They’ve starred in a TV series for 15 years, recorded two albums and horrified conservative parents groups since they first went on the air in the late 1980s. Now they’re getting their props from ESPN of all places. Fox’s The Simpsons has had so many athlete guest voices and sports story-lines in its 330-plus episodes that ESPN.com is giving the show the Top 100-treatment.
Compiled by ESPN scribe Greg Collins, the Top 100 is unspooling in four chapters. In ascending order of importance, yesterday was moments 100 through 76, today 75 through 50, Thursday 49 through 25 and Friday the top 25 sports moments.
With clearly too much time on his hands, Collins says the project "is a labor of love," adding, "If you don’t like it, I’ll borrow one of my favorite Homer retorts and tell you gently, ‘You can cram it with walnuts, ugly!’"
Among the best moments from 100 to 76, according to Collins:
100. To show his “extreme” nature, Poochie the Dog dunks a basketball while jumping a stunt bike off a ramp in his one and only appearance during an Itchy & Scratchy cartoon.
98. When Lisa becomes President of the United States, she honors the players of the Negro Leagues of Rollerball.
80. Homer tries to combine a weekend of marriage counseling at the Lovejoys’ retreat and a fishing trip. When he hears of the legend of General Sherman, a huge catfish that lives in the lake where they’re staying, he can’t resist.
79. One of Homer’s lifelong dreams is to run out on a baseball field during a game. But this is hardly his only lifelong dream. Others include to eat the world’s biggest hoagie, work in a bowling alley, manage a beautiful country singer, be a blackjack dealer, be a contestant on The Gong Show, be a monorail conductor, and own the Dallas Cowboys–all of which he achieves, except for owning the Dallas Cowboys.
75. With the town caught in a rabid anti-immigration movement, Apu feels obliged to prove his love for America by wearing a cowboy hat and a baseball jersey. “What do you say we take a relaxed attitude toward work and watch the baseball match? The N.Y. Mets are my favorite squadron,” he says to a customer.
To follow Collins’ Simpsons tome, go to espn.com and click on "Page 3."