2014 Bracket and Updates

The sun is shining. Flowers are starting to bloom. For the first time since 2010, Name of the Year is starting during March Madness. Praise be!

As always, there are going to be some changes this year. First, we’re going to stop updating this domain — in order to consolidate NOTY’s already considerable pre-existing readership with our own, we’re moving operations over to www.nameoftheyear.com. We just uploaded this year’s bracket over there! Both the old guard and the fresh blood contributed to this one — after months of infighting, we’ve come up with a field we’re happy with. This is gonna be a Wagenblast.

It doesn’t stop there. To our delight, longtime NOTY supporters Deadspin offered to host the NOTY tourney this year. Voting will happen there. The extent to which we’ll be able to cross-post to nameoftheyear.com is unclear at the moment, but we’ll keep you updated as the situation develops. — we may copy the Deadspin posts, we may post with more detailed analysis. At very least, we’ll be linking to the votes as they go up — like today’s play-in between Olajuwan Stiffler and D’Olajuwon Swanks.

Again, we’ll have details on the new setup before you can say Tumpsey Speeks. And C’Mon, follow us on Twitter for more updates. May the best name win!

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Leo Moses Spornstarr is Your 2013 Name of the Year

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A champion has finally been named.

Okay, if you’re into semantics, Leo Moses Spornstarr was named twenty-some years ago. But as a commenter pointed out, there is no prior Spornstarr line, no Spornstarr family crest, no awkward yearly gatherings of Spornstarrs. Our champ is a thoroughly modern creature, the product of the commendably egalitarian but hopelessly naive union of a Sporn and a Starr.

On second thought, perhaps it’s a mistake to conjecture that the portmanteau was an accident. Who are we to assume that Leo’s folks are anything other than delightfully droll jokesters who jumped at their one-in-a-million onomastic opportunity? Who are we to rule out the possibility that the hyphen-free mashup was a well-intentioned parenting tactic, a contemporary Boy-Named-Sue situation? Who are we, dear reader, to dismiss the idea that Ms. Sporn and Mr. Starr had ambitions for their son’s performance in this very tournament — which has after all been around longer than he has? However it came about, our Leo may be the only Spornstarr in the world. The only Spornstarr in history, even. We don’t know if he has siblings.

Let’s recap: the 2-seed out of the Chrotchtangle Regional manhandled #15 Junior Lomomba and crushed #7 Carlton Crunk. He dispatched upstart 14-seed Ram Amandeep in the Sweet Sixteen without much fuss, proving that the best way to take down a bawdy name is with another bawdy name. He brought down the top-seeded Fancy English, Jr. in the Elite Eight. In the final four, Smokey Don Pipes of the Dragonwagon went up in flames. And as of last night, Leo secured his place in the history books by vanquishing Bulltron powerhouse Pornsak Pongthong. Here’s to you, Leo.

(Sidenote: the one-point margin in the poll is artificially close; the actual differential is closer to 60 votes. Our analytics show that a lone rogue voter tried to inflate Pornsak’s score after midnight but before I closed the poll. Improbably and miraculously, I noticed just in time, with one vote left before the scales tipped. Ugly crisis of second-guessing legitimacy averted — but don’t do that, people. Play fair: one vote per voter.)

Aside from that unsavory hiccup, thank you all for following along, voting, and making our first shift at the helm of the tourney a rousing success. We’ll be back for March Madness in 2014. Name on.

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2013 Name of the Year Title Match: Pornsak Pongthong vs. Leo Moses Spornstarr

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Of course.

By our estimation McWisdom Badejo was an unlikely favorite, but he had a sizable cadre of supporters this round, nearly landing an upset against the fiercest Thai challenger this side of Ong-Bak. And Smokey Don Pipes, conqueror of Bossy-Nobs, had to grapple with giants to reach the summit of one of this year’s most competitive regions. Both are great names.

But this is the Internet, and the Internet is for porn. You, voter, have provided compelling evidence for the truism – the guts and glory of the past months aside, the fact is that the two names out of our 64 which contain a certain four-letter string are the two names left standing by popular consensus. Of course they are.

Not that they don’t deserve it. Pornsak and Spornstarr both have positively side-splitting names, and each has been shoved through a grueling onomastic wringer in his own region to emerge unscathed at the edge of the winner’s circle. So here it is, folks: the climax, the money shot, the pairing we’ve all been waiting for. The most exciting moment of 2013, some might say.

On the left: Pornsak Pongthong, Sriracha FC defensive midfielder.
On the right: Leo Moses Spornstarr, aspiring actuary.

Which will be 2013′s Name of the Year? The choice is yours.

Voting ends Sunday. Follow us on Twitter. Also, check out this statement from the original NOTY High Committee.

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Final Four: #1 Pornsak Pongthong vs. #2 McWisdom Badejo, #4 Smokey Don Pipes vs. #2 Leo Moses Spornstarr

This is it. This is the week we’ve all been waiting for. The Final Four begins today, with the Final commencing on Thursday. GET HYPE…AND FOLLOW US ON TWITTER.

For a while, it seemed as if Pornsak Pongthong wouldn’t make it past the monumental challenge of Yolanda Squatpump. Ultimately, he was able to outlast her and become the Bulltron Regional’s Final Four representative. As the sole one seed remaining in the field, Pornsak has to be considered the odds-on favorite to emerge victorious.

That being said, each entrant in the Final Four has proved his name to be elite, and no favorite is safe. In order to make the final, Pornsak will have to get past McWisdom Badejo, who beat Baby Swinger in the Elite Eight and won the Sithole Regional. McWisdom has already toppled one top seed; will he make it two? Which athlete will prevail?

