Rick Reilly Eats Babies

That's my "hey, everyone, look at me!" statement. It's what you need these days to make sure your message makes it through to the masses. You don't need to be smarter or more articulate than the other talking heads, you just need to be more outrageous and more outlandish.

I have a first-hand knowledge of this, having worked at a radio station. Some offices celebrate good sales numbers or other traditional harbingers of success, sometimes they even celebrate with cookies or jeans day. Radio stations don't hand out popsicles until someone has been murdered or when there's a big sex scandal, because that's when business is good.

So I should understand when radio and TV people engage in this practice. But sometimes it's so ridiculous that you can't stay above the fray. For instance, I was in Cincinnati on Wednesday and listened to 35 seconds of the big station in town.

In that 35 seconds, the host attacked Brian Kelly for lying about staying at UC (he presumes Kelly will sign with Notre Dame) and then attacked Notre Dame for even hiring Kelly because he's pro-choice. First, I have no idea how anyone knows Brian Kelly's thoughts on abortion or why they are relevant at all. There's nothing in his job description that deals with the termination of pregnancies.

Still, in 35 seconds, this host was able to call Kelly a liar and a baby-killer. A baby-killer! That's one the elderly host probably dusted off from 40 years ago when he welcomed home our soldiers from Vietnam. And he just casually threw it in there like it was one of his hobbies or something. Like in Kelly's bio, it says:

In his spare time, Coach Kelly likes long walks on the beach, reading 19-century British literature, and murdering babies.

So, there's one of two ways you can deal with an ignorant remark like that. You can either get pissed off, which is what the host wants, or you can get really, really sarcastic. For this instance, I choose the latter.

Allow me to don my Notre Dame fan hat. Okay, here we go.

"Hell yes, Notre Dame should be hiring a baby-killer. It's about damn time the Golden Dome was represented by someone with a little bit of an edge. No one wants to mess with a guy that is so deranged that he murders babies just because he doesn't have an Xbox to fill his time with.

This is just solid coaching from Brian Kelly, right here. He understands you can't just go from zero to stopping the high-powered offenses of USC and Navy. You need to start by getting confidence building wins over smaller teams. And, in Kelly's case, over smaller human beings.

It's nice to know we finally have a coach that will win at all costs, even if that cost is one miniature human life. If he kills babies, I can't wait to see what he's going to do against Rich Rodriguez and Michigan.

Killing babies is a big step up for this program. The only thing our last head coach killed was $5-dollar-footlongs from Subway (five at a time)."

And then, of course, there's Rick Reilly. Reilly went on a deranged rant on "SportsCenter" this week about Tiger Woods. Because everyone has an opinion on Woods, Reilly had to get outrageous with his. He had to scream the loudest.

So he went on an impassioned rant about how Tiger should return all of his sponsor money until he clears his name and about how Tiger owes it to all of us to fix his marriage. Reilly said we needed Tiger to show us how important marriage is.

It was literally the most asinine thing I've ever heard a sportscaster say. Tiger didn't break the law by having an affair. He's not even accused of something awful like rape or murder or anything. There are tons of athletes that have committed far worse crimes against society and they are a ton of sports figures that aren't faithful to their wives. A ton. And Reilly is going to get on his soapbox and say America needs him to fix his marriage?

I'm not even taking the sarcastic route on this one. It's simply too stupid. Reilly has thrown away any journalistic integrity he had left to pull off yet another episode of "angry white guy whacks young black athlete." Reilly has just stopped trying.

I have prepared a well-thought out, extremely articulate counterpoint to Reilly's remarks.

"Rick Reilly eats babies!"

Comments and Conversation

December 11, 2009


I completely agree with everything you said here. The difference between Obama and Kelly is that Kelly is not at the university to expound on his views as Obama was when he wanted to give a lecture.
I’m sure Kelly is getting the “Lou Holtz Package”, where the academic standards are somewhat more lax than they were for the last 3 coaches. And good for them, if you want to get serious about winning, you have to get serious about bringing in athletes.
I used to really enjoy reading Rick Reilly, and then I grew up.

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