The Evster breaks down this year's Heisman hopefuls

The Evster breaks down this year's Heisman hopefuls

Everyone loves a Heisman winner (except Rashaan Salaam, that guy sucked). And next Saturday night, another strapping, brooding, virile young man will join college football's most exclusive fraternity. Soon after, the new Heisman winner will have his oil-painted portrait hung up alongside some of the finest competitors to ever play the game: like Nile Kinnick, the Iowa Hawkeyes running back who in 1939 rushed for three touchdowns after getting kicked in the brain. Then there was Notre Dame's Leon Hart, who in 1940 entered Heisman lore after he broke a guy's brain. And who can forget Gino Torretta, the Miami gunslinger who had quite possibly the cutest hairy belly button known to man.

Now just like you, I spent most of my Saturday afternoons this football season asleep on my couch. But unlike you, I am responsible for delivering a sports column to my MANIACAL DICTATOR BOSS editor Enrico every Thursday night. So when Enrico emailed me Thursday morning suggesting I ditch my "Top 10 Kurt Nimphius-inspired NBA Hairdos" post in favor of one focused on college football, I had no choice but to comply jumped at the opportunity.

Do I consider myself a college football expert? Sure. Did I write this while watching THE SOUND OF MUSIC LIVE TELEVISION EXTRAVAGANZA? Absolutely. Is there anything more annoying than when someone asks and answers their own questions? Yes, The Sound of Music live television extravaganza. There's so much singing!

Okay, enough about the Sound of Muse, let's take a look at this year's Heisman hopefuls.

But one more thing about the Sound of Muse ... how dope is that do-re-mi song?!?!

Jameis Winston, QB, Florida State

Key stats - 3,490 passing yds, 35 td, ZERO charges of sexual assault

Provided he does not kill a prostitute between now and next Saturday, Winston is a lock to win the award. The guy has been incredible, his team is ranked #1, plus Jameis has both a hilarious first AND last name. (I once knew a dog named Winston. He used to sleep in the dryer!) JW is the total package. An absolute stud. I have never, ever seen him play football.

Fun Fact: Jameis also plays baseball for Florida State and was drafted last year by the Texas Rangers. Granted everyone already pretty much knew that, so that kinda negates it from being a fun fact ... but still. He's also dating Carrie Underwood (not true).

Jordan Lynch, QB, Northern Illinois

Key stats - Passing: 2,457 yds, 22 td, 5 int ... Rushing: 1,755 yds, 20 td, 7.1 ypc ... Bowling: recently rolled a 211!

Northern Illinois? There is no way that Northern Illinois is a real place. I have been on this earth for 36 years and I have never, EVER, seen one Girl Gone Wild who went to Northern Illinois. But Wikipedia claims it's a place, so I guess it's a place.

Lynch has been tearing it up at NIU, a dual threat whose rushing numbers might be even more impressive than his passing stats. His team is also undefeated going into the final week, and with a win against the mighty BOWLING GREEN GREEN BOWLERS this Friday night, they might even sneak into a BCS bowl game. Not to mention the guy can roll!

Now I'm not saying that 211 is the most impressive score of all time -- it's a good score, don't get me wrong, it's a great score -- but it's the fact that he was so nonchalant in the way he tweeted about it. No punctuation. No emoticons. Just a decent start to a typical Tuesday evening that most likely ended with him snorkeling in a freshman's underwear. Very similar to my night last Tuesday, when I ended up sleeping on the couch because my wife claimed I was snoring out of my own butt.

Fun Fact: Lynch went to Mount Carmel High in Chicago, the same high school as DONOVAN MCNABBERS!!! Other Mount Carmel grads include: Chris Chelios, Antoine Walker and two-time Tony Award winner, Daniel Sunjata! (never heard of him)

Michael Carter-Williams, PG, Philadelphia 76ers

Key stats - 17.7 ppg, 7.3 asst, 5.8 reb, 3.1 stl

He good!

Fun Fact: Coming up with "Fun Facts" is probably the lamest thing that has ever been done on this website.

That Guy Who Returned That Kick in the Iron Bowl, CB, Auburn

Key stats - One bonkers touchdown that made me fill my pants with shit.

The best play in the history of college football. Period. Actually, that might not be true. That Cal-Stanford "the band is on the field!" play was probably better. But this is second. Although I always liked that Desmond Howard 4th and 1 diving in the corner of the end zone jawn against Notre Dame, too. So maybe this is third. Then again there's always a play every year where some guy jumps over a whole guy and kicks someone in the brain, so this is probably like the 14th or 15th best play in college football history. But still ... incredible.

[Enrico says: FLUTIE!]

It was the kind of play you'll tell you're grandchildren about, or if you're like me and are unable to have an erection and make love to your wife, the kind of play you'll tell someone else's grandchildren about. I'll always remember where I was when it happened: at my in-law's house in upstate New York, a house that does not have a working television. You see, my wife's father recently got remarried to a Rabbi (I know!) and the Rabbi is one of those people who prefers to have conversations and eat granola instead of watching television. (I KNOW AGAIN!) And let me just clarify, when I say she's a rabbi, that doesn't mean she's one of those dudes who has a long beard and smells like yogurt, she's actually a very nice human being who plays the guitar and walks around barefoot and is very down-to-earth and understanding. But she also chooses to live in a house without a television which is just WEIRD. I mean, wasn't she even the least bit curious about the latest LIVE TELEVISION EXTRAVAGANZA???

