November 5, 2008, 3:04 PM
Joey Logano For Next: Fun Facts
"I roll deep with John C. Reilly? Cool."
There are a lot of intersting things about the one they call "Sliced Bread." Did you know he has deep ties to Terry Bradshaw via the Smokey and the Bandit film series? What about his connections to the impossibly good prayer scene in Talladega Nights, or the fact that he might as well be Bill Belichick's cousin. Yeah, dude is in it deep. Check it out.
1. Football Ties
Joey Logano was born in Middleton, CT, which should really be considered more of a football hotbed. Consider that Wesleyan University is there, and both Bill Belichick and Eric Mangini went there, and were Middleton residents. When will they play an AFC East game in Middleton?
It makes sense of course that Joey will stay tied to football, racing for Joe Gibbs Racing. Gibbs, we should note, has more traditional NASCAR roots, even though he came to the sport after he got into football. He's from Mocksville, North Carolina, where Daniel Boone was born.
Joey's family moved to Georgia when he was ten, and he was racing the Legends series at Atlanta Motor Speedway at that age, at one time winning ten races in a row. Lucky? Well, consider that in Georgia, you can't even ride a moped 'til you're 15. Atlanta is considered one of the sports' fastest tracks, and qualifying times there routinely top 190 MPH. Better yet? Smokey and the Bandit II filmed scenes there. Who guest-starred in Smokey the Deuce? Terry Bradshaw. Yeah.
4. Call Me a Midget
Joey Started racing quarter midget cars at the age of just six. Don't let the midget part fool you, a) the cars don't mind being be called "midget" at all, and b) they go up to 45 MPH. At age six. Yowsa.
5. High Praise
When Joey was just 15, Mark Martin saw him race and said, "I am high on Joey Logano because I am absolutely, 100-percent positive, without a doubt that he can be one of the greatest that ever raced in NASCAR. I'm positive. There's no doubt in mind." What does Martin know? Well, he was not only born in 1959 (he's seen some racing), but won his first American Speed Association's rookie of the year title in 1977. He was 18, the age Joey is today.
6. Joey C. Reilly?
Joey was born on May 24th, 1990. Yeah, you're old. It's not a bad birthday, at least. Though nobody we know shares the year, the day is stacked. Other athletes include soccer star DeMarcus Beasley, Tracy McGrady, Brad Penny, Brian Ching, Bartolo Colon, Kris Draper, Rich Rodriguez and Joe Dumars. Need someone in pop culture, try Bob Dylan (born Robert Zimmerman!) or Tommy Chong. Or you could go with John C. Reilly, Mr. Film NASCAR himself. Guy was the friend of Tom Cruise in Days of Thunder and co-starred with Will Ferrell in Talladega Nights.
We say a prayer for that move every night. (Note Reilly with the "Mm!" when Ferrell mentions his wife, mid-prayer. Mildly epic.)
7. Pearl Harbor
Logano will drive the No. 20 Home Depot Toyota Camry next year, a car that is currently driven by Tony Stewart. Toyota hasn't been long for NASCAR, and their inclusion in the series sparked what is, in our opinion, one of the more epic press conference moments of all time. When Jimmy Spencer was asked about Toyota, he mentioned, "They bombed Pearl Harbor, don't forget."
It was a while ago, Jimmy.
8.Slice It Up
Joey's nickname is "Sliced Bread", a name given to him by fellow racer Randy LaJoie, who was ostensibly referring to Joey as "The best thing to come around since…" Sliced bread is actually pretty cool stuff. It wasn't even really invented or produced on a mass scale until 1928, its inventor being the famed Otto Frederick Rohwedder of Davenport, Iowa. (Can you imagine cutting your own bread? Talk about hell on earth.) Believe it or not, sliced bread was banned for a time during World War II as a measure to counteract the rising price of bread during a time of scarcity and war. It didn't stick.
9. Walk Tall
Joey is 6-foot-1, which is tall in a sport where drivers are often small so they can fit into their tight cars. NASCAR is literally sport's version of Hollywood, where all the guys you assume are tall until you get the facts, or see them in person. Jeff Gordon is just 5-7 and Tony Stewart is just 5-9. Even the great Dale Earnhardt, who seemed to have a domineering presence, was a mere 6-foot tall. Joey could do some carbo loading on his nickname, though. He's just 140 lbs. Even Gordon's got him by ten pounds. (Hey, Danica Patrick is just 5-2 and 100 pounds.)
10. Orange Inspiration
Logano will be sponsored next year by Home Depot. He has a long way to go before he's officially a star in NASCAR, but he can look on his side panel for inspiration. When Home Depot was founded in 1978, they wanted to create massive stores where they could store huge amounts of building and home supplies. Didn't start easy. The first two stores were in small spaces leased from J.C. Penney that used to be Treasure Island supermarkets. Thirty years later, Arthur Blank owns the Atlanta Falcons, and can afford to spend the millions to pain this name across Joey Logano's car.
November 5, 2008, 10:05 AM
SIX WORD STORY CONTEST: NEXT
It's time to declare this year's NEXT athlete, and we've whittled down our list of finalists to Ricky Rubio, Joey Logano, David Price and Matt Ryan. Can you sum up any of them in just six words? Here's an example to get you started:
The best thing since sliced bread. (Joey Logano)
We'll be rewarding the best submissions for each of our finalists next Monday, Nov. 10, so get your entry in today!
November 4, 2008, 10:54 AM
Joey Logano for NEXT:
A Photo Gallery
The secret to perpetual youth? Drive around the world backwards, causing reverse rotation. Same as Superman.
