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Articles on this Page
- 02/10/14--09:39: _Total strangers tal...
- 02/10/14--10:08: _A FEW MORE THINGS O...
- 02/11/14--12:26: _WOULD YOU LIKE TO B...
- 02/11/14--12:43: _Westminster dog ran...
- 02/12/14--10:02: _URBAN MEYER TAKES A...
- 02/12/14--12:24: _LOOKING AT A VAST A...
- 02/12/14--14:59: _YOU COULD GET A DEL...
- 02/13/14--08:28: _THE MORNING CONSTIT...
- 02/13/14--11:58: _THE ILLUSTRATED ARG...
- 02/14/14--13:30: _A VERY BIELEMA VALE...
- 02/17/14--11:14: _DEE HART'S NOT GOIN...
- 02/17/14--14:25: _2014 NFL Draft: Ano...
- 02/18/14--07:49: _THE MORNING CONSTIT...
- 02/18/14--12:53: _VANDERBILT'S NEW CO...
- 02/18/14--12:58: _Cross-country skiin...
- 02/19/14--08:35: _THE MORNING CONSTIT...
- 02/19/14--10:50: _BOB STOOPS STILL ON...
- 02/20/14--08:12: _MORNING CONSTITUTIO...
- 02/20/14--09:37: _Breaking Olympic wo...
- 02/20/14--14:56: _HATIN' ASS SPURRIER...
- 02/10/14--09:39: Total strangers talking about Michael Sam
- 02/10/14--10:08: A FEW MORE THINGS ON MICHAEL SAM
- 02/11/14--12:26: WOULD YOU LIKE TO BE AN ANONYMOUS SOURCE?
- 02/11/14--12:43: Westminster dog rankings, 2014: Another tough year for Spaniels
- 02/12/14--10:02: URBAN MEYER TAKES A PHONE CALL
- 02/12/14--12:24: LOOKING AT A VAST AND DESOLATE LANDSCAPE
- 02/12/14--14:59: YOU COULD GET A DELAY OF GAME FOR GOING TOO FAST IN 2014
- 02/13/14--08:28: THE MORNING CONSTITUTIONAL: A MAN SHOULD NOT PLAY WITH LEGOS
- 02/13/14--11:58: THE ILLUSTRATED ARGUMENT FOR THE PROPOSED NEW CLOCK RULE
- 02/14/14--13:30: A VERY BIELEMA VALENTINE'S DAY
- 02/17/14--11:14: DEE HART'S NOT GOING TO WORK OUT AT ALABAMA
- 02/17/14--14:25: 2014 NFL Draft: Anonymous strikes again
- 02/18/14--07:49: THE MORNING CONSTITUTIONAL: WELCOME TO NICK SABAN MERCEDES
- 02/18/14--12:53: VANDERBILT'S NEW COACHING STAFF JUST GETTING COMFORTABLE
- 02/18/14--12:58: Cross-country skiing, or why you'll never be a secret Scandinavian
- 02/19/14--08:35: THE MORNING CONSTITUTIONAL: LET CALIPARI RUN KENTUCKY FOOTBALL
- 02/19/14--10:50: BOB STOOPS STILL ON THAT PASTA GAME
- 02/20/14--08:12: MORNING CONSTITUTIONAL: ART BRILES AND FAST CARS
- 02/20/14--14:56: HATIN' ASS SPURRIER IS NOTHING WE MADE UP
Michael Sam came out to the public on Sunday night. What followed was an avalanche of reactions by total strangers, all of whom felt deeply involved in the news.
There are a lot of total strangers who consider themselves involved in Michael Sam's coming out story.
The first total stranger might be THE PERSON WHO ASSUMES THIS IS ABOUT THEM. This person is most likely the one seen saying "Why is this news," a piece of code that means, "Please don't talk about your gayness around me." They surely weren't running around Facebook last year tagging your shared video of Felix Baumgartner jumping from a space balloon with the same fervor, or doing this about other news. If they were, kudos to them for consistency, and for posting "WHY IS THIS NEWS BABIES ARE BORN EVERY DAY" under the pictures of your newborn you posted last year.
The story of how Michael Sam came out
The exclusive behind-the-scenes story of how NFL prospect Michael Sam came out as gay.
This is all news, because Michael Sam is the first openly gay man to enter the NFL Draft as someone likely to be drafted, and also because being gay is still the subject of some really archaic laws still on the books in a number of these United States. "Only the media cares," says someone who clearly is protesting too much, and would love to take the opportunity to tell you at length how much they do not at all care.
Another total stranger might also be an anonymous NFL source talking about what a distraction Michael Sam and his now very public homosexuality would be for a team. Please note that when I say that the perpetual candid chatter of NFL front office people should be public, and is otherwise cowardly vomit spouted from the least spineful apparatchiks of the NFL's genuinely deformed political culture, I don't confuse them for everyone involved with the NFL.
For instance, the entire NFL scouting community knew Sam was gay, and said nothing. A number of players knew Sam was gay, and respected his privacy and said nothing. Journalists, coaches and a slew of others knew Sam was gay, and took zero issue with it. There are a lot of people surrounded by the NFL who by name and in public did and have done right by Sam, and his decision to take a step no one else at his level ever has.*
*And we should be clear on that level: Sam is a tweener DE with linebacker size, and thus merely a "good" NFL prospect by most ratings. It would be very tempting to, in service of his bravery on a personal level, make too much of his potential as an NFL player. He's good, which makes him one of the best athletes you'll ever meet, but he is not an obvious, no-look first-round draft pick, which means Pete Carroll will take him in the seventh round and turn him into an All-Pro pass rusher.
You can't even blame some draft analysts who will drop Sam due to "distraction" since they might be right for the worst imaginable reasons. The NFL Draft is so overdetermined, so overanalyzed and the topic of such scrutiny that any unique feature of a player's personality becomes a speed bump for NFL personnel to worry over repeatedly. It also helps that they can drive down a player's price by turning a detail into a sticking point in negotiations. (See the case of "Myron Rolle is too smart for the NFL" versus "Oh my god what are you even talking about.") Analysts, if they want to reflect just how dumb some of the decision-making can be in the NFL, sort of have to follow suit.
Yet there is another kind of total stranger involved here. In the span of 20 minutes last night, the NFL issued a statement of tolerance and support of Sam and SI published anonymous quotes from GMs claiming Sam would be a distraction both in the draft and in the locker room afterwards. For them, Sam would be something the NFL was not ready for, something they assumed as the league public avowed it was ready for, and as players made statements of support on Twitter. Privately, anonymous people were "concerned."
This means one of two things. It means everyone else is lying, or that there are two camps in the NFL: the players, who largely don't care with some notable exceptions, and management. For players, there are some who really don't like the idea of a gay teammate, and among those on the record they are in the minority.
