The Bottom 11

You’ve seen ESPN’s Not Top 10.  This is a lot like that, except it’s one better and has a different name.  The Bottom 11 is the foil to our Top 11, a list of the 11 least awesome things to happen over the course of the past week in sports.  Enjoy.

11. Alex Rodriguez lies while trying to clarify the truth.  Remember those steroids A-Rod allegedly ingested?  The ones that are illegal here, but as he claims, legal in the Dominican Republic?  Apparently, the D.R. has no idea what he’s talking about, since the performance-enhancers he came clean about are, in fact, illegal in the mother land as well.  When does the lying stop?

10. Texas Tech QB Graham Harrell runs a 5.07 40-yard dash time at NFL combine.  No one ever accused the former Red Raider of being quick, but 5.07?  That’s a bad high school time.  Out of the way Graham, the senior citizen walkathon needs to pass you.

Perhaps he takes his running pointers from Mike Leach
Perhaps he takes his running pointers from Mike Leach

9. UConn’s Jim Calhoun gets into argument with crazy freelance journalist over salary.  A member of the Green Party and one referendum short of a bill (if you get my drift), freelancer Ken Krayeske went in search of notoriety earlier this week when he obtained media credentials for the UConn men’s basketball game, then targeted head coach Jim Calhoun during the post-game question-and-answer session.  Krayeske angrily inquired about Calhoun’s $1.6 million salary, to which Calhoun responded in a foolhardy manner, making himself look like an idiot in the process.  Calhoun should have just had the nutjob removed from the premises, but instead he went to war with the looney and ended up chipping away at his own reputation in the process.

8. Dwyane Wade drops 50 points in Heat’s 23-point loss.  That’s right, Orlando beat Miami 122-99 despite the 50 points by Wade.  The 29-26 Heat aren’t horrible, but they’re definitely underperforming.  With guys like Wade, Michael Beasley, Shawn Marion (before he was traded last week), and Jermaine O’Neal (acquired for Marion), you’d expect more out of a team that’s won a championship in the past five years.

The Heat would have needed 73 from Wade...to tie
The Heat would have needed 73 from Wade...to tie

7. Zach Randolph continues to earn a paycheck.  The ex-Blazer/Knick/threw a punch (that connected, no less) at an opposing player during a game last week, before being nearly traded to Chicago the next day.  Despite the fact that he wasn’t traded (contrary to earlier reports by Seattle Sportsnet, but that’s ok because we receive no income in any form), Randolph is still employed by the NBA.  If there was ever a player less-deserving of an opportunity, it’s Randolph.  I look forward to reading about Randolph’s home beneath a highway overpass in twenty years, when all is right with the world.

6. High school brawls reach new apex in Alabama massacre.  Perhaps “massacre” isn’t the right word, but it’s close. As THIS VIDEO shows, the fight between two Alabama high school basketball teams was pretty bad, even spilling into the stands and involving a number of fans.  The participating teams were issued a double forfeit and eliminated from the Class 5A state tournament in which they were competing.  Still, with a rash of violent outbursts at high school basketball games locally and around the country, you have to wonder what the heck is going on.

5. 73-year-old JuCo basketball player fails Spanish, declared ineligible.  Damn it!  Why were you taking Spanish anyways?  Are you looking for a job at Wendy’s when your playing days are over?  Why not stick to the basics and learn the ABC’s of college while continuing to add to your on-court legacy?  Why did you have to get all fancy and try to showboat your bilingual knowledge all over the place?  It takes a special person to fail at the community college level, and by God, you’ve done it.

Ken Mink, no bueno
Ken Mink, no bueno

4. Lance Armstrong attacked by syringe-wielding lunatic during bike race (not the Tour de France).  Yes, there are other cycling events besides the Tour de France, not that anyone knows or cares about them.  But that’s beside the point.  The issue here is the man dressed like a lightning bolt/bumble bee, wielding a gigantic plastic syringe in the direction of Armstrong.  I don’t like Armstrong all that much, but how do you let potentially dangerous crackheads like this near a celebrity athlete?  It’s bad news for everyone.  However, Lance came out on top in the whole mess, grabbing syringe man and shoving him into a snowbank, all while maintaining his cycling.  Wow.

Yes, that really happened
Yes, that really happened

3. Nats quickly aging prospect spurs internal investigation.  We first reported the story of 19-year-old Washington Nationals pitching prospect Esmailyn Gonzalez, who turned out to be 23-year-old Carlos Lugo, nearly a week ago in this headline.  Now, however, the Nationals are in a whole world of trouble that goes beyond their ties to a kid who doesn’t know his own age.  Following a report in SI breaking the falsified age story, Nats’ special assistant Jose Rijo (ex-Cincinnati Reds ace and the man who first found Gonzalez/Lugo) took a leave of absence from the team and has yet to return.  Then, GM Jim Bowden was found to have possibly stolen portions of salary from Latino prospects who were signed to deals as teenagers.  That report has prompted a federal investigation.  And we thought their biggest problem was winning ballgames.

2. Oregon Men’s Basketball team finally wins a Pac-10 game. They happen to be 1-14, after knocking off Stanford on Saturday, and couldn’t equal their cross-state rivals from a year ago in going winless in conference play.  This gives them some momentum heading into the home stretch of the season, and may be enough to salvage head coach Ernie Kent’s job.  Put away your O-18 t-shirts, it’s not gonna happen this year.

You know Barack, that's also the number of wins we're gonna have this year!
You know Barack, that's also the number of wins we're gonna have this year!

1. Pac-10 court stormers embarrass their programs after meaningless victories. Last night it was the ASU faithful, attacking the hardwood after their narrow victory over unranked Arizona.  It was a game they should have won, and they barely did.  Then, on Saturday night, in perhaps the most smile-inducing moment of the weekend for Husky fans (next to the victory over USC, of course), Oregon’s Pit Crew rushed Mac Court after their first Pac-10 victory of the season.  When has one victory ever meant so much?

5 thoughts on “The Bottom 11”

  1. If we beat ASU… the vote goes to not rushing the court. When we beat Washington State for the Pac-10 regular season title… that might be okay.

  2. Unfortunately, the sad part about becoming a major program is that there are very few occasions where storming the court becomes acceptable once again. A few years ago, there was an ESPN article on the subject of what was just cause for a court storm. I can’t remember the exact details of that piece, but here is my list of valid reasons for a court storm if you’re a major program like UW:

    -Major upset of a #1 team when your team is unranked.
    -Defeating a previously undefeated team on the last day of the regular season (see: Stanford, 2004).
    -Winning a must-win, play-in type game, where a loss ends your season and a win gets you into the Tourney, etc.
    -Winning some kind of an epic battle against an equally as-good team or a better team (like a five-overtime game or something)
    -Winning a meaningful game in entirely unprecedented fashion (like on a full-court buzzer beater)
    -Upsetting a major ranked opponent after a stretch of down years (see: Arizona, 2004)

    That’s basically it. There are few occasions where storming the court is necessary anymore, especially when your team is up like the Huskies are and have been. I apologize to the legions of students who want to experience a court rush, but it’s probably not likely to happen anytime soon, with justifiable reason, that is.

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