Thursday, March 13, 2014

THE CRANKSHAFT GAZETT: Tidbits from our infamous guest writer...RUSTY CRANKSHAFT

Frank Martin loses it at Groucho’s

Coach Frank Martin was trying to be patient with the wait staff at Grouchos earlier this week, but he had just had enough.  After all, he was very clear that he wanted 95 sauce instead of 45 sauce on his White Moose sandwich.  “I am trying to take off a few pounds, so I just wanted some of that **** lower calorie **** on my food.  Apparently that’s too much to ask.”

An onlooker caught on camera an exchange between the Coach and his waiter when the sandwich arrived with 45 sauce instead.  “DID I ASK FOR 45 SAUCE?  WELL DID I?  ANSWER THE ******** QUESTION YOU *******!!!!!” 

The Coach has been asked to not eat at Grouchos for one month by AD Ray Tanner.  


Auburn and Carolina decide to play Twister instead of Basketball at SEC Tournament

The Auburn Tigers and South Carolina Gamecocks knew that whoever won their 1st round game in this year’s SEC Basketball Tournament wasn’t likely to win the Championship, so they turned their meaningless 1st round matchup into a fun game of Twister.  “Why not,” said Gamecock Coach Frank Martin, who believes his players deserved a fun ending to the year.  “They’ve worked hard and we’ll get better, so why not end the year on a happy note?”

The Gamecocks ended up winning the Twister game after Brenton Williams successfully maneuvered his right hand to blue after putting his left foot on red.  Carolina will meet Arkansas in a game of “Truth or Dare” in the 2nd round.  

Dawn Staley: Doing it the right way!

USC Women's Basketball Coach - Dawn Staley
I will be the first person to admit that I am biased toward the three men’s major sports, golf and NASCAR.  It is doubtful that shocks anyone, as most folks in our region are as well.  Also, when someone tries to “cram” a sport down my throat, I usually just ignore it.  Yes, I will tune into some of the Olympics every couple of years, and there may be the occasional random event that grabs some attention, but for the most part I like my little sports cocoon. 

But if you can find a way to pierce that shell via merit and persistence, you earn my respect.  And if you’ve done that with me, you likely have done so with everyone who is like me.  I would guess I am your typical, average Gamecock fan so the number is probably large in that group.  Dawn Staley, you have our attention! 
I know very little about Women’s Basketball and I won’t pretend I have “always” followed it from a distance.  I haven’t.  My perception of that sport has largely been that UConn and Tennessee dominate, with the occasional Baylor, North Carolina or Notre Dame in the outside group.  Accurate?  I have no idea but I bet it’s close. 

That outside group is where I now I place another team:  the South Carolina Gamecocks and Dawn Staley.  (Disclaimer:  If you have followed this program for a long time, there are going to be many things wrong with this column.  I get that.) 

According to ESPN, we are ranked #8 right now after being upset in the semis at the SEC Tournament.  We are 27-4, won the SEC regular season title and are likely a #2 seed in the upcoming tournament.  Assuming we win our 1st round game, that will be three straight seasons where Coach Staley has won a game in the Ladies’ Big Dance. 

Okay, so we may have had a nice run but what about the future?  Coach Staley is on the verge of landing the nation’s #1 recruiting class.  Apparently, we already have the #4 class or something like that and we are waiting on 1 recruit’s decision to get us to the top.  Past success, present success and future success are all in good shape under Dawn Staley.  And she hasn’t asked for any special help that I know of to promote her program.  Her team has earned the recognition and exposure through their results on the court.  That is what turns a passive, not-interested fan base into genuinely excited supporters.  Should it be that way anyway?  Of course, and if a frog had wings….

So count me among those who have now made Lady Gamecock Basketball something I both keep up and for which I seek updates.  If this keeps up I may have to add Women’s Hoops to the list of sports that get pilloried here on The Cockabooster!  You may see the Tiggers’ Audra Smith get the treatment I give old Dabo, Jack-Leg and the Velvet Vanilla.  

It’s a great time to be a Gamecock!  

