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Hingle McCringleberry. THE Ohio State University. Real vs. Key & Peele Names

key and peele football character bismo funyuns

Don’t you CALL me Bismo Bugles!

Once again Wednesday, my favorite skit-sters Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele delivered, in honor of football bowl season, their lead-up to the annual “East-West Bowl” with the usual curious characters, including a player who speaks in Morse Code and one named for a popular, onion-y snack.

Of course what’s really going on is “Key & Peele’s” gentle skewering of some African-American athlete name choices. But the truth is, black, white, male, female–there are some pretty odd or downright unfortunate sports names out there. So I wonder, can you tell which of these names are real, and which are Key & Peele? (Scroll down for answers.)

And speaking of weird names, you need look no further than some of this year’s bowl games. Famous Idaho Potato? Royal Purple Las Vegas? AdvoCare V100? Think I’ll watch my Key & Peele reruns. OK here we go….

  1. Tyrell Smoochie-Wallace
  2. Craphonso Ja’won Thorpe
  3. Ibrahim Moizoos
  4. Phyllis Mangina
  5. God Shammgod
  6. L’Carpetron Dookmarriot
  7. Jenni Asserholt
  8. Quatro Quatro
  9. Coco Crisp
  10. Ozmataz Buckshank
  11. Dick Trickle
  12. Fartrell Cluggins
  13. Dick Felt
  14. Elipses Corter
  15. Richie Incognito
  16. Nyquillus Dillwad
  17. Dean Windass
  18. Decatholac Mango
  19. Irina Slutskaya
  20. Goolius Boozler

—ANSWERS—

(Scroll down…)

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  1. Tyrell Smoochie-Wallace: K&P
  2. Craphonso Ja’won “Cro” Thorpe: REAL. Professional wide receiver for numerous NFL and Canadian teams, currently a free agent
  3. Ibrahim Moizoos: K&P
  4. Phyllis Mangina: REAL. Former Seton Hall women’s basketball coach.
  5. God Shammgod: REAL. Former professional basketball point guard for the Washington Wizards
  6. L’Carpetron Dookmarriot: K&P
  7. Jenni Asserholt: REAL. Swedish hockey player
  8. Quatro Quatro: K&P
  9. Covelli Loyce “Coco” Crisp: REAL. Professional center fielder for the Oakland As
  10. Ozmataz Buckshank: K&P
  11. Richard “Dick” Trickle: REAL. American multi-champion racecar driver
  12. Fartrell Cluggins: K&P
  13. Dick Felt: REAL. Former American Football League defensive back for the New York Titans and the Boston Patriots
  14. Elipses Corter: K&P
  15. Richard Dominick “Richie” Incognito, Jr.: REAL. NFL guard currently on indefinite suspension for harassment of Miami Dolphins teammate Jonathan Martin
  16. Nyquillus Dillwad: K&P
  17. Dean Windass: REAL. English former professional soccer player for Bradford City
  18. Decatholac Mango: K&P
  19. Irina Slutskaya: REAL. Russian figure skater and Olympic medalist
  20. Goolius Boozler: K&P
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High 5 Headlines! Rose Wilts, Worries for Winston, and Puppy Snuggles Cost Me the BEST NFL GAME EVER!

chester

Football, or fuzzy kisses? Chester is the clear winner, no OT.

1) It is a testament to the snuggliness of my dog (and maybe some wine) that I fell asleep with him on the couch last night and missed the end of an incredible NFL comeback. Denver visited Boston and brought along many storylines: two of the best quarterbacks, Peyton Manning and Tom Brady squaring off again; Denver receiver Wes Welker returning to play his former Patriots for the first time, and coming off a concussion last week; and temperatures colder than polar bear poop. Denver led 24-0 at the half, but Tom Brady returned reborn in the second,  completing more than 80 percent of his passes to erase the deficit–that Manning shredded with one last touchdown, sending the game into OT. Boston won on a field goal 34-31. Brady inked his 38th career game with 3+ TD passes and no interceptions, the second-most all-time to–guess who–Peyton Manning (42).

