March 28, 2008

Worst. Rankings. Ever.

Popcrunch has ranked the 50 hottest student bodies in the country (found via Cecilio Guante), and the there aren't really any surprises in the top 10. All the usual suspects are here:

  1. Arizona State
  2. USC
  3. FSU
  4. Florida
  5. Ole Miss
  6. South Carolina
  7. UCLA
  8. Auburn
  9. Georgia
  10. LSU
The big shocks start a little further down when you don't see UNC until number 28. That's absolutely crazy. Carolina girls are way hotter than Wisconsin chicks. The horrible rankings only get worse when you get to Duke at #30. WHAT? Duke girls are universally mocked for being ugly, annoying nerds. I'm sure that's just a horrible stereotype, but seriously? Number 30? The pictures they had of Duke students aren't even very good. They couldn't find even a few pictures of hot Dookies, but somehow they're ranked 30th?

Maryland women checked in at #47, which I think is a bit low, but probably pretty fair. I'm sure the Terps would have ranked higher if Popcrunch had met my beautiful wife, but Maryland isn't going to jump past the southern and west coast schools that fill out the top slots. I would rank Maryland ahead of some of the Midwestern schools from the middle ranks (Indiana, Michigan, Ohio State, Wisconsin).

While we're discussing the regional rankings, I noticed that there are zero schools northeast of Penn State. It's certainly true that New England schools are not known for their hotties, but I think Boston College could have cracked the list.

A public service announcement from East Coast Bias

Kids, every year we hear tales of trauma and grief much like the following, and it's so easy for us to distance ourselves from it and dismiss it as not a real problem. Until it happens to soembody close to you. Or, more accurately, to you.

I urge you, URGE YOU, to submit your brackets well in advance of 12:00 noon on tipoff Thursday of the tournament. Give yourself time to proofread your brackets. Make sure that you've entered everything in correctly. There is nothing worse than waking up in the morning, being psyched about a picking performance the previous night that will catapult you into first place in your pool, only to see that because you were "too busy billing clients" to spend the extra five minutes to proofread your pick, or because you "wanted until the very last possible minute to make all the changes that you could" that you didn't leave yourself time to proofread your picks, that you've entered your picks incorrectly.

I, personally, was very happy watching the closing moments of Xavier and West Virginia last night. I "knew" that I had Xavier in the Elite Eight, and as of that moment, my Elite Eight was still perfect. Louisville had not beat Tennessee yet (and nobody in my pool had Louisville in the Elite Eight so that game could only help me, not hurt me). I log onto Yahoo this morning, and sure enough, I had mistakenly entered Duke to beat Xavier.

So kids, take your time when you enter your brackets. Buckle your safety belts, don't do drugs, and proofread your brackets.

Don't cry for me. I'm already dead.

March 26, 2008

Five Weird Pieces of Sports Memorbilia on E-Bay

We all know E-Bay is full of weird stuff, but here are five particularly weird pieces of sports memorabilia current up for bids.

1) Willie Mays Full Frontal Nude - Say HEY! This offering supposedly comes with the negative and the rights to the photo. You can buy it now for the low, low price of $25K. That's a lot of money to see a dude's schlong. It also makes you long for the time when you didn't wonder what is in the doctor's syringe. Hurry, Jeremy! The auction ends at 11 a.m. Thursday.

2) "Lemon-Peel" Baseball - Maybe the dead ball era occurred in part because the balls looked like something that would fall off a tropical tree. For only $275, this 125 year-old "ball" could be yours. I hate to think what kind of nasty could be produced by Dice-K flinging this oblong turd.

3) Two Crappy Tickets for Wake's 30-0 November 2006 Win over FSU - $250, where do I sign up? I mean, seriously, Maryland doesn't have the most amazing football tradition, but I can't imagine any of us would be dumb enough to shell out $250 for ticket stubs for a regular old conference game. Keep trying dude, but this $250 isn't going to fill the void caused by your divorce caused by you missing the game to pick out a new bedskirt.

4) Antique Golf Ball Vending Machine - Best placed right next to the tee box for the island green on 17 at Sawgrass. This vintage golf ball machine from the 70's apparently still works, doling out golf balls in exchange for $0.50. You could use it as a weird conversation piece, or actually stake out a place where duffers tend to lose a lot of balls. The seller claims it can be refilled.

5) Muhammad Ali Decanter from 1981 - For you middle school dropouts, a decanter is something you fill with liquid, usually a potent potable. Gather your friends and family for a quaff of fine brandy, poured directly from The Greatest's Neckhole. That's right, Cassius' head comes off with the cork, allowing you to pour a fine cocktail from his larynx. Of course, as a Muslim, Ali does not drink, but don't let that stop you from enjoying the hooch. At $199, it's a bargain.