For management, Sam's story means they have to change something, a something they feel like they can only tell the truth about anonymously. Remember this: there is one man who is the first to go public with his socially contested and politically volatile status, and he is public and, in his own words, "excited" about it. In contrast, there are NFL executives so scared of making a declarative statement in public that they will not use their own names in making a negative statement about how his public homosexuality will affect his draft prospects. One might wonder, as a total stranger observing the situation, how these men slept at night for fear of waking up and seeing their own shadow cast by the morning sun.
I repeat: there are total strangers in NFL front offices who can't say what they think because they think they deserve or need the same protections afforded national security leaks. I wouldn't want to assume the worst about anyone, so please pray for these brave, threatened men of our NFL National Security Complex, and the work they do in the shadows to keep our football safe from harm, and from having to deal with a player who has sex with men. They are the true heroes here.
Finally, there is another kind of total stranger involved in Michael Sam's coming out, and how it affected them. They aren't strangers to Michael Sam mind you: they are his teammates, and his coach, and his community at Missouri. Sam has been out to his teammates since summer of 2013, and was such a distraction that the Tigers went 12-2, played for an SEC title and a spot in the national title game, and had their best season in recent history. It wasn't a universal sentiment of welcome -- Gary Pinkel himself said not everyone on the team was happy about it -- but like people who aren't total strangers do, they embraced him and got on with their business.
And you know who's about business, per a thousand layers of branding, 50 years of custom film and documentary, and repeated public pointing towards THE SHIELD? The NFL, allegedly, an organization whose boredom and mechanics may be its saving grace here. Sam will become another number with numbers. He will be processed in the draft, and spat out into the labor pool and valued accordingly.
At a distance, Sam's mere existence may seem like an earthshaking event for the faceless brave covert operatives of NFL front offices, but up close he'll be another commodity. The NFL, however, has one advantage in learning tolerance here: it already treats every player like a total stranger, all the time. The soul might have strong feelings about Michael Sam, his decision to be the first real draftable gay NFL player, and what this means for society as a whole. The NFL, though, has never had a soul to trouble, and is already moving past all this with a series of bleeps, bloops and recalculated evaluations. Another soulless venerable American trust is already setting odds on when Sam will be drafted; for the record, opening betting in Las Vegas has him going sometime in the fourth round.
There are a few really heartening things about the Michael Sam story, and Bill C has already said most of them. Mizzou handled this beautifully, the Mizzou football team did all of the right things, and Columbia in general proved what most people already know about communities: that if you don't treat people like total strangers, and you're just dealing with people every day in a humane fashion, you tend to get pretty humane results. (Any other thoughts on the NFL, or shitass cowardly NFL scouts, are here.)
What we love about it that might not have been mentioned yet:
1. Football players embraced him. The great bullies of every high school drama, the ones who can literally be played as a character called "Ogre" without pause, and even went along to gay bars with him. We'd really, really like to have the transcripts of the discussions on these trips, because they would be hilarious in the most awkward and kind way, and also probably mention the sometimes insane drink specials at college gay clubs. ("Dude, I'm uncomfortable, but FAT TIRE FOR TWO BUCKS ON DRAFT AND IS THIS RIHANNA? I LOVE RIHANNA. YOU LOVE RIHANNA. EVERYONE LOVES RIHANNA!!!")
2. That for Michael Sam, Columbia was a place where he could discover who he was. Mizzou is disputed territory at best, so we can't speak to it from experience. But in the rest of the SEC small university towns like Athens, Gainesville, Tuscaloosa, and yes, even Oxford were places where our gay friends could come out, be themselves, and understand for the first time that they were part of a community, and were going to be alright. It's a nice sideline for those who follow college sports to know that they get to live in these places for at least a chunk of the year, and that they continue to be places where that can happen.
3. It's also fantastic to know that this hopefully won't be news eventually, and that an openly gay player on a team can exist with maybe only the inconvenience of being "everyone's gay quiz buddy" whenever a question comes up. That's gonna happen. (Again: we want these awkward transcripts, and we want them now.)
4. That's all, and M-I-freakin'-Z to Michael Sam.
IF YOU HAVE AN INSANE OPINION, PLEASE INQUIRE WITHIN
We think it's important at EDSBS for you to know this: if you have something you'd like to say about a player, or about the most deranged possible interpretation of a recent big college football story, we will print it.
We will. If people will click on it, even if it makes no sense whatsoever, we will print it. How far will we go? We meant what we said here: we will just print it, and not even make you put your name on it like a responsible adult.
You can speculate about Mizzou having a secret society like the Ozark Illuminati, and we will print it without asking a single follow-up question. You can literally wonder out loud in a public but still comfortably anonymous space if the respect teammates paid one gay player and his desire to come out his way was A FORM OF CULT BEHAVIOR. Furthermore, you can do this in the SEC, a league filled with fanbases whose devotion to certain animals and symbols already borders on the occult.
We will print it. Inquire within. No ID required. Little scrutiny given.
They're dogs, and thus all wonderful by definition. Still, if Westminster gets the chance to rank them, then so do we, using the same criteria they use: our own irrational personal biases.
1. Great Dane. THE KING. Come at them if you dare. (Bring food, they'll pretty much do anything for food or love.)
2. Irish Wolfhound
3. Australian Cattle Dog. Been running the Aussie government efficiently for over one hundred years.
4. Newfoundland. Webbed feet, warm hearts, AND known to abduct random swimmers and tow them back to shore against their will? Sold.
5. Belgian Malinois. Your pilot has had a heart attack. The plane is crashing. And now it isn't. The door to the cockpit opens: a paw gently throttles down into a cruising speed, and a pair of bright, calm eyes stares back at you. You never saw this, human, it says without moving its lips. You agree. You were worried, but the Malinois had it the whole time.
6. Boxer. HEY HEY HEY WHATTA WE DOIN' LOOK THERE'S YOUR FACE I LICKED IT THERE'S YOUR FACE I LICKED IT THERE'S YOUR FACE I LICKED IT
7. Belgian Tervuren. Like a Malinois, but with a wicked sense of humor. (Will not fly plane.)
8. Bull Terrier
9. German Shepherd
10. Spinone Italiano. You have to like a dog that looks like an alpine vagrant
11. Australian Terrier
13. Plott Hound. Looks like it slept under a car leaking oil, so it really IS the state dog of North Carolina.
15. Staffordshire Terrier. O.G. Staff-dog gets first ups.
16. American Staffordshire Terrier. Listen, this is a great dog but it's just a Crate and Barrel pit bull. Other than that, no complaints.
17. Australian Shepherd
19. Pug. A solid-ass dog for something ugly enough to scare a buzzard off a corpse wagon.
21. German Pinscher. Just a Doberman duplicate everyone's too polite to correct.
22. Great Pyrenees
23. Scottish Terrier. So cute and deformed it almost makes you forget that they live just for the possibility that they will one day get to die in paw-to-paw combat with a badger.