So as I sat in her living room listening to people TALK AND TALK AND GOOD GOD WHEN WILL IT END, I was also secretly checking the score on my phone. As the fourth quarter approached, I started periodically excusing myself, pretending to have a severe case of EAS (Exploding Ass Syndrome) so I could go to the bathroom and watch the game buffering on my phone.

The 99yd touchdown pass was one thing. And the triple option 50-yarder was another. Then came the back-to-back fourth down stops, and the blocked kick, so by the time the last field goal attempt was being teed up, I had been screaming so loudly that everyone in the house thought I had to go to the emergency room.

My Wife: Are you okay in there, Ev?


My Wife: You keep screaming.

Not screaming. Not screaming at all!

My Wife: Like, right there, you're screaming. Don't strain.

This is really something!

My Wife: I'm sure it is. I am sure it is. Do you need more toilet pa--


My Wife: What?! What is happening?!


My Wife: What is he doing?! Who is he?!





Fun Fact: Below is a (semi-interesting) video of the kick return recreated on Tecmo Bowl. It's almost worth watching.

Andre Williams, RB, Boston College

Key stats - Rushing: 2,102 yds, 17 td, 6.4 ypc ... Receiving: NADA, NUTHIN, NOT ONE STINKIN' RECEPTION

Andre Willy is an absolute beast. He came out of nowhere this year to rush for over TWO THOUSAND yards, but also happens to attend the same school that Enrico went to, so he is officially a MAJOR DORK.

Look at this tweet he sent out earlier this season:

Ughghhghghhh. Shut up. No one cares about intelligent dinner conversations. Except for my Rabbi/Step-Mother-In-Law (who happens to be a very nice person!).

Fun Fact: Doug Flutie can suck my butt!

AJ McCarron, QB, Alabama

Key stats - Passing: 2,676 yds, 26 td, 5 int, 1 really really really hot girlfriend

AJ McCarron has done it. The man has really done it. He's done everything anyone would ever want to do in this world. And I don't mean the back-to-back titles or the upcoming NFL contract, I mean the fact that he has a super-duper-glooper-hot girlfriend. What else in life really matters?

Okay, maybe decent service at Cracker Barrel also matters, but let's talk about more important issues.

Even though AJ has been dating a totally bing-bong-don't-stop-get-it-get-it girl for the last two years, isn't it time for him to cash her in for something different? Not necessarily something better, but a little variety? It's not like Matt Leinart won the Heisman and then stuck with whatever ridiculous chick he was dating at the time. He lived it up as a bachelor and starting goin out with celebrities, porn stars and Playboy Bunns. I'm guessing he also got it on with older chicks, younger chicks, dudes?, whomever. And good for him. Good for him! I would much rather look back on my life knowing that I lived up to my sexual potential as opposed to getting the most out of my athletic skills. Athletic ability is fleeting, sexual domination lasts FOR-EVAH.

So I think we can all agree that it's time for AJ McCarron to break up with Katherine Webb. I'm sorry Katherine, it's not you, it's me. I want to watch AJ McCarron do the diddle-dang-dang with other ladies. Could this be the first time The 700 Level was responsible for a breakup?!?!


Thanks, boss!

Fun Fact: Check out your boy's tattoos!

Real Gs don't cover up their belly buttons!

(I have no idea what that means.)

Follow The Evster @TVMWW.

