AJ Daulerio's Cultural Oddsmaker runs every Friday. Email him to let him know what you think.
There are no more slow news days in sports. Forever. The last 10 days has brought forth a landslide of Bob Ley-throws-a-town-meeting type issues that are sure to last a good few months and still be important when the post-Super Bowl deadness sets in. Take your pick between Roid Records, shifty NBA referees or David Beckham changing his cleats during the 81st minute of a charity game, and there'll always be a story.
But the most disturbing sports news of late are the Michael Vick dogfighting allegations. The federal indictment on Vick has transformed him from showboating NFL quarterback with a Valtrex prescription and a penchant for doobies to one of the most vile people on the planet. Regardless of how nice your smile is, once your name gets attached to electrocuting dogs, your credibility as a human being starts to diminish. And poor ESPN News reporter Kelly Naqi appears to be stuck in Virginia for the duration, forced to do updates every day regardless if anything happens. At some point, pressured to get any kind of update, she'll be seen running around Newport News, Virginia with a pocketful of Snausages trying to interview a bull mastiff.
Whether the allegations are true or not, it's obvious that Mike Vick was not the squeaky clean superstar everybody hoped he'd be. He's a sociopathic thug who probably had childhood hobbies like setting frogs on fire and punching old ladies in the breast. He's evil incarnate, and it's about time the truth came out that this isn't the type of guy that advertisers would want shilling for them. Save the big money sponsorships for athletes who are more deserving, like, you know, the married ones that have sex with teenaged hotel attendants. The only one who comes out winning in this situation is Marcus Vick, who now, remarkably, becomes the good son. Good boy, Marcus. Now go help Elijiah Wood. He's hanging off a cliff.
This Michael Vick issue should, at least, be alarming for other franchises who've invested big money into players they've designated the face of their franchise. Can any of them be trusted?
So this week, I'm carving a pentagram into my wrist with a pencil, sacrificing virgins in the men's room and placing odds on the next "good guy" athlete to be revealed as rotten to the core.
Let him who hath understanding reckon the number of the beast...
Scream for me, Long Beach.
Joe Mauer: 3/1
Hey, it's the All American kid who just loves to play ball. Quiet, unassuming, leads on the field and doesn't cause too much of a ruckus. But don't be fooled by this facade; behind that catcher's mask lies the heart of a soulless cannibal. Those cold Minnesota winters get lonely sometimes, and Joe Mauer has a refrigerator full of Vietnamese teenage boys hacked up to keep him company. He'll still wash them down with a cold glass of milk, though.
Donovan McNabb: 2/1
It's tough to put 5 on here, but his name keeps coming up in Philly papers in connection with the Vick story along the lines of "just be thankful we know our quarterback doesn't bodyslam pit bulls in the offseason." But do we really know? It's entirely possible that McNabb has been fooling us the whole time as well. Next time he flashes that big smile, inspect his incisors for kitten fur.
Sidney Crosby: 4/1
The Pittsburgh Penguins center (or "centre") has all the makings of actually surpassing all the hype that's surrounded him since he's been 12 years old. He's a natural at his sport, a tireless workhorse, and shockingly humble. Plus, he chooses to live with the Lemieux family during the season, willing to be accept the guidance handed down to him by his elders. But it's too good to be true. We'll soon find out that Crosby has actually been a lifelong member of Al-Qaeda and been using the Lemieux's basement to plot terrorist attacks all over the world.
Andy Roddick: 1/1
No, he hasn't lived up to his expectations and won't win any significant tournaments as long as Roger Federer is around, but Andy Roddick is still the face of American men's tennis. He's like the John Mayer or sports world, however, and that would drive any person to eventually worship Satan. And the further Roddick tumbles down the national tennis rankings, the more and more his dark side will radiate. Pay attention as the years go by and he begins dressing in black at Wimbledon, blasting Venom in the locker room and replacing his Gatorade with dove's blood. Eventually, he won't show up to tournament to attend Peter Gilmore's birthday party in a burned-out church and soon after that we'll find out he's guilty of the Paradise Lost murders.