2) By the way, the Patriots’ Bill Belichick isn’t the only coach in the family. His daughter Amanda, a Wesleyan University grad, is the head women’s lacrosse coach at Wesleyan, where Dad himself played lacrosse in the early 70s. Both Belichicks were captains of their teams as seniors.

3) That slapping sound you are hearing is Chicago NBA fans’ collective foreheads this week as Bulls star (aka Michael Jordan 2.0) Derrick Rose is once again out for the season, requiring surgery on a torn meniscus in his right knee. He missed last season after tearing the ACL in his left knee. Rose has been Rookie of the Year, Most Valuable Player, and an NBA All-Star, so his frustration must be only slightly worse than Adidas, who just launched his new shoe collection and “The Return of D Rose” campaign. (Or the frustration of Memphians like me, who had our national-runner-up 2008 season erased by the NCAA over allegations that Rose had someone else take his SATs for him. Sigh.) But Rose is only 25, having turned pro after just one year of college play (otherwise snarkily known as a “one and done”). Steve Nash (39, Lakers) and Manu Ginobli (36, San Antonio Spurs) are just a couple of superstar starters playing for super teams well into their 30s. And Chicago still has their NHL champion Blackhawks, currently among the top of the Western Conference.

4) The slapping sound you are still hearing is me. My forehead. Because it just couldn’t be a football season without a sexual assault case. Oh wait, my bad. Just before the season, a group of Vanderbilt players were indicted on counts of aggravated rape and sexual battery against a victim in a dorm room. (The case is ongoing and getting uglier). Now, Florida State quarterback and Heisman Trophy hopeful Jameis Winston is at the center of a potential rape charge stemming from an encounter in December 2012. Details are still unclear, but we at least know the following: 1, The victim reported the event a year ago and asserts it was not consensual. 2, The case was only referred to the Florida State Attorney General two weeks ago. 3, There is a DNA evidence match confirmed. 4, Some affidavits support Winston; others support the alleged victim. And 5, Winston is a redshirt freshman leading the Seminoles to their first potential championship since 1999. Whatever the outcome, we can hope whoever is telling the truth will see justice, and that the athletes of a storied program won’t see their hard work overshadowed by scandal. But I have to wonder if either will happen.

5) OK, let’s end on a funny note. If you missed it last weekend (and I did because I haven’t found “Saturday Night Live” reliably funny since 1982. Yeah, I said it. Except for episodes with Justin Timberlake, also from Memphis. Naturally.), SNL really did come through with a parody of “The Red Zone” channel. Each Sunday, Red Zone allows fans to see any potential NFL scoring play–when the ball is within 20 yards of the goal line, aka “the red zone.” (I must admit I do have this channel.) But if you’re not into sports, you now have “The Rosé Zone“–a women’s channel with all the best (worst?) reality TV moments without the charity benefits and fashion shows. As one “viewer” puts it, “B*tches be crazy. But not all the time. Sometimes b*tches just be standin’ around and thinkin’.” <cut to Kim Kardashian staring vacantly>. “And mama ain’t about that.” Hilarious.

High Five! Warriors War with Clippers, Napoli Celebrates Happily, and a Cricketer Aces Final “Test”

1) Apparently there is some bad blood even God himself cannot overcome. The Golden State Warriors and the Los Angeles Clippers have had a grudge since last season when the Warriors took three out of four season games—and were, in the Clippers’ opinion, a little too jubilant in their celebrations. So reportedly, the Clippers wouldn’t allow the Warriors into Thursday night’s pre-game chapel service, a tradition offered by NBA arenas. The Warriors had to attend a separate service. Their luck didn’t improve on the court; despite a fight after Warriors center Andrew Bogut delivered a hard foul against Clippers center DeAndre Jordan, The Clippers won 126-115.

(Names to know: Blake Griffin is the Clippers’ power forward–you’ve seen him in these Kia commercials; Chris Paul is the Warriors’ point guard–he is “born to assist” for State Farm.)

napoli

I love you guys! Now please someone shave this beard!

