Projections

2018 NFL DRAFT – FIRST IMPRESSIONS

In the 2018 NFL Draft, quarterbacks went with four of the top 10 overall picks for the first time in history. As a result, draft pundits will evaluate this year’s draft class based on the success or failure of QBs Baker Mayfield, Sam Darnold, Josh Allen, and Josh Rosen. Running back Shaquon Barkley certainly will be part of the conversation, but likely in reference to how he performs relative to the three QBs taken after him. Hopefully, linebacker Shaquem Griffin is not just a footnote and gets remembered for having a successful NFL career despite missing his left hand. It’ll be at least five years before I can definitively declare any Top 10 Busts. In the meantime, I’ll offer my assessment of the early favorites.

Top 10 BUSTED

T10B Not Busted: Urban Meyer

After a two-week investigation into Urban Meyer’s handling of domestic violence allegations against former Assistant Coach Zach Smith, THE Ohio State University announced a 3-game suspension for its head football coach. Meyer’s actions (or inactions) apparently didn’t elevate to a fireable offense. At the same time, OSU President Michael Drake believed the head coach deserved to be punished. Following an 11-hour closed-door meeting during which the Board of Trustees decided his fate, Meyer spoke to the press. He certainly missed the mark by failing to show remorse or offer a sincere apology. In response, numerous ESPN “reporters” argued that Meyer deserved to be fired. When will the network learn that its role is reporting and not creating news. 

Top 10 BUSTED

T10B Busted: WAR (Wins Above Replacement)

Sabermetics has taken over how baseball teams are constructed, how games are managed, and how players are evaluated. Whereas stats like HRs, RBIs and BA used to delineate players, MLB general managers now seem to be obsessed with stats like OBP, OPS, and WAR. I fully appreciate the importance of statistics when evaluating players, but I question the current over-reliance on them. In this post, I hope to discount the importance of wins above replacement (WAR) when evaluating greatness.  

Projections Top 10 NBA Draft Busts

2018 Mock NBA Draft

Heading into the 2018 NBA Draft, the prohibitive favorite as the #1 pick is Arizona’s Deandre Ayton. From there, the likely #2 to #4 picks are Duke’s Marvin Bagley, Michigan State’s Jaren Jackson and international phenom Luka Doncic, respectively. Despite any excitement surrounding these players, the free agency of LeBron James and trade request by Kawhi Leonard will dominate fan interest going into the 2018-19 NBA season. This year’s draft lacks a guaranteed superstar so each and every team should be willing to use their picks to get into the James/Leonard sweepstakes. I don’t have the foresight to predict all of the possible iterations so I’ll simply offer my 2018 NBA Mock Draft based on the current draft position of each team.

Projections Top 10 NFL Draft Busts

2018 T10B MOCK NFL DRAFT

With respect to quarterbacks, the 1983 and 1999 draft classes stand out among the rest. Of note, a record six QBs went in the 1st round of the 1983 NFL Draft. Furthermore, teams took QBs with the first three and five of the top 12 overall picks in the 1999 NFL Draft. I believe the 2018 draft class will join these others in the record books based on the fervor surrounding this year’s crop of signal callers. Specifically, I predict that teams will use the top four 2018 draft picks on quarterbacks. Let the games begin!

Bad Calls Top 10 Busts (Other)

Bad Call: Dan Hicks Proclaims Anna Veith As Gold Medalist

Synopsis: While reporting on the women’s super-G event at the 2018 Winter Olympics, NBC’s Dan Hicks proclaimed that Austria’s Anna Veith had won the gold medal. All of the favorites had completed their runs by then, but half of the skiers still hadn’t raced yet. Within minutes of the announcement, Czech skier Ester Ledecká came out of nowhere to edge Veith by 1/100th of a second. Ledecká’s shocking upset will be remembered for years to come. However, I choose to highlight the premature declaration by Hicks as a T10B Bad Call.

Reality TV Busts Top 10 Busts (Other)

#9 Reality TV Bust: The Moment of Truth (2008)

If Jerry Springer and Maury had a three-way with Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, the resulting bastard child would have been The Moment of Truth. Thanks to a lead-in from American Idol, the January 2008 premiere of Fox’s disturbing game show drew 23 million viewers. By the end of MOT’s 10-episode initial order, the audience had fallen by over 60%. With only 4 million viewers remaining halfway through the show’s 13-episode second order, Fox pulled it for good. As an inglorious basterd, The Moment of Truth earned the #9 spot on T10B’s ranking of Reality TV Busts.

Reality TV Busts

#10 Reality TV Bust: Skating with Celebrities

By airing Dancing with the Stars in the summer of 2005, ABC changed the landscape of reality TV. Of note, DWTS became the first elimination competition with “stars” as contestants. Inspired by that show’s success, Fox decided to air Skating with Celebrities several months later. With 25 seasons and over 400 episodes under its belt as of the 2017-18 television season, DWTS has proven to be a ratings powerhouse. In contrast, the ice skating version of the same show lasted for only one season and seven episodes. As a failed imitator, Skating with Celebrities earned the #10 spot as a Reality TV Bust.

Nominee Top 10 BUSTED

Top 10 Busted: Jackie Robinson West

Many of us were inspired by the success of Chicago’s Jackie Robinson West at the 2014 Little League World Series. Unfortunately, our inspiration turned to disappointment upon hearing that the team cheated. I had originally written and posted this article back in 2015, but pulled it down upon hearing that Stephen A. Smith had been sued for speaking on the topic. Now that ESPN’s most loquacious blowhard has been dropped from the case, I’ll take advantage of the same Constitutional protection to free speech. America, what a country!

Nominee Top 10 BUSTED

Top 10 Busted: Harvey Weinstein

Assuming all of the allegations against him are true, Harvey Weinstein may be one of the worst sexual predators in the history of Tinseltown. Well, he’s certainly the worst to be exposed since Bill Cosby went from being a lovable sitcom dad to a scary real-life rapist. Hopefully, there’ll be an end to such despicable actions by men in power now that more women seem willing to come forward. At the same time, I can’t help but marvel at the hypocrisy of the Hollywood elite which protected these criminals for far too long.