Since I was introduced to Bleacher Report back in October, my life has been changed.
For the better.
I have been swept up in a world of writers just like myself; amateur writers in love with their sport or team who just want to express themselves on a free website. I have climbed up the rankings of this website and learned the keys to good, quality writing.
I have made cyber friends and cyber enemies (just a few though) and discovered the joy of expressing myself to a world of readers.
Along the way, I have read some very good articles.
Articles that I feel belong on the front page of ESPN. Articles that if I wrote, I would proudly tell everyone, “That's MY article. I wrote that.”
Over the last few weeks, I have taken the time to compile a list of my ten favorite articles I have ever read on Bleacher Report.
I have found these in many ways.
I have read the posts on my bulletin board. I always make it a point to read the Article of the Day. I went back through the archives of every single one of the top 50 writers on this website. I searched for topics I thought might have good articles. I have read literally thousands of articles in my search.
I mostly read about baseball and football, so many of these articles will be centered around those two sports. I apologize to those of you who write about other sports that don't interest me. It's not that your articles aren't good. They are.
Bleacher Report has one of the best wrestling sections compared to any other sport. These guys (Joe Burgett, Ryan Michael, Shane Howard, and others) write with a passion that really impresses me.
Unfortunately, I couldn't put any of their articles on my list because, well, I don't know a thing about wrestling and wouldn't know a bad article from a Pick of the Day article.
Same with some of the other sports on this website: World football, Formula One racing, boxing, cricket, etc.
In fact, there are tons of fabulous writers on this website whose articles didn't quite make the cut.
Sean Crowe is one of my favorite NFL writers on the website. Same with Angel Navedo. None of their articles quite made my top ten, but there's no denying these guys are tremendous writers who have a profound dedication to their team.
Bob Warja is an extremely talented MLB writer. So is Andrew Nuschler. These guys didn't make my top ten, but they are good enough writers I want to give a POTD vote to virtually everything they write.
Pete McKeown wrote an incredible tribute to his friend, titled, "To An Athlete Dying Young," that garnered him Article of the Day for THREE consecutive days, but I had to leave it off my list (it fell at No. 11).
In short, there are a LOT of good articles on this website.
Too many to include in my article.
In fact, there are enough that I could easily make a list of my top 50 favorite articles from this website.
With this in mind, I included my own personal top ten favorite articles from this website. These aren't just all pro-Eagles articles, although in my mind, the best article anyone could write is one which does nothing but praise Philadelphia sports teams.
These are articles that took time to write. The writers did their research. They backed up their points with facts and they captured hundreds of readers.
Many of these articles were awarded as the official Article of the Day. All of them should have.
I think every user on Bleacher Report should read these articles.
They're that good.
Feel free to post the link to any others you have in mind, and rather than using this as an opportunity to advertise your own writing, include articles that weren't written by yourself. Any article you have ever read that made you go, “WOW!” should be mentioned.
And there are a lot of them that make me say, “WOW!”
Here is my top ten, starting with an honorable mention...
*Honorable Mention: Move Over Barry Bonds – That's Why I Play in Center Field series by Zander Freund
This wasn't just an article. It was an entire series by our very own B/R leader, Zander Freund.
This series, totaling five articles, chronicled the ten greatest center fielders in baseball history. And the research behind this was amazing.
10. Female Reporters in the Locker Room: Does it Work? by Lisa Horne
This is probably the best article ever written by the longtime No. 1 ranked writer for Bleacher Report. In this article, Lisa explores that thought we have all had at one time: should women be allowed in the men's locker room?
Better yet, Lisa doesn't just speculate what it would be like. She bases her opinion on her real-life experience - what is was like for HER when she ventured into that "forbidden place called the players' locker room," as she puts it.
Her article was a little controversial, in the fact that a lot of people disagreed with the subject. But it sure captured my attention and I remember it was the first article I ever thought was good enough to bookmark on my computer.
9. The 20 Worst Football Cliches by Justin Goar
Wow. Check out the stats for this article. Over 26,000 reads and 200+ comments. Not a bad job by Justin.
This article highlighted the 20 worst football cliches we as fans have become accustomed to, such as "giving 110 percent" and making a "circus catch."
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this article not only for its list of entertaining cliches but also for the blend of humor Justin was able to inject constantly throughout the article.
Tom Brady vs. Peyton Manning has become the ever-popular Bleacher Report debate. More articles have been written about this topic than every other topic combined. At least it seems like it.
Derek took a look at this debate in his article, focusing on who has been better this decade, Brady or Manning?