2) By now you probably know the Boston Red Sox won the World Series, defeating the St. Louis Cardinals four games to two on Wednesday. What we don’t know is just what Sox first baseman Mike Napoli drank that led to this hilarious succession of photos of Napoli celebrating with his fellow fans, doing shots, even bartending a little himself (minus, eventually, his shirt. Which is fine by me.) 

3) Denver Broncos head coach John Fox will undergo aortic heart valve replacement surgery this week after he experienced lightheadedness on a Charlotte golf course Saturday. He did not have a heart attack, but tests revealed immediate need for the procedure, which doctors had already advised him he should do after this season. The Broncos had their “bye” week and were off Sunday; Fox will be out for several weeks recovering—we’ll see if 7-1 Denver can maintain its dominance in his absence. Jack Del Rio will fill in as interim coach.

Also recovering is Houston Texans coach Gary Kubiak after he collapsed at halftime of Sunday’s game against Indianapolis. He is reportedly doing well, undergoing tests for blood clots and a possible stroke. It is not certain if or when he will return. The Ladies Room wishes both coaches the best of luck!

4) Alabama remains undefeated and #1 this week in the college football rankings, but Florida State has moved to #2 after handing Miami its first loss Saturday in a highly anticipated intra-state matchup. Oregon, Ohio State, and Stanford round out the top five. Miami dropped to #11.

5) And just because it’s cool: Sachin Tendulkar has announced his retirement. Who is Sachin Tendulkar you ask? Well, the 40-year-old Indian is only considered the world’s best cricket player. Duh. Tendulkar will say goodbye to a 24-year career after he plays his 200th “test” this month against West Indies. It’s difficult to convey the meaning of the match. No cricketer has played so many. Tendulkar also owns the records for most runs and centuries in both test and one-day cricket. Tendulkar began his international career in November 1989, and was the third youngest test cricketer at the time.

5 Reasons to Watch the Women’s Final Four (No, Really. These Babes Ball Hard.)

Female Final Four-titude.

Female Final Four-titude.

I admit it, I don’t normally follow women’s basketball very closely. (I played college volleyball, and I don’t follow it either. Or soccer, or badminton—like I said, this isn’t a “women’s sports” blog, so don’t hate.) But this is the first year in my memory where the mention of “Final Four” actually needs clarification: men’s…or women’s?

The ladies have compiled quite the quad this year—and in jaw-dropping fashion, including an NCAA record, a sister act, a Final Four first, and the absence of perhaps the best female college player of all time. But these four teams will more than fill the void in New Orleans…

Connecticut
It’s not uncommon for the Huskies to reach the Final Four; but six times in a row? No other team, male or female, has done so—and led by a freshman, no less. Six-four forward Breanna Stewart scored 21 points in UConn’s 83-53 defeat of Kentucky, as well as adding some impressive defense. Fun fact: Hall of Fame head coach Geno Auriemma was actually born in Montella, Italy. But he’s learned U.S. basketball pretty well, having led the Huskies to seven NCAA championships and the U.S. women’s team to gold at the 2012 Summer Olympics.

Notre Dame has beaten the Huskies in all three previous meetings this year—can the Huskies change history tonight? Catch the game at 8:30 ET on ESPN.

California
It took an overtime period and 25 points from senior guard Layshia Clarendon, but Cal topped Georgia 65-62 in the Spokane regional to reach its first Final Four in school history. Clarendon’s composure—and a solid jumpshot—closed a double-digit deficit in the second half. Helping out were sophomore Afure Jemerigbe (14 points, 8 rebounds) and Reshenda Gray’s season-high 11 rebounds off the bench. Cal is the only Pac-12 team besides Stanford to reach the Final Four since 1986. The Bears are coached by Lindsay Gottlieb, just 35, in her second year at the helm.

Cal will meet Louisville at 6:30 ET tonight on ESPN. But Louisville had to slay its own Bears to get there…

Bummed-Out Baylor
Maybe even more shocking than the compound fracture sustained by Louisville guard Kevin Ware Monday afternoon was the Louisville Lady Cards beating the defending champion Baylor Bears, 82-81. Seemingly-untouchable Baylor had won 32 straight games, but 6-8 center Brittney Griner (second-highest scoring player in NCAA history, career records for blocks and dunks) didn’t score until the second half of a highly-physical game with refereeing questioned by an incensed Baylor coach Kim Mulkey, who had to be restrained while challenging a call.