24. Airedale Terrier. Has its own legwarmers.
25. Lakeland Terrier. An Airedale with good extensions. Stop lying, dog breeders.
26. Siberian Husky
27. Greater Swiss Mountain Dog. A lot like the Bernese, but the Swiss don't use comparative adjectives like they're nothing.
28. Bernese Mountain Dog
29. Standard Poodle
30. French Bulldog
31. Bulldog. Farty and lovable and naked, just like dad on most nights.
32. Welsh Terrier. Another Airedale. Stop this, dog breed charlatans.
34. Norwegian Lundehund. Has six toes, and that's like free bonus dog for your dog-buying dollar.
35. Otterhound. Has webbed feet. That's cool.
36. Border Collie
37. Black and Tan Coonhound
38. American English Coonhound
39. Finnish Lapphund
40. Belgian Sheepdog
41. West Highland Terrier. Little tiny combat marshmallow of a dog.
43. Alaskan Malamute
44. Golden Retriever. Beautiful dogs who would drown in a stiff mist if allowed.
45. Entlebucher Mountain Dog. The feral-ish, utility Swiss Mountain Dog.
46. Norwich Terrier. A tiny little asskicking dog.
47. Cairn Terrier. Another little tiny adorable asskicking dog.
48. Norfolk Terrier. Yet still another tiny adorable asskicking dog.
49. Icelandic Sheepdog. Is weatherproof and friendly, like most people from Iceland.
50. Portuguese Water Dog
51. Bouvier des Flandres. Known as "The Milk-Cart Dog," because it is actually a furry miniature Yak.
53. Ibizan Hound
54. Dogue du Bordeaux. HOOOOOOCH.
55. Old English Sheepdog
56. Cardigan Welsh Corgi. Yes it's adorable but if it were a human and it lost its job it would be the one you would unfollow on Facebook for manically posting fifty times a day about personal growth. NEEDS A JOB.
57. Pembroke Welsh Corgi
58. Bichons Frise. Deeply underrated little dog.
59. Portuguese Podego Pequeno. I don't even know what this is (it's new for 2014) but that name is awesome. A great dog sight unseen.
60. Xoloitzcuintli. Weird Mexican hairless dog. The big one that looks like it's wearing a sheeny wetsuit over its whole body.
61. Mastiff. Great if it recognizes your existence; not if it doesn't.
62. Neopolitan Mastiff. See: "mastiff."
63. Bedlington Terrier
64. Briard. The official dog of the French Army, so wait where did he go.
65. Bearded Collie. Has a beard, is thus superior to normal Collie.
68. Giant Schnauzer. Cool dog, but rekindles my desire for a Giant Dachshund all over again.
69. Fox Terrier
70. Rat Terrier. Honestly, might just be a short Fox Terrier for all I know.
71. Bloodhound. Might be a wonderful part of your household, and might just be an animal that eats and sleeps at your house. Drooooooooool.
72. Dandie Dinmont Terrier
73. Afghan Hound
75. Sealyham Terrier. A great dog and a fantastic name for a horrible and successful young Brooklyn novelist.
76. Bluetick Hound
77. Cane Corso. What a pit bull has nightmares about.
78. Manchester Terrier. Just an economy-sized Doberman, really.
79. Wirehaired Pointing Griffon
80. Finnish Spitz. Just for the name.
81. Puli. The animated rastafarian wig of a dog. Look at it and try to think about having time to do anything but groom it, ever.
82. Boston Terrier. Not really of this earth and possibly alien probes in dog form sent to scout us out.
83. American Eskimo Dog
84. Yorkshire Terrier. I sat on one once on accident and it lived, so durability is unquestioned.
85. Miniature Bull Terrier. Just an economy-sized Bull Terrier.
88. Canaan Dog
89. Skye Terrier
90. Tibetan Mastiff. Not really a dog but they're still cool. (Is really a very mean man in a dog suit.)
91. Schnauzer. They're fine.
92. Shiba Inu. Just get a cat. Same thing.
93. Norwegian Buhund. A Viking's Shiba Inu.
94. Anatolian Shepherd Dog. Is constantly wondering whether you might be a double agent for the wolves.
95. Kerry Blue Terrier. Has its own mustache, must be alright.
96. Basenji. Chill dog, weird tail, no problems with that.
97. Norwegian Elkhound
98. Basset Hound. Adorable, and will make your house smell like you just skinned five river otters in the kitchen.
100. Polish Lowland Sheepdog. Can't hear you. Is listening for thieves.
102. Pyrenean Shepherd
103. Border Terrier
104. Pomeranian. Is it a little dog... or are you SUDDENLY HUGE?
105. St. Bernard
106. Brussels Griffon
107. Swedish Vallhund
108. Black Russian Terrier. Godlike dog. Not the benevolent kind of god, either.
109. Shetland Sheepdog
110. Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier. A decent dog if you're into the silent bigotry against the gluten-intolerant, I guess.
111. Parson Russell Terrier
113. Pekingese. They're okay.
114. Akita. Terrifying and silent, just how I like my watchdogs and undertakers.
115. Pharaoh Hound
116. Japanese Chin. Chill dogs for being so little and crushable.
117. Dachshund. Every one is either a loving companion or a serial killer and you never know which one you'll get.
118. Petit Basset Griffon Vendéen. This is America and we don't care how many accents or names you have. You're gonna have to prove it on the field, buddy.
119. Chinese Shar-Pei. Eh.
122. Tibetan Terrier
123. Irish Terrier
124. Italian Greyhound
125. Maltese. Not bad.
126. English Foxhound
127. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. THE QUEEN'S COMING!
128. Cesky Terrier
130. Gordon Setter. Setters and spaniels score low here because they don't understand things like "fire burns" and "don't jump off that deck because gravity is not your friend."
131. Silky Terrier
132. English Setter
133. American Foxhound
134. German Wirehaired Pointer
135. Chow Chow. The grim existentialist's companion dog of choice, if that's you.
136 Chihuahua. They're fine, I just worry about losing them. Like, literally losing them somewhere in my house.
137. Chinese Crested. Would also lose in house.
138. English Toy Spaniel. Lost in house with others.
139. Havanese. Lost in house in Spanish.
140. Toy Fox Terrier. Lost in house while pursuing vermin.
141. Glen of Imaal Terrier
142. German Shorthaired Pointer
143. Curly-Coated Retriever
144. Weimaraner. "WAIT GUYS. IS SOMETHING WRONG? I BET SOMETHING'S WRONG. EVERYTHING'S WRONG! AHHH I'M A WEIMARANER AND EVERYTHING'S WROOOOOOOOONG."
