear Bryant's unstoppable old-man-with-a-giant-cadillac-full-of-money-and-nude-ladies jacketry. (Particularly this pink pattern, which Bryant worse presumably to soothe the other team into docile, compliant opposition. "I'd like to fight, but the world's most terrifying easter bunny is on the sidelines smoking a Chesterfield.")

    The other counter-example to anyone ever mocking Kliff Kingsbury's fashion sense is the mother sauce for modern coaching, the treemaker himself, Hayden Fry:

    Additionally, Kliff Kingsbury is 33 and is a head coach of an FBS football team making millions of dollars to do what he loves. So, yeah: advantage you, bro on the internet typing away in a polo and ill-fitting jeans. You're clearly coming out of this matchup a winner.


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    Gyi0063107737

    Chris Jones wrote a piece on Rebecca Marino, the 22-year-old tennis player who, in leaving the tour to deal with her depression, deleted her Facebook and Twitter accounts. Her explanation: ""Social media has taken its toll on me."

    It is probably a very, very good idea for someone dealing with serious depression to get offline, particularly if that person is a professional athlete with a ton of uninformed, unconnected inputs plugged into her social feedback machine. (I.e. not a true social network, but the hundreds of thousands of random followers that blip into someone's life with a terrifying, artificial familiarity granted thanks to social media.)

    It is not a good idea, or even a particularly accurate one, to suggest that social media would force you to be anything but what you have to be in the rest of your life: careful, vigilant, and selective of what you listen to and consider to be of value. It's filtering, something your brain does naturally and Twitter and Facebook allow you to do specifically.

    If Chris Jones feels "flatlined" by the internet, then I don't think he really understands it. He's a magazine writer, and a very good one. (Here, read this, and behold said talent.) He is not what I would call an "internet-first writer," meaning I don't know if he understands this salient point: the internet is not this separate, walled-off segment of your life, nor a rude bag of rabid bats thrown into your face every morning. It's exactly like life, but accelerated and with a weird emphasis on cat pictures.*

    *Don't think life doesn't do this. One word: beetles. Way too many of them IRL, disproportionately absent online.

    And here's the icky, horrid, and needlessly personal part : I am, and have, for the better part of my life in tidy five year-ish cycles, dealt with depression. Dealing is the right term. You don't fight it, because if you are the kind of person who suffers from depression, then you know you surrender the minute it shows up, and simply send distress signals to the appropriate people. They send meds, changes of routine, and patience. Then you wait for it to blow over, and just pardon yourself for the crying jags, long walks, and repeated listens of George Harrison's "All Things Must Pass" over your headphones.

    I'm just one data point, but the internet has never, ever exacerbated any of that for me, particularly regarding depression. If anything, it helped by giving the best data set in the world on the universal crap-to-gold ratio, i.e. that 90% of everything is crap, and that the 10% worth keeping is a matter of editing and careful curation.

    That is something that from the start of this website, and further on into whatever it is I do now, has helped. It's not like I hear one asshole talking, because ten thousand of them at once are merely a statistic. If someone told me to stop writing--which three people, full-stop, in no uncertain terms, have done over the past eight years--then I disregarded it, since there are at any given time three people on the internet who believe anything. I've also disregarded compliments and praise, because that's just as misleading and poisonous in its own way.

    (NOTE: This is excepting the time I got retweeted by Jackeé, because holy shit I want that on my tombstone. I am AWESOME for having that happen to me.)

    If anything, being on the internet for 12 hours a day for the better part of three Presidential terms has made me way healthier mentally than at any point in my adult life thanks to that: filtering, and learning to deal with the constant river of shit flowing through your existence. You learn to auto-sift, to see a horrendous argument coming a mile away, and to quickly figure out who to deal with and who, in one sense or another, to block. To paraphrase C.T. Fletcher, your ability to shunt incoming traffic onto the onramp for Snap City gets very efficient.

    That's not the case for Rebecca Marino, who learned the necessity of the block button the hard way, mostly because she is twenty-two and very depressed, and learning to deal with the biochemical hand she's been given. When she comes back--and she will, if it all works out--she won't have to be less sensitive. She will have to be more selective, something that only comes with time and experience, and that life would have taught her anyway. She'll have to value the voices and people she trusts more, and others less.