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

More...MOO U NEWS: Top 10 ways Clemson is showing they’re not obsessed with Carolina

In light of the new “Countdown to Carolina” clocks at Clemson, here are some other ways the Tigers are showing they aren’t worried about the Gamecocks

10.          All Li’l Cricket locations in the Upstate now required to have a “Kill Cocky” video game
9.            The slop buckets used to feed the cheerleaders now must have “Beat Carolina” painted on them.  (Correct spelling is optional)
8.            The “Bring Back Big Spur” petition is now circulating the Iptay Center.
7.            Will Merritt has tripled his daily drive-thru appearances at Popeye’s Chicken 
6.            Roy Philpott is going to sit in a tree on campus wearing Burt Reynolds’ chicken suit from “Stroker Ace” until Dabo beats USC. 
5.            All freshman students at Clemson must now wear a severed beak around their necks.
4.            Dabo’s new reality show on A & E… “I don’t care about USC.  Really.” 
3.            Death Valley now being renamed as “Well we beat LSU and Ohio State at least” Stadium
2.            New manure-scented perfume being sold at all malls is named “Obsession…but not about a rival”
1.            Best Selling bumper sticker in Pickens County:  “Beat USC.  Or Don’t.  We don’t care.”

MOO U News: Leggett seeking lifetime contract after Gamecock Sweep

Jack Leggett set out to prove he could lose to USC better than any Clemson coach last weekend, and he put forth a strong argument by getting swept in three games and vaulting Carolina to #1 in the national rankings.  Based on what the Tigers gave their football coach for losing to the Gamecocks, Leggett feels he is now owed a lifetime agreement.  

“Coach Swinney may have our first ever 5-game losing streak to them in football, which is strong.  No question.  But come on man!  I have lost 23 out of 30 to them, been eliminated by them at Omaha twice, and have watched them take in 2 national titles in that timeframe.  Oh, and thanks to them sweeping us this weekend they are now #1 in the country.  What else can I do?  I gots to get paid Jack!” 

Leggett says if they won’t give him the contract he seeks, then maybe something else could be worked out.  “I would love to try and get some Mrs. Winners chicken places going again.  They could flat out fry some chicken.  Or maybe it’s time for me to retire to Myrtle Manor.” 


Clemson fans have completed the transition

If they weren’t fans of our in-state arch-rival, I would almost be sympathetic toward my Clemson brethren right now.  For decades, we just were obsessed with making “BEAT CLEMSON” our entire identity.  I can admit now that in football I would have honestly taken a win over the Tigers instead of an 11-win season any day.  

Now I hear the news that the Tigers are installing countdown clocks all over their football facilities.  Counting down to the National Championship game I’m sure?  Or maybe that dynamic ACC Title game they try and pretend they care more about than USC?  Or maybe it’s just a generic countdown to the opening kickoff type of thing?  Of course not.  You guessed it:  the program that gives insane contracts to coaches and bends itself into pretzels to INSIST that it doesn’t care about beating Carolina is now formally counting the seconds and minutes until we play again.  You have to love it! 

Ah, fond memories pop into my head of that “Beat Clemson” obsession we went through in football before Spurrier.  Again, let me say that I was neck-deep in the middle of that.   Those of orange ilk used to live rent-free in our heads.  Now we’re the tenants in their craniums and that’s how it needs to stay.  

And we need to remember that no one has done more to change the fortunes of this rivalry than Dabo Swinney.  He is likely going to go down as the most popular Clemson coach at both schools when he is done.  Clemson has sold their souls to him to be able to try and prove to Gamecock fans that they really aren’t worried about us.   Therefore, every time we beat them in football, they now have to double-down further and reaffirm their loyalty to old Dabbles.  Hoping beyond hope that eventually the odds say that they will win a football game against us (which I’m sure will happen at some point), somehow that will vindicate the entire foolish exercise.  We’re good with that plan.  We’re all in!  

I have so many really cool Tiger friends who have privately admitted what they actually think about their current path.  Needless to say when you get them 1 on 1 it is unanimously recognized how reckless, short-sighted and disingenuous their choices are- like the big contract, the obsession, the countdown clocks, etc.  But as the old saying goes, “A person can be smart, but people are stupid.” 

Shoot, despite brutal treatment by them for many, many years growing up I still do feel sorry for them and I guess I carry a touch of sympathy.  It is just miserable to be where they are right now, cast as Don Quixote of the Palmetto State attacking the windmill.   At least they have the attention span of the dog in the movie “Up” to fall back on.  The next distracting squirrel (playing a bowl against a team that doesn’t want to be there, facing the ACC “heavyweights,” recruiting all skill players, etc) is always just around the corner.  Hang in there my Tigger pals.  The odds do say you’ll get a win at some point.  

It is a great time to be a GAMECOCK!