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Chris Berman's Nicknames Becoming More Obscure After Taking Night Course In Russian Literature

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NFL Vows To Fix Bottomless Pit On Levi’s Stadium Field Before Super Bowl

SANTA CLARA, CA—Following persistent safety concerns regarding the playing surface throughout the regular season, the NFL made firm assurances Friday to both the Denver Broncos and Carolina Panthers that the bottomless pit in the middle of the field at Levi’s Stadium will be fully repaired before Super Bowl 50.

Area Man Would Hate Cam Newton Even If He Was Different Minority

MURRAY, KY—Adamantly stressing that his disdain for the 26-year-old quarterback is not based on any racial prejudice toward African Americans, local 49-year-old Michael Willet told reporters Friday that he would hate Cam Newton even if the Carolina Panthers star was a different minority.

Rex, Rob Ryan Finally Get Bunk Beds They Always Wanted

BUFFALO, NY—Howling with excitement after seeing the brand-new furniture set in the corner of the bedroom they now share, Buffalo Bills head coach Rex Ryan and his twin brother, recently hired Bills assistant head coach Rob Ryan, finally got the bunk beds they always wanted, sources confirmed Monday.

NCAA Investigating God For Giving Gifts To Athletes

INDIANAPOLIS—Amid a new scandal that many are already calling the most damaging in the history of collegiate sports, the NCAA announced Tuesday that it has launched an investigation into God, Divine Creator of Heaven and Earth, for allegedly giving gifts to student-athletes.

Defunct 4-Year-Old Sports Blog Still Lurking On Internet

FORT COLLINS, CO—Noting that the site devoted to the Colorado Rockies and their minor league affiliates had long ceased being updated without any explanation, sources confirmed Friday that local man Ben Gutowski’s defunct four-year-old sports blog, “The Rockies Report,” was still quietly lurking on the internet.

BCS Computer Takes Over Every Screen In Country During College Football National Championship Game

‘BCS Will Live Forever,’ Reads Text Suddenly Appearing On All Televisions, Computers, Phones Simultaneously

GLENDALE, AZ—Noting that all television feeds and online streams suddenly cut out simultaneously, sources confirmed that the BCS computer took over every single screen in the United States midway through Monday evening’s College Football Playoff National Championship Game between Alabama and Clemson.

Grizzly Bear Catches Spawning Michael Phelps In Jaws

KENAI, AK—Sitting on a rock atop the powerful, churning rapids, a grizzly bear reportedly caught Michael Phelps in its jaws Tuesday as the sexually mature Olympian leaped out of the water while swimming upstream to spawn.

Area Dad Thinks Refs Should Just Let Them Play Football

DOYLESTOWN, PA—Facetiously questioning how the game had suddenly become a non-contact sport, local father Aaron Harper confirmed his belief Thursday that referees officiating a Thanksgiving game between the Philadelphia Eagles and Detroit Lions should just let them play football out there.

Punter Just Praying Returner Doesn’t Make It All The Way To Him

JACKSONVILLE, FL—Growing increasingly nervous as he contemplated being the team’s last line of defense, Tennessee Titans punter Brett Kern was reportedly praying Thursday that Jacksonville Jaguars returner Rashad Greene wouldn’t make it all the way down the field to him.

Defensive Tackle’s Innocence Shattered By Play-Action Pass

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ—Saying the eye-opening experience has forever altered his worldview, Buffalo Bills defensive tackle Marcell Dareus admitted to reporters Friday that a play-action pass play by the New York Jets had totally shattered his youthful innocence.

Royals Prove Doubters Who Were Still Paying Attention Wrong

NEW YORK—Having capped off their championship run with a 7-2 victory over the New York Mets in Game 5 Sunday night, members of the Kansas City Royals expressed their delight at silencing the doubters who still happened to be paying any attention to the World Series.

Keys To The Matchup: Mets vs. Royals

The Mets face the Royals in this year’s Fall Classic, with the two teams battling for the chance to bring World Series glory back to either Kansas City or incredibly small pockets of New York. Onion Sports breaks down what each team must do to win.

The Mets face the Royals in this year’s Fall Classic, with the two teams battling for the chance to bring World Series glory back to either Kansas City or incredibly small pockets of New York. Onion Sports breaks down what each team must do to win.

