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      Great Moments in Stupid Sports Question History

      Today is Ask a Stupid Question Day. We know. It’s a stupid holiday. But hey, America! Actually, it was created in the 1980s by teachers to encourage more kids to ask questions in class. (So, it’s legit. Bet you feel bad for talking smack about it. Ha! Who’s stupid now? Huh? Don’t answer that.) The actual Ask a Stupid Question Day is supposed to be on Sept. 28, but they celebrate it on the final school day of September. Again, that seems kind of stupid. What was wrong with Sept. 28? It was a perfectly good Monday. Why do you hate Mondays, America? Don’t answer that. Anyway, sports and stupid questions go together like coffee and cream, like white on rice, like cold on ice. The two weeks of hype leading up to the Super Bowl are fertile ground for stupid questions. It most infamously gave us the twisted tale of the guy who supposedly asked Doug Williams how long he had been a black quarterback (or did it? Here’s the actual story in Snopes). But sports reporters don’t need a big event like the Super Bowl to drop a stupid bomb. The occasion can be as innocuous as a trip to Green Bay to face the Packers. Actual question once asked of Bucs coach Tony Dungy before such a trip: “Coach, do you like cheese?” Stupid is as stupid does, right? It's OK, though. Stupid questions will always make great fodder for satirical essays. Oh, we know it’s not easy coming up with brilliant ways to get athletes and coaches to make brilliant comments. Most questions reporters ask are vanilla and lame. In fact, good, reasonable questions often elicit the worst answers. So, today, we celebrate the stupid questions in sports. These questions, in particular, made history.

      1. We begin with one of our personal favorites: the great Allen Iverson .
      [youtube] 2. Another all-time great: After a long rant about how bad his team had played in a loss, Colts coach Jim Mora was asked about his prospects for the AFC playoffs. [youtube] 3. Sometimes there is no question too stupid -- or intelligent -- to draw an interview subject out of his shell. Here is the quintessential pointed answer by a coach who knows how to stay on topic: [youtube] 4. Before young Bryce Harper became famous for getting choked in the dugout by a hyper-angry relief pitcher, he was a 19-year-old phenom doing phenomenal things. He once was asked if he would celebrate one of those phenomenal things by drinking a beer. At age 19. He was asked that on camera. In front of a whole bunch of people. Ask a stupid question ... [youtube] 5. Then, there is the post-game blow-up of all time. Hal McRae, then managing the Royals, always felt bad about this explosion afterward. But he left NO DOUBT about how he felt about stupid questions that day. [youtube] Happy Ask a Stupid Question Day! Remember, there ARE no stupid questions. Only stupid reporters, and hot-headed athletes and coaches who have no patience for stupidity.

      Jim Breuer: Super Fan (Mets edition)

      No one is enjoying this season of resurgence for the Mets more than super fan Jim Breuer. The comedian, Saturday Night Live alum and New Jersey resident OWNS his fanhood. His podcast is called Jim Breur Mets and More. His Facebook feed is loaded with epic fan rants about his beloved Amazin's (see his latest below; you must be signed in to Facebook to view it). And he LIVES it, you know? It's not just show. He is one of you, Mets fans. One. Of. You. He posted this on his Twitter feed before heading to the Rocky Mountains for a gig:

      We know there are other celebrity fans out there. Ashley Judd does the Kentucky Wildcats proud. Jack Nicholson (Lakers), Spike Lee (Knicks) and other stars are mainstays in NBA floor seats. Bill Murray is a Cubs legend. And of course, Jerry Seinfeld famously staked out some Mets territory of his own in the 1980s and '90s. At the moment, though, Jim Breuer is the standard bearer for celebrity fans who not only love a team, but live and die with it. Here's a Smack Zone hat tip to Mr. Breuer. Well done, Mets fan. Well done. [facebook url="" /]

      Our New Favorite Terrible Name: Deportivo Wanka

      We're suckers for silliness. When we came across this video, we figured it would be a bit funny, maybe even bordering on boorish. It's a British production, after all, and if history has taught us anything, it's that all British comedy is derivative of Monty Python. And our suspicions proved correct, for the most part. It's not LOL funny, exactly, but it is kind of haha funny. And then we reached the part about Deportivo Wanka, and our inner 12-year-old kid took over. We had never heard of the Peruvian soccer club, but now we have a new favorite terrible team name: Viva los Wankeros! Enjoy! [youtube]

      How to Win an Argument with a Packers Fan

      [caption id="attachment_1153" align="aligncenter" width="474"]Ugh. The Packers. Amirite? Ugh. The Packers. Amirite?[/caption] This is a recurring Smack Zone educational series focused on assisting fans to take down their rivals in a sports bar argument. We've hit the Yankees and the Patriots so far. Today, we turn our attention to the arrogant, obtuse, beer-and-bratwurst-addled, loyal, friendly, passionate, and intelligent fan base of the Green Bay Packers. Wait, what? Yeah, we're a bit torn on this one. Read on for an explanation.


