It's funny how a blog can grow out of a random thought.
Watching and rooting for Brett Favre to toss up a game losing interception Sunday, I asked myself if ol' No. 4 is Wisconsin's all-time sports villain?
In reality, he's probably not. Many athletes have done much worse, and talking about the subject on my weekly radio segment on 96.5 WKLH, the list grew and grew ... and got better and better.
With help from Dave, Carole and KB, as well as their passionate listeners, here are a few of the worst offenders -- and why. I'd love to hear your additions via the Talkback feature below:
- Packers' backup quarterback T.J. Rubley for the worst performance in the history of all backup quarterbacks in 1995 against the Vikings
- Brewers pitcher Julio Machado, for murdering a woman after a car accident in Venezuela
- The Bucks' Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, for punching Kent Benson and calling Milwaukee a "cow town" to get traded
- NBA guard/forward Latrell Sprewell, for choking his coach, running his boat aground and various other "party fouls" in and around town
- The Brewers' Gary Sheffield for threatening to commit errors until he got traded
- Bill Bartholomay, the guy who moved the Braves to Atlanta
- Packers backup quarterback Jim McMahon for wearing a Bears jersey to the White House photo shoot after the Packers won the Super Bowl in 1997
- Tony Mandarich, Terrell Buckley, Antone Williamson, Tractor Traylor and Ned Yost, all for sucking
- The Badgers' Don Morton, the coach brought the "Veer" offense to Wisconsin
- Packers' Mark Chmura, for allegedly doing some pretty bad things at a prom party
- Packers' Javon Walker and Mike McKenzie, for demanding trades in "spoiled brat" fashion
- Pirates' Randall Simon, for whacking our wiener
- White Sox outfielder Tony Phillips, for going behind the County Stadium bleachers to fight a heckler
Truth, Paul Molitor stayed eight years past his bad off the field behavior so that had nothing to do with him leaving; it was all financial. I want to pick Herb Kohl for meddling but reality is that the Bucks would be gone without him and the Kohl Center wouldn't exist so begrudingly admit that he is more of a hero than a villain. I guess my choice is Gary Sheffield; biggest jerk to ever wear Brewers uniform and a guy who openly admitted that he didn't try his best.
And how about Gary "I never wanted to be in Milwaukee in the first place" Payton? I hear he bolted straight for the airport after his last Bucks gane here.
I was at that Bucks game and in some ways Benson had it coming, threw a wicked cheap shot elbow right before he got punched. I argued with a friend last weekend that Jabbar knocking out Benson may have directly doomed the Bucks for a decade after. If Benson doesn't get stuck (which pretty much ended his career), the Bucks would have had a force in the middle for the next 10+ years. In the end, they trade Benson to Detroit and get Lanier and his bad knees. If Bensons fulfills potential, the team would've had all the pieces to make several runs at the title from 1980-1985. By the way, the video of that punch is on You Tube.
Show me the other 12 Talkbacks
17 comments about this article.
Post your comment/review now
Disclaimer: Please note that Facebook comments are posted through Facebook and cannot be approved, edited or declined by OnMilwaukee.com. The opinions expressed in Facebook comments do not necessarily reflect those of OnMilwaukee.com or its staff.
Recent Articles & Blogs by Andy Tarnoff
Published July 29, 2015
If you've never heard of floating and sensory deprivation tanks, let us answer this question for you: it's not a form of torture. Rather, some consider it the ultimate form of relaxation, injury recovery and meditation, and it's coming to Milwaukee very soon.
Published July 28, 2015
When you've visited the same place well over 20 times, sometimes you have to look at it a different way. Whether that means taking a bird's eye view from the treetops, or a fisheye perspective from just a atop the water, Wisconsin's crowing jewel that is Door County still looks spectacular from any angle. Even if it's one you have bend a little to see just right.
Published July 15, 2015
Though Liz Lincoln, who writes under the nom de plume of Eliza Madison, just published her first erotic novella, the Milwaukee writer isn't new to penning books about romance. "I've been writing romance forever, really," says Lincoln, who debuted "Fast, Fresh & Hot" this summer on Amazon. " I wrote romance stories when I was in middle school."
Published July 12, 2015
A decade ago, I took a spin around the Milwaukee Mile in a special two-seat IndyCar. I did it again this morning, and it was even better.
Published July 8, 2015
While I only passively care about what happens on the court, I nonetheless passionately, urgently and desperately request Milwaukee and Wisconsin to get its act together and build the Bucks a new arena before it's too late. Just like I preached in the mid '90s when the Brewers were semi-genuinely eying Charlotte as their new home, I'll say it again: Build it now.
Published July 3, 2015
It's a long-standing tradition at Summerfest - and at plenty of other festivals - to use radio station DJs to introduce a headlining band. It may seem like a five-minute formality, but as usual, there's a back story to most of what the public sees while standing on the Summerfest bleachers.
Published June 29, 2015
It hasn't been a good month for the Stars and Bars. Only 150 years after it should've disappeared for good, national online and brick and mortar retailers have yanked the Confederate battle flag from their shelves and their sites. In other words, you will no longer find Confederate beach towels, belt buckles or even the General Lee (I'm bummed about that, actually) at Wal-Mart, Amazon, Etsy, eBay or many other stores around America. Fortunately, you won't find them at Summerfest, either, in the state that lost 12,216 men to the Civil War.
Published June 25, 2015
To me, the Kings Of Leon were supposed to save rock music. When I saw them for a second time at Summerfest in 2006, this time at the Miller Lite Oasis, something felt wrong. KOL seemed slow. Plaintive. Quiet? Turns out that was the direction this band would head in, and it's what made them extremely popular. But I came into tonight's show with an open mind and was rewarded with old Kings, and even lulled a little with new Leon.
Published June 22, 2015
"Summertime" is a great song - so great that it's been covered 25,000 times since George Gershwin wrote it in 1934. One of the more enchanting - and special - versions of the jazz standard has just dropped from Nineteen Thirteen, an enigma of a Milwaukee band. Featuring Victor DeLorenzo on percussion and Janet Schiff on cello as its two permanent members, you almost have to see this group to believe it.
Published June 18, 2015
Even though Summerfest gets passed over by lots of national media - at some point, let's put the onus on getting the word out better, OK? - there's no doubt that this gigantic musical festival is Milwaukee's crowning annual achievement. Here are the annual picks from OnMilwaukee.com Publisher Andy Tarnoff.