    That, if done right, won't be a bad thing for her or anyone else. I hope she learns to do that, because when she's depressed and weak it could help save her life. I really, really hope she does, because not giving up entirely is so worth the payoff. I think that every time my children poop on something, or I get to cackle my ass off for an entire night of people I don't know making me laugh while I watch sports. Those would be people online, who, after all, are just people--bad, good, indifferent, sometimes too broken to fix, and sometimes too dull to give anything the courtesy of a gesture towards the door.

    P.S. I didn't originally learn this from the internet. I learned it from one of the best movies about mental illness ever. If you pick up the phone and someone tells you to put a shotgun in your mouth, that line is out of order, and you'll just try it later, especially if you happen to be depressed, and out of order yourself.

    Chris Jones wrote a piece on Rebecca Marino, the 22-year-old tennis player who, in leaving the tour to deal with her depression, deleted her Facebook and Twitter accounts. Her explanation: ""Social media has taken its toll on me."

    It is probably a very, very good idea for someone dealing with serious depression to get offline, particularly if that person is a professional athlete with a ton of uninformed, unconnected inputs plugged into her social feedback machine. (I.e. not a true social network, but the hundreds of thousands of random followers that blip into someone's life with a terrifying, artificial familiarity granted thanks to social media.)

    It is not a good idea, or even a particularly accurate one, to suggest that social media would force you to be anything but what you have to be in the rest of your life: careful, vigilant, and selective of what you listen to and consider to be of value. It's filtering, something your brain does naturally and Twitter and Facebook allow you to do specifically.

    If Chris Jones feels "flatlined" by the internet, then I don't think he really understands it. He's a magazine writer, and a very good one. (Here, read this, and behold said talent.) He is not what I would call an "internet-first writer," meaning I don't know if he understands this salient point: the internet is not this separate, walled-off segment of your life, nor a rude bag of rabid bats thrown into your face every morning. It's exactly like life, but accelerated and with a weird emphasis on cat pictures.*

    *Don't think life doesn't do this. One word: beetles. Way too many of them IRL, disproportionately absent online.

    And here's the icky, horrid, and needlessly personal part : I am, and have, for the better part of my life in tidy five year-ish cycles, dealt with depression. Dealing is the right term. You don't fight it, because if you are the kind of person who suffers from depression, then you know you surrender the minute it shows up, and simply send distress signals to the appropriate people. They send meds, changes of routine, and patience. Then you wait for it to blow over, and just pardon yourself for the crying jags, long walks, and repeated listens of George Harrison's "All Things Must Pass" over your headphones.

    I'm just one data point, but the internet has never, ever exacerbated any of that for me, particularly regarding depression. If anything, it helped by giving the best data set in the world on the universal crap-to-gold ratio, i.e. that 90% of everything is crap, and that the 10% worth keeping is a matter of editing and careful curation.

    That is something that from the start of this website, and further on into whatever it is I do now, has helped. It's not like I hear one asshole talking, because ten thousand of them at once are merely a statistic. If someone told me to stop writing--which three people, full-stop, in no uncertain terms, have done over the past eight years--then I disregarded it, since there are at any given time three people on the internet who believe anything. I've also disregarded compliments and praise, because that's just as misleading and poisonous in its own way.

    (NOTE: This is excepting the time I got retweeted by Jackeé, because holy shit I want that on my tombstone. I am AWESOME for having that happen to me.)

    If anything, being on the internet for 12 hours a day for the better part of three Presidential terms has made me way healthier mentally than at any point in my adult life thanks to that: filtering, and learning to deal with the constant river of shit flowing through your existence. You learn to auto-sift, to see a horrendous argument coming a mile away, and to quickly figure out who to deal with and who, in one sense or another, to block. To paraphrase C.T. Fletcher, your ability to shunt incoming traffic onto the onramp for Snap City gets very efficient.

    That's not the case for Rebecca Marino, who learned the necessity of the block button the hard way, mostly because she is twenty-two and very depressed, and learning to deal with the biochemical hand she's been given. When she comes back--and she will, if it all works out--she won't have to be less sensitive. She will have to be more selective, something that only comes with time and experience, and that life would have taught her anyway. She'll have to value the voices and people she trusts more, and others less.

