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"THAT'S...why the play the games!!!" - Chris Berman

"There is no chance in hell DILFs win the D2 title. you guys have THE LEAST chances of winning - I guarantee it!!!" - The Build to Travis last week

"Don't you know I'm still standing
Better than I ever did

Looking like a true survivor,
Feeling like a little kid

I'm still standing
After all this time

Picking up the pieces of my life without you on my mind

I'm still standing yeah yeah yeah

I'm still standing yeah yeah yeah..." - Elton John, "I'm Still Standing"



Yes, I understand how much crow I'm eating on the 2nd quote. Obviously, since I typed the quote...

And here we are. The season is in the books, and we had quite possibly the wildest Championship Saturday ever. Of the #1 seeds, only 3 won it all - and while it's never been a guarantee at all for a #1 seed to win the title, the fact that the top 3 seeds in D2 all didn't make the championship is astonishing. No Punt Intended and Frodo Swaggins getting bounced raises eyebrows. TMA getting smoked is downright unbelievable (until it actually happened). What an exciting season we had in terms of competition. The way that the dust settled proves that Topper and I know a little something about team placement. Based on the final results, 4 out of 6 divisions were competitively up for grabs. So I'll happily tell all the second guessers who spoke up earlier this session to suck it. We've done this long enough to know what's what. 

It was a cool session. I don't know if I would call it "fun", as the second half of the session was unnecessarily dramatic and arduous at times. I think my writing reflected that, and I'm sorry that the entertainment aspect suffered in lieu of the "rant" part of this article. but I couldn't hide my frustrations, and I tend to be real about my thoughts and feelings. I will say thank you to those who offered supportive, kind words this past Saturday. I appreciated it. Although it was admittedly awkward for me, because that's my catch-22 - I say the truth about my thoughts, and then that inevitably spurs people to offer words that I really wasn't fishing for. I understand and appreciate the sentiments behind them and thank all for their care and thoughtfulness. But I really wasn't fishing for people to recognize the job we do - I prefer that people just know it and appreciate it naturally. Oh well.

I thanked a lot of people in recent articles, but I want to thank The Angry Buffalo at The Rose Garden for hosting us yet again and continuing our partnership now in our tenth year. Say whatever you want, but The Rose Garden remains the epicenter of coed touch football in WNY, and everyone knows where the best competition plays. We look forward to coming back to play at our home fields in the Spring. So thank you Nikki, Scott, Joe David, April and the whole staff and crew there who work with us and put up with us every year. 

Thank you to my officials. The refs have a thankless job - they are tasked with running the games, but nothing they ever say or do is enough. They're human, but expected to be perfect officiating robots - and then when they act too robotic, they're criticized for not being human enough. But they show up weekly and run our league right. Thank you to the men and women who show up every week and allow you guys to have games. I love our refs. 

Thank you to all of the people who help us out every week. Yes, Topper and I do a lot. But there's an entire community of folks who do their part from the article writers, to those who observe things and quietly tell Topper and I what we don't see or may miss, to those who quietly make decisions that you guys don't even know about. I won't name them, cuz I don't WANT you to know who they are. I'll say it's not just a few people. There are well over a dozen people I'd list as contributors to our league that you guys have no idea who they are. THEY know who they are. And I appreciate them.

While it should go without saying - thank you to Topper. Without Topper, this thing doesn't exist. Topper is the one who wants to make sure you guys have the best vehicle to play football each and every year. And he gives himself a lot of unnecessary headaches to make you guys happy. And that ish needs to be said and recognized, which is why I'm doing it right here. 

Thanks to Lenny. I'll say it now, cuz some know - but not everyone does. The initial idea to move this session up came from Lenny. So this was his last major "new" contribution. He had mentioned last Fall about moving the session up. Topper and I loved the idea, but Lenny mentioned it first as an option. So the warm temps and lack of shivering temps and snow? Yeah - you can thank our commissioner for it. 

Save the date, as we're planning our awards banquet this coming January 3rd, 2020. It will be downtown - location will be announced in the coming weeks. No, we're not going back to Niagara Falls, so don't worry about that. Last year was a blast, so we've got a lot to live up to. For all of you who offer to help out when needed - I may definitely call on you to help with planning, arranging and setting up for this thing. Topper and/or I will let you know. 

Speaking of the awards - I jumped the gun in my last article with the nominees. So you guys can use that as a good guideline of who will be nominated...but we ARE going to revise things. For now, I'll simply release the awards categories. Please note - we reserve the right to add or subtract from this list of awards. But awards we intend to hand out as of now include:

D1 MALE MVP 

D1 FEMALE MVP 

D2 MALE MVP 

D2 FEMALE MVP 

D3 MALE MVP 

D3 FEMALE MVP 

D4 MALE MVP 

D4 FEMALE MVP 

D5 MALE MVP 

D5 FEMALE MVP 

D6 MALE MVP 

D6 FEMALE MVP 

BEST AT THE BAR

BEST REFEREE
BEST TOMMY HUGHES AWARD

MOST HATED VILLAIN

CHET CASCIO MOST BELOVED PLAYER AWARD

SHANE GRIFFIN BEST PLAYER TO BE PLAYING IN A DIVISION NOT GOOD ENOUGH FOR HIM/HER AWARD

TSL STORYLINE OF THE YEAR

DEFENDER OF THE YEAR (MALE)