Bid with confidence!

March 25, 2008

Idol Recap 3/25

So before I start on tonight's Recap, I'd like to apologize to our loyal six readers for the dearth of original posts the last few days, especially what with the NCAAs going on. You see... Maryland's performance this season pretty much rendered us joyless when it comes to college basketball. Further, J-Red, Brien, Russell, and myself actually also have day jobs. ECB doesn't pay the bills. So the four of us have been consumed with menial tasks like writing papers, drafting motions, and a few other things that we do just to pay the bills and to feed our sports habits. Stick with us oh ye loyal six readers... we'll be here for at least a little while longer.

Now, on to the Recap... last week's performance featured a picture of a horrifying trainwreck. Nice to see that some of the Idol contestants rebounded in a HUGE way this week.

David Cook - One of the absolute ballsiest performances I have ever seen on Idol. Performing Billie Jean in a hard rock arrangement. One of the most famous songs of all time thoroughly associated with Michael that even though had the alternate arrangement David played was never known in that particular version. And David's was phenomenal. I wouldn't spend the 99 cents on iTunes for any of these 1:45 performances, but this is the closest any performer has come so far to making me want to load up my iPod with his track.

Kristy Lee Cook -
"That was the most clever song choice I have heard in years" - Simon (post-performance)

"This is fucking brilliant! She's playing up to all the people in middle America who would never vote against the flag and is practically screaming 'Vote the Nigerian boy or the Irish girl off!!!!! Don't vote the pretty blonde American girl who rides horses off!' She's awesome! - Jeremy (laughing, during performance).

I said to the wife that Kristy Lee proved herself to be the most genius Idol contestant ever with this song choice of God Bless the USA. Talk about knowing how the game is played. Nicely done Kristy, nicely done. And you did actually sing it pretty well too.

David Archuleta - I don't know the song, but as usual, he sang it well. But Simon was spot on that this could've been out of "It's a Small World" themepark-like ride. And he got in a little dig at David's dad too. Nicely done Cowell. David can sing well but I'm not sure he has the charisma to win. See Melinda Doolittle last year. David will get the teenybopper vote more than Melinda did, but Melinda's "aww shucks" act wore thin by the final three when she lost out to two performers who brought more personality to the table.

Michael Johns - Given that his best two performances to date were Bohemian Rhapsody during Hollywood Week and We Will Rock You/We Are the Champions tonight, maybe he should just join a Queen cover band. I really would like to hear him take on Somebody to Love. But anyway, tonight's performance was excellent. Lots of energy, looked like he was loving life up on stage, and we FINALLY saw the Michael who showed up during Hollywood Week. Hopefully he'll use this week as a springboard because putting aside the fact that he used to work as a mascot for an Aussie football team, I really, really like him.

Jason Castro - He'll skate by because of the blue eyes, big eyelashes, girlish cheekbones, and goofy grin. But unless he branches out soon, his shelf life is limited to about three more weeks. He's got talent but he's become apathetic.

Syesha Mercado - I watch the show on DVR about 40 minutes before it starts. When I check my e-mail just before turning the show on and see an e-mail from J-Red warning me to watch for Syesha, I know I'm probably in for something good because that's a first from J-Red. Syesha is back people. She was Mariah Carey-esque in her performance tonight. Simon was right, she did stretch her vocal range to the limits. But my understanding is that's what the performers are supposed to do. Syesha is likeable and the girl can flat-out sing.

Brooke White - This could have been fabulous. But we all get protective of our favorite songs. Every Breath You Take just happens to be one of my favorite songs. Hence me being very upset when P-Diddy did his own little take to mourn Biggie. And hence me being upset when the band came up and Brooke tried to take on the original version of the song. Agree with the judges... I could totally tolerate her doing her own solo slowed down version with just the piano. It was nice. It was pretty. But she's not big enough to take on the original arrangement. She'll survive I think though. She had good stage presence to march on after flubbing the first note and starting over. Honestly, I didn't know that's what it was. I thought she just missed her cue. She's in danger of being in the bottom three this week if we go just by this week's performances.

Ramiele Mulabay - Better than last week and that's not saying much. Alone by Heart was not a good song because everybody automatically compared her to Carly who has the voice to sing a far superior version, and who did sing a far superior version in Hollywood Week. Plus, she was born in Saudi Arabia. With that in mind, going up against Kristy Lee's performance, Ramiele must be a terrorist who any good red-blooded American Idol voters would never support. But of course that's not what Kristy Lee Cook was thinking, right????