145. Miniature Schnauzer. I'd pet one, sure.
146. Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever
147. Shih Tzu
148. Manchester Terrier
149. Flat-Coated Retriever
150. Affenpinscher. A good dog for your elderly great-aunt to take in her purse as companionship and concealed weapon.
151. Welsh Springer Spaniel
152. Labrador Retriever. I love them dearly but they will eat rocks and wonder why you are yelling at them, and why their stomach feels like they swallowed a bunch of gravel. "The Big Bang Theory" of dog breeds.
153. Lhasa Apso
154. Beagle. The Kennedys of the dog world: beautiful, not real bright, and usually die in spectacular fashion. If a dog dies being sucked into a jet engine? It was a beagle, and it thought it was a good idea.
155. Sussex Spaniel
156. Tibetan Spaniels
157. Field Spaniel
158. Irish Water Spaniel
159. American Water Spaniel
160. Miniature Pinscher. Can take the finger off a fat-fingered blacksmith in nanoseconds.
161. English Springer Spaniel
163. Toy Poodle
164. Miniature Poodle.
165. Boykin Spaniel
166. Clumber Spaniel
167. Irish Setter
168. Irish Red and White Setter
169. English Cocker Spaniel
170. Rottweiler. Got attacked by one once and I hold grudges.
171. Cocker Spaniel. Never liked them and never will. Still better than any cat, though.
More from SB Nation:
SOMEONE OWNS THE BROWNS?
[A man sits eating a cold pizza alone in his garage in a golf cart. An oil painting of Woody Hayes hangs on one wall. From time to time, in between bites, the man looks up at the portrait, and then back down to his pizza. Four empty beer cans linger at his feet. He drinks from another in the dark. His phone rings.]
URBAN MEYER: Huhhnnggrrgghh.
JIM HASLAM: Urban! This is Jimmy Haslam.
JH: Jimmy. I own the Browns.
UM: Someone owns the Browns. Huh. I thought they were, like, free-range. Feral. Something like that.
JH: Wanted to talk to you about someone. Pick your brain a little.
[Urban reaches into his shirt, pulls out slice of six week old pizza]
JH: I was wonderin' what you thought of Greg Schiano.
[his burner phone in his pocket buzzes. URBAN MEYER rubs his eyes. The number ID reads: B. BELICHICK]
UM: --yeah, he's...he's great.
JH: That's what Bill said. Just loved him.
UM: Everyone does.
JH: You think what happened in Tampa says anything about his NFL future? I need your complete honesty here.
UM: Oh, no. No one's ever been successful in Tampa.
JH: Well, except for Tony Dungy and Jon Gruden, Coach.
UM: Megachurches and Hooters. That's all Tampa is, and that's all Dungy and Gruden need. In that order. Schiano's more of a, um...Quicken Loans kind of man?
JH: What do you mean by that?
UM: It's a coaching term. He's a man's coach, Jim.
JH: Bill said that too.
UM: Yup. A coach with balls. And a dick. He's got all three of those, I think. That's what you want if you want a coach who's a man.
JH: You're getting me excited, Urban.
UM: You should be. I know a lot of things about Greg Schiano, but I know this more than anything else: He. Is. A. Football.
JH: Well, I'm sold.
UM: So am I.
JH: What are you buyin'?
UM: Whatever you're sellin', buddy.
JH: Well here it is.
UM: Well there you go.
JH: Just puttin' it out there.
UM: And I'm pickin' it up.
JH: But you're dishin' it out, son.
UM: And I'm shakin' and bakin' the whole way.
JH: We're cookin' now!
UM: If you can't take the heat get INTO this kitchen.
JH: Sounds like I got me a new chef.
UM: Bort bort bort, buddy.
JH: Gonna go to Tampa to plate this up.
UM: Bon appetit, big fella.
[JH hangs up. Urban slumps into his seat, sighs. His phone buzzes.]
UM: Yeah, I did, just like you said to do with NFL people. Threw in some friendly gibberish, too. He loved it.
UM: They're gonna interview him ASAP. Hey, why are you doing this? He's awful.
UM: Well, sure.
[Urban resumes eating pizza in a dark garage, and doesn't wonder once why Bill Belichick can hear him talking out loud in his own home.]
THE EYE SEARCHES AND FINDS ONLY ICY DOOM
Ice tip-taps against the window like the sound of ghostly fingers typing. The world grows quiet. Words die in the throat before one can say them. Winter's best and purest anger deadens the landscape. Highways stand empty. A city enters suspended animation. Life comes to a silent halt, punctuated only by the sounds of sirens rushing to quiet disasters.
UConn announced Tuesday that it has solidified a home-and-home football series with Big Ten member Illinois for the 2019 and 2020 seasons.
There is none. The sleet taps at the window. Wind wiggles the top of the trees, the hair and nails growing on the corpse of the city.
WE CAN'T WRITE ABSURD THINGS MORE ABSURD THAN WHAT YOU ACTUALLY WANT, COLLEGE FOOTBALL
Allow the NCAA a moment of clarity: among this year's proposed rule changes, there is something un-stupid in taking away the mandatory fifteen yard personal foul accompanying a targeting penalty. In 2013, this was assessed even on overturned targeting calls. This makes sense, and if it were the only rule the NCAA and the Rules Committee were considering we could leave this as the first year in recent history where the Rules Committee has not overlegislated in the name of justifying its own useless existence.
(Please note that this is the Rules Committee fixing its own stupid, shortsighted mistake.)
This is not that year. The Rules Committee has proposed that teams may not snap the ball with more than 29 seconds left on the play clock. This is the stated justification for that rule.
"This rules change is being made to enhance student-athlete safety by guaranteeing a small window for both teams to substitute," said Calhoun.
This comes despite the dearth of research or data backing up the assertion that hurry-up offenses are any more dangerous than conventional offenses. In fact, there's very little data or research to say anything about the matter at all besides this: generally speaking, the difference in the two style of offenses is the varying frequency and intensity of injuries. Clumpy slamball offenses tend concentrate more frequent head injuries among linemen, and spread offenses have higher intensity injuries distributed more evenly (i.e. among running backs and wide receivers running into things with big head starts.)
That's just the nebulous-at-best safety angle. The rule would affect very few teams. Not many can ever snap the ball with less than 29 seconds on the clock anyway--Baylor miiiiiight get the ball off with 30 seconds on the clock if the refs aren't sucking too much wind--but the principle of the thing is what goads the brain so badly. Managing the play-clock in the opposite direction is respected football wisdom; pushing the play clock to its limits in the other direction, however, is worthy of college football's equivalent of legislative intervention.
The worst part is that there is nothing we can write more absurd than this than the actual rule proposal itself: You could get a delay of game penalty for going too quickly in college football in 2014. We can't do better than that, which is the problem with being a hardcore absurdist. Real life always wins, and is undefeated in this department.
P.S. A defense for the rule better than anything Troy Calhoun said would be "We just hate running." Everyone understands that.
