So last week, Sippin on Purple saw the greatest name poll in its brief history: Pat Angerer was up 39-38 with five minutes to game time, and somebody swooped in at the 11th hour and cast a vote for Marvin McNutt, knotting the score at 39 a piece.
Well, first, off, thanks to the 104 of you who voted. I was contemplating making myself the tiebreaking 105th vote, but decided against it. Angerer and McNutt both deserve their share of the title, so, congratulations to the both of them.
Anyways, on to the U of I, here's some runners-up: QB Juice Williams (you've heard of him), defensive lineman Sirod Williams, kicker Derek Dimke, defensive back Dere Hicks, defensive back Joelil Thrash defensive back Ashante Williams (the way to my heart: references to late-90's R&B/hip-hop acts. I performed an acoustic version of No Scrubs in front of about 100 people last week in Tech Auditorium, and I'm not ashamed to admit it. And Ashante is about as close as you can get.), defensive lineman Clay Nurse (because it means something that doesn't make sense) and quarterback Sean McGushin (His birth name back in Hawaii was actually just "McGushin" but he gave himself a first name to be more normal.)
The fact that those last few were runners up are testaments to the depth of UI's names.
And now, on to the names:
#27, Antonio Gully: Antonio is, by default, the gulliest human being on the planet earth. Because his last name is gully. And Antonio is a pretty sweet first name too, not a top ten first name, but up there.
Antonio is a junior defensive back, but hasn't actually cracked the rotation outside of special teaming.
#14, Miami Thomas: First off, Miami is from Chicago. Errrrr? In other news, if you're going to name your kid after a city, make sure it's a good one. Nobody's going to be friends with Cleveland Thomas, or Detroit Thomas, or East St. Louis Thomas. But Miami? Man, that kid's so cool. I'ma name my kid New York Sherman, and he's going to be the most popular kid in school, and school sports tv shows will focus on his sporting events way more than any other kid's sporting events, and when his teams are good, people will discuss how it's good for the league that his team is succeeding.
Miami is a cornerback. He started last year's game against NU, but hasn't played yet this year.
#16, Michael Hoomanawanui: His friends call him "Mike" for short, and "Hoomanawan" for short, also.
Mikey Hoo is a pretty damn good tight end. Now a junior, Hoomanawanui has been starting since his freshman year. He had 25 catches for 312 yards and two scores last year, but only eight this year, but considering how bad Illinois' offense has been, it really can't be that surprising.
#96, Wisdom Onyegbule: A few weeks ago, we saw Knowledge Timmons lose in the Penn State name poll. Some were disappointed. Knowledge is an awesome first name. Well, people, if you felt slighted by Knowledge's loss, well, Wisdom's your guy. First off, very similar first name concept. Now, swap out "Timmons" with "Onyegbule", and you've got a win win. That, my friends, is wisdom.
Wisdom redshirted last year, and saw his first game action a few weeks ago against Michigan, assisting on a sack.
and my pick for the winner...
#85, Whitney Mercilus: If my name was Whitney Mercilus, I'd do two things every day: first off, I'd be angry that my name was Whitney, because that's a last name, as evidenced by Eli Whitney, and, well, anybody ever to be named Whitney.
Then, having done that, I'd contemplate showing mercy. But would I? HELL NO. My last name would be pronounced MERCILESS. And therefore, even if all I know about humanity were to dictate that I was in a situation that deserved mercy, you can be sure as all hell that I would not. WHITNEY MERCILUS. A great football name too. Now, if middle name was "The", I would begin to worship him.
Whitney is a redshirt freshman defensive tackle who has seen a decent amount of tick, having played in eight games and recorded two sacks.
So, yeah, hit the poll, people. More later.