Earlier today, we brought you the Mid-Major Festivus Airing of the Grievances. Now, as is tradition, we arrive at the Feats of Strength.
Typically, this takes place after Festivus Dinner, and the holiday does not end until the head of household has been pinned. However we are a website on these here Internets, so we can’t ACTUALLY fight you (I tried to pitch this to the powers that be at SB Nation and they were not receptive). What we can do, however, is provide you with plenty of #content displaying mid-major players’ various feats of strength from throughout 2016.
All the dunks! I love dunks! You love dunks! You know who else loves dunks? Mo Allie-Cox. Here he is ruining peoples’ lives in the NCAA Tournament.
Not to be out-done, here’s UNC Wilmington’s Chris Flemings.
But the best dunks of the year aren’t limited to the NCAA Tournament. Take, for example, Shawn Johnson of Incarnate Word, who gave us this beautiful gift.
Then there’s Steven Davis from Wright State, who entered our lives just last week.
Is it cheating to include a professional dunker in here? Maybe. But when you’re 6’1 professional dunker Myree Bowden and you jump over 7’6 Mamadou Ndiaye, well, we can’t leave it out.
Category: Buzzer Beaters
Buzzer beaters quite often require a tremendous feat of strength, be it a half-court shot or a 3/4-court pass to the open man. 2016 had plenty.
Perhaps the most famous was Paul Jesperson’s game-winner over Texas in the NCAA Tournament.
Derric Jean from Louisiana Tech: your response, please.
What’s better than a deep three-pointer to win it? A deep four-point play to win it, of course.
Here's the shot that tied it pic.twitter.com/x8Dnx8Kyml— Brant Wilkerson-New (@BrantGNR) January 26, 2016
And let’s not leave the ladies out of this either. Check out Idaho State, beating the buzzer and possibly starting an earthquake. That’s strength.
I know this one isn’t exactly a buzzer beater. It happened at East Tennessee State’s Bluenanza, but it needs to be in here anyway. Devontavius Payne and T.J. Cromer both connected from half-court to win free tuition for a pair of students.
But it’s not all about the shooter. Sometimes it’s the pass the requires extraordinary strength and accuracy, just to set up the final attempt. Valparaiso is famous for this.
A good block requires more than just strength. It’s timing. Discipline. Being really tall. Just ask BYU’s Nate Austin.
Giddy Potts isn’t really tall, but he came up huge with this block that helped seal Middle Tennessee’s massive upset over Michigan State.
Challenge: Find something more satisfying than watching Jameel Warney block a Kentucky player. I’ll wait.
Category: Humans doing strong things
We can’t have a Feats of Strength without showing you the strongest man alive, Superman. Superman himself appeared at the Atlantic 10 Tournament this year to direct VCU’s pep band, The Peppas. Well done, Superman.
Sadly, however, things did not end well for the Rams at the A-10 Tournament. After losing to Saint Joseph’s in the title game, this cheerleader showed off her strength by stompin’ some balloons.
This VCU cheerleader stomping the hell out of St Joe's championship balloons is my spirit animal pic.twitter.com/PprxGyYLoU— Rodger Sherman (@rodger_sherman) March 13, 2016
While Wichita State head coach Gregg Marshall isn’t exactly showing off his strength here, just look at him in this video from the Shockers’ Canadian tour over the summer. Is this someone you would want to fight? Didn’t think so.
Video: Here's the McGill broadcast of Gregg Marshall's ejection in Canada this evening. pic.twitter.com/slaWKrBMys— Chase Shannon (@chase_shannon) August 10, 2016
And last but not least, this takes a special kind of strength. Something really strong inside, literally, I guess, to drink bleach in celebration of your team’s win. Here’s how one fan reacted to Fort Wayne’s shocking upset over Indiana earlier in the year.
IPFW just upset #3 Indiana. This kid celebrated by... drinking bleach pic.twitter.com/quiv0S2LHp— Deadspin (@Deadspin) November 23, 2016
That’s ... that’s something.
So there you have it. The Feats of Strength. Now gather ‘round the pole and exchange gifts. No tinsel, please.