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Fiesta Bowl: Winners and Losers

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Recap? What is a recap?


Justin Blackmon, Andrew Luck
Both solidified their high praise and further improved their respective draft stocks with this showing on a national stage. This improvement may have moved Blackmon into the top 5 and Luck to the Elway-gasm pick.

Justin Gilbert
The interception, solid coverage (for the most part), showcasing that ridiculous speed, and providing excellent run support. Time and time again the Stanford backs were getting around the corner, and every time JG was there, he held his ground.

Stepfan Taylor and the Cardinal O-line
That line is big and bruising and got the most push I have seen anyone get against the Pokes all season. They didn't so much open holes as move the entire pile forward. Then Taylor would drive into all the space and find at least 5 yards every time. Taylor's speed/size/power combo was impressive. That dude comes at you full speed by his 2nd step, doesn't stutter step, doesn't dance, just squares up and runs downhill. He is who I would love Smiff to be.

Markelle Martin
Delivered some huge hits, including the facemask rearranger that we will see in OSU highlight packages for years to come.


Markelle Martin
Bit HARD on the play fake on Stanfords first TD (the 50+ yard bomb over the top), giving up his position as top containment and was torched. Then in the 3rd quarter was giving about a 130 yard cushion to one of the TEs on a 3rd and short in the red zone, fell down, and gave up the easy slant for the TD.

Brandon Weeden
OK, he probably didn't really come out of this game a loser, just not a winner. The MDMBW was often short on his throws, mis-communicated with receivers, and just didn't look like the cool, crisp millionaire we are used to seeing. Still, he threw for 400 yards and got the W, but I wouldn't say he improved his draft stock or anything.

The Cowboy Running Game
11 carries for 24 yards for the Randle/Smith combo. Booooooooo! Fire Dana!

Internet Alabama Fans
If you can find me a Fiesta Bowl recap at any major national media outlet that does not feature a comment section full of trolling Bama fans, I will send you some Pete Was Here panties. I am serious about this. The first person to leave a comment with a link to a national recap (not a local paper or something) that has a hearty comments section completely free of Bama fans making ISU, Big 12, defense, plane crash, or any other awful comments that are completely unrelated to the Fiesta Bowl but somehow makes them feel as though they are validating their existence in the NC game, will receive the panties that prove your Cowboys fandom by bragging that our big-headed, mustachioed mascot has been in your nether-region.

Thayer Evans
I haven't written anything about this guy because attention is what he seems to be after and the very act of commenting about him being an awful person (who sources could not confirm allegedly punches old ladies in the face for fun) does nothing but give him that sweet, sweet pageview attention, but his post from this morning is absolutely baffling. It doesn't anger me, it confuses me. What is his target with this?

related anecdote.. In the 90's when Howard Stern was making a name for himself in New York radio, there was a semi-famous survey taken of thousands of his listeners in which one of the questions asked was if they liked Stern or not. The responses were somewhat shocking as there was close to a 50/50 split among Stern's listeners on this question. This meant that almost half of Stern's audience was made up of people that didn't even like him or his show. They actively listened in order to justify their hatred of him. This was a fairly new phenomenon for media personalities who had traditionally been hired based on traits like being relatable, likeable, and trustworthy, but now could be hired based simply on being shocking. Being likeable was no longer important.

This worked for Stern (and continues to work for people like Traber, Rome, Bayless, etc) for two reasons:
1) Stern is compelling
2) Stern is in a huge market

Now this is where Thayer confuses me. He is obviously following the Stern/Troll model, but he lacks the two traits that made Stern a success. He is definitely not compelling (the dude can't seem to complete a thought within an article... you sorta have to re-read and connect the dots to get what he is trying to say), and he is not presenting this to a high demand market. Who is he selling this to? How many people out there are just craving news and conjecture that comes down hard on Oklahoma State? How many sports fans out there even have a strong opinion one way or the other about Oklahoma State? What audience is he trying to reach with his shock-jock message? I guess the hardcore Oklahoma State hater demographic and the hardcore Oklahoma State defender demographic who also spends a lot of time browsing blogs and sports sites? Congrats, your target demo is the 2000 people that follow this blog. Maybe you can get a third of them and a few links on facebook.

My advice to Thayer if he insists on following this model: get a better editor, then go after a program that the nation actually has an opinion about. Try Michigan or USC or Notre Dame or Texas. There is a built in audience of hundreds of thousands of lovers and haters there. You see, my problem with you isn't that you are a clown (although you are), it is that you have a poor business model. Fix it.