As a sports history buff, it’s fun to research tidbits of information and, on occasion, drop them into a conversation that can often result in stares of disbelief while rattling off obscure sports facts.
While scanning the internet recently, I came across “The Phoniest Records in Sports” compiled by a trio of sports writers. I remember watching a few and others I recall reading about. Here are a few:
• Barry Bonds home run records
While he has never admitted to steroid use, Barry Bonds’ body feature turned into “Mr. Atlas”-like. He smashed Mark McGwire’s single-season home run record (70) in 2001, hitting an astonishing 73 bombs and passed Hank Aaron’s career mark (755) in his last season of 2007, finishing with 762.
The 1961 single season home run mark of 61 should return to Roger Maris as should the career home run mark of Aaron. All records set during the steroid era should be banned and forgotten much like the next entry.
• Most Consecutive Tour de France Wins
Lance Armstrong’s rise and fall from grace has been well documented. After surviving testicular cancer Lance ran off seven straight Tour de France wins and made himself into a household name.
He was finally stripped of his titles by the organizers of the Tour de France in 2012 and admitted to Oprah Winfrey in 2013 to his use of illicit performance-enhancing drugs.
Coming clean cost Armstrong millions in dollars and fans.
• Strahan “sack” record
Former New York Giants’ defensive end turned media personality was “gift wrapped” the NFL sack record courtesy of Green Bay quarterback Brett Favre.
With three minutes remaining in the last game of the season, Favre, a golfing buddy, took a dive right in front of Strahan. The “sack” gave Strahan the NFL single-season record of 22.5 breaking the mark set in 1984 by Mark Gastineau of the New York Jets.
• D-2 hoops shenanigans
The final score was 258-141. The two teams involved in this January 12, 1992 fiasco were homestanding Troy State (AL) and DeVry University (Atlanta).
Troy State’s coach Don Maestri’s philosophy was to unapologetically attempt steals on an opponent’s every possession, and if the Trojans missed the steal, they allowed the opponent to score.
Troy State averaged nearly five shots a minute (190) in this so-called “game” to DeVry’s three shots a minute (121). Only seven total fouls were called with one going against the Trojans. Obviously, there was no defense played.
This reign of “Troy” should be stricken from the record books as well.