Someone Do a Sport: Name of the Year Sweet 16 Power Rankings

** Opens **

** Sees NFL Draft coverage **

“Yep, still no actual sports to be found. Guess it’s time for another Someone Do a Sport.”

There’s no rest for the weary for those of us covering the Things-Masquerading-as-Sports beat, as the 2020 Name of the Year contest quickly moved onto the Round of 32 voting following the completion of the first round. If you missed it, you can learn about the annual contest and take a look at the first-ever Name of the Year Power Rankings from earlier this week.

With second-round voting complete, the first round power rankings held up reasonably well. Nine of the top 10 names repeated their success and advanced to the Sweet Sixteen. Only Zebulon Vermillion went down, in a tough battle against juggernaut Kokain Mothershed.

Although the power rankings qualifiers performed well, as might be expected with better names surviving, voting got much closer in the second round. Only 4 contestants increased their vote share in the Round of 32, with last week’s Heat Check candidate Courvoisier Dingle posting the biggest round-to-round gain of 12 points (I’ll take credit for that pick, yes I will).

Making the Sweet Sixteen in any bracket is an accomplishment (well, maybe except for the NBA and NHL playoffs … everyone makes those), but now the choices facing the voting public get tougher and tougher. For today’s NotY Power Rankings, we’ll be feeding the remaining 16 contenders through the napkin algorithm and determining their relative worth heading into the Sweet Sixteen. We also conducted Oracle of Nomenclature for a prediction of how far each contender is expected to make it in this year’s contest.

Sweet Sixteen voting is open at @NOTYtourney on Twitter through Sunday night. Go participate to Do a Sport and Have Your Voice Heard and all that.

Round of 32 NotY Power Rankings

16. Infinite Culcleasure

Like with the NCAA, the Selection Committee for the NotY contest is a secretive, shady cabal that someone comes up with seedings before the tournament. Scoring a number 1 seed is a badge of honor rewarding a good season in the NCAA, but with the NotY contest, the Committee seems to have turned in some headscratchers.

Among them is number 1 seed Infinite Culcleasure. Yes, come March April, it’s all about surviving and advancing, but style counts for something as well. After a lackluster 63-37 win in the first round, Culcleasure beat Eileen Strong-O’Boy by a mere 55-45 margin. Dr. Welcome Bender, whom the algorithm is not necessarily vibing on as well, awaits, so maybe Culcleasure is just waiting for the tough competition to up their game.

Prediction: Elite Eight

15. Bluebell Eikonoklastes

Basically everything we wrote about number 16 can be repeated for another number 1 seed in Eikonoklastes. Eikonoklastes had a bigger first round win, 74-26 and was number 9 in the first-round power rankings, but he barely eked out a win over cycling favorite Chadfield Clapsaddle in the second round. With algorithm favorite Kokain Mothershed awaiting, it seems like we will likely be saying “Bye Bye Bluebell” in the next few days.

Prediction: Sweet Sixteen

14. Barron Cashdollar

When you come in as a double-digit seed, you take your wins however you can get them. Style in this case is simply winning. No one in this year’s field embodies that more than Barron Cashdollar, who carried the first two rounds with vote totals of 54 and 51. Their most recent triumph was a not-unimpressive win over 2-seed Nazareth Pantaloni III, but now, another tough out in Heat Check superstar Courvoisier Dingle awaits in the Sweet Sixteen. Will Cashdollar rally, or in these hard times, is the NotY contest too big of a hill to climb for the bourgeoisie of this year’s bracket?

Prediction: Sweet Sixteen

13. Mystikal McGhee

We … don’t have much to say about the number 13 entrant on the Power Rankings. The alliteration is definitely appreciated, but in the voting, McGhee has been workman-like, holding seed with two wins from the 4-line, but not doing anything special. Up next is a matchup with Power Ranking algorithm heavyweight Mathdaniel Squirrel, meaning McGhee is likely to be McGhone soon enough.

Prediction: Sweet Sixteen

12. Rod McQuality

After the first round, I noted how I appreciated the simplicity of Rod McQuality’s name, and the voters did as well, giving him a 79-21 winning margin in the first round and earning him the #3 spot on the Power Rankings. I guess I maybe expected a little more from McQuality in the second round against Perfecto Cuervo, but McQuality saw a big drop off in victory margin, only earning 55% of the vote. Now facing a tough matchup against Fatjon Cake, it looks like McQuality’s momentum might be stalling.

Prediction: Sweet Sixteen

11. Dr. Welcome Bender

Falling just outside the top 10 is the number 2 doctor in this week’s Power Rankings in Dr. Welcome Bender. A 5 seed coming in, Bender took down 4 seed Robspierre Bender in the second round and now faces a matchup against our Power Rankings caboose Infinite Culcleasure. Although the Power Rankings algorithm is not feeling Culcleasure, the Oracle of Nomenclature was, and it looks like the doctor might be out at the end of the Sweet Sixteen voting.