ALL A MAN DOES IS FROWN AND DIE THIS IS IMPORTANT TO REMEMBER
It is how I start my morning. I get out of my bed with 8,000 thread count sheets made of pure pre-Revolutionary Egyptian Cotton. Each one costs $435 and you can feel the oppression of the Mubarak regime in every fiber. I then slip on my $185 Brooks Brothers morning robe and walk into my kitchen. I command my Bonavita voice-controlled coffeemaker to begin brewing my coffee.
While I wait, I persuse a book written by a white male. In it, women cannot stop having sex with a man whose description matches the author's photo very closely. He also talks about death, and thinks about it while working at a magazine in the city. That filthy, magical city.
I then pour the coffee into my "Write Like A Motherfucker" coffee mug. I drink it black and do not play with Legos while I frown and drink this coffee. I read the book and nod knowingly at the scene where his friend from the expensive school does the heroin.
Then I begin my day like every man should start his day.
I hit myself in the balls with a hammer.
I use the right kind of hammer. It is a $219.99 fourteen ounce Stiletto Milled Face Hammer. It is a hammer Hemingway would have used. It is the hammer women find most attractive when spied on your affordable $4,509 tropical hardwood coffee table covered with Esquire magazines. I strike ten to fifteen times and remind myself that men have rules. We do not play with Legos, not even with children.
And we definitely strike even the midseam of our $185 Ashland five pocket Billy Reid corduroys with the hammer that reminds us that we are men. We drink our coffee black and hit ourselves in the balls methodically with the swing of someone who understands that hitting yourself in the balls instead of doing fun things is a craft.
We will make a list while we hit ourselves in the balls, and think about evolving to our next stage of manhood. This will be an important list others will tweet with "must read" and "important", even as I do not because Twitter is for children. But I will have others do this for me. Unpaid interns, perhaps, who I will show the proper method of swinging the hammer into the balls while drinking your coffee black in your bathrobe.
With my iron balls I will utilize steps, tricks, and procedures to sex as no other man does.
I will acquire a lathe. I will sit at this lathe in my $160 Style of Success dress shirt and lathe away at whatever lathes lathe at and I will become a grimmer, more perfect person. I will acquire the 47 things my closet needs to have no matter who I am. I will be appreciated by women for my recently uncompleted memoir and my important ability to make a hamburger just like Ernest Hemingway did.
I will not play with Legos, and instead I will hit myself in the balls until I die and fall into my custom-built $75,000 Burberry casket with hand-stitched double sealing and Afghan silk pillowcases. It will be a man's sleep, without Legos or smiling. Fellow corpses will applaud my manhood, but I will disdain their praise. A real man always does.
THAT'S IT. THAT'S AS GOOD AS WE COULD DO.
That's as good as any other argument we came up with, really.
I JUST WANT TO TAKE IT NICE AND SLOW
Love is football. Therefore, football can't be hurried. That's Phil Collins, and it might as well be law.
Call me the Sheriff, because when it comes to love, I'm a law-abiding citizen, lady.
It's Valentine's Day, and that means I'm gonna roll up in this tracksuit...slow. It means we don't hurry up anything, and we are gonna huddle. Love is nothing without communication.
Then we're gonna line up and...whoa, girl. Don't even put your hand on the ball yet. There's 40 seconds on that clock, and we're gonna use allllllllll of them. Love isn't about the number of plays. It's about rolling this out eight, nine, oh, maybe ten plays at a time. Slowly. Powerfully. Sometimes we just kick it, and sometimes we go straight for the score.
It all depends on how you feel, girl.
But it will happen slowly. Listen: that's the sound of once ice cube hitting the bottom of this ice tray. And another. And another. I'm not gonna fill this thing all at once. No, no, you let the Baylors and Auburns of the world do that. I'mma let this roll for a minute. Might take ten minutes for me to fill this up. Might take me eleven. But it's gonna get there, and when it does?
We got a bucket of ice, girl. And it'll keep that suicide Slush Puppy laced with Adderall as cold as you like.
I'll order a pizza. I only do pizza cooked low and slow. You might like a crust, but I like a pizza you have to eat with a spoon. No, no, girl, that's not the same as Chicago deep-dish. This takes seven hours to make. Otherwise, it's basically the same as Chicago deep-dish pizza.
We can eat the pizza and watch a movie. A SLOW movie. We're gonna eat that soup-pizza and watch some Terence Malick, and we're gonna sit on that bed in our robes and watch a guy talk about the rain while laundry blows in the breeze for ten minutes. We will watch The Tree of Life and if that's not enough we'll watch a Lars Von Trier movie. Any of them will do.
We're gonna play Monopoly using all the rules, and until one of us runs out of money completely. I'm gonna be the thimble, girl, because someone threw the racecar away.
We'll play a sexy game of "Woman writing a check for groceries in the year 2014." You'll be the lady who stubbornly refuses to use even simple technology in the 21st century. I'll be the irritated man behind you who can't resist you while rolling my eyes and trying to identify which celebrity does indeed have the worst beach body.
Uh oh, the cash register doesn't have a price listed for string cheese! Guess we'll have to wait for the stock boy to go check.
He's real busy, that stock boy.
I'm gonna crack out the N64 and find every star in Super Mario 64. You're gonna think we've permanently relocated to Lethal Lava Land by the time I'm done.
There will be bedroom stripping. Of wallpaper. It takes so long to do properly. But all worthwhile things do, and that's why I refuse to upgrade from dial-up internet. Sing to me, you saucy 56k minx.
We're gonna take it SLOW, girl. The card says we are going for two. And that is exactly what we will do.
NICK SABAN, JUST BURNING MONEY FAST BECAUSE HE CAN
A roster made up of nothing but four and five star recruits works out the same way as every other roster does in this sense: it'll distribute itself normally, and you will end up with a bell curve of production. On the far end are recruits like Cyrus Kouandjio, a five star recruit who became an immediate contributor on Alabama's offensive line. On the other end, there's Dee Hart.
Reserve running back Dee Hart was arrested Sunday, Tuscaloosa police confirmed to AL.com. The former 5-star prospect was charged with possession of marijuana and giving false information. Hart was released from jail after posting $1,300 bond.
Hart never cracked the starting lineup, tallying only 43 carries total in his two years of work in Tuscaloosa, and wouldn't have been a factor this year anyway with monsters--literal, child-eating monsters like Derrick Henry--lurking on the spring depth chart. Teams like Alabama continue to exist in a realm of such luxury that they can not only stand a five star running back leaving the team for an arrest, but can also leave him on the shelf for the better part of two years because hell, we've got two or three more of those at arm's length, and one or two more on the way this year.
TL; DR: Nick Saban, just doing Escobar things with recruits like they were money he could let mold in caves because, eh, who can spend it when you've got forkliftable stacks of it just sitting around?
