ESPN — Dez Bryant might not have been watching the Scripps National Spelling Bee live, but the Dallas Cowboys wide receiver quickly became a huge fan of co-winner Nihar Janga.
Janga channeled his inner Bryant, throwing up the “X” after being named co-champion with Jairam Hathwar on Thursday night.
This is just so typical. It’s everything that’s wrong with sports AND with society these days.
The Scripps Spelling Bee used to have a code. Unwritten rules that said you don’t disrespect your opponent. You don’t showboat. When you got a word right, you acted like you’ve been there.
Now, it’s all about the individual. It’s about drawing attention to yourself. It’s putting your own self-aggrandizement ahead of the English language and really hard, non-phonetic spellings. Some are actually arguing the sport needs that sort of gimmick. They say Spelling Bees have gotten stale, and the gesturing and the dancing will appeal to a younger audience. But I’m not buying it.
Back in my day, we played the Bee game with dignity and class. We put complex words, ambiguous vowel sounds, digraphs and diphthongs first. And if an opponent danced in your face, you drilled him in the ass with a string of consonants that made him screaming onomatopoeia all the way to the hospital.
So thanks for trying to ruin the Sport of Kings, Nihar Janga. Just like your hero Dez Bryant is doing to football. And forgetting that you’re supposed to be a role model for all the younger Bee fans who are supposed to look up to. Lord, I hate to think what the game is going to look like in 20 years.
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