Monday Morning Sports Rant: March 14, 2011

Maxim chats with sports blogger Drew Magary of Deadspin and Kissing Suzy Kolber about this weekend’s athletic hits and misses.

Maxim chats with sports blogger Drew Magary of Deadspin and Kissing Suzy Kolberabout this weekend’s athletic hits and misses.

maxim: I actually watched college basketball this weekend! Did you?

bigdaddydrew: I didn’t, but I had a good excuse.
Traveling with children.
Children murder basketball fandom.
But I am excited for the tourney.

maxim: Me too. This time of year reminds me why I hate the NBA. They can’t muster a tenth of the excitement of a college game until the last quarter of a game. Maybe.

bigdaddydrew: See, this is the time of year I get mad at college football, because I look at the pool and I want to find Jim Delany and kick him in the dick.

maxim: Totally.
Though people are really riled up about some of the snubs this year.

bigdaddydrew: I love that.

maxim: Poor UAB. Everyone is like, WTF are you guys doing here.

I know!
That happened to Air Force either last year or the year before.
People get so pissy about the bubble snubs, then they forget all about it four days later.
Because in the end bubble teams don’t MATTER.
Maybe one or two make the Sweet 16, but none of them are gonna win are the thing.
I think the committee knows this.
I think they spend far less time on these brackets than people suspect.
“What? UAB? Sure. Why not. They seem nice. Who fucking cares. Let’s get Chinese.”
The selection committee is like the lady in the old Rice Krispie Treats ad who throws flour on herself in the kitchen before presenting the platter to her guests.
“I worked HARD!”
The other thing about the bubble teams is that it should alert the BCS that you can have both A) Controversy and B) a satisfying championship.
Those things aren’t mutually exclusive.

maxim: Very good point. It fosters the right kind of controversy, rather than the “this whole system is stupid and makes no sense” controversy.

bigdaddydrew: Right.
That’s the point. You have this little controversy that ends up having virtually no impact on the end result.
Except that one of these teams will FUCK you in your pool.
Watch UAB make the final 8, just to piss Jay Bilas off.

maxim: Haha. And everyone wants to look like the genius picking the right “little school that could.” Like, just pick the top seeds, dudes.

bigdaddydrew: I love people getting mad about seeds.
“BYU was a 3 and not a 2? WORST INJUSTICE EVER.”
As if they have to be calibrated perfectly or the fucking world will end.
They’re seedings. They’re already somewhat arbitrary.

maxim: My head was already spinning last night with analysts being like, “Wofford beat so-and-so on the road and then won four straight but didn’t win their conference so they’re only a 6?” or whatever.
Ouch. Brain hurts.

bigdaddydrew: I like that they care so much, though
IT’s fun to see people get all fired up over this, then step back and be like, “But yeah, CAN’T WAIT FOR THE GAMES TO START!”

maxim: My favorite thing about all of it is that for some of these early games we crowd around someone’s computer during the day to just straight-up watch TV. Thanks, NCAA tournament!

bigdaddydrew: You don’t go to a bar?

maxim: Hey—we do work over here you know.

bigdaddydrew: Oh sure you do.

maxim: We just drink at our desks. Like real journalists.

bigdaddydrew: “Quick! I need a caption about how hot Olivia Munn is!”

Also part of my TV viewing this weekend (I mean, in between all the AWESOME PARTYING I was doing): the HBO documentary on UNLV and the ESPN 30 for 30 on the Fab Five.
Holy smokes. Those were the days.
I remember being obsessed with those teams when I was in high school—especially Michigan.

bigdaddydrew: The fact that the Fab Five now count as “classic” makes me feel so, so old.
I remember ESPN had an old ad campaign where they asked athletes what was “old school.”
And they go to Juwan Howard and he’s like “The Fab Five is old school.”
And this was, like, five years after he graduated!
I sternly objected.
You can’t label yourself old school if your sorry ass was part of it.
By the way, I’m surprised the Fab Five doc wasn’t vacated from the TV schedule after the fact.

maxim: Haha. You would’ve hated this film, then, for the degree of self-referential…I don’t know…glorifying. The self-consciousness of it all. I absolutely ate it up. Though at the end I saw that all those guys were either producers or exec producers.
That’s kind of weird, I think. To produce a movie about yourself.

bigdaddydrew: THAT’S FUCKED!
“Remember how awesome we were, America?”
And I say that as a very casual Michigan fan.
You can’t do that shit.
“We changed basketball! Low shorts!”
maxim: That’s totally what it was! And I’m such a sucker. I was watching, wide-eyed, like, “Yeah, wow, I didn’t realize what a cultural shift they brought about! All because Jalen Rose listened to rap!”
It ended on a dramatic quote from Rose about their being “blood brothers.” I was almost teary-eyed, and then, on the screen: EXECUTIVE PRODUCER, JALEN ROSE.

bigdaddydrew: BAHAHAHA
It’s like a wedding a video, only they forced four million people to watch it.
It’s like a “Behind the Music” episode,where they give the band wayyy too much credit for what they did.
“You know, Chicago was one of Jimi Hendrix’s favorite bands. HISTORY.”

maxim: It did kind of effectively re-expose the weird arc of Chris Webber’s career, though. Or rather, re-exposed him as sort of a dick and a coward. But a beast of a player in college. I’d almost forgotten.
(Webber refused to participate in the doc, btw.)

bigdaddydrew: Such soft hands.
He was a great dunker back in the day.
Jesus, I just said “Back in the day.”

maxim: Classic, man. Classic.