(By the way, Derrick damn Henry. You didn't just hallucinate him. He's real, and next year maybe he'll get more than nine carries in a game.) (Sorry for the seizures resulting from that reminder that Alabama somehow lost to Oklahoma in the Sugar Bowl in a real football game not played under protest or A-11 rules.)
The annual NFL Scouting Combine starts this week, and that means only one thing: context-free reports about the state of America's youth.
It is important to note that Nolan Nawrocki isn't just a scout. He's a writer for ENN EFF ELL DOT COM, and thus an official cog in America's most profitable football machine. It's not just that he's an expert in totally non-quantifiable things heard from anonymous scouts. No, Nawrocki scratches deeper than most, and gets to the very core of a prospect's character.
This year, writing for the official website of the NFL Network, Nawrocki delved into the non-quantifiable realm of character with the usual results. Every first grade has a teacher fond of writing the dark fates of children in their heads, and of hinting that the dropping of a juicebox onto the class computer's keyboard means a dark future of certain jailtime for the youngster. Nolan Nawrocki is this teacher, and these are his progress report warnings composed after a long, bitter research session in the teacher's lounge.
This is his entirely original insider estimate of Johnny Manziel.
Suspect intangibles -- not a leader by example or known to inspire by his words. Carries a sense of entitlement and prima-donna arrogance seeking out the bright lights of Hollywood.
Texas A&M had the best two-year span in recent history, raised more money than they ever had as a university thanks to Manziel's Heisman year, won two bowl games in a row, beat the best team in the nation in 2012, and remained competitive in 2013 with the 111th ranked defense in the nation because of one thing: Johnny Manziel. His teammates generally liked him. His coaches, even when irritated with him, vouch for him. He raised $80K for scholarships at Texas A&M, and does charity work for kids with juvenile cancer.
These are Johnny Manziel's tangibles, which surely do not counter the obvious statement that rich-ass, cashin' out Johnny Manziel is also extremely confident in his abilities, and occasionally makes gestures indicating a real enjoyment of the game of football.
Jadeveon Clowney's estimate might be as bad, or at least less sensical. In between writing things people already knew about Clowney -- that he's brilliant, but inconsistent for a lot of reasons -- Nawrocki actually writes this about a player who just declared for the NFL Draft a few months ago.
Needs to learn what it means to be a pro.
These are other true things. Clowney is 21. He's gonna have to learn what it takes to be 22, but being 23 is a project. He's gonna have to get there one day at a time. Probably 365 days at a time. He's a long way off from being 24. At least two years off, if not more. Clowney's gonna have to mature, and eventually become a 25 year old. Jadeveon Clowney is definitely not a pro football player yet, because he doesn't play in the NFL, the pro football league he's looking to join as a professional player.
Even when he's accurate about possible character concerns, there's nothing of substance to Nawrocki's criticism, at least not with things you couldn't have found out yourself using Google and up to four years of reporting on the various prospects here. Colt Lyerla has "overcome a lot of adversity," which you would know if you had read any one of the articles already written about him elsewhere. Him being "overly emotional" is important knowledge; Lyerla's arrest for cocaine possession, however, is not worth a mention, either by deliberate omission, or because this was written last July before Lyerla's arrest in October of 2013.
Victor Hampton of South Carolina is mentioned as a character risk, but with no mention of his arrests, or what they were for. LSU running back Jeremy Hill "must be investigated", a funny choice of words because Hill, an LSU running back of immense talent and horrendous judgment, has been arrested twice: once for misdemeanor carnal knowledge of a minor, and once for punching a man in a parking lot.
Nawrocki's argument would be that this is all what he had heard from scouts, and thus some kind of fact worth passing on under the protection of anonymity. This would be fine if it were anything new, or interesting, or not duplicated by multiple layers of existing reporting. It is not any of this, and is mostly a word-slurry of filtered, secondhand cromag gossip among what sounds like an astonishingly dull group of men. (BREAKING: Western Kentucky's Jonathan Dowling "talks too much.")
Worse yet, it's been stripped of all relevant detail, supporting evidence, or context. If you want that, read it. You can find the rest out with Google, a more helpful tool than Nolan Nawrocki. It isn't that his business is the direct casual slander of possible NFL prospects. It's that he collects it like it's fact, and passes it forward. He's more of an official casual slander courier, carrying the anonymous judgments of the NFL's whispering manbabies forward into the light of public opinion. It's a living.
OPEN FOR BUSINESS AS SOON AS THIS LAWSUIT CLEARS UP
Welcome to Nick Saban Mercedes, a dealership that strives to give you excellence every day. We're trying to push the E Class right now because of the great deals on it, and also because we have a few too many of that class on the lot, and have to make room for the newer, faster models. Pretty unique situation, but they have to go, and you might as well benefit.
Let's get you in for a test drive. Let you feel the acceleration, available in full once every forty seconds because don't you want to savor the driving experience, and do so safely? Of course you do. The standard features can't be beat: the heated seats, with settings of one, two, three, and "stunning, once-in-a-lifetime-loss-to-Auburn"; the moon roof, the bluetooth connectivity across all devices, the GPS system that's second to none.
It'll read the directions out to you in a variety of custom voices: Eli Gold, Kenny Stabler, and Bear Bryant. There's even a setting for the hearing impaired:
[presses map button]
"YEAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH RECALCULATING ROUTE YOU ALREADY KNOW YEAAHHHHHHHHHHHH"
Scott Cochran did that especially for us. That's just the kind of service you'll get here, and definitely not at Les Miles Kia down the street or Sumlin Subaru down the road. Just between us, we had a guy from Muschamp Ford come in the other day, just covered in bite marks. Human ones. Deep ones.
You worry about people, is what I'm saying, and that's why we want only the best for you here. You want a car that's gonna peel your face off and smoke an F1 car off the line, well, you head on down to Malzahn's House of Perverted Motorsports, or whatever you wanna call it. But if you want a car that's gonna run on first down, and get the yardage you need? A champion's car?
Well, we're here when you want to talk, because here at Nick Saban Mercedes we ain't never been nothing but winners. And right now, there's a few too many winners on this lot, buddy, so get to shoppin'. You ask for me, and if some guy called Lane tries to help you, you call the cops. He doesn't work here, and is a vagrant we've been trying to get rid of for a few weeks.
WELCOME TO NASHVILLE
Even our nicest, sober-est great uncle was arrested for DUI in Nashville. So know that if you want to fit in with the locals, there are few better ways to do it than pinballing down a narrow street in the West End bouncing your car off other cars and into the loving arms of the local authorities. It's part of the city charter: everyone will be arrested for DUI once, and all cars must have one school pride sticker of some sort in the rear window.
