College basketball media as Sesame Street characters

I don’t know when or how it started and I won’t take the 30 seconds to look it up, but I’m glad we live in a world where postgame press conferences exist. Imagine you’re doing whatever it is you do for a living and minutes after a big day at the office, you’re questioned about every decision you made.

If things didn’t go so well, odds are you’ll blame anybody you can aside from yourself. In college hoops, the main complaints from head coaches go toward officials, but after a home loss to Wisconsin on Saturday, Archie Miller took direct aim at the Bracketology industry, even naming Mr. Bracketology himself Joe Lunardi.

I’ll agree the Bracketology game is far too crowded these days (see Deceptive Speed’s latest Bracketology update), but the Sesame Street comparison was a bit of a stretch. I’m guessing it was a spur of the moment idea that sounded great in his head but things went awry when the thought made the transition from brain to mouth.

This happens to me quite often, and it’s a miracle when I pull off a complete sentence without error.

Joe Lunardi responded to the Sesame Street comment, ending a Twitter update with “Meanwhile, I’ll be home tonight watching Sesame Street with Archie Miller…”

We tried to help Archie Miller and put a few seconds of thought into this, identifying college basketball media members as Sesame Street characters. I’ll be honest, it’s been a while since I tuned in for an episode, so I did a little research and here’s what we came up with.

Joe Lunardi: Oscar the Grouch

This is the one Sesame Street example Archie Miller provided when he said about Lunardi, “Go back to your trash can” when walking away from the podium, so we’ll go with it even though it’s a bad comparison. Lunardi seems to be one of the nicest fellas who makes a living chattin’ ball. Plenty of people in sports media could be labeled as Oscar the Grouch, but Lunardi is not one of them. Should’ve given this a little more thought, Archie.

Side note: Joe Lunardi has Indiana making the NCAA Tournament.

Dan Dakich: Grover

If Archie Miller wanted to go with an Oscar the Grouch comparison, Dan Dakich would’ve been a much better fit. I am a big supporter of Dan Dakich and learn a lot listening to him as a dumb-dumb college basketball fan even though I mastered the swing offense playing JV hoops as a junior in high school. While I agree with a lot of what he says, there are some lawns kids need to stay off of when Dakich is talking.

But since Archie took Oscar off the board, we’ll go with Grover for Dakich. Grover is described as “self-confident, furry, cute, capable and intelligent.” It’s pretty accurate outside of furry label as the amount of hair continues to decline for Dakich, and I don’t have a good read on the cuteness of 57-year-old men.

Bill Walton & Dave Pasch: Bert & Ernie

In the earlier Bill Walton - Dave Pasch days, this would’ve made a lot more sense with Walton as Ernie and Pasch as Bert. Pasch embraces Walton’s nonsense more today than when this duo started, but it still works. Walton has the green light to say anything he’d like in a lighthearted, jovial tone while Pasch does his best to reign him in and get back to business instead of discussing the architecture of Arizona State University’s chemistry building late in a tie ballgame.

Doug Gottlieb: The Count

Out of everybody on this list, Doug Gottlieb and The Count look the most alike. Both are smart. Both are probably good with numbers, especially when credit cards are involved. Yep, I’m not above going after the lowest of low-hanging fruit.

Jon Rothstein: Mr. Snuffleupagus

This took some digging, but for years Mr. Snuffleupagus was Big Bird’s imaginary friend nobody know existed. Until recently when he came out of his shell and revealed his full personality, I remained convinced Jon Rothstein was not a real person - just a robot tweeting out the same few things every day. Big Bird eventually revealed Mr. Snuffleupagus to the world just like Rothstein, who finally showed some personality the last couple years and developed into a star.

Dick Vitale: Cookie Monster

While I tend to find Dick Vitale a little annoying, he is right up there as one of the most lovable figures covering college basketball. And who doesn’t love the Cookie Monster? I sure do even though he’s difficult to understand sometimes just like Dickie V.

Jay Bilas: Big Bird

When you think college basketball media, you think Jay Bilas. When you think Sesame Street, you think Big Bird. Maybe that’s just me, but both are strong front men for their particular employers.

Plus, Bilas gives a shoutout to Big Bird in one of his “I gotta go to work” tweets from August 2018.

Bill Raftery: Elmo

Bill Raftery and Elmo both dominated their respective spaces since the mid-1980s and have become household names. Both are among the most beloved as well, as I cannot think of a reason to dislike either one at this point. Elmo needs to work on more recognizable catch phrases, but this is an apt comparison to close things out.

Photo courtesy of