    That, if done right, won't be a bad thing for her or anyone else. I hope she learns to do that, because when she's depressed and weak it could help save her life. I really, really hope she does, because not giving up entirely is so worth the payoff. I think that every time my children poop on something, or I get to cackle my ass off for an entire night of people I don't know making me laugh while I watch sports. Those would be people online, who, after all, are just people--bad, good, indifferent, sometimes too broken to fix, and sometimes too dull to give anything the courtesy of a gesture towards the door.

    P.S. I didn't originally learn this from the internet. I learned it from one of the best movies about mental illness ever. If you pick up the phone and someone tells you to put a shotgun in your mouth, that line is out of order, and you'll just try it later, especially if you happen to be depressed, and out of order yourself.


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  • 03/11/13--12:44: DANA OF THE HORSEWOMEN
  • Be49wywcqaazbda

    A vast and lonesome plain. On it, a bedraggled people walk, shackled in chains, walk toward the horizon. Cruel warriors prod them on with pikes and swords, occasionally pulling one out of the line and decapitating them for their own twisted pleasure. They laugh as the villagers cower.

    Warrior one: Haaa!

    Warrior two: Haaa, I say!

    Warrior one: What manner of man could stop us?

    Voice out of nowhere: "No man needed, man."

    A spear sings through the air. Warrior one grabs the end, oddly calm given that the spear is sitting clean in his neck, thrown by a skilled yet vengeful hand. Warrior two is horrified, and wheels around to look for the spearthrower. A voice sings through the air.

    Dana_horsewoman_zpsd7b1f402_medium

    Dana Horsewomen: "THAT SUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUCKS, MAN. For you, I mean. Ladies, let's do this."

    Horsewomen: "Yes, daddy."

    Danahorsewomen_zps69d54135_medium

    The Horsewomen of Stickdrawcaban slaughter the soldiers and free the innocent villagers, Dana Horsewomen winks at the camera, and we go to commercial. DANA HORSEWOMEN and the HORSEWOMEN OF STICKDRAWCABAN: only on TNT this fall.


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    Knute-rockne-all-american-title-still

    Run Home Jack and ourselves attempted to watch the cornerstone of the Notre Dame legend, "Knute Rockne, All-American." It is a fucking terrible film, and you should never watch it.

    RHJ: The film begins by crediting reports of Rockne's "intimate associates." Ah, simpler times for America, when we had kinder terms than "fuckbuddy."

    SH: It's okay. We asked people who existed before the advent of antibiotics to use their clap-addled brains to remember details about things they were likely stinking drunk for to remember for the movie. Then, we just wrote down what Knute and his family wanted in the film.

    SH: Lloyd Bacon, a British director, made this film. He also made 130 others in his lifetime. Lloyd Bacon must have fucking hated movies.

    RHJ: We're three minutes in and a child is casually using a hand saw while three adults give zero fucks. Norway, yo.

    SH: "I like what I hear about America...and about opportunities for working men like me." Do Notre Dame Fans know Knute Rockne's dad was poor? Don't tell them, they'll turn to dust. Dad's pissing on Norway pretty hard.

    RHJ: "Let's leave Norway for Chicago, because gunfire keeps you warm."

    SH: The football scene in Knute's neighborhood growing up has a black quarterback in the single wing because RACISM.

    RHJ: KNUTE ROCKNE, Linebacker, Chicago, Illinois. Terrible stance. Late off every snap. Does not pursue so much as has the ball carrier run into him. No lateral movement. One star recruit.

    SH: The Manti Te'o of his time. Rockne is knocked unconscious and continues playing, and children suggest they leave his body for the cops.

    RHJ: Concussions build character!

    SH: Chicago! Rockne tells his father at dinner to "talk American now." Knute Rockne could have coached Alabama just fine. #TCOT #NDNATION #NOBAMA #DADSBASICALLYAVANILLAMEXICAN #BOOTSTRAPS

    RHJ: I have been hit with the "AMERICA" hammer too many times. Poor Knute only gets one offer, from the U.S. Postal Service Fightin' Return-to-Senders.

    SH: Knute cleans and presses a bag of mail pretty well, the best piece of weightlifting an ND player will do until the early 2000s.

    RHJ: At the USPS, Rockne really learns the value of hard work, efficiency, and casual theft that goes untraced. He finally decides to leave for college after approximately 30 years.

    00357405_medium

    Not actually a scene from the hit movie "Grandpa College."

