Thursday, July 14, 2011

James Harrison is badass

Apparently, James Harrison is an angry dude with a lot of thoughts and opinions.

I usually try to stay away from writing about what players do off the field and stick to more important things like dreaming up better scenarios for the BCS or talking about the best and worst uniform changes. You know, important stuff.

At any rate, here's the long and the short of it in case you were out doing something productive and/or golfing on what was a beautiful day here in Western PA.

A few months ago, Harrison did an interview for Men's Journal (which is stupid first off, because I always heard it wasn't "manly" to keep a journal, but I guess that's beside the point). He had the writer come to his house in Arizona where he was training, which wasn't a bad idea, but I'm sure they sat around and talked for a while, giving the writer the freedom to pick and choose what comments he wanted to use. This also probably gave Harrison a lot of time to get worked up talking about Goodell, fines, etc. Anyways, Harrison dropped some gems of quotes about what he thinks about Goodell (like saying "If that man was on fire and I had to piss to put him out, I wouldn't do it"), NFL executive vice president and guy in charge of fines Ray Anderson ("another dummy who never played a down") and former 49ers DB Merton Hanks who is in charge of the appeals process for fines ("needs to be ashamed because he played D before, though he was never what you'd call a real hitter").

For starters, let's be honest. Harrison's sentiments about the league and those in charge of the league office are pretty much what most Steelers fans think/feel anyways after how last season went down. Is Harrison going to get fined or whatever for this? Possibly. Ironically, the NFL can't touch him right now because of the lockout. But when the lockout ends? Who knows. Can't say I disagree with Harrison's thoughts on this subject though.

The big thing that jumped out, at least to me, from the article was how much of a badass Harrison really is. Obviously, we know how he plays on the field and his reputation of having a gravelly demeanor off the field isn't far wrong. From the snippets of the article I saw, it was pretty clear that Paul Solotaroff wrote the article to make James sound as grizzly and "manly" as possible (this is the "Men's Journal" after all). However, there were a few stories mentioned that did stand out.

The first was from when he played in high school and told a group of kids on the other team they were going to die.

"The only hair on Harrison is the pointy beard he’s been trying to grow all spring. He’s kept his skull bald since his sophomore year of high school, when he approached his opponents before a game, doffed his helmet to show his new-mown pate, and told them they were going to die that day."


No, I'm not joking about this either.

" 'I grabbed a rattler by his tail and threw him over the fence last month.'
You grabbed a rattler bare-handed?
'Had to. My son was here visiting, so that bitch had to bounce. ASAP.'"

This is a dude that grabbed a rattlesnake barehanded. Do you really think Marshall Yanda is going to scare him?


Yeah, I didn't think so either. But let's also not forget the reason why he did it. His son was visiting. Harrison doesn't just go around picking up rattlers for the fun of it. He did it to protect his son.

Now comes the part that has the Pittsburgh media elite's panties in a bunch. Harrison had a few quotes about Ben Roethlisberger and Rashard Mendenhall and their performances last year.

With regards to Ben (and I don't know the context of this quote, just that it pertains to the Super Bowl), he said, "Hey, at least throw a pick on their side of the field instead of asking the D to bail you out again. Or hand the ball off and stop trying to act like Peyton Manning. You ain’t that and you know it, man; you just get paid like he does."

For starters, and before anyone reading this gets up in arms about anything, we'll go to what Ryan Clark posted on Twitter.

For those of you who aren't familiar with Twitter, Ryan is saying "He's just James! You know what you're getting" in response to what the other person (jemelehill) said.
Same here. Ryan says in response "Locker room stuff gets handle[d] in the locker room not [on] twitter."

I think these 4 tweets pretty much say it all. What happens in the locker room stays in the locker room. That's pretty much all you need to know.

Chances are, I'll be posting a few more times this week with counter-arguments to what those in the Pittsburgh media, including Gery Dulac who thinks #3 is the best hole at Birdsfoot Golf Club (I wouldn't even put it in my top 5...#2, #5, #7, #11, and #18 are all better holes), are saying about Harrison.

"That Bitch Had To Bounce" and "Ride or Die With #7" would make great t-shirts. Just saying.

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