Monday, March 23, 2015

Murphspot Mascot Bracket 2015 - Midwest/West Second Round

#16 Hampton Pirates vs. #9 Purdue Boilermakers

I can't quite find an intended identity for the Hampton Pirate, but one presumes because of how he's dressed that he's intended as sort of a late 17th, early 18th century sort of pirate, probably sailing around the Caribbean with occasional detours up to the Chesapeake Bay to see how things are going at his alma mater.

Also, apparently in this version of invented history, he's not only the mascot for Hampton, but an alumnus. So that's fine.

The thing is that if we set the Hampton Pirate as early 18th century, he's still a bit too early for the development of the steam locomotive. Born a bit later, and he might have a shot at overpowering Purdue Pete and derailing the Boilermaker Special, but as it stands it seems like he'd not know which switch to throw and at best, wind up tossed from the train.

Also, he's got a steely-if-sort-of-confused gaze.

I'm sorry, Hampton Pirate. If it's any consolation, I've got no idea how to stop a train either.

Purdue advances.

#5 West Virginia Mountaineers vs. #13 Valparaiso Crusaders

At its core, this is a question about two opposing fighting styles. The Mountaineer is equipped with a rifle and a bearskin cape, which either indicates that he's good enough with the rifle that he managed to kill and skin a bear, or that he bought a cape from someone, which would give him points in the all important Bargaining Variable in our patented Murphspot Mascot Bracket Algorithm.

Also, an alarming amount of fringe.

The Crusader, on the other hand, while not as resourceful, is likely more diligent in pursuing his beliefs, which in this case apparently include making Brown and Gold work as a fashion statement.

At the end of the day, I think the Crusader's tenacity (as well as his plate armor) give him the edge.

Valparaiso advances.

#11 Texas Longhorns vs. #3 Notre Dame Fighting Irish

Having just set aside an argument over resourcefulness against passion towards achieving your goals, I can't help but think that this also comes down to question of attitudes.

I don't want to knock Bevo. He's certainly got the most impressive horns in the bracket, even if they do seem a little unwieldy. He looks rather frightening. The problem with going with a cow, though, is that cows are generally pretty docile. I mean, hell, the Texas Longhorn wikipedia page notes the breed as having an "innate gentle disposition". That's great. I, personally, really respect that and find an innate gentle disposition to be admirable.

The problem is that the Fighting Irish Leprechaun is constantly preparing to box and is armed with a club.

As much as I want to award the Longhorn for eating some grass and going about his life, I don't think he comes out of this one.

Notre Dame advances.

#7 Wichita State Shockers vs. #15 New Mexico State Aggies

The issue with sentient wheat is that I'm not really able to form a plan for how to defeat it. The NMSU Aggies could, I suppose, come up a way to introduce a rival crop that would compete with WuShock. Or maybe introduce some sort of harmful pest into WuShock's living quarters.

The problem is that the mascot isn't an agricultural student, though I think that would be awesome. It's Pistol Pete.

The Maroon one in this case, though the Pistol Petes (Pistols Pete?) are beginning to blur together.

Pistol Pete understands a few things very well. Pistols, for one, and moustaches for another. If this were a Burt Reynolds-off, it'd be Pistol Pete in a landslide, but I don't think he'll get to use that skill here.

I think he'll just shoot at WuShock.

But the bullet passes through the individual stalks. WuShock advances.

Panicked, Pistol Pete fires five more times. All of his bullets pass through WuShock, seemingly harmlessly.

The horror of his situation hits Pistol Pete at about the same time as a giant fist made of wheat.

Wichita State advances.

#16 Coastal Carolina Chanticleers vs. #9 Oklahoma State Cowboys

I speculated in Coastal Carolina's last matchup about some sort of terrible Rooster Magic available to the Chanticleer which might allow for some way for him to claw his way to victory. I wasn't quite sure where that came from, but I think, looking back into my notes, I was swayed by a bizarre Russo-Finnish film that appeared in an episode of Mystery Science Theater 3000 and in which a rooster controlled the movement of the sun by not crowing.

Yes, I'm not quite sure either.

So that's a bit of a deep cut.

Here, though, I imagine that the Oklahoman Pistol Pete; the original, will have no trouble. Roosters are part of his life, I assume, as are communing with the Great Pistol Pete Consciousness and shooting varmints and such.

Oklahoma State advances.

#5 Arkansas Razorbacks vs. #4 North Carolina Tar Heels

So, while Tusk has tusks and, as was pointed out by a friend with a far superior blog that is well written, full of actual analysis and insight and that you should be reading (and isn't just a once yearly bit of nonsense like this), may have been involved with the downfall of Robert Baratheon, leading to the reign of our Glorious Defender, Joffrey.

Not many people know this, but when characters in A Song of Ice and Fire die, they're reincarnated in the distant past, in sequels no one wanted.

And I can see how feral hogs would be a problem for North Carolinians. They're dangerous, there's some agriculture they could mess up, and if they collectively decided to block Route 12 near Sealevel, they could effectively trap and endanger Outer Banks vacationers all the way up to Corolla, which I imagine would be sort of inconvenient.

On the other hand, residents of North Carolina (as well as Ramses) have access to the internet, and therefore have access to this big long advertisement for a hog trap. It seems like being armed with that would end this pretty quickly.

North Carolina advances.

#6 Xavier Musketeers vs. #14 Georgia State Panthers

On one hand, the Xavier Musketeers have the advantage of not only being armed, but probably having some actual hunting experience and should be able to pick a bright blue panther out of a wooded area.

On the other, they might make some sort of horrible mistake and wind up in a movie with Orlando Bloom and his most improbable neckwear to date.

Orlando, you've reached critical Orlando-ocity. It's time to settle it down a little.

The Panther's threatening at all, but I believe the hit he takes to his stealth capability by being the same electric blue color as the first car I drove when I was in high school is fatal.

Not a photo of the actual car, but I'm pretty sure they only made these things in electric blue and maroon.

Xavier advances.

#7 Virginia Commonwealth Rams vs. #15 Texas Southern Tigers

I like Rodney. Honestly, I do. He's got an offensive weapon in the horns, obviously, but more than that I'm concerned about his grin. That is the grin of a ram who is up to something.

The Mr. Burns hands probably aren't helping.

The problem, though, is that while I respect Rodney's Intimidating Grin of Madness, he's fighting a tiger. Sure, a grandfatherly tiger who seems content to just show up and throw some Werther's Originals at the kids, but a tiger nonetheless and I'm not sure "ram vs. tiger" ever ends with the ram victorious.

I'm sorry, Rodney.

Texas Southern advances.

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