Still, Griner was a rare unanimous selection to the Associated Press’ All-America team Tuesday, and only the fifth three-time recipient. Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban has said he would welcome her at a tryout. Whether Cuban is serious or not, it goes to show how serious Griner’s game is.

Notre Dame
They don’t call her “Sky” for nothing. Another unanimous AP All-American, Skylar Diggins found early foul trouble in the Notre Dame-Duke matchup Tuesday, as the Blue Devils controlled the first half. But her stellar second half outside shooting scored 24 points to rally Notre Dame to a 87-76 win and a third straight trip to the Final Four. (The Irish have fallen in both the last two championship games.) Kayla McBride, Jewell Loyd, and Natalie Achonwa added 18, 17, and 17 respectively—with help from 21 Duke turnovers–as the Fighting Irish (35-1) won a school-record 30 consecutive games.

Louisville
Only once in Division I history have the same school’s men’s and women’s teams won titles in the same year—can Louisville equal Connecticut (2004) this year?

After taking down Baylor, the fifth-seeded Lady Cards (28-8) had to face Tennessee, a perennial tournament threat despite its first season in three decades without legendary head coach Pat Summitt, who retired last year with early onset dementia. Yet Louisville built a 20-point lead and held off a late UT comeback to win 86-78. Shoni Schimmel’s 24 points were a big part, not to mention younger sister Jude’s 15. The siblings grew up on an Indian reservation in Oregon. Though they share the expected family rivalry, the Schimmels hope to share in a Louisville championship.

The 11 Easiest NCAA Bracket Tips EVER! (Sorry, Ted From Accounting)

No winnings for you this year, Accounting Department!

No winnings for you this year, Accounting Department!

In one of my favorite Cheers episodes, Diane infuriates Sam by choosing game results according to which city’s orchestra conductor she prefers. And winning.

Which is why when it comes to making a bracket, I think casual fans actually have an advantage; they haven’t been barraged with two prior months of BRACKETOLOGY! and Hoopdemonium with Hal! (brought to you by Taco Bell and Wells Fargo and…)

A bracket’s possible winning outcomes are 147.57 quintillion (more cool tourney factoids here). Even insiders have joked to me they have considered uniform color as a parameter. So don’t overthink it – get to pickin’! But here are some tiny guidelines just in case:

Don’t believe the hype. (#1)
The mind-numbing math is a lot to grasp even for experts. Don’t worry about all the algorithms, just stick with the basics—wins, seedings, and experience.

Then again…(#2-3)
It doesn’t hurt to consult some pundit pals. CBS Men’s College Basketball Analyst Greg Anthony shared with me he relies on strong seniors and road wins:

“Teams that have at least three starters who are seniors averaging double-figures are a good idea. Teams who have lots of road wins—those are the upset specials.”

Go with guards. (#4)
CBS Radio’s 106.7 The Fan host and George Mason University play-by-play voice Bill Rohland recommends a solid backcourt. “Guards win tourney games. Trust a team with above-average guard play.”

Just a few guards to consider: Peyton Siva (Louisville); Joe Jackson (Memphis); Michael Carter-Williams (Syracuse). Sports sites like CBS and ESPN will give you quick looks at rosters and schedules. Note: “Vs.” a team means “home”; “@” a team means “away.” And for help on understanding the five basic basketball positions, allow my family photo album to assist.

Not-sweet-sixteen seeds. (#5)
It’s a classic rule-of-thumb not to pick a 16 seed to win even one round. It could happen, but not so far.

Then again (again)…(#6)
Don’t put all four 1-seeds in the Final Four either. This has only happened once in modern tourney history (2008). I personally pick at least two upsets for each of the four regions and cross my fingers from there.

What’s a good upset? (#7)
Teams are paired from end to end – 16 vs. 1, 15 vs. 2 etc. If I have particular vitriol for a 4-seed I might have them go down to the 13 just for fun, but I only have an 18% chance of winning.

