Hey, it's Andy here, Mark is on the plane for Minnesota, so he wanted me to come on here and clarify some things.
-THERE WAS NO CEASE AND DESIST FROM THE NCAA, NOR WAS THE NCAA INVOLVED IN ANY WAY. This has been reported inaccurately today by The Big Lead (who later changed what they said) and SI's Campus Clicks (who has not changed what they are saying). The bylaw Mark put down is fictitious and was added for humor, not fact. Bylaw 34.4.3? Mark Titus, #34, for 3. A joke. The NCAA? Aside from the title, they were never a part of it. Mark was told to remove the merchandise counter as a PRECAUTION, not as a CEASE AND DESIST in any kind of way.
-Mark is not selling any t-shirts, getting any money from their sales, or anything associated with that. It's very disappointing to see SI's "On Campus" homepage have the blurb "OSU backup busted" in the lead for you to go to the Campus Clicks. It's even more disappointing to see completely untrue reporting passed off as fact like "he's even sold merchandise on the site. Unfortunately, the NCAA got word of his profitable business, and he was slapped with a cease and desist notice. Well, back to bench warming." As I stated, that is simply not true about both the merchandise, as well as the NCAA being involved in any way, shape, or form. The bench warming? Okay, we'll give you that. They even link to the blog where he explicitly explains how he did neither of those!
When Mark gets to Minneapolis, he might come on and edit some of this. Until then, I'm calling on the Trillion Man March to flood SI's Campus Clicks Mailbag, and any other kind of e-mail place on SI's website, and kindly demand that they remove what they said about Mark having any sort of NCAA violation and promptly apologize. Even better would be to find Nicki Jhabvala's e-mail address (she's the one that wrote the Campus Clicks) and send the messages directly to her.
After that, you guys should all check out a quality piece done on Mark today by the Minneapolis Star-Tribune. Now, back to the real reason you're here...
Personally, I think New Year's is a pretty sorry excuse for a holiday, but any holiday that allows me to shower confetti on people I've never met in my life is a holiday I will at least acknowledge. The start of a new year means I will inevitably fill out every form asking for the date with something like 1/12/08 and hope that whoever is processing the information can figure out what I meant to write. I'm particularly excited about one year from now because it provides the first opportunity in ten years to return to the format of saying the year as two numbers (i.e. Nineteen Sixty-Five), instead of the current system of one number (i.e. Two Thousand Seven). I sincerely hope America collectively decides to go with Twenty Ten and not Two Thousand Ten. It's less syllables and thus makes more sense. Who's with me on this one?
New Year's is also the only time of year I ever hear anybody use the word "resolution" when they should be using the word "goal." Well I'm not falling for into the resolution trap. I'm going to outline my New Year's Goals. And unlike your goal of losing 20 pounds, I actually plan on seeing these through. So without Freddy Adu, here are my top 10 goals (in no particular order) for 2009:
Play Los Feliz golf course in Los Angeles with Bill Simmons.
Los Feliz is the course played by Mike and Rob in "Swingers." If you are not familiar with this movie, please get off your computer, call the cool guy in your group of friends, and ask if you can borrow it so that you can escape the rut of mediocrity you currently live in. At the very least go to YouTube and type in "Swingers/Gretzky" and prepare to be blown away (I would link you to it, but it's got R-rated language and I try to run a family friendly operation here). After watching that scene, consider the fact that Keller bought me an authentic Roenick jersey from the Blackhawks for my birthday and I returned the favor and bought him a Chelios jersey that looks identical to mine. It's perfectly fine for you to admit that we are a little bit cooler than you originally thought. Anyway, Los Feliz is in L.A. and is probably a short three hour drive from Simmons' place in L.A. I'm thinking we get a camera crew to document what goes down and either release the footage or let me write a blog about it. I can't speak for his golf game, but I can assure you that my golf game can best be described as "entertainingly entertaining." All of you Simmons readers out there know that you would love to see this happen. Simmons, if you're down let me know.
Get a picture of Steve Perry wearing a Club Trillion T-shirt.
This is pretty self-explanatory. Steve Perry was the sole reason I got out of bed for a period of two years in my life. Everyday I would wake up and say to myself, "Life could be worse. Journey could have never existed." I know I claimed that these goals are in no particular order, but let's be honest, this is my #1 goal. I don't care if he doesn't read the blog or have any idea who I am. I just want to know that at some point in time Steve Perry had a Club Trillion T-shirt on. Even if he wears the shirt, takes the picture, and then gets rid of it and goes his separate way, I will be the happiest man in the world.
"Dot" Erin Andrews, if you know what I mean.
Because what I mean is making a jump shot over her outstretched arm. When she works our games, she usually comes to the shoot around in the morning and hobnobs with the superstars. Hopefully I can get her to put a hand up and hopefully I can muster the strength to actually shoot the ball and not stare in amazement. This could prove to be the toughest goal of all.
Win Deadspin's "Sports Human of the Year" Award.
Again, this one is kind of self-explanatory. The funny thing about the award is that you don't have to be good at sports or be a good human to win it. So while your immediate thought of "There's no way this bench-warming jerk can win that thing" may be an accurate description of me, it could also be a very inaccurate analysis of my chances at winning. Plus "Baby Mangino" can't win next year, so my chances of winning are that much greater.
Do a live television interview.
