Ode to the Man-Crush: A Single Fan's Valentine's Day

Tony BishopCorrespondent IFebruary 14, 2009

Today is Valentine's Day, and I'm single.

Thankfully, it's on a Saturday this year so I can enjoy some nice college basketball and then snuggle up to the the Blackhawks-Stars game at my local watering hole.

So instead of honoring some girl with useless candies and flowers and groveling, I've decided to give some homage to the men in my life: My man-crushes.

I know every one of you guys out there have your own rules for man-crushes. Maybe they're a star on your local team or a guy in some other city that you just can't get out of your head.

Some of them are at the top of their sport like Luke Harangody, who is currently in the running for the Naismith award and uses his elbows and shoulders more than anyone since Alonzo Mourning.

Michael Jordan, whose trademark tongue gave every kid in the Midwest a raw lower lip from over-imitation.

Others are role players on your favorite teams such as Steve Kerr, who gave me the form to shoot threes in the driveway and ping pong balls into Solo cups. He also gave us one of the greatest victory speeches at Chicago's Grant Park in 1999.

Or perhaps Cubs utility man Mark DeRosa, who epitomized the phrase "team player." It helps that he wasn't all that bad on the eyes, either.

That's uhh...what all the girls say anyway.

My personal favorite was Mike Anello of Notre Dame's football squad. The second coming of Rudy was an unbelievable example of heart and determination finding success, albeit only on special teams.

We also develop man-crushes on guys like Kyle Farnsworth for his form tackle on Paul Wilson, or Nolan Ryan for giving Robin Ventura the business.

Dale Earnhardt was a man-crush not because of his driving skills, but his driving styles.

I don't care why you love your sports stars. I don't care if they're really good or really funny or even good looking.

Put down that box of chalky candy hearts with "Luv U" written on them and raise your beer.

"Here's to you, my Man-Crush. I love you."