Because Stanford men are smart, they understand this, and obey by being arrested for blowing a .18 after hitting a few cars in the heart of the West End early on a Sunday morning. Assistant coach Vavae Tata, part of Derek Mason's new staff at Vandy, hit two parked cars and fled the scene before his arrest for DUI less than a month into his stay in the city. Now that he's got initiation rites out of the way, we hope Mr. Tata sobers up, pays the thousands of dollars he'll have to cough up for the privilege of being arrested, and wish him luck enduring DUI school and never doing this again.
P.S. We also hope he's not married. Asking your wife to drive you everywhere because you got a DUI, and thus turned her into the world's most justifiably angry chauffeur, is an agony we imagine you never, ever want to experience.
Cross country skiing is like most sports in the Olympics, and creating your own alternate history: It's a thing you can't do, but still want to very badly.
Sweden won gold in a sport they should be good at this past weekend: cross-country skiing. As a discipline it is lonely as hell, requires a ton of snow and the mindset of someone who wants, nay needs to spend all day slushing through the woods by themselves. The event can be one of pursuit: steady, dogged pursuit through a cold, abandoned landscape of trees, ice, snow and the incongruous appearance of a packed grandstand and stadium at the end. It relies on someone being willing to go into the woods alone to hunt someone else, hang on their tracks for up to 50 kilometers or so, and to overtake them in a mad rush on the final one hundred meters of the race.
It's almost -- almost -- like hunting another person, or being hunted by another person, a tedious lunacy ended only by the fatality of the finish line. It builds like The Most Dangerous Game, too. Watching cross-country works like a long tracking shot, one you can let your focus wander around a bit before coming back to the clock, and the little numbers in the corner of the screen letting you know how doomed the leader or pursuer may be. The greatest attractor is the curve of the moment itself, the gradual flow of the chase down to the stadium and the ruts leading to the finish line, and that last, desperate lunge and mass collapse at the line.
On the final leg of the women's 4x5 kilometer relay this weekend in Sochi, the little differential number for the Swedish women's team was 25 seconds, well behind the Finns and Germans at the lead. Charlotte Kalla of Sweden blew through the final 5K of the race at a suicidal pace, overcame both the Finns and German on the last stretch, and like everyone else does at the finish line, flopped across the line and onto the snow, exhausted, spent and indistinguishable from someone shot at a great distance by a sniper.
Looking at the photo, it's hard to tell whether something really good or really bad just happened.
The Winter Olympics feature so many things you could not, even for a nanosecond, consider doing, ever. You could not consider doing them for reasons of grace and athleticism, like figure skating or ice dancing; you could not consider doing them because of deficiencies of strength, coordination and speed, as with professional hockey or speed skating. You might be too sane to ski-jump, run a proper downhill course or throw yourself down a skeleton course. You thought about it, and ran the simulations. They weren't pretty, and people might have died.
The two real cult classics of the Winter Games have consistently been cross-country skiing and curling, two sports sharing the illusory appeal of not looking totally impossible for the viewer watching along at home. Curling is just throwing a rock down the ice like you're playing a giant game of table shuffleboard, and cross-country skiing is just fast alpine trudging, and you could do both of those things. You could do both of them without skipping face-first down a mountain like Daito Takahashi, or riding upside down in a tiny, frail bullet train of a bobsled like the Brazilian women's bobsled team.
You'd be terrible at both of them, sure. But you wouldn't die, and you might even show some small degree of aptitude. With cross-country skiing, the thought isn't about how hard it actually is -- skiers can go up to 35 miles an hour, take sharp turns on impossibly narrow racing skis and grievously injure themselves flying off the course -- but how it is a sport of average mechanics matched with inhuman endurance. More than anything else, cross-country skiers endure, and then make good on that survival by finishing what they started and collapsing in a destroyed heap when it's over.
I never decided on what kind of Scandinavian to be. Being Swedish is like being Scandinavian Plus, and requires instructional videos. This is not a joke: some relatives of mine in the State Department watched Swedish videos made for foreigners about interacting with Swedes, most of which focused on situations where the Swedes found casual interaction to be rude. Per the videos, these situations included pretty much every daily social situation, and meeting people in Sweden is hard.
Denmark's a little too close to Germany, and Iceland's just a little too far from everything. Finland might not even be Scandinavian in anything but geography, and might not be anything other than Finland, a separate dimension of taciturn people born with the ability to steer rally cars on icy roads through dense forests at 120 miles per hour and go weeks without saying anything at all. Finns scare Russians, and I'm not sure if I want to live that far over on the spectrum of personally terrifying nationalities.
I've got time to decide. Everyone does when considering the second country they're going to be from, the place where they really belong, the place where, after 12 very scientific questions are answered, an internet quiz tells you to call your spiritual home. This place usually accentuates or flatters your favorite things you'd like to be, and rarely highlights the bad, the irregular, or the disastrous. This place is usually in Europe and it is never somewhere like Congo (Brazzaville), because your secret homeland is never, ever a place that is actually hard to live in.
Your mom has one: per Steve Hely's How I Became A Famous Novelist, it's probably Italy, and in particular Tuscany because Americans just trust anything with the word Tuscan in front of it even if they have no idea what it means. For your dad, it might be some place tropical where no one speaks his language, and there's a beach, and no one can talk to him while he reads books about World War Two, drinks and slowly collects a manageable case of skin cancer.
For me, it's somewhere in Scandinavia where things are orderly, people don't talk much and the winter lasts eight months and swallows up everything around it, forcing people to live in the misery of the cold, to push through it and eventually to survive by floating along atop it as endurance athletes of the soul bent on finishing, enduring and pushing through to a brief, glorious spring. And if you took it a step further, Charlotte Kalla would be the personification of that thing, the thing the Finns call sisu. It is a resilience transcending any adversity including defeat, the snow, the Russians, the horrible winters or isolation. It carries through, and finishes no matter the cost.
This is all an old but reliable lie: escapism, stuck among a lot of smaller lies like that being Scandinavian makes the basic facts of life any easier, or that living in darkness in winter is any more bearable for them, or that they might not all spend their days like Ricky Bruch eating piles of vitamins and lifting barbells in well-appointed Stockholm gyms. I want them to, of course, for my own purposes, just like I want all of Russian life to happen on dashcam, and to imagine that every wedding party in Australia features at least one talking crocodile who also is the town treasurer. It's more fun to think of the world that way, particularly when you think that somewhere, perhaps, the Sorting Hat might have made a mistake, and that you could have been a better, more impressive human there.
None of that even comes close to a semblance of how things actually work. If I were being honest and thinking in terms of compatibility, my secret homeland would be someplace hot, disorderly, and horrible located nowhere near Scandinavia. (Think "someplace run through during a chase scene in True Detective," and not "Oslo.") Picking your second home is never about honesty, though, and neither was watching Charlotte Kalla blast across the finish line into a heap of victorious gasping. For the audience, sports are still about desire -- a thing most often about the things you don't and possibly can never have or be, but still want so very badly.
