In the waning seconds of Sunday’s NFC Championship matchup between the Seattle Seahawks and San Francisco 49ers, it seemed the Niners were poised for a comeback win. Down 23-17, they made up for the sloppy play of their previous few possessions, cruising downfield to set up a potential game winning touchdown. But thanks to the self-proclaimed “best corner in the game,” Seahawks CB Richard Sherman, San Francisco fans were to leave CenturyLink Field disappointed. Sherman tipped a pass into the hands of teammate Malcolm Smith for a game-sealing interception. Sherman picked up the obligatory unsportsmanlike conduct penalty for harassing intended receiver Michael Crabtree (an ironic buttpat and some choice words to which Crabtree responded with a hearty shove), and the Seahawks ran out the clock.
Then this happened:
For those who don’t speak tickedoffese, that was “I’m the best corner in the game! When you try me with a sorry receiver like Crabtree, that’s the result you’re going to get. Don’t you ever talk about me.”
The screed was enough to nonplus even a veteran sportscaster like Erin Andrews. After inquiring who specifically was “talking about [him],” Sherman continued, loudly, “Crabtree. Don’t you open your mouth about the best, or I’ll shut it for you real quick. LOB!" [Note: “LOB” stands for “Legion of Boom,” the nickname of the Seattle defense.]
Sherman is a 25-year-old graduate of Stanford, where he played for current 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh and majored in communications. But despite his field of study, some have speculated that his rant evidenced a lack of media savvy:
Richard Sherman made the play to win it. But show a little class Richard. Sets up a great Super Bowl. Offense vs Defense.
— Tony Dungy (@TonyDungy) January 20, 2014
If you're trying to show your kids what to be like when they grow up, show them Richard Sherman and tell them to do the exact opposite.
— Chris Cotillo (@ChrisCotillo) January 20, 2014
I'm going to go out on a limb and say Richard Sherman has never had media training...at any level. Classy, Rich.
— Ato Boldon (@AtoBoldon) January 20, 2014
But not everyone’s hating:
Anyone bothered by Richard Sherman tonight has never sat through a one-game-at-a-time cliche fest. Speak your mind, Richard.
— Pete Thamel (@SIPeteThamel) January 20, 2014
And for his part, Sherman tweeted this somewhat cryptic response:
A lion doesn't concern himself with the opinions of a sheep.
— Richard Sherman (@RSherman_25) January 20, 2014
And so begins the meme-ing:
Image via Wikimedia Commons