Rather than wait for columnists to bait readers into blind Internet anger, we at SB Nation believe in setting the curve ourselves and doing so honestly. On Troll Tuesdays, we attempt to construct the most obnoxious column on earth. Today: Let's talk about March Madness.
DAYTON, Ohio -- While the whole country fell in love with a pop-up school from Florida or a parolee playing in prime time this past weekend, you might have forgotten Duke's Ryan Kelly diving for a loose ball. Or the quiet dignity of Ohio State's Aaron Craft taking a charge to win the game. Or Indiana's Cody Zeller and his flawless fundamentals powering the Hoosiers to paydirt. Yeah, maybe you were too focused on Marshall Henderson or the Florida Gulf Coast dunk contest.
If you were, don't worry. So was everyone else.
March Madness is on four different networks this year, and we want a show.
Scratch that, folks.
We want showmen.
Like Marshall Henderson from Ole Miss. No no no, it doesn't matter how many times he tested positive for drugs or got himself arrested, or whether he went out drinking during the NCAA tournament, or how often he taunts the crowd like a 12 year-old begging for detention. He got a LeBron James tweet! Charles Barkley loves watching him! Let's have a party for him! Middle fingers for everyone!
Marshall Henderson just gave the KC crowd double middle fingers. Classy.— RockChalkBlog.com (@RockChalkBlog) March 25, 2013
Welcome to March Madness, where the inmates are running the asylum.
It's not just basketball, either.
Have you seen the Heisman Trophy winner these days? Last week, Johnny Football was seen shoving his coach during a spring practice after he threw five interceptions. Way to learn from your mistakes, Johnny. Way to set an example, Johnny.
Can't wait to see how your story ends, Johnny.
For now, it's no surprise that Manziel recognizes a peer in Marshall Henderson.
.@nativeflash22 Keep hoopin and don't listen all the BS. Keep the green light green!— Johnny Manziel (@JManziel2) March 23, 2013
Misery loves company, I guess.
(Here's to betting the company goes bankrupt someday soon.)
Maybe it's all just "BS" that Johnny Goofball will ignore, but it seems to me that in college sports these days, being a character matters more than having character.
Just look at Florida Gulf Coast. "Their style of play is very similar to ours," said a Harlem Globetrotter after it was all over. "No-look passes, alley-oops. It was great to watch."
Yes, three cheers for the modern day Globetrotters. Of course America loves this team. When they took down Georgetown Friday night, after all the alley-oops, Eagles' star Sherwood Brown couldn't even wait until the game was over before he walked up to the television announcers to shake Reggie Miller's hand and introduce himself to the world.
Florida Gulf Coast!
Are you sure we can't have a mulligan?
Are you sure we can't talk about someone like Cody Zeller, and the magical footwork that makes him a maniac down low? Or a Duke team that's been counted out all year and just keeps coming up huge? Or Aaron Craft, the little guy who squeezed every last bit of talent from his body to make it to the big time? What, he's not a Cinderella because he wins too much?
Those are some March Madness questions ... You want March Madness answers?
The simple fact is that guys like Marshall Henderson and the village people at Florida Gulf Coast fit the "Cinderella" label because they weren't good enough to be recognized to begin with. Then March rolls around, they turn it on for a few weeks, and suddenly they overshadow the guys who've been working hard their whole lives to enjoy their One Shining Moment. It's a twisted system we have here. One that rewards nobodies and makes it hard for everybody to admire the example of the somebodies.
Who wants to talk about Aaron Craft taking a game-winning charge when Marshall Henderson's giving America the middle finger?
Who wants to interview Coach K and his Duke players when Florida Gulf Coast and their Wall Street coach will walk up to the scorer's table and strike up conversation?
I don't know, folks. Cinderella sure seems like an attention whore this year. (Did David start chicken-dancing for the cameras after he took down Goliath? You tell me.)
If you ask me, it's time for an attitude adjustment.
If you ask me, we can let Marshall Henderson do his drugs and let Johnny Goofball punch his coaches and let the Florida Gulf Coast team imitate the Harlem Globetrotters and try to steal the spotlight while they have the chance.
If you ask me, no, it's not Marshall Henderson who needs an attitude adjustment, it's you. It's not Florida Gulf Coast who needs to remember what winning is all about, it's you. You and everyone else who gets caught up in the afterglow of shooting stars like Sherwood Brown or Brett Comer and forgets about the real supernovas in March Madness.
If you ask me, maybe it's time to start worshiping the other guys. Guys like Ryan Kelly and Aaron Craft. The ones too busy diving for loose balls to give interviews or throw alley-oops. We didn't hear much about them this weekend, did we? Kelly or the other stars who are here year after year. Coach K, Tom Izzo, Jim Boeheim, or Mark Few's gritty Gonzaga bunch -- losers every single year, but never quitters. Celebrate that.
If you ask me, in this era where everyone loves to generate buzz, the ones who quietly win the right way have become the real Cinderellas. Celebrate them.
But hey, you didn't ask me. So let me ask you something.
Even with all the crazy zany swag out there, this is still college, right?
It may sound crazy and zany, but class used to matter around here.