What I really enjoyed from this article is its completely neutral perspective. There was no biased preference to either quarterback; simply the facts and statistics to make a pretty convincing argument.
And I really enjoyed how even after Derek made his selection of who has been better (I won't ruin it for you in case you haven't read it yet), he still offered his opinion for how the other quarterback could become the best, based on an outstanding performance in 2009.
All those Brady vs. Manning articles should look to this one as the example. It's that good.
7. Wasted Vick-Tories by Kristin Hamlin
If I remember correctly, this is the first article I ever remember reading on Bleacher Report. It really stuck in my mind, so much so that six months later I still remember it.
For starters, the title really drew me in. It was very clever and the picture was a bit of a shocker, certainly summing up the content in the article.
The article focused on the wasted opportunities by not only Michael Vick, but his brother Marcus: two young men blessed with all the talent in the world who let their attitudes get the best of them.
I felt like I was reading one of those long articles you find in ESPN The Magazine – it was that good.
6. The New Bleacher Report T-Shirt: All The Cool Cats Are Wearing 'Em by Todd Civin
I had never heard of Todd before I read this article. After reading it, I gave it my POTD vote and immediately became a fan of Todd.
Check out the first three sentences of his article:
"I'm not a pretty man. I'm 5'8" and weigh 220 pounds with gusts up to 230.
Women don't look twice when I walk down the street."
I almost died laughing after reading that. The whole article is just as funny as that short blurb, and if we as readers should take anything away from the new Bleacher Report shirt, it's that "the least we can do is buy one so Zander can pay the damn bills."
5. Super Bowl XLIII: 10 Possible Matchups NFL Fans Would Love to See by Dan Parzych
Dan wrote this article before the NFL playoffs started and named the ten possible matchups NFL fans would love to see. He did pretty well, generating over 100 comments and an amazing 12,000-plus reads.
This article was extremely well-written. If I had to write my own 10 possible matchups, they would probably be very similar to Dan's list.
He covered everything you could imagine, such as Indianapolis Colts vs. New York Giants (battle of the Mannings) or San Diego Chargers vs. Minnesota Vikings (battle of the No. 1 fantasy picks).
4. Four Reasons Michael Jordan Is, and Will Be, The Greatest Ever by Mike Carley
Anyone think LeBron, Kobe, or Dwyane Wade is the new Michael Jordan?
Mike Carley's article discusses four reasons why Michael Jordan is, and always will be, the greatest ever. His article had research, facts to back up his opinion, and it was so well-written it just blew me away.
I can't imagine how long it must have taken to write this article. It was close to 4,500 words long and well worthy of being featured on ESPN or FoxSports.
Perhaps I saw it summed up best in one of those comments. A user commented saying he was going to write an article about Michael Jordan being overrated but decided it's now impossible to do so.
That's high praise, especially impressive considering this was only the eighth article Mike has written for Bleacher Report.
3. Why Jerry Rice is NOT the Greatest Wide Receiver in NFL History by Bryn Swartz
There are some things every sports fan just accepts as fact. Babe Ruth was the best baseball player who ever lived. Tony Romo chokes every December. And Jerry Rice is the greatest wide receiver in NFL history.
Bryn's article contained more statistics than I knew existed. I can't even begin to fathom the amount of research it required to write this, but he did a tremendous job in an argument that seems impossible to support.
And here's how you know the article was great. TWO separate writers wrote a rebuttal to Bryn's article, stating why Jerry Rice IS the greatest wide receiver in NFL history.
2. Tom Brady Stole My Girlfriend by Michael Cline
I never knew I could laugh so hard simply by reading an article.
And then I found this one.
I read this article, commented and gave it a POTD vote, and then read it three more times because it was so good. I showed it to my mother, my girlfriend, everyone I met. And everyone loved it.
This is the type of article that should be in Reader's Digest or Sporting News. It was so good. It's perhaps the funniest thing I have ever read in my life.
Simply put, you HAVE to read this.
1. Cardinals-Steelers Super Bowl Pick: Princess Bride Style by Robert Allred
As soon as I saw the title for this one, I had a feeling it would be an article to remember.
And it was.
All I could say when I finished it was, “Wow.”
Robert injected humor, facts, sports, everything into his article. I don't know where he got the idea to write this, but he took dialogue from a popular movie "(The Princess Bride, which happens to be one of my favorite movies) and turned it into a Battle of Picks about the Super Bowl.
Hands down the best article I have ever read on Bleacher Report.