Prediction: Sweet Sixteen

10. Dudley Onderdonk

The 10 spot is typically reserved for our Heat Check contestant of the week, and so #13 seed Onderdonk fits in perfectly. After knocking off the 4 seed in the first round, Onderdonk conked 5 seed Jimbertson Vapor to advance to the round of 16. Cinderellas often survive the first weekend of the tournament, only to face a harsh reality check in the Sweet Sixteen, and that appears to be the case for Onderdonk, as Dudley now squares off against algorithm favorite Beanbag Amerika. It was a good run, most likely.

Prediction: Sweet Sixteen

9. Decoldest Crawford

Decoldest was among dehottest in the first round, taking home over 80% of the vote and scoring the #2 spot on the first Power Rankings. With that round 1 resume and a #2 seed, expectations were high for Crawford in the second round. A 55-45 win over Rembertus Beerepoot was not bad per se, but it does represent a big drop off heading into a showdown with Gimadiah Scrogum. Decoldest needs to rally, or they’ll be tasty deagony of defeat.

Prediction: Sweet Sixteen

8. Fatjon Cake

Cake withstood the 1990s nostalgia moment in the second round, beating out Rayne Schwinghammer—probably because their parents didn’t name them the more appropriate “Wayne”—albeit by a narrower margin than the first round. It is tough to say what would qualify as the icing on the cake for the 3 seed, but a berth into the Elite Eight probably wouldn’t hurt. The Oracle is taking the cake to win in the Sweet Sixteen before meeting the Mothershed mothership for a trip to the Final Four.

Prediction: Elite Eight

7. Gimadiah Scrogum

At first glance, Scrogum looked like a contender. Good first name, great last name, the future seemed bright for the 3 seed. Then in the first round, Scrogum barely eked out a win over Dr. Delight Champagne. That 3 v. 14 matchup proved tough for the favorites in the NotY bracket, so rumors of Scrogum’s demise were perhaps a bit premature, as Gimadiah bounced back with a solid second-round win. Up next is a winnable matchup against Decoldest before a likely showdown against the Beanbag buzzsaw.

Prediction: Elite Eight

6. Waffles Natusch

Waffles was one of the contestants that really stood out as being conspicuously underseeded after a first read of the NotY bracket. Slotting in at the 14 line, Natusch had the vibe of a senior-laden mid-major that the national media and Selection Committee discounted because “they didn’t play anybody.” Waffles was smooth as butter in a round 2 win over Jan Six XI and now faces off against Power Ranking lower-tier qualifier Mystikal McGhee. The Oracle likes Natusch to continue what is a relatively predictable “Cinderella” run before an unfortunate draw against Mathdaniel Squirrel in the Elite Eight.

Prediction: Elite Eight

5. Kokain Mothershed

With Mothershed, we are starting to get to the hitters of the Power Rankings lineup. Perhaps a bit underseeded at the #4 line, Mothershed has hit the motherlode of votes, winning with 70 and 68% in the first two rounds. Sometimes it’s all about the luck of the draw, and in the case of Kokain, the one seed in their bracket is the lowly Bluebell Eikonoklastes. Barring an untimely bust, a trip to the Final Four seems likely.

Prediction: Final Four

4. Courvoisier Dingle

The revelation of the NotY bracket thus far has been Dingle. The 14 seed was the Heat Check pick of the Power Rankings in the first round, and then proved the Heat Check was no fluke in round 2, winning by the third-highest margin of the round. Dingle was also one of the four contestants who improved their vote haul from round one to round two. With a seeming walk against Barron Cashdollar on tap and then a potential showdown against Power Ranking detritus Culcleasure, it seems like Dingle will be popping the cork on the Courvoisier for a Final Four celebration.

Prediction: Final Four

3. Dr. Reason Machete

You can’t argue with good reason, and the good doctor has plenty of support for the number 3 spot on the Power Rankings. A #2 seed and 77-23 and 69-31 (nice!) gives the doctor an excellent resume heading into the round of 16. Unfortunately, a matchup against Waffles Natusch awaits, and although Machete has the heat right now, it may be chop chop when the voting is done.

Prediction: Sweet Sixteen

2. Mathdaniel Squirrel

Really the top two spots are the Kenny Werner and Curtis White of the bracket thus far—this one really could have gone either way, and everyone would have been happy. Squirrel moves up from the 5 spot in the Power Rankings to take home the #2 spot this week. After a Round 2 thrashing of Hannah Moody-Goo, an easy Sweet Sixteen matchup awaits before an Elite Eight showdown against the newest NotY juggernaut, Waffles Natusch.

Prediction: Final Four

1.Beanbag Amerika

The hacked together banner image probably gave it away, but Beanbag Amerika retains the number 1 spot in the latest Power Rankings. Amerika had a bit of a drop off in Round 2, taking home 76% of the vote compared to a Round 1 haul, but the number 1 overall seed still seems the closest this bracket has to a sure thing.

Prediction: Final Four


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