IDIOT OF THE YEAR: The annual descent into madness continues

IDIOT OF THE YEAR: The annual descent into madness continues

Here are 10 more bastions of stupidity for you to sigh at

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Welcome once again, dearest and most beloved reader, to Deadspin’s vaunted IDIOT OF THE YEAR awards, the global phenomenon in which we say churlish things about people we dislike. Huzzah!

Missed yesterday’s installment? Here it is.

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40. Brian Urlacher

40. Brian Urlacher

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What a waste of such a successful hair regrowth story.

It might be time to change some of those Brian Urlacher highway billboards by O’Hare Airport that greets visitors when they arrive in Chicago. That lettuce is sitting on top of a lifesize idiot burger.

Urlacher spends New Year’s Eve at Mar-a-Lago, promotes election-denying propaganda, and smiles when talking about undocumented immigrants being shipped to the East Coast in a stupid and cruel publicity stunt. That was all on Jay Cutler’s podcast. On Bussin’ with the Boys he claimed that some former players are faking CTE.

Those billboards would be much better served telling people the location of the closest Portillos.

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39. Scott Frost

39. Scott Frost

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The savior of Nebraska football didn’t make it to Week 4 of his fifth season, getting unceremoniously dropped after losing — and giving up a bazillion points and yards — to a Georgia Southern team that finished 6-6. There are a number of dumb things that he did during his tenure at Lincoln, but bragging about his players puking an unhealthy amount during fall camp before getting beat in the fourth quarter by Northwestern for their only win of the year is among the dumbest.

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38. Tampa Bay Rays

38. Tampa Bay Rays

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It’s a wonder how one of the smartest organizations in all of professional sports could employ some of the most stone-headed, ignorant players. Remember this...

How hard is it to wear something? Even if you don’t necessarily want to wear it, it’s not difficult to put on a patch. Most people don’t want to wear slacks everyday, but damn, business casual happens to be the dress code, just like how baseball players have to wear the same uniform.

Even stupider on these players’ parts is how they outed themselves to the rest of the team. According to reports, there were only five players who refused to wear the patches, and those five must have stuck out like a sore thumb to everyone else in the locker room afterward. Might as well pin a badge to your shirt that reads “I’m a bigot.”

I mean, think about it. More than likely, a good proportion of your team’s fans are a part of the LGBTQIA+ community, and these players were essentially saying, we don’t value your life. We all understand that most athletes have a disconnect from their fans. They don’t value us the same way we value them, but for them to come forward and essentially say “Yeah, we don’t value anything you stand for,” especially when what they stand for is love for all people... that’s harsh, cruel, and above all else, stupid. That’s why they’re on this list.

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37. Marcus Stokes

37. Marcus Stokes

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Do you know how easy it is for white people to not say the N-word? Pretty damn easy. Most of them go their entire lives without saying it. It’s easy to acknowledge the rule — Don’t say it under any circumstances” — given its history rooted in hate. Well, former Florida commit Marcus Stokes couldn’t follow that simple rule.

This was so stupid that Marcus himself tried to delete the evidence as soon as it became public. He knew how stupid it was and immediately tried backtracking as soon as everyone knew what a scumbag he really is. Florida rescinded his scholarship, which thankfully, Stokes understood. While Stokes did eventually come forward, taking accountability for his actions via Twitter, “I fully accept the consequences for my actions and I respect the University of Florida’s decision to withdraw my scholarship offer to play football,” we all know he did so not because he was sorry for his actions, but rather because he was sorry he got caught.

It doesn’t matter if your favorite song’s lyrics have that word. You just don’t say it. Never. You’d think it’d be the easiest rule to follow given how easily such an action can destroy people’s careers, but Stokes just had to get that awesome Snapchat off didn’t he? Now, look at him. He’s got nobody to blame but himself.

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36. Jack Del Rio

36. Jack Del Rio

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Jack Del Rio. What a dumbass. The defensive coordinator for the NFL team in our nation’s capital called the Jan. 6 insurrection “a dustup and doubled down on it, asking America what’s so different between riots over race relations and a bunch of racist assholes invading Washington to try to overturn the election. He got fined and deleted his Twitter (before it was cool), but can still be found in burgundy and gold calling the Commanders’ defense.

