Commentary

Power Rankings: Vengeance edition

Originally Published: September 28, 2009
By Greg Hardy | Special to Page 2

It's a brand-new Monday of Page 2 Power Rankings! We've tweaked our formula by combing the results of two surveys: a human poll concocted by freshman ESPN Page 2 contributor and longtime humanoid Gregory Hardy; and a scientifically calibrated poll generated by computer analysis. Unfortunately, the computer we're using is based on software gleaned from an ancient "Hooked on Phonics" CD-ROM that belonged to R. Kelly. On to the results!

1. Cheese Wars: Episode 4 -- Revenge of the Favre

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
10.0 10.0 20.0

Credentials: Feel a tremor in the Force? That's Darth Favre, about to fire up his new purple lightsaber, and he's ready to slice up the Packers' secondary. Oh, but it's not for "revenge," he insists. And that's true for now, because as far as drama goes, this showdown in the Metrodome is mere prequel; the real showdown will be Nov. 1 at Lambeau Field. Just as Anakin and Obi-Wan had their fateful duel over a river of molten lava, Favre should have his epic showdown with Aaron Rodgers at a Wisconsin dairy farm over a conveyor belt that leads to a boiling vat of nacho cheese. Movie poster tagline: "Revenge was never so gooey!"


2. Chicago fail

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
9.2 9.8 19.0

Credentials: Think of it this way, Windy City: What if during an ill-fated stretch of the Olympic torch relay on the way to the 2016 opening ceremonies, Michael Jordan tripped on his untied Air Jordans, the torch landed on a pile of old Chicago Sun-Times newspapers that Jay Mariotti hadn't gotten around to recycling, and that set off a second, mightier Chicago fire. Actually, a burned-to-the-basement Chicago would still be in better economic shape than what you'll find in Rio. P.S. Page 2 is taking nominations for Rio's 2016 motto. Here's ours: "Rio! Come for the Olympics! Stay for the soul-wrenching squalor." What's your idea?


3. Minnesota's Dome light is still on

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
9.1 8.8 17.9

Credentials: There's playoff baseball in the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome! OK, only a one-game regular-season playoff against Detroit on Tuesday so far. No promises yet if the Yankees will come to town to wrap up a sweep once that's settled. But Minnesota sports fans, let's go devil's advocate. If the Sports Gods told you ONLY ONE of these things could be guaranteed to come true at the expense of the other at the Triple-H over this two-day span, which would it be: Purple Favre leads the Vikings to victory against Green Bay on Monday night, or the Twins win Tuesday? ... Choose wisely! The Sports Gods grant wishes when you least expect it.


4. SpongeBob SwaggerPants

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
9.4 8.3 17.7

Credentials: The red-hot Miami SwaggerCanes are 3-1 after surviving shots by FSU, Georgia Tech and Oklahoma. But just so success doesn't go to their swaggerskulls, they've vowed to turn off ESPN in the locker room and watch only "SpongeBob SquarePants." "If SpongeBob can tell you how good you are, then you deserve it," coach Randy Shannon said. Keep in mind, Canes -- you can finish the regular season 11-1 and not make the ACC title game, because Virginia Tech owns the head-to-head advantage in the Coastal Division. So instead of dreaming about a crystal football in Pasadena, you might have to settle for some manner of Pineapple Under the Sea Bowl.


5. Breaking the law

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
9.0 8.4 17.4

Credentials: Yes, authorities have arrested a man and charged him in the Erin Andrews peephole video case. No, the man was neither Roman Polanski nor David Letterman. And even if it were, for some reason famous old guys are able to convince most of the public to give them a pass when they act like creeps.


6. Box office brain teasers

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
8.1 8.8 16.9

Credentials: Here's what Hollywood just learned: Horror comedies flop when it's Megan Fox killing boys all sexy-like, but if Woody Harrelson hazes zombies you can win the weekend with $25 million. Also, nobody wants to see Drew Barrymore on roller skates unless maybe she wants to try her hand at being Rollergirl. And Ricky Gervais' "The Invention of Lying" didn't do so hot, because people thought it was a Scott Boras biopic.


7. Won't someone think about the children?

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
8.0 8.5 16.5

Credentials: Why would Jon Gosselin furtively drain $200,000 from his joint bank account with Kate? Jon, there's no need to make that much money disappear from the mother of your eight children. If you need $200,000 that badly, I'm sure we can find enough people who'd donate $1 in exchange for punching you in your publicity-starving face.