No One In Gym Class Volleyball Game Willing To Set Ball

LITTLE ELM, TX—With neither team having completed more than two hits during a rally before sending the ball back over the net, sources confirmed Wednesday that no one in Jefferson High School’s third-period gym class was willing to set during a volleyball game.

Strongside/Weakside: Chase Utley

Los Angeles Dodgers second baseman Chase Utley has long been considered one of the best players in baseball, consistently making clean, solid contact with opponents’ fibulas. Is he any good?

Los Angeles Dodgers second baseman Chase Utley has long been considered one of the best players in baseball, consistently making clean, solid contact with opponents’ fibulas. Is he any good?

Jadeveon Clowney Succumbs To Battle With Ankle Sprain

HOUSTON—Noting that the 22-year-old was a “wonderful young man who will be immensely missed by all who knew him,” the Houston Texans announced Thursday that linebacker Jadeveon Clowney tragically succumbed to his battle with a right-ankle sprain.

Strongside/Weakside: Odell Beckham Jr.

Since bursting onto the scene in 2014, New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. has tormented opposing defenders with his dazzling one-handed punches. Is he any good?

Since bursting onto the scene in 2014, New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. has tormented opposing defenders with his dazzling one-handed punches. Is he any good?

WNBA MVP Devastated After Roommate Moves Out Without Any Warning

CHICAGO—Saying she is now desperately searching for any options that will prevent her from being evicted, Chicago Sky forward and 2015 WNBA MVP Elena Delle Donne was reportedly left scrambling Thursday after her roommate moved out of their apartment without any warning whatsoever.

Strongside/Weakside: Chip Kelly

Known as one of the most innovative minds in football, Philadelphia Eagles head coach Chip Kelly has implemented an offense that racks up huge numbers in the loss column. Is he any good?

Billy Crystal Tearfully Admits He’s Never Seen, Been To A Yankees Game

‘I Don’t Even Know What The Yankees Are,’ Crystal Says

NEW YORK—Admitting that he could simply no longer continue living a lie, veteran actor, comedian, and self-professed New York Yankees fanatic Billy Crystal tearfully confessed Thursday that he has never seen or attended a single Yankees game in his life, and indeed has absolutely no idea who or what the Yankees even are.

New LSU Stadium Shuttle Transports Tigers Fans Back To Woods

BATON ROUGE, LA—Saying that they hope to make traveling to and from football games more convenient and enjoyable, officials from the LSU athletic department announced Friday that the university will now offer a round-trip stadium shuttle bus to transport Tigers fans back to the woods.

Strongside/Weakside: Marcus Mariota

With an incredible four-touchdown performance to start his NFL career, rookie quarterback Marcus Mariota showed that he has what it takes to be the Tennessee Titans’ new silver lining. Is he any good?

With an incredible four-touchdown performance to start his NFL career, rookie quarterback Marcus Mariota showed that he has what it takes to be the Tennessee Titans’ new silver lining. Is he any good?

Giants Move Tom Coughlin To Assisted-Coaching Facility

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ—Saying that they held off taking such a drastic step for as long as they could, officials from the New York Giants confirmed Wednesday that the team had made the difficult decision to move head coach Tom Coughlin into an assisted-coaching facility.

2015 NFL Season Preview

The 2015 NFL season is poised to be among the most memorable and eventful in league history, with several of the notable moments hopefully occurring on the field. Onion Sports breaks down everything you need to know before the season kicks off.

Jayson Werth Catches Foul Ball Without Spilling Beer

WASHINGTON—In an incredible play that drew cheers from the whole stadium, Washington Nationals left fielder Jayson Werth managed to catch a foul ball Tuesday night without spilling the beer he was holding in his other hand.

Strongside/Weakside: Serena Williams

Serena Williams is aiming to clinch a historic calendar Grand Slam at this year’s U.S. Open, forever enshrining her as the last American tennis player worth talking about. Is she any good?

Journeyman Fan Joins Sixth NFL Team In 5 Years

HELENA, MT—Continuing his lengthy trek around the league, sources confirmed Friday that 36-year-old journeyman fan Brian Ferretti has joined the Arizona Cardinals, his sixth team in the past five years.

Strongside/Weakside: Jose Mourinho

Having won titles in Spain, England, Italy, and Portugal, manager Jose Mourinho has cemented himself as one of the most successful megalomaniacs in soccer. Is he any good?