    SH: Everyone in the past was 40 years old, and then eighty. That's convenient: the actor Pat O'Brien playing Rockne is actually 40 at the time of filming here. By the way, it is not creepy at all that Rockne's wife said O'Brien looked so much like Rockne that she expected "him to make love to me." Also creepy: priests talking about chemicals.

    RHJ: For real. There's nothing about a priest saying "synthetic rubber" that isn't horrifying.

    SH: The movies bro credentials are pretty strong, since Rockne passes up a chemistry internship to go wear men's casual on the beach. White people love wearing all their clothes on the beach, per 1930s Hollywood.

    RHJ: I don't even get what they're doing here. The beach scene features people in swimsuits but Rockne and his buddy in pants and sweaters. Are they implying all the assholes not covered up are libertine state school graduates?

    SH: HOLY SHIT THIS MOVIE REALLY CLAIMS KNUTE ROCKNE INVENTED THE FORWARD PASS. I can't decide whether lying about your child being gravely ill to motivate your team or this is worse. Then Rockne ruins his proposal of marriage talking about his gameplan against Army, which is the most realistic part of this movie.

    RHJ: You can tell Rockne's wife is a Big Ten fan because she's bored to tears by a description of a passing attack.

    SH: Oh holy shit the newspaper flying at the screen.

    RHJ: "Boss Sanity Trial Jury Is Completed. 2 year old girl killed by auto in crossing street. Business man loses life on cabin cruiser. Killer escapes." These are all minor headlines compared to "IRISH TROUNCE SO AND SO."

    SH: In the past, the entire nation was the SEC, basically. When you beat Army, a lynch mob of happiness showed up with torches to meet you at the station, so filled to the brim with glee were the citizens.

    Screen_shot_2013-02-20_at_12

    The funniest part of this: that the words "South Bend" were ever written in anything but spray paint, and without a question mark at the end. Knute then has a baby and acts excited, something no man was before the year 1985.

    RHJ: Side note - in 1913: Wake Forest went 0-8. They lost to UNC twice, NC State, Davidson, and GALLAUDET. Has shit ever not been rough at Wake Forest?

    SH: There is an extended scene where Rockne is sitting in the yard putting some mercury-laden bullshit on his head to get his hair to grow back. Per his wife: "You've worried yourself half-bald!" People in the 1920s UNDERSTOOD things, man.

    RHJ: Here is what a priest says to Rockne, regarding the value of his coaching: "You are helping MANKIND." The wrestler, I presume.

    SH: No, no, move over, Norman Borlaug and Louis Pasteur, Rockne's coming through and he's going to feed the Horn of Africa with the power sweep. Players visit the Rockne house and attempt to steal Mrs. Rockne's food, and claims she makes the best fried chicken in town. This being Indiana meant that this was probably just boiled chicken with corn flakes spread on it. Even then, it probably was the best fried chicken in Indiana, and still might be.

    In part two we find out that doctors in the 1920s gave up on people really, really easily.

    Knute-rockne_-all-american-_1940_---pat-o_brien-and-ronald-reagan-746215_medium

    "He's dead. Or asleep. There's literally no way of knowing which one."


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  • 03/13/13--07:34: THE CURIOUS INDEX, 3/13/2013
  • 20130305_krg_al2_312

    JUST ANOTHER DELIGHTFUL PICTURE OF LANE KIFFIN. The photo tool for some reason is just clogged with pictures of Lane Kiffin making exasperated faces. The photo tool is the best friend we have ever had or ever will have.

    TO HELL WITH YOUR TACKLING DUMMY. Tulsa's defense is out there being absolutely inhuman to tackling dummies. This is okay, because tackling dummies are not people no matter what current UVA DC Jon Tenuta says they are, or what they just said about your mother. (P.S. Tenuta really does believe tackling dummies are people, and that's why he has three of them bound and gagged in his basement.)

    That's great son. Now please pay for that tackling dummy, because you are not an employee of the university, and merely a student-athlete. P.S. You can probably just leave without paying for it, since we did that with a french horn at the University of Florida and totally never paid for it.

    OR LET'S JUST HOLD UP REAL FAST ON THAT STORY. If you're going to air a story about an alleged rape, it really helps not to use a warrant with the hames of those involved on a broadcast, then put that video online, then delete it, and then use the same video with names in it on the 11 o'clock news. Ramzzy is right: if a blog had done this there would be heads rolling left and right. (And there may yet be, but still.)