8. Odom-Kardashian wedding aftermath

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
7.7 8.0 15.7

Credentials: The final scene of Woody Allen's "Bananas" shows him and Louise Lasser in a honeymoon suite ready to consummate their marriage as Howard Cosell provides bedside play-by-play in his ABC Wide World of Sports blazer. The Kardashians' reality show producers must be asleep at the switch if they haven't tried to re-enact that setup for this couple with Craig Sager wielding a baton mike.


9. Next Redskins coach? Apply within

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
7.1 7.1 14.2

Credentials: Lucky for Jim Zorn, that halftime deficit to the winless Bucs was erased in the second half for what might have been a job-saving victory. Just keep an eye on Jon Gruden in future Monday night games to see if he's not wearing Washington shirts and visors in anticipation of being called up at a moment's notice. Or maybe it's time for Dan Snyder to think outside the box. If 14-year-old Alexis Thompson could share a second-round lead at an LPGA event, maybe the NFL is ready for 14-year-old head coaches. Oh, and that would be worse for this franchise than the past 10 years how?


10. Raiders kerfuffles

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
5.1 6.2 11.3

Credentials: Free agent QB Jeff Garcia explained in no uncertain terms to Fox Sports Radio that the Oakland Raiders' locker room is a disaster. We'd love the chance to interview Garcia in person and ask if he thinks Oakland's situation could be improved with the acquisition of Terrell Owens. Just to see if Garcia's eyes would light up at the thought of sentencing T.O. to a life of Al Davis.


11. Lady Gaga roots, roots, roots for Yankees

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
5.4 5.5 10.9

Credentials: While draped in a swirl of metal rings (did she think that getup was needed so that NBC could get better TV reception inside the studio?) she dropped some odd trivia during her "SNL" piano-side poker-facing when she noted that she "cheered for the Yankees with my dad in Section 6." With any luck, this inspired A-Rod to fall for her over Madonna and Kate Hudson -- and instead of focusing on the playoffs, he and Gaga will begin wearing matching leather jumpsuits together to all their favorite Midtown clubs through October.


12. "Seinfeld" reunion

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
6.0 4.2 10.2

Credentials: HBO's "Curb Your Enthusiasm" gambles that there's nothing like getting the gang back together. Actually, the more entertaining idea might be to incorporate Larry David into a reunion season for "The Wire." Larry's got enough problems connecting in life just on his regular cell phone; imagine him trying to get high-tech surveillance equipment to work. "What did she say? I can't hear a damn thing through these cheap earphones. And please tell me this is as cold as it gets in Baltimore. I don't know how you stand it. No, really, I'd love to spend another five days sitting in this van smelling your bagel breath."


13. Relevance alert: WNBA playoffs vs. NHL

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
2.2 1.1 3.3

Credentials: Two leagues that prove there's no place like home. WNBA playoff games regularly had to be moved to different venues because Sesame Street and Britney Spears concerts were already booked in the regular arenas for postseason dates. And the NHL insists on staging regular-season games in Helsinki. It's bad enough when the public doesn't WANT to watch you, it's worse when your own league practically forces you into witness protection with its scheduling idiocies.


Also receiving votes:
• Bobby Bowden: As if his legacy hasn't taken enough hits, imagine if he gets fired from his coaching job and then he learns that the Tallahassee Wal-Mart isn't hiring any more greeter positions.

• Tim Tebow: Has been progressing well from his concussion during Florida's bye week. When he's not being guarded in a 12-foot protective bubble, entire Gainesville sororities are working in shifts to provide his three-times-a-day sponge baths.

• "Toy Story" and "Toy Story 2" in 3-D: Overprotective parents are overjoyed: Finally their kids can see a virtual representation of a Slinky Dog, without worrying that Junior will get his fingers caught in the springy recoil.

Never receiving votes:
• My fantasy football team: My lame-o lineup amassed 55 points through Sunday's games. My opponent got 50 points alone from the 49ers' defense. Curse you, Mike Singletary!

• Zombies in the workplace: A University of Florida disaster preparedness Web site jokingly included instructions on how to survive once co-workers started feasting on human flesh. Man, who hasn't had that happen during the company picnic?

• Greg Norman and Chris Evert: Oddest thing about the split of these 54-year-olds: He keeps the tennis rackets, she gets the golf clubs. Crazy kids.

Greg Hardy is a Page 2 contributor. It's all pop culture all the time at Twitter.com/HardyVision.

Greg Hardy is a Page 2 contributor. It's all pop culture all the time at Twitter.com/HardyVision.