Scott Torgerson's suspension from Columbus radio for jokingly sending a tweet wishing death upon Desmond Howard was just another in a long line of dumb sports tweets this year. Athletes and sports personalities hitting the send button before thinking is nothing new, but it's been an epidemic in 2012. Some of these tweets will make you laugh. Others that were meant to produce laughs will make you cry. Still others will make you cringe and question the existence of social media. Whatever the case, these are the tweets that should have never been sent to the masses. And just think, we're only in October, so there's still plenty of time to add to this list before December rolls around.
The worst of the worst are in chronological order...
Onward State & CBS - Premature Paterno Death Reporters
On the night of January 21st, Penn State website Onward State reported the passing of former Penn State coach Joe Paterno. There was just one problem though - Paterno was still alive. If there's one story above all others you can't get wrong, it's reporting someone's death. What could be worse than that from a reporting perspective? CBS Sports lifted the errant Onward State Paterno death report with minimal attribution, and then deflected blame back onto the website only when it was proven wrong. That was the single weakest move by a sports network this year.
Jason Whitlock - Racist Sportswriter
Way back in February, Fox Sports columnist Jason Whitlock sent this offensive tweet in the wake of Jeremy Lin's incredible performance on ESPN in a nationally televised Knicks victory over the Lakers. Whitlock apologized for the tweet and explained it as a crude and poor attempt at humor. The Wire's #1 fan somehow survived the intense firestorm over the tweet and continues to inflict pain on anyone who reads his columns or tweets.
Joe Cowley - Sexist Sportswriter
Chicago Sun Times sportswriter Joe Cowley revealed himself as an enormous d-bag on his Twitter feed April 29th when commenting about the attractiveness of flight attendants and female pilots in late April. The worst part about Cowley's moronic tweets was the pride he took in being a pre-neanderthalic ogre. Cowley was merely put on probation and continues to write for the Sun Times without any real punishment. Thankfully, the Sun Times at least shut down his Twitter account that sought to take us back to a time when women couldn't vote or own property.
Vito Stellino - Inadvertent Porn Tweeter
The most unlucky tweet on our list may be this May 10th message from Jags beat writer Vito Stellino of the Florida Times Union, who unkowingly sent a link to a porn site instead of an intended story on the USFL. I'm sure there's a joke in there relating "Hot Blonde F*cked Backstage" to the USFL's demise, but I think it's best that we just move on.
Metta World Peace - Holiday Mixer Upper
Happy labor day....Enjoy it— Metta WorldPeace (@MettaWorldPeace) May 28, 2012
We have to have some levity in this list, and who better to provide that than Lakers enigma Metta World Peace, who sent this tweet wishing the world a Happy Labor Day. One slight issue. It was Memorial Day. Eh, close enough...
Voula Papachristou - Racist Would-Be Olympian
Nothing says "championing the Olympic spirit" like this racist tweet from Greek triple jumper Voula Papachristou. She made history as the first Olympian on record to be suspended from the Games because of a tweet when she was banned July 25th from the Greek Olympic team even before she got to London.
Michel Morganella - Racist Olympian, Part Deux
Not to be outdone, Swiss Olympic soccer player Michel Morganella became the second Olympian to be expelled from the Olympics because of a racist tweet sent July 29th. Hours after a loss to South Korea, the Swiss player sent a tweet that roughly translated to, "I fuck up all the Koreans, go burn yourselves. Ahahahhahahaah bunch of retards." I'm guessing Morganella isn't going to be involved in any campaigns trying to stamp out racism in global soccer. He currently plays for Palermo in Italy's Serie A.
Lolo Jones - Absent-minded Olympian
October 2nd, Lolo Jones took Eric LeGrand's challenge for a race a bit too seriously. While not purposely trying to be insensitive, Jones wanting to bet on a race with a paralyzed individual sent palms to faces around the country. How could she not know Eric LeGrand was paralyzed, even by merely looking a bit more closely at his Twitter page? Thankfully, LeGrand took it in stride and even defended Lolo for her gaffe.
Jay Bilas - Rap Connoisseur
Jay Bilas is a one of our favorite analysts, but even he can make mistakes. Bilas forgot to scrub these particular Jeezy lyrics clean before his daily "gotta go to work" tweet of inspiration October 4th. A Dukie using such foul language? Well, I never! Bilas hasn't sent a "gotta go to work" tweet since October 10th.
Cardale Jones - Frustrated Student Athlete
On October 5th, Ohio State freshman quarterback Cardale Jones wanted to let the world know he was in Columbus to play football, not take classes. He should have known the only ones who could make a mockery of the "student athlete" are everyone who makes money off them but the athletes themselves. If only Jones had a seminar or freshman orientation on mistakes athletes make on Twitter, then he may have known better.
Tony Carter - Aurora Shooting Jokester
A tweet that fell a bit under the radar, but is no less unconscionable than the othes on this list was this tweet by Denver Broncos CB Tony Carter October 8th. Yes, that's a DENVER Broncos player making a joke about the theater shooting massacre in AURORA, COLORADO. Too soon. Always too soon. Carter apologized and still plays for the Broncos.
Scott Torgerson - Give Me Liberty, or Give Me Death... for Desmond Howard
Finally, our most recent entry was this weekend's brain fart from Columbus shock jock Scott Torgerson sent October 13th. We broke the news Monday that Torgerson was suspended from 97.1 The Fan for tweeting that Desmond Howard should get fired or die so he could enjoy a college football pregame show. At least The Torg should have plenty of time during his indefinite suspension to get that application in to the local Citgo.
@CarterthePower there's so much time and two months of LeBron watch left. Sure to dozens from that alone.
I think Brooks deserves at least an honorable mention for mocking the money raised for The Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network by Penn State alumni -- http://twitter.com/SPORTSbyBROOKS/status/135202510683119616
@awfulannouncing How about that "reporter" that said Robinson Cano would be suspended for PED use? @DanTordjman
@TheRassi @sbpesce @jobrien85 You can't have this list without Cowley on it. They haveny shut his account down though. Its now "protected".
Snubbed again :( RT @awfulannouncing Presenting the most awful sports tweets of 2012 (so far). http://t.co/SixoV63g
@MattSpiegel670 Not sure there has been a close 2nd in the race for All-Time Biggest Chicago Sports Media Assbag.
Ew. No Sulia/SportsYapper? RT @richarddeitsch The worst sports tweets of 2012? @awfulannouncing just released its list: http://t.co/apn3MqDs
@awfulannouncing You are missing Chris Broussard's tweet about Deron Williams and his sources hahaha
@awfulannouncing Watching The Herd. There's 3 TVs with ESPN channels on. Two of them had Stephen A. Smith on simultaneously. #ugh
@StephStradley @richarddeitsch @awfulannouncing The dude who was defending Sandusky as merely sick and not criminal had to be the worst.
@StephStradley @richarddeitsch @awfulannouncing Gotta tell ya, RD should have made the list RT'ing that Bayless story yesterday. :)
@Zimmsy Agreed, we just talked about this today. Students were very aware that they should be extra careful about what they say online.
@David_Spellman @MattSpiegel670 When I was an intern, I worked for Murph. Eccentric and often bitter? Yes. Nowhere near Cowley's level.
@ryanvooris The reckless ones are few and far between now. They get that social media is part of their brand.
@JalenFrRosemont @MattSpiegel670 Only know Cowley from tweets and S-T and I will agree he is a MAJOR asshat.