With the start of football season still three months away, Kansas University seniors Daymond Patterson and AJ Steward dreamed up an idea to keep them busy and entertain their friends and fans at the same time.
But not everybody found the idea amusing.
Earlier this week, Patterson and Steward revealed the debut of their Internet reality show “DP and AJ Take On KU.”
First up was a penalty-kick shootout against two members of KU’s women’s soccer team. At first, the six-minute video created a buzz among KU fans, those lauding its entertainment value and laughing their butts off at the soccer, um, skills of the two football players.
Thanks to some timely shots and clutch goaltending, Patterson and Steward won the challenge by a goal. While they talked and laughed throughout the challenge, they saved the best for last. With his shirt pulled up over his head, Steward raced down the field in celebration. One problem: He ran head-first into one of the video cameras and sliced open his forehead.
The freak accident only added to the video’s popularity, and by midday Thursday, the clip had gone viral — more than 5,000 views and counting — and made its way to ESPN, where analyst Mark May and “College Football Live” host Erin Andrews showed part of the video.
Unfortunately, May couldn’t stop there. Instead of crediting Patterson and Steward for making it onto the network for something other than a scandal, May felt it necessary to take a shot at KU and question why coach Turner Gill would let them do this in the first place. He then questioned why the two Jayhawks were wasting their time with women’s soccer.
“I’d say, ‘Act like you’ve been there,’” May said on the air. “But they were 3-9 last year, what do you expect? Not only that, why don’t you take on the men’s basketball team. Those guys are 6-3, 230-250. They’re going against girls that are, like, 5-8, 160. That’s a mismatch. It’s not fair.”
Close. Steward’s 6-3, 233, but Patterson stands just 5-9, 173. But that’s not really the point. Clearly, by taking the serious approach to all this, May missed the point entirely. It would’ve been nice if he could’ve seen it for what it was. Offseason fun. College. A couple of amateur athletes making headlines for the right reason.
Patterson and Steward responded to May’s criticism with a mock news conference in which they challenged May to a debate in any sport he’d like.
On Friday’s episode of “College Football Live,” May did not back down from his arrogant tone. Instead, he rattled off some accolades from his playing days, decades ago, as if that were supposed to intimidate the Jayhawks. Then he accepted the challenge.
Not surprisingly, Patterson and Steward are in.
“Tell him we are 100% down,” Steward posted on Twitter.
“We ready,” Patterson wrote.
So the stage is set. Patterson and Steward will debate May in Bristol, Conn., sometime before fall camp.
May might have the professional polish, but my money’s on the guys who don’t take themselves too seriously.
In the meantime, rumor has it that the next episode of “DP and AJ Take On KU” will feature the men’s basketball team. Oh boy.