The Ballad of Big Mike: What happened next was the strangest encounter of Lemming's 28-year career as a football scout. Michael Oher sat down at the table across from him ... and refused to speak. "He shook my hand and then didnít say a word," Lemming recalled. ("His hands ó they were huge!") Lemming asked a few questions; Michael Oher just kept staring right through him. And soon enough Lemming decided further interaction was pointless. Michael Oher left, and he left behind blank forms and unanswered questions. Every other high-school football player in America was dying for Lemming to invite him to play in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl. Michael Oher had left his invitation on the table. A fantastic article in the NYT Magazine by Michael Lewis, detailing the unusual story behind Michael Oher. via kottke
The Road from Bristol: A March Madness style bracket to determine which ESPN broadcasting personality is the most totally loathsome. Voting for the Egregious Eight takes place this week.
Who was your favorite player growing up?: Rich Lederer asks that question to a group of baseball writers, analysts, and executives at a new site called Baseball Analysts. 15 of the 38 people named a Hall of Famer, and the leading player was Yaz, who was named five times. Yesterday was part one, today is part two, and the last part is due tomorrow. Here's the Baseball Primer thread on the article. Me? I'll take the Wizard of Oz.
Awesome, baby!: The Super Bowl is over; the NHL isn't playing, and the NBA playoffs don't start for another 6 months or so. That means it's college hoops time! The stories so far: Illinois and Boston College are undefeated while traditional powers Kentucky, Kansas, North Carolina, and Duke are all having excellent seasons. Coaches are on the hot seat at Virginia and Indiana. Some resources: Jeff Sagarin's ratings; Ken Pomeroy's site, The Mid-Majority, and Yoni Cohen's excellent College Basketball Blog. And it's never too early for Bracketology. Oh yeah....this is Rivalry Week on ESPN.
If at first you don't succeed,: skydiving is not for you. Fortunately, predicting the NFL has less serious consequences. It's time again to predict the NFL winners, and to help us, TMQ, ESPN's talking heads, and Dr. Z all weigh in. Who do you think will be going to Disney World this year?
Joe Morgan is really bugging me.: When one of the chat questions involves a comment that Morgan made in a recent column, he gets defensive and claims that the questioner is trying to put words into his mouth. He then does it again at the end of the chat. In a previous chat he thinks Billy Beane wrote Moneyball, and is upset that Beane inserted too much of his own ego into the book. He's a decent color man but he comes across as uninformed and I'm not even sure he writes his own columns. Relevant excerpts inside.