clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

The Harlem Shake's one-month sports anniversary: How long can this go on?

Surely the end is near.

66-year-old Virginia Tech football coach Frank Beamer.

You thought the Minnesota Timberwolves killed the Harlem Shake meme. No. It's only just now hitting the ACC, with Virginia Tech and Miami dropping theirs over the weekend (and Georgia Tech seemingly up next).

After weeks of dealing with such steady output, one has to wonder when this will run dry. It's been a month since the Georgia men's swimming team released its version on Feb. 11, which was the first one many of us saw and the first I can find to have been done by a major sports team. That was also around the time the whole thing really took off for both sporting and non-sporting types.

Since then, it's only gotten more unavoidable, with teams from the NBA, SEC football, MLB, Big Ten football and the NHL and prospects at the NFL Combine adding to the racket.

How much longer? Which team will be the last team to post a Harlem Shake video? And what else can there possibly be to do here?


March 11: Surely another team will do one before end of business.

March 12: launched.

March 13: Every other football team in the ACC releases a Harlem Shake video at the same time. Due to the confusion, they are somehow all overlooked.

[Note: Any blanks in our timeline should be presumed to overlook teams still releasing Harlem Shake videos. We're only chronicling noteworthy incidents here.]

March 17: Roger Goodell fines James Harrison.

March 18: Fines him again. Harrison is not a member of any NFL team and has never heard of the Harlem Shake.

March 31: The Houston Astros are praised for taking the Harlem Shake to disturbing new levels, though they were merely trying to infield.

April 7: You are as high as a weather balloon if you think there won't be a WrestleMania Harlem Shake starring Pete Rose.

April 11: Massive Harlem Shake at the Masters. Will be remembered as one of four most offensive things in human history.

October 24: Someone actually from Harlem does a Harlem Shake meme video ha ha no that will not happen.


June 3: Carolina Panthers owner Jerry Richardson topples from his breakfast golf cart while having daily bloodwork done. As he lands, a flurry of valets, security personnel and handmaidens spring to his assistance, tripping over each other in their frenzy. A disgruntled stable boy films all this and uploads it as a Harlem Shake video. A furious Richardson turns the stable boy's whole world upside down, literally purchases the stable boy's house and orders a crane operator to flip it over. Someone complains this has nothing to do with the authentic Harlem Shake dance.

September 10: NASCARlem Shake. Don't ask.


August 14: A South Dakota minor league baseball team renames itself the Harlem Shakes for one night.

August 30: The new SimCity works.


April 6: This GIF of unknown origin of Lebron James and his oscillating teammates is still just straight-up amazing:



February 29: Yep, still.


October 30: During a live mooncast, Kanye West spends three hours apologizing to "Earth as a people and as a heavenly f------ body" for a litany of misdeeds, including the time in 2016 when his gospel pop band with Shooter Jennings turned the Harlem Shake into the tear-jerking dance soundtrack of West's botched documentary starring Karl Lagerfeld on the search for Atlantis. 2016 was really late for such a thing, but it just reminded everybody of the time he sampled that Will Ferrell ice-skating movie. West laments the whole thing as racist, but refuses to blame Jennings, whom he describes as his "moon brother, but not really my equal in any way ever, ever, ever."

In response, openly identifying racists in North America, Europe and Japan (just to back up, identifying as a racist will briefly become a trend, with racist support groups springing up and a racist recovery reality spacecast making stars of troubled racists) take up the Harlem Shake all over again as a beacon of pure racism. Not of, like, personal sovereignty or states' rights or other good things that have been previously contorted by racists. Just racism for racism's sake.

The Washington Redskins, finally realizing the full potential of the meme, introduce their Harlem Shake video. It is unspeakably offensive, banned from all spacecasts, and ends the racism fad.


March 15: Notre Dame football does a by-the-numbers, 35-second Harlem Shake video.


November 1: MLS' San Antonio Scourge, the most popular team in the galaxy, releases a video called "Harlem Shake Meme." Teens love it. No-fun oldsters lament it has nothing to do with the authentic Harlem Shake meme. Wikipedia edit war claims lives.




December 31: Dan Dierdorf learns what YouTube is.

More from SB Nation:

NFL mock draft: Changes on the eve of free agency

Watch Tom Crean's postgame altercation with Michigan assistant

Tiger Woods wins WGC-Cadillac Championship

Swimsuit model Alyssa Miller joins The Halfy Hour

Just how powerful is Roger Goodell?

Are advanced stats good for fans?