      All right, it’s possible we’ve bitten off more cheddar here than we can chew. The Green Bay Packers are, after all, the Great American Sports Success Story. A little town at the mouth of the Fox River, perched on the lip of Lake Michigan, way up north in ‘Sconsin. A meat-packing town, a town of beer and bratwurst and large, Nordic traditions. Oh, by the way … Title Town. It’s true, you know. The Packers have won 15 league championships in their history, including 11 before the Super Bowl became the standard for greatness 50 years ago. And of course, there are those four Super Bowls – including the first two played. I mean, what can you say that’s bad about the Packers? The Packers are Lombardi, Starr, Favre, Reggie, Nitschke and Hornung. They are Lambeau Field, the Frozen Tundra, and tailgating for days. They are the little team that could in the little town that said, “You know what? We’re going to own this.” And they do own it – the public ownership structure of the Green Bay Packers is unique in major American sports. The people in the stands aren’t just fans, they’re team owners. Sort of. Green Bay is a real, nice place with real, nice people. A place where they love their football team so much, it’s more religion than sport. How can we possibly argue against that? Oh, I guess we’ll just have to give it our best shot, eh?
      1. We’ll start with what remains one of the creepiest celebrations in sports, made even worse by its adoption in those Discount Double Check commercials:
      Discount Double Check
      1. It’s too damn cold. The average low temperature in Green Bay in January is 14. Enough said. [caption id="attachment_1156" align="aligncenter" width="300"]So, so cold. Creative Commons Image: @Karen54301 So, so cold. @Karen54301[/caption]
      2. Cheese clothes.Packers Cheese Bra
      1. Bratwurst kills. The average saturated fat content of an 85-gram bratwurst is 9 grams, 43 percent of the recommended daily intake of saturated fat. Furthermore, the average brat contains 65 milligrams of cholesterol and 720 milligrams of sodium. Basically, a bratwurst is an edible heart attack.
      1. “Binge drinking is a sport in Wisconsin.” – Former Brown County Sheriff’s Office patrol captain. This is a serious problem. Seriously: Binge Drinking in State Still Far Exceeds U.S. Average
      1. Anti-Packers Facebook pages also are a sport in Wisconsin: Green Bay Packers Suck, Anti-Green Bay Packers Memes, Official Anti-Green Bay Packers Fan Club.
      Aw, hell. You know what? This is hopeless. The Packers are just too good, their fans too nice, their stadium too historic, their atmosphere too epic, their beer too cold, their food too tasty. We can’t do it. We can’t win an argument with a Packers fan. If only someone – SOMEONE – in the world could craft the ultimate anti-Packers tome. If only someone smarter and more handsome than us could eviscerate Packer Nation with well-honed prose and sublime video clips. If only someone could capture the pure, helpless angst that swept through the land of the Cheeseheads after last year’s NFC Championship Game collapse against the Seahawks. If only … wait. Oh. Oh, yeah. Thank you, Drew Magary. The world owes you a debt of gratitude. And a beer. Green Bay Packers: Why Your Team Sucks 2015. Case closed.

      The Nats are a Clown Team, Bro

      [caption id="attachment_1128" align="alignright" width="300"]Papelbon: Papelbon: "Hey, bro, run that out!" Harper: "Hey, bro, F you!" Papelbon: "No, bro, F you!" And then they danced.[/caption] So, the Washington Nationals' star player didn't exactly bust it down the line on a can-o-corn pop-out late in yet another disappointing chapter in what was supposed to be their year. It's Bryce Harper, dude. He's going to be the National League's MVP this year -- and many more years in the future. Surely, he can jog one out here and there? Um, no. That's not the way it's done. That's a BS way to play the game, and anybody who knows baseball knows that. Cubs manager Joe Maddon, during his time with the Rays, was known to pull dudes on the spot for not busting it down the first-base line. You going to argue with Joe Ma about the unwritten rules of the game? Hustle is mandatory, and you'd think a manager like Matt Williams, who was known to be a hard-ass as a player, would want more from his young leader. And maybe Williams might have said something later. But ... Then, recently acquired closer Jonathan Papelbon decided to "show leadership." Bad idea. Remember Harper's snide response to a reporter's question a few years ago? "That's a clown question, bro." You know what? The Nationals are now perceived as a clown team, bro. That's a reflection of Williams, certainly, but at some point the superstar needs to step up and stop acting like a nonchalant kid. This piece for Fox Sports by former pitcher C.J. Nitkowski sums up the feeling around baseball: Players Overwhelmingly Support Papelbon. That said, Papelbon was an idiot (it came naturally, we're sure, based on his Red Sox history). He acknowledged later that it wasn't his place to admonish Harper in that spot, that it's Williams' job to do that. And oh, this: Stop choking dudes, Pap. Too late, though. Washington's collapse was complete last week when the Mets clinched the NL East. This is the fallout. And it ain't pretty.