As college basketball takes center stage in the sports world during March Madness, we here at Deadspin got to reminiscing about one of college basketball’s most legendary, infamously psychopathic incidents which involved one of the game’s most legendary, infamously psychopathic figures. We are speaking, of course, of the time back in 1985 when Bobby Knight got mad and hurled a chair across the court in the middle of a game.
While appreciating the particulars of this insane act from the past, we found ourselves wondering what precisely it would take to throw a chair in such a way. How much latent anger does this require? Is it more a feat of strength or of technique? Is this a skill innate to Hoosiers or could any rando execute the move with similar adeptness as Knight?
To answer these questions, we amassed two groups of willing participants and set up a little chair throwing competition. On one side, we had the Deadspin Idiots; on the other, Gizmodo Media employees who hail from the great state of Indiana. I qualified for both tribes, though it didn’t take a moment’s consideration to throw my lot in with my true people, my fellow Hoosiers. With these groups formed and ready, we went out to The Cage to try our luck.
Once on the court and armed with some folding chairs and a traffic cone to aim at, we got busy. Each team was given two attempts to throw the chair at the cone. The goal was to hit the cone, but if a competitor missed, we measured the distance of the chair’s final resting place from the cone. After the chairs had been thrown, we added up each team’s combined distance and crowned a winner.
The conclusion was predictable: Hoosiers are good-natured, cheery people who can’t really be bothered to try all that hard for what is at heart a deeply stupid idea, while your average Deadspin Idiot is a dumb rage-head who loves to bring harm to inanimate objects such as folding chairs and orange cones.