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Monday, September 26, 2011
Power Rankings: 'Moneygolf' Edition

By Greg Hardy
Special to Page 2

Let us help you carry your clubs through the ESPN.com Page 2 Power Rankings! Our formula combines the results of two surveys: a human poll concocted by ESPN Page 2's Greg Hardy and a scientifically calibrated poll generated by computer analysis. Unfortunately, our computer spent the weekend downloading the personal information of everybody who hasn't clicked the proper friend access buttons on Facebook thanks to its redesign format. Apparently, it's about a million times easier than trying to guess your banking passwords before the mob does. To the results!

1. Bill Haas

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
9.7 9.6 19.3

Credentials: What a golfing payday: The 29-year-old wins $1.44 million for winning the season-ending Tour Championship plus $10 million for being the name on top of the FedEx Cup standings. Wow, if we would bank more than $11 million just from golfing, there's no doubt we'd sign up for Netflix and Qwikster. Haas can now happily spend the winter subscribing to all the golf magazines that will obsess about when Tiger Woods will complete his comeback and thus prevent us from learning about any other interesting golfers on the PGA Tour again.


2. Red Sox plunge

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
9.5 9.1 18.6

Credentials: Our advice to Boston fans who are having a panic attack after the wild-card debacle: Call up that clinic that froze Ted Williams' head. It might have a "Red Sox October" package that will put you in a suspended animation from now until Thanksgiving. When you wake up, you might find yourself with a bounty of World Series championship gear or the soothing comfort of a Patriots scouting report. Either way, you'll have built up enough guilt and anxiety to be in full form for spring training.


3. Michael Vick's hand

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
8.8 8.3 17.1

Credentials: What's the story? It's broken; it's bruised; it's infected with zombie virus. The important thing is that therapy for his right, non-throwing hand won't rest in the hands of NFL referees. Because, according to Vick, their recommendation might be to treat it with an ice pack that's kept in place by repeatedly slamming them together in a car door.


4. NL wild card

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
7.7 7.2 14.9

Credentials: Sorry, Braves fans. We can't help it that you're on the verge of throwing away your comfortable playoff eligibility margin, too. But look on the bright side if the Cardinals overtake you. Just pick up Albert Pujols as a free agent in the offseason, and you won't have to worry about this happening again next September.


5. Texas A&M

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
7.1 7.4 14.5

Credentials: It's official. The Aggies are eligible to compete in all Southeastern Conference sports after July 2012. Although coaches and players will acclimate to the culture change of visiting so many new college towns for football, basketball, baseball, volleyball and track, just remember that all those rumors of SEC-sanctioned lawn-mower races are just that -- rumors. Once you get to the likes of Oxford, Athens and Birmingham, you'll discover that lawn-mower races are just a fraternity rec-league thing.


6. Tony Romo's ribs

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
6.2 6.3 12.5

Credentials: Cowboys fans are nervous going into the "Monday Night Football" showdown against the archrival Redskins. Hey, settle down; so what if your best quarterback may or may not have healthy body parts with his fractured ribs and/or punctured lungs? You don't hear any Washington fans complaining about how Rex Grossman is coping with the medical functionality of the head that rests on his shoulders.


7. Desperation Colts

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
5.4 5.2 10.6

Credentials: Watching Indianapolis this season has been the strangest sensation. How weird it is that you have to root that the Colts -- the Colts! -- don't fall too far back on the scoreboard, otherwise they'll be forced to throw on every down, and that's just a recipe for them to become dead meat. Yup, the only thing worse than worrying about Peyton Manning having a three-interception game is knowing that he can't throw any interceptions at all.


8. Tony Stewart

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
5.2 4.9 10.1

Credentials: Look who's won two races in a row since the Chase for the Cup started. This one was helped along when he passed Clint Bowyer, who ran out of gas with fewer than three laps to go. Which got us thinking, how can that translate into an excuse for why the Boston Red Sox could lose out on the wild card? "Yeah, we couldn't finish our games against the Orioles because we ran out of bats or gloves or cleats or clean underwear." Thank you, drive through.


9. Bob Bradley

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
5.1 4.3 9.4

Credentials: Congratulations to the ex-coach of the U.S. national soccer team for ending up in charge of Egypt's squad. That's one of countless job interviews we'd never be able to get through with a straight face, because we wouldn't be able to resist touting that our main credential would be bringing a sandlot mentality. Get it? Sand? Egypt? Pyramids? Oh, that deserves a red card on our joke-writing permanent record.


10. Solheim Cup

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
5.0 4.3 9.3

Credentials: Europe took away the Solheim Cup from the U.S. women golfers for the first time since 2003. Great, now we've got a garage full of boxes of thousands of red, white and blue "Solheim Cup Champs 2011!" T-shirts and caps that we have to get rid of. Anyone want to help us set up a yard sale next weekend?


11. WNBA Finals

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
4.2 4.1 8.3

Credentials: The Minnesota Lynx await the Atlanta Dream and Indiana Fever to settle their Eastern Conference finals so that they can dive into their best-of-three league championship series. Did we mention that our favorite part of looking at any "best-of" scheduling is seeing the notation for games marked "if necessary"? And although anyone could snark that every WNBA game could be notated as "if necessary," the point is, after these Finals are over, it will be another glaring reminder that there's no NBA action on the horizon. So enjoy it while it lasts, because it will be no fun if the entire 2011-12 NBA slate is deemed "not necessary."


12. NHL preseason

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
4.1 3.2 7.3

Credentials: The countdown is on until the first regular-season faceoff on Oct. 6. Although it's nice that we can finally count on a pro sports league to start on time without any labor issue drama, there's a part of us that wishes that Sidney Crosby's concussion issues could get with the program and disappear so that he can be on the ice with everyone else. On the bright side for commissioner Gary Bettman, this is something for which we can't boo him.


13. "Moneyball"

Human Poll Computer Poll Power Points Trending
3.1 2.4 5.5

Credentials: Brad Pitt and the Oakland A's rounded the bases with $20.6 million in the opening weekend of "Moneyball," but it wasn't enough to top the $22.1 million of "The Lion King 3-D" in its second weekend. Hey, since we read early drafts of the "Moneyball" screenplay on the Internet, we said that what the movie would really need to stand out at the multiplex was a 3-D gimmick, like making the sabermetrics stats pop out at the audience. Oh well, there might still be time to make those effects work for a Christmas re-release.


Also receiving votes
• Joe LaCava: Word is he's the guy Tiger Woods hired as his new caddie. Maybe that doesn't automatically make LaCava The Most Interesting Man in the World, but we figure it sure as heck puts him in the running for The Most Discreet Man in the World. Is there any job interview on the planet other than for the role of Tiger Woods' caddie where the questions "Can you keep a secret?" and "You're not going to tell anyone in the media about this, right?" are floated?

Never receiving votes
• Justin Bieber's Staples Center date: How romantic. The dreamy teen treated his girlfriend, Selena Gomez, to dinner and a movie and some just-me-and-you time with the arena all to themselves. We'll bet that the hardest thing for Bieber to arrange wasn't the food or the entertainment but just making sure L.A. Clippers owner Donald Sterling didn't show up to chaperone.

Greg Hardy is a Page 2 contributor. It's all pop culture all the time at Twitter.com/HardyVision.


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