2021 MatMen Open champion Greg Bulsak (photo courtesy of Sam Janicki; SJanickiPhoto.com)
I think I'll forego the classic opening this week as it's the last day of the year and there's really nothing left to be said. On that note, let me say a bunch more things.
What first-semester result surprised you most? Are you going to NCAAs? Do u consider yourself a Rutgers homer? Which school has the worst fans? sup? @PelikanHead Stalemates Award Winner
I'm old and weathered, so nothing surprises me, but I would like to see Sam Latona get back on his feet. If I go to NCAAs, who will watch my eight screens at home? A homer? I won't cheer for any wrestler against a Rutgers guy, but I wouldn't consider myself a homer, where I'm just shouting out stalling at every dual for no reason. I love every fan of every team. Hey.
Who's someone that's completely off everyone's radar, but you think will contend for an NCAA title in March?
Conversely, who's an NCAA champ that you think definitely will not repeat?? @sleepyvinny
Random out of nowhere champs are a rarity, but they do happen. Obviously, this might be the most difficult year ever to pull one with ten champs returning, but I'll say Greg Bulsak of Rutgers (not a homer) has a real chance at making some noise. He's vastly experienced after five years, he's in great shape, and started the year on in absolute heater capped off by a title at Midlands 2: Electric Boogaloo. I say why not! Who definitely won't repeat? Easily David Carr or Austin O'Connor. In fact, I'll guarantee one doesn't.
Top 5 favorite bands of all time? @ItsJustARide94
My music taste is mostly the rock and roll, but it spans about five decades, so it's tough to narrow it down to five. I'll pick two straight classics, a hair band, and two grunge/alternative from my angst years.
In no particular order:
Alice in Chains-Grittiest and grungiest band of the era and can turn around and hit you with a gorgeous piece of music like Jar of Flies. Nobody in rock did dual vocals better than Layne Staley and Jerry Cantrell.
Def Leppard-just a catalog of hits and they never get old.
The Allman Brothers-I'm not like an Allman Brothers nut, but they're the soundtrack to the American road trip.
Stone Temple Pilots-A band that changed stylistically so much in a decade (sometimes from one song to the next) and it all still holds up today.
Led Zeppelin-Behemoths. Rock Gods like this do not exist anymore.
Jagger, in this tumultuous time of the wrestling world, what's a good New Year's resolution you'd recommend for us all? I'll take my answer off the air. @NotTomNotTerry
I covered this on my new podcast called Resolution Podcast.
Do you still love Suriano? @PierceStowman
I'll have to see him on the mat first before I know if the spark is still there.
If wrestling tournaments ever had little concerts like the Super Bowl halftime show, which bands or artists do you think would be good choices for NCAAs? @oldestgreatest
Gabriel Townsell, of course! In fact, book it for this year. The fans of Stanford had to endure the pain of potentially losing their program last year and didn't get to see their colors fly. I say we celebrate the team that fought to stay alive by having one of their finest student-athletes get the honor.
How does it feel to have Willem Dafoe compared to you? @JonnyG7613
He's the one who should feel honored.
Hey, Happy New Year, everyone! I never thought a year ago I'd be closing 2021 with a mailbag column, but here we are. With any luck, I'll be closing 2022 the same way, by acting like an idiot. Enjoy tonight, everyone, be safe and be well. You're more important to those around you than you can ever know; never forget that.