On Fire 1-22-13

1. Notre Dame Does Not Exist

The sports world has been blowing up with the story of Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te’o, whose Heisman Trophy campaign story of playing through the season despite the death of his girlfriend Lennay Kekua, turned out to be false, seeing as said girlfriend did not exist.

But even more strange, possibly existential news has been coming out of South Bend lately, this time revolving around high school running back and University of Georgia commit Stanley Williams. On Sunday, Williams claimed that he visited Notre Dame over the weekend and supposedly had a “great time,” even mentioning the team’s tight end coach by name.

Only problem is, Williams never actually visited Notre Dame. Several university writers called Williams out soon after the quote was released. The recruit later backtracked, saying, “It was all just a big misunderstanding, and I apologize for it.”

But what exactly was Williams apologizing for? Did he make up the story to gain favor with Notre Dame? Perhaps to persuade other schools to recruit him harder?

Your Holmesian On Fire correspondent has another theory. Perhaps Williams’ visit was hosted by the elusive Lennay Kekua. Or maybe Notre Dame is just full of people like Williams and Te’o, enjoying fine Indiana mornings with Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy and the Abominable Snowman.

2. Not Tim Tebow

A certain backup quarterback for the New York Jets has had a very trying season.

This quarterback, who was drafted after a very successful career at the University of Florida, was acquired by the Jets in the offseason to serve in the team’s Wildcat package behind Mark Sanchez. But, as has been highly publicized, the quarterback who wears the number 15 had a very limited role in the 2012 season. He never got the opportunity to start a game even when Sanchez was highly ineffective and saw most of his action as a punt protector.

Now things look even worse for this quarterback/occasional punt protector. The Jaguars — the team rumored to be seeking the services of this football player who is publicly Christian — have declared that they have no interest. The Jets front office is reportedly saying they were forced into picking up the six-foot-three, 236-pound quarterback against their will, which is terminology that sounds much too serious to be referring to football.

And yet this football player who sometimes plays the game of football keeps getting ESPN and Sports Illustrated headlines for doing absolutely nothing but sitting on a bench and having men in suits talk about him. Your puzzled On Fire correspondent, along with the majority of America, finds this irritating and unnecessary, so he or she has decided to correct this breach of journalistic integrity by censoring this quarterback’s name whenever it comes up in this column. You’re welcome.

3. Harbowl

In the off chance the news has yet to reach you, the San Francisco 49ers will be playing the Baltimore Ravens in the Super Bowl. There are many compelling storylines in this match-up, including Ravens linebacker, Pro Bowler, and Terminator understudy Ray Lewis playing in his last game before he retires, the success of 49ers rookie quarterback Colin Kaepernick, and what part of the bench Alex Smith will sit on. But the most gripping and unexpected storyline is the fact that the coaches of both teams, John and Jim Harbaugh, are brothers.

The sports world is naturally having a field day. The Super Bowl has already been cleverly dubbed the “Harbowl” by fans and media alike, as football enthusiasts everywhere seem to have just discovered that the team’s coaches are indeed biologically related in addition to being relatively good at coaching football.

Your inquisitive On Fire correspondent has spent hours of research on the subject, but it appears that John and Jim were both brothers and coaches before their teams won their respective semifinal game, and the possibility of them coaching against each other in the Super Bowl had existed long before yesterday. So yes, the media is overreacting to this, and you probably are too.

John and Jim are likely enjoying a cup of tea right now in their childhood home in Toledo while laughing about the uproar they’ve caused.