    BECAUSE EVERYTHING IS AWFUL. Dan Wetzel on the Steubenville Rape Trial is necessary reading, but it's not exactly fun.

    THE EVER-ENTERTAINING JEFFERSON FAMILY. The Louisiana Jeffersons, who appear to be the number one family you totally want a barbecue invite for since, yeah, they seem lively at all occasions.

    AND BECAUSE EVERYTHING IS LEGALISH TODAY. Yes, we see the arrest of Cayleb Jones at Texas, and will adjudicate accordingly in a Fulmer Cupdate later today.

    ETC: When Jonathan found his father again, years later, Bob was living alone in a goat hut on the Mani peninsula. He had no running water, and no lavatory. But he did have a cravat, and a clipping from a biography of Field Marshal Alexander which read "the greatest Hun-killer I ever knew was Major Bob Crisp".


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    156758195

    Please file this under "Turkish soccer fan things."

    Schalke's sporting director Horst Heldt has confirmed that a group of ticketless Galatasaray fans were caught trying to burrow into their stadium using their bare hands ahead of Tuesday's Champions League match.

    Turkish soccer fans: making Philadelphia sports fans seem sane, rational, and balanced since everyone got the internet and realized just how insane Turkish soccer fans truly are. That photo above is of a Galatasaray fan. He watches you sleep every night of every day of every week, just inches from your face, wearing that very mask. Sleep well, reader.


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    151619918

    Demonstrate your love by beating up a tennis player. This is what I really want most from you, honey. It's not that we couldn't communicate, or that I'm insane, or that we just didn't work. What I really want, more than anything in this world, is for you to tell me not to even talk to other men. Correction: what I want most in this world is for you to do that, and then beat the shit out of a tennis player in front of me.

    If you could break his jaw, I would marry you on the spot. Wait. You didn't!

    According to Austin police, Jones fractured Joseph Swaysland's jaw outside an Austin nightclub on Feb. 22 after Jones saw Swaysland speaking with Texas volleyball player Katherine Bell. She told police she had been in a relationship with Jones that ended badly.

    Oh my god honey we are getting married and I am having your babies on the spot! Thank you sweetie! Ur teh best!

    XOXOXOXOXOXO,

    No woman ever in the history of fucking civilization

    P.S. That''s a felony charge with a possible maximum prison sentence of 20 years, so that's a three point charge for Texas in the Fulmer Cup.

    P.P.S. Mack Brown offered him as an arsonist.


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  • 03/14/13--07:20: THE CURIOUS INDEX, 3/14/2013
  • Screen_shot_2013-03-14_at_10

    KISS THE BAR BECAUSE YOU LOVE IT. The spring conditioning rounds usually include a full cycle of brutal weightlifting, and thanks to the wonders of cheaply made digital video you, too, can share the joys of vomit-inducting max squats. (Yes, even with Indiana football.)

    The kiss of the bar at the end is deeply unsanitary. (And awesome.) (VIA)

    THIS IS NOT A TYPO. Tennessee got a commit today from Jalen Hurd, a five-star running back. Repeat: Tennessee has a commit from a five-star skill player in the year 2013, and there is an Australian lady trying to rap like she's from the SWATS because the future never asks permission and doesn't care if you're ready or not.

    BERKLEY DOES HAVE A TENDENCY TO MAKE ONE CHUCKLE. Not necessarily for football reasons, but Sonny Dykes' staff seems like they don't need chemical partners in order to be relaxed, funny, and sort of fixated on food.

    NEWS IN SADNESS. Remember: you're not Purdue. Unless you are, and then we don't know what you're talking about.

    THE LONGHORN REALLY IS THE TIP OF THE ICEBERG. We would totally believe that TAMU's announcer not only has the Red Dragon tat, but is the Red Dragon himself. [puts on footage of the Cotton Bowl] [screams "LOOK AT ME" at a bound and gagged Bob Stoops]

    STILL MORE SPRINGY INTERVIEWS. TNIAAM talked with their new coach like real journalists.

    ETC: THESE EMMA WATSON NUDES ARE REAL.


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    Screen_shot_2013-03-14_at_12

    Vanessa Bryant, wife of recently injured Lakers superstar Kobe Bryant, posted a picture of what sort of looks like Kobe Bryant's swollen ankle on Instagram. This sparked immediate mass confusion in the SB Nation newsroom for reasons no one may ever fully understand. The actual dialogue with slight editing follows.

