The election season is building momentum. Thirteen states will go to the polls as part of Super Tuesday. We’ve already heard everything we can possibly hear about each of the candidates thanks to the seemingly weekly debates on TV (CNN may beg to differ, however).
It’s time someone gives you a look at the candidates through an entirely different lens in order to help you with making that vote.
What other event in the U.S., other than the presidential election, brings two separate groups of people together and proceeds to pitch them against one another in a winner-take-all fight to the death? Okay, maybe the election isn’t that serious, but the answer I was looking for, is sports!
The major sports leagues have been around long enough now for specific player trends to arise and become known.
There’s been the big, physical quarterback in football. In basketball there’s the old head that always makes you ask yourself, “he’s still in the league?,” because he does one thing really well and consistently. We’ve seen the slim leadoff man in baseball who’s coveted because of his crafty, scrappy play.
The candidates would have fallen into one of the existing trends had they chosen a path of blisters and ankle braces over hearings and filibusters. Use this information wisely.
Let’s start with the democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton. Okay, the fun is officially over. Clinton is the San Antonio Spurs of politics.
Counting her time as first lady, Clinton has been in office since 1992. The Spurs have been a perennial playoff contender since the early 1990s in their own right. Through the years, Clinton has built a reputation for being politically correct. On the same note, when has anyone on the Spurs said anything remotely interesting, let alone controversial?
In the end, both Clinton and the Spurs have benefited from their unexciting methods.
Clinton, of course, went straight from the office of the first lady to a U.S. senator from New York, followed by a period as secretary of the state. The Spurs won four NBA championships over the same time-period.
Clinton was defeated in her 2008 presidential election bid by a man with a nice jumpshot who was popular with the younger crowd. The Spurs lost the 2013 NBA Finals to LeBron James (who had a nice jumpshot at that point). The Spurs came back to win the title the following year.
Only time will tell if Clinton can do the same.
Every ball team needs an old timer on the bench or in the locker room. Bernie Sanders is the old timer on the democratic bench. Yes, Bernie Sanders helps coach the democratic national basketball team.
How has he been able to stay on board for so long?
He has proven to make great ties with the younger generation of players. Unlike many old ball coaches, who harken back to how great the game was in their day, Sanders keeps both eyes to the future.
The one man that sticks in his craw time and time again? That Stephen Curry kid. How dare he knock down game-winners 40 feet away (it was actually 32, but, is that even a big difference at this point?) from the basket! Sanders knows he can’t do anything about that.
Instead, Bernie wants to make it easier for the rest of us by moving the three-point line closer to the hoop. Why should Curry be the only one to enjoy the spoils of the three ball so frequently and with unprecedented ease? Curry is definitely in the 1% on this one.
Sanders wants to redistribute the wealth of three’s out there to the rest of the league. Everyone should be able to reap the rewards of the higher value three-pointer.
Who wouldn’t want this kind of progressive change, where everyone can feel like Curry?
Now in the game for the republicans, The Donald. Donald Trump is the frontrunner in the republican race; but how did he get there?
Since day one, he has lined up and come on a downhill blitz to split the tackle and guard (untouched) and smack the rest of the republican field in the backfield. Loss of four on the play.
Trump is the prototypical linebacker. He’s in the middle of it all on each and every play – unless Megyn Kelly is the quarterback – and is unafraid of anyone across from him.
He’s bruising. He has an attacking style of play. Plus, he’s an intimidator. Just ask Jeb Bush.
If you don’t know by now, Marco Rubio is the man the republican establishment wants to own Super Tuesday. There’s only one problem; the man is a flopper. Not a flip-flopper, but a fútbol flopper!
Anyone who has watched even twenty seconds of soccer knows one thing; all soccer players have the instinct to fall for no apparent reason, no matter what the situation. It is the one thing they practice at all times.
The same goes for Rubio and his stump speech. It doesn’t matter whether he’s being asked about the economy or ISIS. He just knows, that Obama knows, exactly what he’s doing. When in doubt, stump!
The same goes for the soccer player. One ex-fútballer told me what would go on in his head over the course of a match:
Drop of sweat just hit me in the face, jerk backward and fall to the ground! Clutch my face with both hands like I had just taken a club to the nose! Keep rolling around like the pain is excruciating! No call? I guess I’ll have to throw in a yelp next time.
Anyone who watches Rubio for twenty seconds knows one thing; Obama knows what he’s doing.
Trump! This guy again? Yes, it is possible to fit more than one characterization. For Trump, it is very easy.
When Trump isn’t slamming into something, anything, really, he’s busy behind the plate. No, not that plate, with the turkey leg and mashed potatoes on it, the one used in baseball!
Trump is the umpire no one ever wants to have call their ballgame. If you strike out, guess who’s right there to let you know about it. He will let everyone know about it. He’s going to drag that call out and punch it out like it’s the last time, every time.
We can already picture the joy on his face under the mask with each punchout. For that matter, I’m pretty sure we’ve already seen it on ‘The Apprentice.”
Plus, forget about arguing any of his calls. Managers are better off staying in the dugout until the next series when a new umpire crew takes over. Not everyone does, however. According to several sources, Trump and a manager got into it during a Spring Training game recently:
“Don’t even think about coming over here! Alright that’s it, you’rrrrrre fired! Oh, that’s not enough for ya’? You can expect paperwork from my lawyer’s in the morning! You can’t question my balls and strikes and not expect to be sued for defamation!”
Those same sources tell me no official paperwork has been filed yet.
The last of the republican’s is Ted Cruz. He’s the one person who never gives the opponent the benefit of the doubt.
Think that down-the-line backhand was in? Not while Cruz is on the other side of the net. That second serve? Nope, that easily missed by a couple of inches. Don’t even bother to ask him if he’s sure, Ted Cruz is always sure that your ball was out.
Word on the campaign trail is Cruz likes to engage in pickup basketball from time to time. Who already holds the world record for most foul calls in a single pickup game? That would be Ted Cruz.
In case anyone forgot, the only fouls in pickup basketball are the ones that you call on other people for fouling you. That’s right, Ted Cruz calls all of the fouls. Let’s just imagine what that might sound like:
“Just keep breathing on my neck while I try to hit these layups. I’ll be calling it all day.”
“What do you mean it’s not a foul for making contact with me once the shot was up? You can’t affect my follow-through like that!”
I don’t want to imagine how the handshake with Vladimir Putin would turn out. Or maybe on second thought…
Either the dust will settle after Tuesday or it will turn to a sandstorm.
Whoever can drain a three from half-court in the midst of the madness will earn my vote.
Alex Goldman is a senior majoring in journalism with a minor in political science. He is currently the Sports Editor of distractionmagazine.com. He’s a Northern California native and loves snowboarding, writing, and above all the Green Bay Packers.