DEFENDER OF THE YEAR (FEMALE)
ROOKIE OF THE YEAR AWARD (MALE)
ROOKIE OF THE YEAR AWARD (FEMALE)

MIKE FORD BEST QB OF THE YEAR AWARD

MOST UNDERRATED MALE AWARD

MOST UNDERRATED FEMALE AWARD

MOST IMPROVED TEAM AWARD

KATIE KIMMIE KERRY WEISSER HYPHEN NEFF MOST VALUABLE FEMALE PLAYER AWARD

DARRYL CARR MOST VALUABLE MALE PLAYER AWARD

TSL TEAM OF THE YEAR AWARD

 


Umm...that's a lot of awards. 

Now...if you have any thoughts or feelings on who should be nominated for these awards as well as who should win, you're welcome to email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. I welcome the feedback. But with that said, I need to make something clear. As I make this clear, please understand I am not referring to any individuals or specific teams. But if the shoe fits - break an ankle in the muhfugga...

A number of you have already offered feedback, and that's cool. What isn't cool is you thinking your bias is my bias, or topper's bias, or the league's bias. And make no mistake - most of you are speaking from a place of bias when it comes to your own team and/or division. I know you guys have an unsung man or woman that you think people didn't recognize - EVERY SUCCESSFUL TEAM DOES. that doesn't mean we're handing them an award because of the power of you. It also doesn't mean you or your team's opinion(s) outweigh everyone else's opinions. 

We will select the winners as we always have. We will do our due diligence. I will NOT tell you who is involved in the decision-making process, nor will I tell you how many, when we're deciding, etc. I actually think I've said too much by revealing that I had spies this season asking a bunch of you what you thought without you realizing it. Cuz now a good amount of you realize you were giving unbiased thoughts and feelings unknowingly, and now you WANT to give biased ones. No dice. The awards are supposed to be fun. If you win - great. If you don't - it's coed touch football. Go to the bar, have a drink, and enjoy yourself. I don't want to hear any whining, crying, attempted pressuring, etc. It is what it is. 

Don't badger me or Topper (especially don't badger Topper, cuz he REALLY doesn't want to hear that ish nor is he taking it even as seriously as his new puppy - which means, not at all). Don't try to coerce me, give me ultimatums, bribes, threats, etc. When the awards are handed out, it will be as it is. If you're unhappy, I'm going to not care and simply wonder why you took it THIS seriously in a league that's supposed to be about fun. I'm going to immediately understand that no matter who you are, you simply don't "get it". 

And then I'm going to say something vulgar to you if you're bothering me that night, and I'm going to go grab Taylor Pagano and we're going to do shots and laugh at you. No really - I'm telling you exactly how it's going to go. Shots, Taylor...laughter. 

So feel free to send me your thoughts and feedback (I'd especially like to hear/read thoughts on who people think should be rookies of the year if we decide to do that award). I encourage it, and thanks to you who have already done so. To those of you taking things too seriously, or plan to? Peanut butter whiskey and Taylor's laugh await you...

Sidebar: I'd like to say, for the record...outside of Brandt Dubey, QB of DILFs? No one person or team currently active in our league is the "best" of all time. Knock it off. Some of you sound like kids who swear LeBron James is the greatest player of all time cuz they weren't alive to see other people play and don't know how to work YouTube. Y'all got a lot of hubris - but I've got the mic. And I say "nay". Again - not a shot at any one person or team. So many of you have made this foolish claim in the past month that you're going to think this song is about you...don't you? DON'T YOU??

While I'm always happy to see you guys, and will be happy to see you guys at different points in our offseason - I'm glad this session has wrapped up. I need the break. So I don't plan to do anything other than helping with the banquet and if we do a wine tour at any point this Fall. If we're cool, you can definitely reach out to me for any reason (telegram, preferably) - but don't ask me specifics about the Spring session. That's a legit 6-7 months away. I will say, if you want to help for that session? Easy - you can start asking friends and family if they'd like to ref. I can always use more refs in addition to the ones we have. Always. The more, the merrier. 

Rules will be amended, changed and revised. I'm thinking there will be more than there was going into this session. But I'm not in the space right to start doing that. I'm in the space to drink rum.  


Congrats to all our champions, and thank you to all (well, MOST) of you who were a part of our league this session. We appreciate the teams we have, and hope everyone returns in the Spring for another great year of Topper Sports football. I will say I heard most of your complaints about things, and I've filed them to be addressed going forward. We are not a league that stays stagnant and doesn't try to improve ourselves, and there are things we need admittedly should improve that we will. But really - thanks for another great session of football, people. 

Until I see or talk to you guys again, you know where I'll be...in the cut.

(sidebar: I find it funny that most of you have no idea what I mean by that, so I'll continue to say it for my own amusement)

 

- Rameer AKA THE BUILD

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