    Bill H: had to throw the "snuff film" filter on that ankle snap, eh?

    Martin R: 8mm style

    Bill H: i can barely even understand what i'm looking at

    Chris M: what is that photo telling us, other than he has an ankle and a foot?

    Jason K: looks swollen to me

    Ryan H: it's super swollen. See?

    Swollen_medium

    Chris M: oh!

    Bill H: lol

    Jason K: just checked and my ankle doesnt look like that

    Chris M: it doesnt look abnormal to me, but im no doctor! i have big bones

    Spencer H: It's the Loch Ness Monster of injuries

    Bill H: i have no idea what a thin man's ankle is meant to look like

    Chris M: OHHHHHHH. the ANKLE! (i understand what an ankle is. im saying it doesnt look abnormal to me.)

    Spencer H: Post it first without that, note that it's vague and then use the "helpful: illustration. Like, "Oh, now it's totally clear!"

    Jason K: yall got some f****d-up ankles

    Mike P: i suppose i can get it, not sure what spencer means by those instructions on how to write it though

    Spencer H: point out that it is a vague weird photo that sort of resembles a swollen ankle maybe. then add a totally useless circle that makes it like 1% more clear. because we are overanalyzing this because he is a celebrity athlete and someone took a fuzzy photo of his ankle.

    Bill H.: #jokes

    Mike P: uh ok, i'll try my best, i'm not usually the best at

    Spencer H: I'll do it

    Mike P: i'll do it

    Sharp: i can do it!

    Bill H.: LET'S ALL DO IT

    Spencer H: Nah, I got it.

    Bill H.: SIX POSTS GO

    Mike P: hah ok

    Ryan H: ha

    Chris M: lets just post this entire conversation about the update as the update

    Bill H: that's what i was thinking

    Spencer H: Fine fine FINE we'll do that god this is stupid

    (HT: Deadspin)

    IMPORTANT UPDATE: Kobe himself has posted a picture of his swollen ankle.

    Bfvnnaycuais0zj_medium

    Here is our analysis.

    Kobe_medium

    More in the NBA:

    Kobe Bryant injured, out indefinitely after "dangerous play"

    GIF: Jrue Holiday's monster dunk over LeBron James

    Now you can wear DeAndre Jordan's dunk face

    Watch Ricky Rubio go behind the back -- twice!

    Ziller: Playing board games with DeMarcus Cousins


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    20121222_gav_al2_001

    If you wonder why Chris Petersen stays in Boise, it is very simple. Chris Petersen has his hair braided by wood nymphs who wake him gently every morning, and has his coffee prepared by a bear from the Idaho woods who speaks only Italian. His lattes are art, and come with an intricately poured Bronco logo in the milk foam every single time.

    Then Petersen rides his enchanted elk bull, Eduardo, to his job coaching the Boise State football team, where Petersen does what can only be described as motherfucking sorcery. It's a random note to make on a late afternoon in March, but we were sitting around waiting for a tow truck to show up and pick up our car when we thought: how many returning starters did they have, actually?

    Answer: the 2012 Boise State team had six returning starters out of twenty-two spots on the depth chart, and still won ELEVEN FREAKING GAMES. Their two losses came by the same number of points as those returning starters: six points between them and Michigan State and San Diego State, the two teams that beat them in 2012.

    This may mean nothing to those of you who have never ever really watched a team collapse under inexperience and youth. You can also condition it with the usual "LOL BOISE SCHEDULE," and that is totally fair insofar that they are Boise State, are a bit hamstrung by circumstance, and can't get many teams to agree to home-and-homes with them because everyone is terrified about losing to Boise State. (Cue circular logics, sneering, and more LOL BOIZEE jokes about their schedule.)

    Given all that, this still stands: it is so very difficult to get eleven people to do the same thing consistently on a football field, and harder still to get twenty-two to do it in two different shifts, and infinitely more difficult to do it with a four year labor turnover cycle built into the game. Chris Petersen is that man with a very specific set of skills, and along with Nick Saban comes as close to the Bum Phillips His'n/You'n rule as anyone in football.

