Pageant dad, prospective political candidate and ESPN college football analyst Craig James has unveiled his new award, and ESPN’s journalists received their marching orders to treat it seriously. The “Pony Express Award” will honor the college football season’s best “tandem.” Like most of James’ contributions to the sport it’s self-serving, nebulous and asinine.
The tandem concept has two major problems. How do you isolate two or three players on a football field acting in concert? How do you judge unlike things? If Stanford runs up 500 yards of total offense, do you credit the “tandem” of Andrew Luck, Chris Owusu and Coby Fleener handling the ball or do you credit the “tandem” of Jonathan Martin and David DeCastro blocking on the offensive line? The performances are indistinguishable and incomparable, and college football already has an award to recognize teamwork, a “win.”
The Pony Express Award will be “voted on by a blue ribbon panel of experts that will form the board of directors.” Presumably, said board will not include Mike Leach.
Frivolous awards are fine, if they serve a good cause. The Pony Express Award, however, has no announced scholarship or charity affiliation. Its sole purpose seems to be letting Craig James hold a “gala dinner” and reminding everyone that Craig James was once a great college football player.
ESPN could reign in James’ ego for decency’s sake, but he’s a jock. He must be followed around at all times with kleenex and a bottle full of lube.
[Photo via Getty]