In on our ongoing deluge of NEXTism, NEXTosity and NEXThood, here's another invasion on your senses. Joey Logano is busy making the leap into the world of NASCAR racing long before most people at his age have even the faintest idea how to handle a stick shift. Here, we provide a photo gallery that takes a look at the last year of his career, one that has seen him strap into a NASCAR ride for the first time, record his first victory, sign with Joe Gibbs Racing and now, get the keys for the Home Depot #20 car for next season. A wild ride indeed.
November 4, 2008, 10:15 AM
Joey Logano for NEXT:
As part of the NEXT 2009 rollout (remember: voting begins on Monday, November 10!), we'll be releasing videos on each of the four NEXT candidates from now until the end of the week. First up: racing prodigy Joey Logano, showcased here in images as quick and flashy as, well, him in a Joe Gibbs car.
November 3, 2008, 10:38 AM
Clip Reel: Joey Logano
The clips prove it. Dude's NEXT.
While we've done plenty of homework on the lad, and his detractors, we figured that as a service to the voting public, we should present video, photos and articles from all over the internet so you could be better informed as a voter.
Thus, herewith is a Clip Reel on Joey "Sliced bread" Logano.
Might as well kick it off with the E:60 profile on Logano, where they got to invade his garage, not ours.
We produced this video about Joey, and what he's like off the track. Meaning, what do his friends think of him?
And here's the bigger story behind it.
This is a biggy. We all know NASCAR is one part talent, five parts team and funding. Here's Joey officially inking with one of the top names in the sport, Joe Gibbs Racing.
Since we already told you how some are a little jealous of Joey, we might as well show you how that might look on the race track.
A "first win" always produces a pretty cool scene.
Take a peek at the kid's tricked out new cup ride.
You're not really a part of the NASCAR world until you're in some kind of pitchman role.
Yeah, but can he beat you at Wii's Mario Kart?
Let's see if the dude knows how to handle the hat dance of a Victory Lane interview.
Joey has to take on the interviewing grill known as ESPN's First Take.
Dude's personal site is just slightly sweeter than our own.
We remember when we were perusing the internet at the age of 18, and someone had gone ahead and dutifully launched a fan site dedicated to us.
Joey gets the interview treatment from the NYT sports mag, PLAY.
USA Today takes the Logano story for a spin.
Honestly, you're not a part of NASCAR Nation until you've been caught up in your first cheating controversy.
So, why don't one of you just go ahead and edit his official Wikipedia page and make him the new NEXT right now?
We won't tell.
November 3, 2008, 2:29 PM
Joey Logano for NEXT
I'm Ryan McGee and I approved this message. Need more?
Well, so did Tony Stewart, and Mark Martin, and Jeff Gordon…and pretty much everyone else who has made their living around racecars over the last decade.
Since Joey Logano was a preteen on the bullrings of New England and Georgia, he has driven deeper into corners, jumped earlier in the throttle, and streaked across the finish line faster than rivals twice his age with twice his experience. Unlike baseball, there is no structured minor league system in NASCAR, and unlike football or basketball, there is no such thing as college or Olympic stock car racing. So chances are you haven't been tracking Logano like you have Matt Ryan, David Price or Ricky Rubio.
Unless you're a racer.
Before he was old enough to drive a street car, Martin had already played Jon Landau to Logano's Bruce Springsteen, declaring him "the future of NASCAR". A large part of Stewart's decision to leave Joe Gibbs Racing was because he knew that Logano was ready to take over the legendary #20 Home Depot Chevy, a car that's won 33 races and a two Cup titles.
This year he won his first Nationwide Series pole in only his second try and his first race one week later. He out-dueled 52-year old Ken Schrader to win an ARCA race at Rockingham in May and the following weekend Coach Gibbs celebrated the kid's 18th birthday with a party in the media center. Despite the nickname "Sliced Bread" he's maintained a level head.
Ryan had Blacksburg, Price had the playoffs and Rubio had Beijing. Come February, Joey Logano might just have Daytona.
That's why Joey Logano is NEXT.
November 3, 2008, 11:19 AM
The 2009 NEXT Campaign:
And so, it begins
ESPN The Magazine's 2009 NEXT campaign has begun. Unsure of what NEXT is? It's a ten-year concept for The Mag, in which editors and writers work to identify the athletes (and concepts) about to break out. The very first cover of ESPN The Magazine ever was this right here: a NEXT issue spotlighting Kobe Bryant, Eric Lindros, Alex Rodriguez and Kordell Stewart circa winter 1998 (hey, three out of four ain't bad!) Since then, we've selected such icons as LeBron James and Brian Urlacher as NEXT.
The four athletes this year are: Atlanta Falcons QB Matt Ryan, Tampa Bay Rays P David Price, racer Joey Logano, and international hoops savant Ricky Rubio. You—yes, you—will determine, via voting, who gets selected as NEXT athlete.
There's a bunch of stuff for you to poke around through: the overall NEXT homepage can be found here (that'll give ya everything!). The pages for the individual athletes are here:
On those pages you can find targeted content on the athletes themselves. Voting will run from November 10th to November 17th. Can you figure out who's the next KB24 in here? Start investigating.
Ricky Rubio was playing and holding his own against the two best points guards in the world (Deron Williams, Chris Paul) and he is only 18!!
- The NEXT: SEC Football Champion?
- The NEXT: Celebrity Girlfriend
- The NEXT: Global Application of "Curse"
- The NEXT: Context of "Viral" Video
- The NEXT: Voice in the Manny Ramirez Situation
- The NEXT: Michael Phelps Parody Videos
- The NEXT: Signing Day Sleepers
- The NEXT: Advice For Young Girls
- The NEXT: Michigan vs. OSU Anniversary To Consider
- The NEXT: Interesting Read on Shaq vs. Duncan