POSTED ON SEPTEMBER 8, 2010:
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Ranking the best in Oklahoma -- and beyond
March Madness. After a lackluster C-USA Tournament in Tulsa this past season, here’s hoping T-Towners get excited for the 2011 NCAA Basketball Tournament on March 18 and 20 at the BOK Center. Even a half-full arena will be a vast improvement.
FILE PHOTO/JEREMY CHARLES
"We're Number One!" Prepare yourself for this exact proclamation across T-Town. In fact, most of America will make the same lofty claim now that football season has arrived. For a few weeks, most of these bold declarations might have merit.
However, in a few weeks, the cream will rise to the top and the remaining sediments will sink. Now, without further ado, here are Tulsa's official preseason rankings of anything and everything. Note: rankings subject to change and bribes are welcomed.
Coaches: With a National Championship under his helmet, Bob Stoops earns the top spot in our "local" college football coach's poll. The University of Tulsa's Todd Graham comes in a distant second.
In a show of state spirit, let's add Arkansas to the mix for this one category. So coming in third in Oklahoma's most prestigious poll is OSU's Mike Gundy. The Razorback's Bobby Petrino brings up the rear. "We're Number Three!"
Local Sports Talk Radio: Longevity, creativeness, excitement and thoroughness give the top spot to 1430AM The Buzz's 2-6pm afternoon extravaganza. Their sister station on 1300AM runs ESPN programming 24-7. If you don't have anything nice to say...
Quarterbacks: 1) Arkansas' Ryan Mallett is a legit pro prospect. He could have entered the draft this past season. If we're slamming Petrino for being a flimsy coach we should give credit to Mallett.
2) Landry Jones injected life into the Sooners last season. 3) G.J. Kinne brings hope and toughness to the Hurricane. 4) Brandon Weeden is the Cowboys starter.
Highways: The Pearl Harbor Memorial Expressway dominates this category. Second place was tricky. After multiple recounts the remainder of US-169 gets the second place nod.
The Broken Arrow Expressway solidifies third place while US-75 limps in with a lackadaisical fourth place finish. I-44 bites. It was also disqualified for using performance enhancing drugs otherwise known as orange cones and barrels.
Athletes: 1) TU's Charles Clay looks the part. The physically gifted two-way player hopes to catch a scout or two's eye this season. 2) OU's DeMarco Murray -- all together now -- "when healthy," could earn a roster spot at the next level.
Sports Broadcasters: Pfft. No chance for a fair ranking here. The last thing I need is for a low-ratings-grabbing sportster glaring dirtily during media events. But Big Al Jerkins tops the list, as always.
Upcoming Sporting Events: After a lackluster C-USA Tournament in Tulsa this past season, here's hoping T-Towners get excited (or at least stimulated) for the 2011 NCAA Basketball Tournament on March 18 and 20. Even a half-full arena will be a vast improvement. Tulsa Tough captures enough votes to earn second place.
Coming in last by a Turnpike mile is the Oklahoma City Thunder's preseason snoozer against Memphis at the BOK Center on October 12. Don't get me wrong. Love me some Thunder basketball. But this preseason garbage game in Tulsa is a futile attempt to pacify real basketball fans. Give us a regular season game already.
Tulsa seasons: 1) Football season. 2) Non-football season.
Weather seasons: For years, summer ranked number one. This summer has given previous summers a bad name. Oh, and maple tree destruction is bad mojo for summer too. Here are the up-to-the-second rankings.
1) Spring followed closely by 2) Fall. 3) Summer edges 4) Swimsuit, and coming in dead last as always, 5) Winter.
Television personalities: We'll toss news anchors, reporters and weather people into the same bucket.
Chera Kimiko is a true Tulsa treasure. As far as meteorologist go, Julie Chin rocks. True story, sat next to her in the airport once. I pulled the "corner of my eye" monitoring mission and she was fabulous to everyone in the lounge.
Mike Collier makes the top five. He once wore a green shirt and blended in with his weather map. That sealed the deal. And if I am misremembering, I'll go Roger Clemens on you and deny I ever said his name.
Always enjoyed the way LeAnne Taylor kept her humor about life even during trying times. She is like the cool aunt at Thanksgiving. In fact, visit komentulsa.org for more information on Tulsa's 2010 Race for the Cure.
Bringing up the rear is Janna Clark. Maybe she should be higher on the list but top five is still solid. Her dedication to Tulsa shined through when she reported during her pregnancy. Her water might have broken during a newscast. Well, maybe not, but her professionalism is almost unmatched.
Fighters: As long as Gerald Harris keeps winning in the UFC, he'll keep getting props in this space (whether he likes it or not).
Josh "The Beast" Bryant was unceremoniously dumped from the UFC after a fairly successful run on last season's Ultimate Fighter.
Josh "Platypus" Pulsifer scraps in the 145-pound division. His wrestling acumen and vaunted platyconda choke make it hard for him to find a fight in Tulsa. XFL longtime headliner and 145-pound champ Thomas Longacre has yet to give Platypus a well-deserved title shot.
Ice Cream: 1) Vanilla. 2) Rocky Road. 3) Chocolate. 33) Strawberry. That's the list!
This column gimmick ranks somewhere between my awe-inspiring "Events Tulsa needs to bring to town" and one of my Letterman-esque top ten lists. You decide.
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