Eze - Nice job buddy. You're not going to listen to judges who praised you for singing up tempo songs the past few weeks and blasted you for ballads? You're going to listen to the bandleader?!?! His job is to play your background music and to get it right. That's it. I'll give you credit for at least singing the song well and showing some range and depth to your voice. Your performance though was catatonic and sleep-inducing and you put yourself squarely in danger. Especially with Kristy Lee Cook's song choice which could make middle America harken back to the days of segregated schools. But of course that's not what Kristy Lee Cook was thinking, right????

Carly Smithson - Simon was actually very poignantly accurate tonight. I was super excited for Carly to follow up Michael's awesome performance, especially when I heard the first few bars of Total Eclipse of the Heart, again, awesome song, and a great song for somebody like Carly with a big voice. However, last week's bottom three performance scared the shit out of Carly who was clearly feeling the pressure tonight and it showed in her performance. She was ahead of the backup singers, then behind them, and all over the place when it came to pace. She didn't show much stage presence. She looked like she wanted to just pound out the song. She's going to need just a kick-ass performance to get her footing back. She's safe for now, but I still think in this week's Bottom 3. America might be ready to get rid of the tattoed, Irish girl with the scary looking boyfriend who has 95% of his body covered in ink. But of course that's not what Kristy Lee Cook was thinking, right????

NCAA Sweet 16 vs. My Super Sweet 16 - Tale of the Tape

For years, both the NCAA and teenage girls have been using the term "sweet 16." Recently, MTV threw its weight behind the teen girls with its show "My Super Sweet 16." So in today's "tale of the tape" it's a battle of the "Sweet 16s" - the NCAA vs. MTV.

As always, the tale of the tape idea was stolen from Nick Bakay.

My Super Sweet 16NCAA Sweet 16
The show debuted in 2005.The NCAA tournament expanded to 16 teams in 1951.
Teenage girls trying to one-up their rivals by throwing a bigger party.The best college basketball teams in the country facing off for a national championship.
Theme Song
Hillary Duff - Sweet SixteenCBS Basketball Theme (wav)
NCAA (could this be a runaway vicory?)
Voice Overs
Self-absorbed teens
Self-absorbed old men
MTV steals one (thanks, CBS).
Baby-faced teen girls
What was that?
Eye Candy
Ummm, no comment.
NCAA (I'd like to stay out of jail)
Parents spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on extravagant parties.
Boosters spend thousands of dollars convincing players to choose their school.
Celebrity Appearances
Jermaine Dupri
Vince Gill
NCAA (anything is better than Jermaine Dupri)
MTV (anything is better than the stripes on the side of the Stanford uniforms)

Final Total: 5-3-1
Not a big surprise, the NCAA wins it running away. That makes the NCAA Tournament the official use of the term "Sweet 16."

March 24, 2008

ECB Bracket Challenge

Now that the Sweet 16 is set, we're underway. Let's see who survived the first weekend.


Sweet 16

UNC over Notre Dame
Louisville over Tennessee

Clemson over Kansas
Wisconsin over Davidson

Memphis over Pitt
Texas over Marquette

UCLA over Drake
Duke over Xavier

Elite 8

UNC over Louisville
Clemson over Wisconsin
Memphis over Texas
UCLA over Duke

Final 4

UNC over Clemson
Memphis over UCLA

Memphis over UNC


Sweet 16

UNC over Wazzu
OU over Tennessee (groan, did I really pick that?)

Kansas over Clemson
Wisconsin over G'Town

Memphis over Mich. St.
Texas over Stanford

UCLA over Drake
West Virginia over Baylor

Elite 8

UNC over OU
Wisconsin over Kansas
Texas over Memphis

Final 4

UNC over Wisconsin
UCLA over Texas



Sweet 16

UNC over Notre Dame
Louisville over Tennessee

Kansas over Clemson
Wisconsin over Georgetown

Memphis over Pitt
Texas over Marquette

UCLA over UConn
Xavier over Duke

Elite 8

UNC over Tennessee
Kansas over Wisconsin
Texas over Memphis
UCLA over Xavier

Final 4

UNC over Kansas
UCLA over Texas



Sweet 16

UNC over Notre Dame
L'ville over Butler

Kansas over Clemson
USC over G'Town

Pitt over Memphis
Texas over Stanford

UCLA over Drake
Duke over Xavier

Elite 8

UNC over Louisville
Kansas over UNC
Texas over Pitt
UCLA over Duke

Final 4

UCLA over Texas
UNC over Kansas



Brien - 10 pts (6 E8, 3 F4)
J-Red - 10 pts (7 E8, 4 F4)
Jeremy - 9 pts (8 E8, 4 F4)
Russell - 7 pts (6 E8, 4 F4)