On the other side of the bracket, Smokey Don Pipes was able to move on thanks to the closest match of our tournament, which ended in a tie and had to be decided in a 90-minute overtime. Smokey Don’s victory is a reminder that every vote counts. If our overtime voters had preferred Leila Bossy-Nobs‘ chuckle-inducing last name to her opponent’s mellifluous moniker, the Frenchwoman would have completed an improbable run to the Final Four. Instead, Smokey Don represents the Dragonwagon Regional.

He is up against Leo Moses Spornstarr, who emerged victorious by a healthy margin over one-seed Fancy English, Jr. and will represent the Chrotchtangle Regional in the Final Four. Leo is one of three Final Four contestants aged 26 or younger; has NOTY become a young man’s game? Will Leo’s youth lead the way against the decidedly riper Smokey? You decide forthwith.

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Filed under 2013 Bulltron Regional, 2013 Chrotchtangle Regional, 2013 Dragonwagon Regional, 2013 Sithole Regional

Please Welcome Your 2013 Name of the Year Final Four

Wow.

It took four incredibly close battles, but we have our Final Four. One matchup came down to a single vote, and another was tied at midnight and had to be decided in overtime.

Pornsak Pongthong hadn’t been remotely challenged before taking on Yolanda Squatpump, and early voting had him behind the Usual Suspects crew member. Not to be outdone, Pornsak pulled off a classic March Madness comeback (in November), stormed past Squatpump, and took the victory by 22 votes. He’s the last one seed standing.

At our usual midnight endpoint, Smokey Don Pipes and Leila Bossy-Nobs were dead even. 230 votes for the Oklahoman criminal, 230 votes for the French scientist. By 1:30, Leila’s vote count remained stagnant, but Smokey Don had picked up another four votes, garnering him the perhaps the most nail-biting, hard-won victory of the year and the chance to represent the Dragonwagon in the Final Four. Leila, you will be dearly missed.

Leo Moses Spornstarr had the most decisive victory of the Elite Eight, easily outpacing top seeded Fancy English, Jr. by a margin of 92 votes. We’re sad to see Fancy go, but a penchant for impeccable grammar will hopefully live on.

Finally, basketball player McWisdom Badejo pulled off the NOTY version of a buzzer beater, topping Baby Swinger by a single vote. Badejo fans will cherish this victory for their entire lives, while Swinger supporters will hastily change the channel whenever the matchup is rebroadcast on ESPN Classic.

The Final Four will run from Monday to Thursday. On Friday, the final will begin. Right now we’re planning on letting it run through Sunday, though perhaps we will extend it a couple days to be thorough. You can help us out by voting at this most critical moment.

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Dragonwagon/Chrotchtangle Regionals, Elite Eight: #4 Smokey Don Pipes vs. #7 Leila Bossy-Nobs, #1 Fancy English, Jr. vs. #2 Leo Moses Spornstarr

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We’ve got two potential nail-biters on today’s docket, folks, as well we should; two coveted Final Four slots are on the line.

Repping the north side of the Dragonwagon: the soothing sounds of #4 Smokey Don Pipes, Oklahoma shooting suspect, who steamrolled Dr. Suparman Marzuki and Twollie Vanderwerf in past rounds. He’s up against 7-seeded intergalactic warlord-queen Leila Bossy-Nobs, the nanoparticle researcher who vanquished Sincere Shears, Jackmeoff Mudd, and Fang Man. Each already has an impressive collection of trophies; which contestant will end the week on the other’s mantelpiece?


Trouble’s brewing down in the Chrotchtangle, as well. Top-seeded bank robber Fancy English, Jr. is a force to be reckoned with: more powerful than a Hurricane, tastier on the tongue than Waffles. Still, Leo Moses Spornstarr remains the man who claimed the bounty on rogue 14-seed Ram Amandeep. Don’t be fooled by the low seeding — Amandeep was a fan favorite, an anti-hero, a people’s champion. Now he’s a message: you don’t mess with a Spornstarr.


That’s it for this week. We’ll give you until Sunday to vote for the winners. After that: the Final Four, then the title match. The end is nigh.

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Bulltron/Sithole Regionals, Elite Eight: #1 Pornsak Pongthong vs. #2 Yolanda Squatpump, #1 Baby Swinger vs. #2 McWisdom Badejo

Well, after several weeks of upsets, scares, and near-misses, both the Bulltron and Sithole Regionals are now down to the top two seeds. Both are shaping up to be titanic struggles. As a reminder, we will post two matchups today, two tomorrow, and then give you guys the rest of the week to decide the Final Four. You’ve all done a great job so far (especially those of you who have followed us on Twitter.)

First up is our Clash of the Titans. It’s our Duke vs. Kentucky, our Nimpson vs. Bloodsaw, our Goku vs. Vegeta, our Lincoln vs. Douglas. In one corner: Pornsak Pongthong, Thai football defender, #1 seed,  hotter than a plate of Pad Kee Mao. In the other: Yolanda Squatpump, ascendant challenger, The Usual Suspects makeup artist, and workout champion of the Bulltron. Only one of these names can reach the Final Four. Who will it be?

The Sithole regional’s two titans are also set for an absolute dogfight. Baby Swinger looked dead in the water against Norman Conquest, but she managed to swing the voting in her favor as if it were a newborn child. Now, she faces her hardest test yet: McWisdom Badejo, who has rolled through three rounds without being significantly tested. Methinks he’ll get his first challenge this week.

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