Having won titles in Spain, England, Italy, and Portugal, manager Jose Mourinho has cemented himself as one of the most successful megalomaniacs in soccer. Is he any good?

Highlights From NFL Training Camp

With preseason games underway and preparations intensifying across the league, the NFL has had no shortage of stories to keep fans occupied before the new season kicks off. Onion Sports breaks down the biggest moments from this summer’s training camp.
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Chris Berman's Nicknames Becoming More Obscure After Taking Night Course In Russian Literature

BRISTOL, CT—Longtime ESPN favorite Chris Berman, known throughout sports fandom for his enthusiastic narration of highlights and his practice of giving colorful nicknames to athletes, has come under scrutiny since enrolling in a Russian Literature course at a local community college led to his commentary becoming increasingly hard to understand, ESPN sources report.

"Tonight we've got a veritable Cherry Orchard of highlights to pick from as we Chekhov our top plays," Berman said during Tuesday night's broadcast of SportsCenter in a display of tortured literary puns and obscure references the likes of which viewers have come to dread. "We'll check in on the fading fortunes of Uncle I-Vanya Rodriguez, the tragic circumstances that brought pitcher Dennis Dove-stoyevsky into the big leagues, and find out if the tempestuous relationship between Kurt and Kyle Busch make them the new Brothers NASCAR-amazov, so stay tuned."

ESPN management confirmed that viewers have taken to flooding their offices with thousands of confused phone calls immediately after every broadcast.

"Listen, I have no more idea than you do why Yankees owner George Steinbrenner is suddenly deluded professor George Steinerebriakoff, or why Chris is convinced that Steinbrenner is slowly and sadly wasting the lives of everyone around him by dragging them into his miasma of self-pity, or why he seems to think Steinbrenner has gout," VP of programming Scott Guglielmino told reporters yesterday. "I mean, three weeks ago it was still Foghat references and growling out the 'R' on 'the Raiders,' and now this."

"Honestly, I'm not sure he even knows what he's talking about," Guglielmino added.

Since enrolling in the class, Bristol Community College's Russian Lit 1, which emphasizes the major works of Tolstoy, Dostoyevsky, and Chekhov, Berman has also baffled viewers by nicknaming the flamboyant owner of the Oakland Raiders 'Rask-Al-nikov Davis' during a segment titled "Crime and Punishment," in which Berman discussed the NFL's new conduct policy. He also praised an Alex Rodriguez home run by saying it "traveled as far as the railroad featured so prominently in Anna Karenina," and referred to LeBron James as "LeVronsky" in an apparent nod to the heroine's lover.

Response from viewers has been overwhelmingly negative, especially as Berman's further reading has led him to advance from mere wordplay-based player nicknames to broader, wordplay-based thematic comparisons.

"Excuse me, but what does it mean if Tony Stewart is inspired to near-operatic heights of vernacular in his questioning of the corrupt caution-flag procedure when his car develops bad Pushkin in the corners?" a complaint from longtime SportsCenter viewer Brian Walters read in part. "And why are Miami Dolphins fans like the parents praying over the grave of their atheist son over their team drafting Ted Ginn? Can't he just say Stewart is angry and Fins fans are sad? I don't get it."

"The only thing Berman said last night that made any sense to me was that bit about 'if there's a gun in the story, it has to go off,' when he talked about the Dolphins cutting Marcus Vick," viewer Kathy West wrote. "It means he was arrested again, right?"

"Chris is definitely one of our more, let's say, involved students," said associate professor Bradley Stewart, Berman's teacher in the two-hour twice-weekly class. "I'm not sure how much he's really absorbing, but he certainly laughs the loudest and asks the most questions in class. Although I'm not sure why he wanted to know if it was appropriate to say "Bakunin- Bakunin- Bakunin- Bakunin- Bakunin!" in a celebratory manner when someone hit a home run. I told him it wasn't really a good idea."

Berman himself has refused to discuss either his recent departure from his longtime style or whether he would be returning to his old form anytime soon, saying only that he was weighing his options, listening to all feedback, and concentrating on reading the syllabus for an upcoming night course in the Imagist poetry of Ezra Pound, Ford Madox Ford, William Carlos Williams, and Richard Aldington.

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