    It's stupid to suggest Chris Petersen stays at Boise because magical creatures wait on him hand and foot. It is not, however, stupid to suggest he is one himself, and perhaps should be the subject of government investigation. The man beat an SEC team in the Georgia Dome on its own turf, coached the greatest upset in bowl history, can take a cast of infants and win eleven games, and he does this every single year in the middle of nowhere. That is both amazing coaching and outright thaumaturgy.*

    *Remember that year they won nine games? We don't, because it has never happened. His worst year at Boise was 10-3 in 2007.


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  • 03/15/13--08:11: THE CURIOUS INDEX, 3/15/2013
  • 1363360229

    JIM MORA'S OFFSEASON: ALL AMERICAN IDOL, ALL THE TIME. Even coaches need distractions, and Jim Mora's comes through the power of overly emoted song.

    Lane Kiffin doesn't know who Aubrey is, but she sucks by default, and he needs your phone to make the call for literally anyone else in the competition. No, he needs your phone, because um he left his somewhere or something whatever shut up and give Lane Kiffin your phone bro that's the tax for hanging with the Laner, bitch.

    WE SWEAR THE SEC NETWORK IS HAPPENING. Allegedly in mid-April now, per the EXCLUSIVE from Pat Forde. If they show old games all day we are done and it has been nice knowing you as people and citizens. Also, the SEC Media Days schedule came out, and to our disappointment the words "Robbie Caldwell talks about inseminating turkeys" does not appear anywhere in it.

    FURTHER TWITTER FOLLIES. James Franklin wasn't tweeting at anyone in particular about losing a specific commit to Tennessee, even though this would be a very, very James Franklin thing to do. Watch your subtweets, captains of the internet deep.

    THERE'S NOT MUCH TO DO IN NEBRASKA. When you have to make up your own puzzles, yeah, you were probably headed for the Big Ten the whole time, Nebraska. Oh yeah, well, what is there to do in Auburn, man? Killing wildlife, and occasionally things that aren't wildlife, that's what, Big Ten fan.

    ETC: Lol 2 bad we sent teh SW@t t3am to ur hou5e pwn3d. The Jurassic Park theme bred raptors.


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    Tumblr_lmtgk8g7bw1qavlrco1_1280

    Just Paul McCartney in a Red Raiders jersey, a mystery the internet has left at our doorstep to ponder forever. Accepting leads on any explanation for this in the comments below. (Via)


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  • 03/15/13--10:59: March Mad Men-ness is here
  • Screen_shot_2013-03-15_at_1

    We had Pete Campbell pegged for a Duke fan. Other than lone complaint, the supercut of Mad Men footage worked into a March Madness dialogue is basically perfect. I am a little surprised Bert Cooper appears to have done poorly in the office pool, though, since he doesn't really have anything to do but college basketball research, bracketology, and wandering around the office shoeless. (Via With Leather)


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    20120225_jel_ak8_332

    There is a very simple test to determine whether you are an SEC basketball fan. First, answer this question:

    Is the SEC a bad basketball conference in 2012-2013?

    If you have an answer to this question, congratulations: you are an SEC basketball fan. We mean any answer, in any form, in any manner, that does not amount to "Do what?" or "Roll Tide." You have an answer for this question, and that makes you a likely candidate to being whatever an "SEC Basketball Fan."

    The rest of you are like us in that you are horrible, terrible people whose ears may not even register the words "SEC basketball" as a real term not made up by a neo-prog rock band randomly colliding words to conjure up spectral, unreal landscapes of macabre fantasy. This is a very literal comparison. Take this list, for example.

    1."Bullhead's Psalm"1:20

    2."The Sweetest Curse"4:31

    3."Jake Leg"4:23

    4."Steel That Sleeps the Eye"2:38

    5."Swollen and Halo"6:35

    6. "Alabama basketball" 20:11

    7."Ogeechee Hymnal"2:36

    8."A Horse Called Golgotha"5:21

    9."O'er Hell and Hide"4:22

    10."War, Wisdom and Rhyme"4:26

    11."Blackpowder Orchard"1:01

    12."The Gnashing"4:18

    13."Bullhead's Lament"

    Sandwiched somewhere in there is an SEC basketball team's name and record. Like a colorblind predator, we cannot see it. It seems no less fantastic to us that the words "A Horse Called Golgotha," and certainly no more real.

    We have no idea if "The SEC is a bad basketball conference" because we don't know "IF: BASKETBALL." These are all real true confessions we made without resorting to looking up names or facts.