More on the Winter Olympics:
WE REPEAT: LET HIM LOOSE, AND WATCH AN EMPIRE RISE
We want to be specific here. We don't want to put Mark Stoops out, or have him anywhere but sitting in the chair reserved for the head coach of the Kentucky Wildcats. That chair isn't a very nice one, and is probably a director's chair with the bottom blown out, a wobbly leg, and some old offshore casino account passwords written under the arm. Those belonged to Guy Morriss, and help explain why he can't go back to the Bahamas, ever.
Mark Stoops can stay right in that horrible, cursed chair, doing football things like calling plays and yelling at referees. But we reiterate our call for one of college football's greatest wolves to finally be unleashed on the sheep waiting cluelessly behind their flimsy fence. We repeat: let John Calipari run Kentucky football.
Let Calipari be the strings attached to the puppet, and the World Wide Wes of college football recruiting. You might not even have to pay him more to do it, since Calipari would schmooze, cajole, wheedle, and occasionally arch eyebrows in the direction of a beautiful, low-mileage used sports car sitting in the parking lot, just running and waiting for a young man with a bright football future to drive it around for his mother. His mother, who is leasing the car, because even middle-aged women need to feel the hum of a V-8 monster roaring beneath the tap of their trembling toes.
Calipari would do that for fun, probably. Mark Stoops could literally wear horse blinders if he liked, and claim it was an elaborate motivational gimmick to make players work like the price race horses of the Bluegrass State. Meanwhile, oh--look at that, it's a 5-star defensive tackle committing eight months early to Kentucky, and Instagram pics of John Calipari smiling at Christmas with the family. Mom said he could come back anytime, and Dad said he made him want to be a better man.
Now, we know your concerns: will this affect Kentucky basketball recruiting? No, no it will not, because here's the most spellbinding part of the plan, and the one Kentucky fans will like most. Calipari isn't just doing this because he thinks it's fun; he's doing it because he'll get a cut of every new dollar earned in revenue for the Kentucky football program, and then redirect it back into the basketball budget, and thus back into the recruiting pipeline. And even at the margins, the money you can skim off football beats the hell out of fighting for more hoops money. (Just ask athletic directors: they've made careers off it.)
You weren't totally sold on this plan until tax fraud was involved, were you, Kentucky? It's just the cherry on top here, but every sundae needs a garnish, and we know the ones you love best.
THE NCAA DECLARES WAR ON EXCESSIVE CARBS, BUT B-STOOPS IS STILL IN THEM STREETS
Hey, buddy. Psst. Over here.
Yeah. I see you.
Yeah, it's B-Stoop, aka Yung Semolina, aka Big Game Bucatini. You know. I got that rigatoni. That fusilli, that ziti. Maybe you got a girl over, need some feminine pasta style? Got that vermicelli if you're buyin'. I got boxes of that. Can get it to you quick.
Maybe you're into that serious work. That manicotti for heavy pasta lifting. Maybe you need some ziti, or oh? You got a formal event, need that black tie pasta? BOOM. Farfalle. That bowtie, that ballroom pasta. We can have you cookin' like you at the Whiffenpoof Dinner. Kissinger pasta. MacArthur Genius Grant pasta.
Or maybe you just want it. That's cool. I don't judge. I just pinch that penne till it squeals, so you call me when you want a deal. Macaroni dreams, cannelloni creams, the real thrilla. On your girl like a gorilla, beat Ronzoni and I'm comin' for Barilla. You get B-Stoops on that pasta, because there ain't shit to do in Oklahoma but cook.
And when we do it, we do it Sooner, rather than later. Ya heard. Hit that pager. You got dough, I got dough. When we mix 'em we'll have ourselves a carb-ecue the NCAA can't dream of stopping. Holler.
SO TURNT AT 7 MILES PER GALLON
A McLaren? We guess that'll do for old A.B. and the Baylor death machine, though the lack of bells and whistles does sort of miss the whole point of the Art Briles offense. A McLaren is fast as hell and functional, but it doesn't have aero flaps, the dash from a steampunk spaceship, and the halting anger in first gear you only get in a car that hates being in first gear for even a second. A Pagani Huayira: now THAT'S the Baylor of cars, produced out in the wild by a maverick engineer, custom fit right down to the hand-carved tires, and rare and fast enough that some don't even consider it street legal.*
*Nick Saban and Bret Bielema, specifically.
Wolf-ish? Yes. Wolf? Likely not, say the experts.
American luger and dance enthusiast Kate Hansen shared a picture of a furry, four-legged animal roaming down her hallway in Sochi. It definitely had four legs, was definitely some kind of canine, and well, that's where the internet stopped agreeing.
So we went to the experts, and asked; what the hell is that wandering down the halls of a Sochi dorm, and was it a wolf?
Douglas W. Smith, Senior Wildlife Biologist at the Yellowstone Center for Resources and a pioneer in the field of reintroducing wolves into the wild, thinks not:
Dog - 100%. Looks and behaves all dog. Husky is the breed - dog is the species.
We also asked Daniel Stahler, PhD, a wildlife biologist from the Yellowstone Wolf Project, if Hansen's hall monitor could be a wolf.
Almost certainly this is not a wild wolf. There are hundreds of thousands of wolf-dog hybrids in the U.S. alone, and many more worldwide. My guess is that this is someone's pet, or a Sochi stray. But the fact that it's casually walking down the hall and not looking particularly stressed indicates it's comfortable around people.
Hybrids are typically crosses between captive bred wolves (zoos, private breeders, wildlife sanctuaries, etc.) and northern breed domestic dogs like huskies, malamutes, etc. This definitely looks wolfie, so probably does have some wolf genes crossed in there. Hybrids make very poor pets for most people, as they are a canid stuck in a world between man's best domesticated friend and it's wild progenitor. Many end up abused, killing pets, or hurting people. This one seems pretty mellow to be walking down a hallway, which is why it's probably a pet.
That's my opinion from reviewing the video.
So there's science for you, just ruining the internet's best hopes and dreams yet again. (Though this whole exercise was worth it just to read a wildlife expert describe a stray dog in Sochi as "pretty mellow.")
Update! This is a Jimmy Kimmel hoax. From the Orlando Sentinel:
ABC's Jimmy Kimmel orchestrated a hoax with U.S. Olympic luger Kate Hansen, Inside Edition reports. The syndicated magazine got confirmation of the video foolery from Sandy Caligiore, a publicist for the United States Luge Association.
Jimmy Kimmel is the King in Yellow.
HE'S REAL AND CAN PUT ON HIS CROWN AND CAPE AT ANY TIME
1. We don't make anything up, we just write it down before it happens.
2. See: Hatin' Ass Spurrier on the proposed new clock rules, in real life, and not on this website.
"So, you want to talk about the 'Saban Rule'?" Spurrier asked Thursday, chuckling. "That's what I call it."
3. Play his music, dammit.