FATBack goes up to 11

"You sound like ass this week."
-Kenn Tomasch, e-mailing me this week's link

"So what else is new?"
-Every listener

Boy, Kenn wasn't kidding. Technical difficulties on my end make this episode a challenge for you. But hey, it's worth it. Really. Robert Penner from WPS gives us some insight. Josh Hakala visits us from USOpenCup.com. Plus, the Mount Rushmore of American soccer, and Kenn blows a fastball RIGHT PAST ME in the lightning round. All this and iTunes, too. So WHAT if I sound like ass? You should be used to that by now.

One of the things we ask Robert Penner about is the WPS' use of, for want of a better term, "new media." Take this "tweet" from Peter Wilt.

Great idea, to be honest. Why NOT have WPS jerseys for fans who are convex instead of concave in the skortal region? As soon as I read that, I totally thought about how much I'd like to have one.

And then I remembered I wouldn't be wearing a Sol jersey, I'd be wearing a very expensive Amway ad. Have I ever told you how much I hate capitalism?

But the point is, this news is coming out through Twitter. This is how WPS does business - this is how show business is done anymore, when traditional media is too inconvenient, unwilling or bankrupt to get publicity out. I'd love to say I look down on Twitter, but to be honest I don't understand it. And the last thing I want is to end up being one of those people railing on that things were better back in the good old days. Yeah, on the one hand, Pele. On the other hand, three channels and the world's worst national team.

Speaking of Pele.

Ever wonder who would be on the Mount Rushmore of American soccer?

Yes, this is an ESPN conceit. One might even call it a meme. I got the image from a Tom Hoffarth post from January talking about how easy it would be to beat this trope into the ground, although Hoffarth's post was more about ESPN beating dead horses like there's money in it...which, there is.

Who are the four people on our Mount Rushmores?





...nah, I can't do that to you.

But I'll let you think of your own first, and spoiler mine and Kenn's.

Kenn's list was probably better than mine, despite how similar they were.

1. Pele
2. Billy Gonsalves
3. Mia Hamm
4. Lamar Hunt

1. Mia
2. Pele
3. Gonsalves
4. Landon Donovan

I didn't really consider Builders. And Landon is on there as...well, as the all-time leading US national team scorer, probably will be close to cap leader by the time he's done, and also the best American player I've seen. And someone should represent the "modern", post-Caligiuri era, where the US has fielded its best teams.

Landon is an easily disputed choice, for a couple of reasons. Some of the comments he made in his youth about not needing soccer to be comfortable, his two or three or four stumbles in Germany, his dicking over of the first MLS Earthquakes...sure.

But there's another reason people would resist Landon, and it's the same reason they'd balk at Caligiuri, Lalas, Balboa, Wynalda, Reyna, Friedel, Keller or McBride. As American soccer fans, we believe in a Messiah to come. Someone wearing red, white, blue and/or anthracite WILL lift the World Cup for us. An American WILL one day be the best player in the world. I mean, Mexico once had the best player in the world. So did Bulgaria. So did Liberia. So did Northern Ireland. Barcelona's all-time leading scorer? Filipino. A Yank WILL join that pantheon.

However, "Player to Be Named Later" would be annoying to the sculptors, so Landon it is.

And then Kenn brought up Lamar, and I thought, "Oh. Hm." But nah, might as well stick to my guns.

Ives Galarcep at this point would say "What do you think? Leave your comments below." This is why "Mount Rushmore of Whatever" is such crack cocaine for radio and blogs and such - I'd actually be interested to know how I could STOP you from commenting on this, short of saying "The Great and Terrible Oz has spoken," turning off comments for the weekend, and posting more pictures of sea lions.