Fun with Athletes and Google Suggestions

JoeSportsFanSenior Analyst INovember 17, 2009

On Saturday, our cyber homies over at DC Sports Bog and Mister Irrelevant shared a neat little trick that has enthralled us in the past.

In short, head over to Google…begin typing an athlete’s name…and watch in amazement as the underlying nerdery produces a suggestive completion for your search terms.  Since Google is intelligently basing its suggestions on existing web content and other popular search strings, the results can be marginally entertaining – especially when adding an “is” after the athlete’s name.

We decided to cross-reference the aforementioned nugget of technical insight with another one our favorites, Google Trends.  Below is a sampling of this month’s top Google Trend sports subjects…and what suggests an “interesting” material.

Peyton Manning


Synopsis: Very wide array of search suggestions from Google, which is fairly standard for a polarizing character like an NFL quarterback.  The “indecipherable” search suggestion struck us as odd, but then we remembered this video.

Tom Brady


Synopsis: Very similar to Mr. Manning’s Google suggestion profile, located above.  Of course, Brady had a level of search query hotness that Manning didn’t.  Seems about right.  It was entertaining to see that Brady’s suggestions contained the converse of Manning’s “Peyton Manning is better than Tom Brady”.  In fact, it was Peyton’s #1 search suggestion.  Tom Brady’s #1 suggestion was, um, slightly different.

Brady Quinn

Synopsis: Very very little suggestion references to Quinn’s performance on the field.  In fact, the first search suggestion might not be a reference to Quinn’s inability as a quarterback.  “Bust” may be a reference to his giant man boobs.

Manny Pacquiao

Synopsis: Certainly the oddest collection of athlete suggestions in the bunch.  Pacquiao is simultaneously the best, overrated and dead.  That’s impressive.

Derek Jeter

Synopsis: The general sports media never shies away from glorifying Derek Jeter’s career as the captain of the Yankees.  His Google suggestions are almost as prolific.  An athlete’s “girlfriend” is commonly among the top search recommendations, but when “girlfriends list” is as well, you know you’ve done alright for yourself.  A whole list.  Although, the “herpes” suggestion may offset that.

Bill Belichick

Synopsis: While the whole “Belichick not in Madden” thing is fairly fascinating in a “man that guy is a prick” way, I’m more disturbed that my frequent “Bill Belichick cutoff hoodie” search string isn’t higher on the list.


Synopsis: The people have spoken.  5 out of 6 Google suggestions hate the BCS.  Someone inform the committee.

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