Happy Tuesday everyone, and welcome to your morning Skull Session. Let's talk about butts.
Specifically, Jared Sullinger's butt. I feel that his butt has gotten a lot of publicity lately; during seemingly every Ohio State game, the announcers at some point will have a lengthy discussion on Sully's butt, its size, and how important its utilization is in creating scoring opportunities for everyone's favorite big man. Now, on that point I will not debate. It is quite true that Jared Sullinger's butt is an important member of the team, and that without it Sully might not be quite as successful.
Still, without taking away from the butt's obvious talent, it strikes me as odd that this butt is so highly and frequently lauded. I (sadly) have never been complimented on my butt to quite the extent Jared has, and it makes me wonder how he feels about this constant praise. Does he get similar compliments from the ladies? If not, does it concern Jared that grown men are offering up effusive praise of his butt on national television while other, perhaps more intimate, people in his life do not echo the same sentiments? What about his teammates? Do they ever get angry that the butt of one player on the team gets more mention then they do in total? Is Jared aware of how important his butt is to his success? Can you insure a butt? If so, does this necessitate the butt being kept in a protective containment pod when not in use?
These are all extremely important questions that I'm sure we would all like to know the answers to. Jared, if you're reading this and would like to answer the above questions about your butt, please e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
PS, I am not a crackpot.
Hail To The King, Baby Butts aside, things are looking pretty good for the Buckeyes in the some very early March Madness bracket prognostications. Unsurprisingly, OSU comes in as a 1 seed in all of em, which at this point is still probably more owed to an undefeated record more than anything else. At this point it'd be nice to project an undefeated season, but the remaining Big Ten schedule is absolutely brutal, including home and aways against both Purdue (the home portion of which is tonight) and Wisconsin. Also keep in mind that OSU's total margin of victory in 7 Big Ten games is 60 points.
Which actually sounds decent. Then you realize that 40 of those points were accumulated in just two of those games, and the average margin of victory in the other 5 games has been just 4 points. I still expect OSU to end up as a #1 seed at the end of the season (because their talent is definitely deserving of one), but the road to get there is going to get a lot tougher. The Big Ten eats its own, folks.
Climbin' In Your High Schools, Snatchin' Your Five Stars Up The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette has an interesting breakdown of how Ohio State has been able to infiltrate the state of Pennsylvania (specifically the WPIAL) in recent years to get some high profile high school recruits. Terrelle Pryor is obviously the most recognizable of these, but also included is Dorian Bell, Andrew Sweat, Rory Nicol, and Corey Brown. It's hard to believe that Penn State would lose out on a lot of these kids if they had a head coach that actually was involved in coaching or recruiting, but Metamucil ain't free, dammit.
Hit X To Reload I've been struggling in vain recently to come up with something that adequately expresses why I'm not concerned with the secondary next year, but luckily Ken Gordon over at the Dispatch is here to help me out. We've been over what a MASH unit the secondary was all season several times, but I do think it's time someone recognized that a perceived weakness of the team proved that they were anything but over the course of the season (and, most significantly, in the Sugar Bowl), and will be coming back in 2011 loaded with young talent. Also interesting is this comment from Heacock regarding personnel:
Heacock didn't sound as if he wanted to switch Bryant back to corner, but he did say, "You don't want to stockpile three good players at one position if there is someone better than a starter at another spot."
Not a terrible problem to have.
We're The Best. Better Than You. FINALLY, someone has created a website which can put to bed all of these "my team is better than yours" arguments. Using the highly scientific Transitive Property Of Football, there is now solid, 100% concrete proof that the 2010 Ohio State football team is better than the 2010 Auburn team. But don't stop there, the mighty Occidental College Tigers are also better than the so called "National Champions," as this clearly illustrates. As of this writing BCS executives are looking for ways to include this website into the computer rankings.
You're Not A Man Unless The Sport You Play Drastically Lowers Your Life Expectancy Jay Cutler has taken an insane amount of flak for supposedly "quitting" on his team due to an injury that highly qualified football fans sitting on their couches called illegitimate. I could go on a long, long rant about the utter stupidity of the importance of machismo in football (especially to the detriment of the health of players), but since this is a Skull Session I'll let someone else do it, in this case Spencer Hall over at SBNation:
...I don't even like Jay Cutler as a player, but he and the Bears made the decision for him not to play, and them being football players and people surrounding football is enough to assume that they knew what was up and made the sound, sane decision. To say this deflates the thing the NFL and its attendant media thrives on, the moron-opera sold through terms of personality and currencies with names like "Favre," "factorback," and "grittiness." It is greasepaint morality play underwritten by Bud Light and Ford, and it is the stupidest thing in the world not named Merrill Hoge.
I agree with literally every single thing that Hall writes here, but I will add that I don't think he goes far enough in talking about how culpable players are in this. It is sick enough that fans and the media will attack a legitimately injured player and perpetuate the idea that a core value of football isn't just playing through pain, but massive injury as well. But when players are involved in the shaming of each other, that's when it becomes truly sad. Hopefully one day football will move beyond this, but I'm not optimistic.