    Fact one: The rules of basketball are simple. 50 cents get you six throws. Each throw can earn you between 0 and one hundred points. You get one ticket for every 30 points, and high score gets a free game. Here is a picture of a basketball court.

    This is a picture of a basketball court:

    Skeeball_medium

    Fact two: We really only know the names of five SEC basketball coaches off the top of our heads. Billy Donovan won two national titles at Florida, so we have to sort of know that. Frank Martin is at South Carolina, and if you look like a Romanian serial killer and wear cowboy boots that makes you memorable enough for the hard drive. John Calipari is gloriously sleazy at Kentucky, and we know Cuonzo Martin at Tennessee because his name is "Cuonzo" and he replaced another gloriously sleazy coach, Bruce Pearl. There is a Frank Haith person at Mizzou, and we only know him because he coached at Miami and thus probably killed someone at one point in a Mexican standoff.*

    *True of all Miami coaches in any sport.

    The rest are a complete loss. You would be amazed how little this has affected the quality of our life. We can't even identify the arenas, though we know Vanderbilt's is weird because it has a moat or something around it. Figures, what with the evil aristocratic tendencies of those in the West End of Nashville.

    Fact three: Kentucky's good at it, a fact so strange it sort of put the rest of the SEC off ever really pursuing it seriously, ever, in any fashion. (Because look where that's gotten them.) You might as well be a champion at Unicorn Dressage.

    Fact four: Prior to a week ago, we could name one player on the 2013 Florida basketball team. That would be Will Yeguete, who we knew about because a.) Yeguete is fun to say, and b.) everyone on Twitter was really distressed about him being injured. Other than that, we simply referred to anyone on the court by their unchanging universal archetypes:

    • Giant swatty guy
    • White three point shooter
    • Adderall-pounding point guard
    • Another tall guy
    • A pro prospect everyone loves who averages 8 points per game
    • Some bench guy everyone loves because he's not very good and therefore just like you!

    Fact five: We're not alone. A lot--a loooooooooooooottttt---of diehard SEC fans seriously know absolutely nothing about their teams, and in fact might have never attended a single game in their undergrad or post-grad lives. In our entire time at Florida, we attended one game. That's one, as in one more than the total number of Georgia Tech football games we attended while in grad school. We haven't been to a single one as an adult, not even when Florida was really good at it and winning titles, not even when they were right down the road in Athens on a road trip.

    Fact six: When you basketball really hard, sometimes the ball explodes to let you know how good were you basketballing.

    Fact seven: We'll never, ever feel bad about this. It's like trying to make Kansas fans feel bad about not being football fans in that you are asking a dog to feel bad about its pisspoor understanding of Kantian deontology. It is a dog. It will never understand this, and can't possibly feel bad about something it could never even recognize as a value. College basketball is the bone made of balled up one hundred dollar bills that we bury in the yard and forget about completely. You see money, and our brain sees mediocre dog bone to perhaps chew on for a week or two before losing forever.

    Fact eight: That's okay. It's okay because Kentucky and Kansas need to claim something positive in life, we suppose. The Big Ten's allegedly really good at it this year, and that's great! We don't even mean that sarcastically! That's great, and we hope you annihilate whomever you face in the NCAA tournament. Don't try to trash talk us about it, though, because we have no idea who is going from the SEC besides Florida, who is allegedly pretty good. With that Yeguete kid. And the other guys. Like the tall swatty guy, and the three point shooter. Never mind us. We'll be in the back yard just chewing on a dogbone made of American currency, waiting for fall.

    Fact nine: Wait, wait, we almost told you everything we know about SEC basketball.

    • Arkansas driving Nolan Richardson crazier
    • That time Renardo Sidney got into a fight with a teammate in the stands
    • Dwayne Schintzius beating his roommate with a tennis racket
    • Jason Williams liked to shoot threes from halfcourt and smoke marijuana
    • Joakim Noah something something
    • Teddy Dupay had a gambling problem
    • Shaq?
    • Jim Harrick getting fired for using a standard of education many other UGA professors considered acceptable
    • Billy Donovan had the Orlando Magic job for an hour or two once? We sort of remember that happening
    • Okay, we're done.
    • #SECBASKETBALLFEVER

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  • 03/17/13--08:53: BRAKETOLOGY
  • Brak

    The only bracket we need:

    Braket_medium

    (CLICK FOR BIG)


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