Jimmy Clausen Might Be Overhyped

Sunday, September 09, 2007

(posted by OMDQ)

I was forced to miss the day here on Saturday because my wife's cousin (and our son's godmother) was getting married and we kinda sorta felt I ought to be there. It was a nice day, for the most part - the ceremony ended just before a long, nasty thunderstorm tore through, they had it catered by Texas Roadhouse (seriously, best food I've ever had at a wedding), and my kid was an absolute hit.

The bad: my wife was bombed out of her mind (thanks to an open bar and a year away from alcohol) by about eight and sober by ten, I snapped somewhat needlessly at my mother-in-law, and the past week kicked my ass so completely that I spent the last 2 1/2 hours on a couch in the living room, holding my son and watching South Florida vs. Auburn. I do not like South Florida OR Auburn.

Without a doubt, the highlight of the day occurred around six o'clock, I think. I wandered into the house to cool off, saw that they had the Penn State-Notre Dame game on in the living room, and sat down to watch for a few. After about fifteen minutes, as the Jimmy Clausen-led Irish offense came off the field, ESPN ran a montage of "Famous Debuts" featuring Tiger Woods, LeBron James and Sidney Crosby. I looked over at the one guy still left in the room (everyone else had gone back to drinking, looking at hot girls and actually having a good time) and the following exchange took place:

Me: I know they're not comparing Jimmy Clausen to Tiger Woods, LeBron James and Sidney Crosby...are they?

The Other Guy: The guy's awesome. He's gonna suck this year, but by the time he's a junior, he'll be great.

Me: And Ron Powlus was supposed to win three Heismans.

The Other Guy: Good point, good point.

Without a doubt, that was the fastest I have ever been with a comeback. It's like Ron Powlus and his seemingly untapped potential (although Wikipedia says he was actually a pretty solid QB) have been at the front of my brain for the last decade, just waiting to be dropped into a random conversation at a family member's wedding, and I did not disappoint. When the time came, I was there. Never have I been so proud of myself. I felt just like Meg Ryan in "You've Got Mail" when she finally hit Tom Hanks with a verbal bitchslap and was so proud of herself...except I'm pretty sure the guy I was talking to is not my secret online "friend".

The larger sticking point, however, was the comparison of Clausen to the three athletes mentioned above. What exactly was ESPN trying to sell us with this segment? That Clausen will, like Woods, become arguably the greatest player in the history of his sport? That he will, like James, be a dominant force capable of willing his team to victory whenever he feels like it? That he has been compared to an all-time great in his sport (Joe Namath doesn't count) and is being widely counted on to "save" his game from irrelevance?

Or are they just trying to annoy me? Probably.

Photo: SI.com

Posted by One More Dying Quail at 2:50 AM


The funniest thing was, at the time Clausen was 8-10 for 56 yards, and Mike Patrick said that his performance was more impressive Tiger, Bron, and Sydney. 8-10 for 56 yards! Mike Patrick is an idiot, but his producer had to goad him into saying that. I can't believe he's that dumb.

Gangsta D said...
Sep 9, 2007, 8:50:00 AM  

Mike Patrick and ESPN is too dangerous of a combo. Throw in Duke and Vitale during basketball season, and it's like some kind of deadly Square of Evil.

La Rev said...
Sep 9, 2007, 9:22:00 AM  

This is almost as bad as Thursday night when Al Michels compared Tony Dungy winning the Super Bowl to desegregation, Rosa Parks and probably the end of slavery as well. I just sat there stunned at how one of those just didn't fit in at all.

Justin Williams said...
Sep 9, 2007, 10:39:00 AM  

Im a ND fan have been for over 30 years and I think the kid has the POTENTIAL to be good. But to dump everything on an 18 yr old freshman is pretty unfair of the program.

He's obviously good a lot of school's thought so. But he needs time to develope. I for one am not so hopeful for this year or even next.

ESPN wasjust plain stupid in comparing the kid to those three guys. Give him time lets see if he becomes Peyton Manning or if he becomes Ron Pawlus.

Steve said...
Sep 9, 2007, 12:15:00 PM  

Ron Pawlus was supposed to win 4 Heismans man. 4 Heismans!

thejim said...
Sep 9, 2007, 8:03:00 PM  

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