However, a 12 has beaten a 5 almost every year since 1989. Pick an 11 over 6 and your odds are 32%, and they get better from there. If you’re looking to pick an upset, look in the 12-9 range.

Pick more than one bracket. (#8)
Spread the fun around. I always do a sentimental one that advances my favorite teams, no matter how many unicorns they have to ride, and a second bracket based on reality. Either way, I win.

You don’t have to bet or join a group to participate. (#9)
Find free blank brackets at any sports website (CBS, ESPN etc.) where you point and click your choices, then track them online as the tourney proceeds.

Location, location, location. (#10)
Teams are supposed to play at neutral sites, but it’s almost impossible to pull this off as the tournament progresses. A (hypothetical) top-ranked New Jersey team might struggle to travel three time zones and play a (hypothetical) 16-seed Santa Barbara at noon in Los Angeles, UCSB fans’ backyard. Take note.

Go with your gut. (#11)
If picking a perfect bracket were easy, and all the rules applied, then burger and bubble gum companies wouldn’t offer millions in contests seeking one. Go with your alma mater, the furriest mascot, your gut, your heart, your kid’s heart…you never know.

Because in the end, taking part in this grand, silly, exciting ceremony unites you with an entire country for three weeks – far longer than a one-day Super Bowl. You have common ground with your kids, your co-workers, your mechanic, that cute guy on the morning train. So get on board, and get those brackets done!

The 5 Basic Basketball Positions (As Demonstrated by Awkward Family Pictures)

offense positions

This team is a sure winner for your bracket!

In 8th grade hoops, everyone was a guard, forward, or center. Or OMIGOSH, LIKE, IT’S TOTALLY SCOTT JENSEN!!!

The classic positions have evolved, but recognizing the five modern variations makes basketball much clearer. Allow my photo album to explain. (Sports are fun–and they help you organize!)

#1 spot, Point Guard:The PG directs plays. He’s quick, the best dribbler and passer, and can shoot outside or drive in. He is usually the shortest player (although “short” these days usually means six feet or more).

113Think of him as Elvis: Charismatic, 6-0, talented on multiple fronts, a risk-taker not afraid to make sacrifices for the team–by joining the Army, or just adding an assist. And if you’re a blues purist, a guy for whom the occasional…steal doesn’t hurt.

112#2 spot, Shooting Guard: The SG is typically the best outside, long-range shooter, the go-to guy. He’s also an unshakeable defender, who racks up the steals. He can take over as point guard—you’ll often see them interchanging.

Think of him as Batman: By the time you see him, it’s too late. He’s got dead-on accuracy, a big bag of tricks, and he looks remarkably like…my nephew. Hmmmm. Anyway, together, the guards comprise the “backcourt.”

114

#3 spot, Small Forward: Usually mid-six-feet, the SF is smaller than the power forward and center, but the feistiest and most versatile player. He can nail shots outside and aggressively drive in for the big scores (Michael Jordan, 6-6, played SF the latter part of his career). Skilled at drawing fouls, he’s a solid freethrow shooter.

Think of this one as: my college BFF, Marine Lieutenant Colonel Kevin Trimble. Leader, brave veteran, family man, willing to do anything for victory, and finally safe stateside again. The few, the proud, the small forwards.

115

#4 spot, Power Forward: This fella is tall and tough. He stays nearer the goal, making shorter jump shots and seeking rebounds which, on offense, give him most of his points. His focus is largely defense, blocking opposing players.

Think of him as my Granddaddy Leon McCoy Stevenson: Strapping, authoritative, high school principal, and honored four-sport coach who defended his family from the Depression. Swam, ran, and tended his own yard til his death at 92.

116

#5 spot, Center: Generally the tallest player (sometimes 7-feet+), the center is critical. He stays near the baseline (the “low post”), blocking and rebounding as a team’s last line of defense. On offense he makes short shots—very rarely will you see him outside.

Think of him as Rocky: Beloved 120-pound Lab love machine, majestic in stature, award-winner, noble retriever of any ball in his path, and the furry fulcrum of our family for 13 years. The forwards and center make up the “frontcourt.” Woof!