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35. Bob Baffert

35. Bob Baffert

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There’s not much to be said about Bob Baffert, trainer of the finest ponies modern science can construct. Bob got himself suspended for a season for one too many failed drug tests (not him, the horses) and now spends his free time threatening news outlets for including him in justifiable “best cheater” rankings.

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34. Fernando Tatís Jr.

34. Fernando Tatís Jr.

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We’ve all wanted to gain a competitive edge before, whether it be pulling your phone out for a difficult question at trivia night or finding the answers to an upcoming test on Quizlet. However, when oodles of cash start getting involved, providing yourself with an unfair advantage isn’t just dishonest; it’s egotistical, believing you can get away with cheating and that other people don’t deserve the same help that you do. After all, the way you play is what determines your paycheck and if you doing well means others do poorly, that’s going to affect their paychecks as well.

Fernando Tatís Jr. could’ve earned himself a spot on this list solely for using PEDs, but what guaranteed his spot on this list was the excuse he offered for his behavior.

Ringworm medication? My word, man. Pull yourself together!

Tatís claims that he took the substance not knowing it had been banned by MLB. Yeah, right. These are professional athletes. The Padres were in the middle of a playoff run and were looking to dethrone the Dodgers in the NL West. Tatís earns millions of dollars to be good at baseball. If there was any chance that the substance could’ve been illegal in MLB, Tatís would’ve known. His agent, trainers, or closest members of the Padres’ staff would’ve told him right then and there that he couldn’t use that substance. Tatís did anyway. He knew what he was doing. Three Major Leaguers have been suspended for this substance since 2012. There isn’t a scenario where Tatís doesn’t know exactly what he’s getting into.

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33. Yankee Fans

33. Yankee Fans

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While fans of the Bronx Bombers get lots of hate (they hate ‘em cuz they ain’t ‘em, perhaps?) some of it was deserved when it came to fans booing Arson… er, Aaron Judge. Yes, he had horrible 2022 postseason numbers, but without his MVP season, the Yanks likely miss the cut. But outside of Harrison Bader’s homers, there weren’t too many reasons to cheer during the ALCS. Judge needed to remain in the Bronx, even if Hal had to overpay.

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32. Tommy Tuberville

32. Tommy Tuberville

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Former Auburn head football coach and current GOP Senator Tommy Tuberville likes what Black people can do for him. It doesn’t mean that he actually likes them. That’s apparent by him being a Republican in the south, and some comments he made earlier this year.

“They want reparation because they think the people that do the crime are owed that! Bullshit,” he said.

The “they” that Tuberville is talking about is Black people. Besides, Black folks are the only ones that still haven’t received any kind of reparations for building this entire country… for free.

Just a few years ago, Tuberville was making millions off a sport in which a whole bunch of unpaid Black teenagers put their brains and bodies at harm each week to entertain the masses. And people wonder how he got elected.

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31. Anonymous Lamar Jackson-Hating Defensive Coordinator

31. Anonymous Lamar Jackson-Hating Defensive Coordinator

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There’s a special kind of strength in saying the quiet parts of the NFL’s racism out loud through anonymous statements. That unique “strength” is a weakness of the league and numerous of its parts. It’s all to stir up trouble from keyboard warriors. Typically it’s nothing of substance but ignoring a story from The Athletic’s Mike Sando ranking the NFL’s quarterbacks with evaluators moving the goalposts based on race would be negligent.

The problem is this story devolves into chaos by factoring in the opinions of 50 people. The secret identities of this group include six general managers, eight head coaches, 10 talent evaluators, 12 coordinators, six quarterback coaches, and seven executives. Back in July, that group ranked Aaron Rodgers as the NFL’s best quarterback, which looks like a great choice now. Sandwiching Patrick Mahomes at No. 2 is Tom Brady in the bronze-medal spot, which is also shit-tastic. Now let’s dive into the real awful takes by that group: Lamar Jackson at No. 10 and Kyler Murray three spots behind.

“If he has to pass to win the game, they ain’t winning the game,” a defensive coordinator said, stupidly of Jackson. Here’s the skinny on Murray: “I think he is a wide receiver mentality playing quarterback,” an evaluator somehow surmised of Murray. “… Things have to be a certain type of way for him to have success. Being more of a loner or introvert at that position is tough.” Wow. What horrible, misguided takes. The identities of those who spoke about Jackson and Murray aren’t clear, but it rings like a certain guy who likened the Capitol insurrection to a “dustup” and actually hasn’t actually played against them that much.

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