Thursday, October 23, 2008

10-23-08: Obscure Sports Facts

I've been accused by some of knowing too many stupid/useless sports facts, mostly in the realm of baseball trivia. I wouldn't call the facts useless, since they do come in handy in social situations. They aren't always good conversation starters, but it's better than most ice-breakers I know (e.g. "If you had a choice between dying from a bear attack or a snake bite, which one would you choose?").

But when I see some of the facts that ESPN or FOX or any sports broadcaster with far too large a production staff bring up, it simply amazes me. For instance, while I was watching the Patriots vs. Broncos game from this Monday (I had recorded it), I saw some odd fact that they brought up about a game between the same two teams back in 2003. That game was apparently the only game in NFL history when a team came from behind to win after committing a safety with fewer than three minutes remaining in the game.

Read that again.

Isn't that a bit... obscure? Why bring it up? I bet this past Monday was also the only game in NFL history when Teddy Bruschi and Rodney Harrison both ate Wheaties before 8:30AM whilst wearing two differently colored socks. But you don't see that little fact popping on the screen? It's too damn obscure. I guess it's supposed to show how rare that game was (the safety, by the way, was intentional). But still, why bring that stat up? It can also serve to diminish whatever value more important stats (like career touchdowns, interceptions, etc.) have over the course of a season.

Please, ESPN: take it easy. I know you guys know what you're doing. I love watching baseball and football on your many stations. I'm proud that you're based in my home state. But the next time an assistant digs up a fact about how Brett Favre has never thrown three interceptions into the wind in a third quarter, just let it go. It's for the best.

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