Taking in return, Ryan White moves on but will always remember Flyers

Taking in return, Ryan White moves on but will always remember Flyers

Ryan White was whisking by to the visiting locker room when he had to stop.
With huge delight, the long-haired forward hugged a Flyers employee in bright orange athletic gear standing outside the laundry room. 
The two exchanged hellos and good wishes before White’s path was impeded again.
None of this was a nuisance. This is what he loved.
“That’s probably the biggest thing I miss here in Philly is the people around the rink are great,” White said late Thursday night inside the Wells Fargo Center. “The guys from the locker room attendants to the security guys to people taking care of my girlfriend and stuff like that. It’s a special place to play and I always felt like I was welcomed here.”
White had just scored his first goal of the 2016-17 season. All offseason, he hoped and planned for the occasion to be in a Flyers sweater. He talked about his endearment for the organization trumping the worth of money elsewhere.
But on Thursday night, he was wearing an Arizona Coyote uniform and, what he called, “putting the final nail in the coffin” of a 5-4 loss for the Flyers.
“It feels good scoring here,” he said.
Not at all how he pictured it.
Playing fourth-line minutes (8:09), White somehow snuck a shot past Steve Mason from a nasty side angle with 4:19 remaining in regulation, making it 5-3 and virtually snuffing another Flyers comeback bid.
“Any time you’re coming back playing your old club, you want to make sure you get a win. … I loved playing as a Flyer, it was a lot of fun playing here,” White said. “Guys over there are a great group of guys, good coaching staff, good people in the organization. It’s just a special place to play.”
It’s where White wanted to be but he holds no ill will towards general manager Ron Hextall and the Flyers. Hextall liked and expressed interest in re-signing White, a role-playing fourth-liner, but went out and inked free-agent right winger Dale Weise (four-year, $9.4 million deal), more of a third-line player with similar attributes.
That signaled White’s end with the Flyers after two seasons.
“I think I’d be crazy if I didn’t want to come back here, it just didn’t work out,” White said. “I’m just happy I’ve gotten a chance to play in Phoenix and it’s been pretty good so far.”
White on Wednesday night caught up with former Flyers teammates Radko Gudas and Michal Neuvirth. While with the Flyers, he lived in the same building as the two. They all had dinner and White got to visit Gudas’ baby daughter.
On the ice, White, gritty and physical-minded, made his presence felt. He was penalized in the second period for charging Nick Cousins. He was also called for a delay of game penalty in the final two minutes for closing his hand on the puck. The Flyers scored on the power play, ironically turning White’s goal into the gamer-winner.
“He told me he just wanted the winning goal,” Coyotes head coach Dave Tippett said with a laugh. “So that’s all that counts.”
White enjoyed the rough-and-tough nature against his old friends. 
“All those guys play hard, they know how the game goes,” he said. “I had a little conversation with Gudy last night at dinner and he said, ‘You’re going to be running around out there.’ I figured it would be no other way. You’ve got to expect that coming from those guys, they’re a hard group over there.
“Those guys know how I play and they all play the same way, too, so it was fun.”
He also appreciated seeing the Flyers Heritage Night pregame ceremony honoring the organization’s legends, led by late founder Ed Snider. White kept tabs on the Flyers’ home opener last week when a banner commemorating Snider was raised to the rafters.
“I even heard about the first game coming back, it was pretty emotional in here,” he said. “It was a pretty special time playing here with Mr. Snider around. I think he’ll obviously be forever missed and like I said, it was just special to be a part of it.”
White wasn’t sure what to expect in his return. In the end, he wasn’t surprised.
“It’s funny, I thought maybe coming back here, it would be a little bit different,” White said. “But they’re a pretty welcoming group and it’s nice to be here.”
Even if it’s just for one game.

Rod Brind'Amour relishes night with Eric Lindros, Flyers alumni

Rod Brind'Amour relishes night with Eric Lindros, Flyers alumni

When he was introduced at center ice Thursday night, Rod Brind’Amour, who epitomizes what it meant to be a Flyer perhaps like no other player in franchise history, acknowledged the crowd.
And then the current Carolina assistant coach walked over to former teammate Eric Lindros and hugged him.
There were indeed some awkward moments for the two back in the 1990s, but they remain Flyers forever and this was Heritage Night for the organization’s Hall of Famers in celebration of their 50th Anniversary.
“You know I haven’t seen him in forever, and it was just fun and when we got out there we just said, ‘nice to be back on the ice again’, it’s been a long time and I haven’t seen him,” Brind’Amour explained of the gesture toward Lindros. 
“I saw Johnny [LeClair] last year but it was just nice to catch up with these guys and relive some stories, we had a lot of great times so it was nice to see him.”
How ironic that Brind’Amour would get traded to Carolina for a larger centerman in Keith Primeau and eventually after the pain of separation from the Flyers womb had healed, he won a Cup with the Hurricanes.
Ask Roddy and he’ll tell you that Cup should have been won in Philly. He began the season as a member of the 1999-00 team that blew a 3-1 lead to the Devils in the Eastern Conference finals, but was traded at the mid-point.
To this very day, it ranks all-time as the most controversial trade the Flyers ever made. As if the very soul of the organization had been purged.
“Well I mean that’s the way it goes, right?” Brind’Amour said. “We had a great team. We had a great team back then, but trades happen and they were trying to make the team better. Maybe it did, maybe it didn’t, but had we stayed together who knows what could have happened.
“I’m just fortunate that I got that Cup because obviously, that is what I played for my whole life. Would it have been great to have it here? Yes, I mean that would have been something special, but that’s life. It doesn’t always work out the way you want it to.
“It was just unfortunate we didn’t win because we were one of the best teams in the league there for a long time and things just didn’t work out. It’s hard to win a Stanley Cup, let me tell you.”
He admitted there’s an orange ‘n black spot in his heart that will forever belong to the Flyers. That’s why he interrupted his own season in Carolina to return here for one night of memories.
He also said how much it meant to him last spring when club chairman Ed Snider reached out to him shortly before his death.
“I got a great phone call before Mr. Snider passed and him telling me what he thought I meant to this team,” Brind’Amour said. 
“It meant a lot. So I really feel connected to the Flyers' organization again and I’ll take any chance I can to get back here and be a part of it.
“It has meant a lot to me to be back here and be in the fold. I love the alumni … so, any chance to get to reconnect with these guys means the world to me.”
Which is pretty much how Flyers fans felt about him, too.