There is no reason why "First Take" or "Jim Rome Is Burning" doesn't bite on this. They both like obscure stories that you don't see everyday and I think this blog fits that mold. I don't want to go on TV to beat on my chest, though. I want to go on live TV for one reason only--to make our Sports Information Director, who will be standing just off camera, hyperventilate from nervousness about what I am going to say. I have a (misunderstood and highly inaccurate) reputation of being edgy with what I say and when I say it. Even though I completely understand what is appropriate, the perception is that I will go on live TV and drop four letter words like Braylon Edwards drops any ball thrown at him. The element of the unknown paired with an overall lack of trust will make our SID lose his mind as the interview approaches, which would be perfect.
Grow an iconic mustache in the off-season.
Let's think about the greatest mustaches the world has ever seen. Adam Morrison, Samuel Clemens, Mark Twain, the dude from MythBusters, Aaron Tippin, Jonah Takalua, B.J. Mullens, Jim Dangle, Ron Burgundy, Ravishing Rick Rude, Borat, Randy Marsh, Steve Smith, Sam Elliot, Carl Weathers, and Keller. What's that you say? What about people like Adolf Hitler, Saddam Hussein, Geraldo Rivera, and Keller? Good point. Maybe a mustache isn't such a great idea.
Learn Spanish slang from Rudy Fernandez.
It's no secret that I love Rudy Fernandez. Go ahead and make your "Is it coincidence that you love Rudy Fernandez and you are kind of like the 'Rudy' Ruettiger for Ohio State?" jokes. To answer your question, yes it is a coincidence. Rudy Fernandez is my favorite player on the Blazers, which says a lot considering my friend since junior high and former teammate Greg Oden plays for them. Come to think of it, why do I not just use Greg to see this goal through? Maybe that should be my next prank. For every month that goes by that I don't meet Rudy, I should give out a digit of Greg's phone number. Although, the dude's got more phones than Ari Gold, so he could just end up tossing the phone with the number I have. Still, meeting Rudy needs to happen. Plus, I'm teaching myself Spanish right now, but the software I'm using doesn't teach slang words. I could meet one of my favorite NBA players and enhance my Spanish-speaking abilities. Sounds like a great way to kill two stones with one bird.
Have an on-campus deli change the name of their club sandwich to "The Club Trillion."
This is a no-brainer. A majority of the people who eat at the cafeterias on campus are freshman. If there's one thing all freshman want (besides a fake ID) it's to be awesome, which I guess is why they get fake IDs in the first place. If there's one thing Club Trillion strives for, it's being awesome. So why not have a sandwich that exemplifies the awesomeness Club Trillion strives for. Freshman (and all people for that matter) would quite literally eat that up.
Get into some sort of exclusive place or bypass a long line because the owner/manager/whoever is throwing the party reads this blog.
This would make me a legend in my circle of friends. I'm not sure how this will come about, but when/if it happens, my mind will be blown. It's commonplace for average joes like you and I to be standing in line to get into anywhere, when suddenly a group of five guys wearing way too much jewelery bypass the entire line and walk right in. I used to be in that group (sans the jewelry) when Greg was on campus, but I have since been demoted. The perfect scenario for me to get redemption would be if we went somewhere as a team and one of the good players (preferably Evan Turner--duh) went up to the front of the line and dropped the "Do you know who I am?" routine. The bouncer or whoever would shake his head with a look of disgust until he looked at me, started laughing, and said something along the lines of, "Yo man, love the blog. These your boys? You guys are straight then, come on in." As the whole team walks by him, the bouncer would grab Evan's attention and say something like, "Why didn't you say you were Titus' boy?" at which point Evan would have that look on his face that suggests maybe it's time for him to re-evaluate his life.
Have a wrestling buddy made in my likeness. (Possible alternative: Tag-team wrestling buddies of Keller and me)
Fun Fact: I sleep with my Ultimate Warrior wrestling buddy every night. Not so much because I am a child and need protection from the Boogeyman, but rather because I truly believe that somehow Warrior's awesomeness is transmitted to me through osmosis (The man legally changed his name to Warrior and is from Indiana. How is that not awesome?). I'm not sure about today's America, but the America I remember when I was growing up had a rule that said if you didn't have a wrestling buddy, you didn't have power. Give today's kids a little history lesson in being awesome by letting them have a wrestling buddy. Parents who think I'm a bad influence would have an opportunity to buy something that allows their kids to beat the Michigan out of me. It's really a win-win situation that lacks any sort of evidence as to why it's not a good idea.
A lot of people are wanting me to bring back the #34 jersey counter. However, I am not going to do this for two reasons. The first being that if I can't count the t-shirts, I am certainly not going to support the team shop and their jerseys. Funny how when I promote the Ohio State team shop, it's all good, but when I promote anything other than the Ohio State team shop, the hammer is dropped. Consider this my sticking it to the man. Secondly, the first game after I stopped tracking the jerseys there were about 30 of them and that's way too much work. Deal with it.
Also, let me clear up a misconception and say I was not violating any NCAA rules. It was explained to me as more of a preventative thing than anything else. I understand your concern for my eligibility, but I assure you it's all good.
Bone-Crushing Screens: 1 to date (0 last game)
Here's your awesome YouTube clip, sent in to me by John G. There's your shout-out, John. And here's your video.
Here is the same video as a link, for all you iPhone users out there.
Your Friend and My Favorite,
Club Trillion Founder