OSU Hoops Blogger Tricks Sites In Shirt Sale Flap

Former NBA 12th man Paul Shirley has made somewhat of a career out of being much better at writing about his experiences in basketball than actually playing basketball. And he’s spawned a proteg√© in Columbus, as Ohio State junior walk-on Mark Titus has been entertaining the masses with a blog of his own this season.

Mark Titus

The site is called CLUB TRILLION, a nod to the term that refers to when you play in a basketball game but accumulate no stats. Titus cracks jokes, makes fun of people, and renders the Buckeyes’ beat writer completely useless. (Why would you want to read dry news stories when you can read about the various ways Titus messes with teammate Evan Turner?) But there were reports today that Titus’ site had raised the ire of the NCAA because he was selling merchandise. Will the NCAA shut down the club?

Not exactly. SI’s Campus Clicks column claims today that Titus was told to cease-and-desist with any merchandise sales because it was a rules violation (citing a bylaw that Titus mentions).¬† The BIG LEAD then picked up the same story, decrying the NCAA’s draconian nature. But it’s apparently not quite what it seems. According to the latest post on the Club, the NCAA hasn’t been involved with this at all, and Titus was just pulling the shirts because OSU’s compliance officer said it would be a good idea:

THERE WAS NO CEASE AND DESIST FROM THE NCAA, NOR WAS THE NCAA INVOLVED IN ANY WAY. This has been reported inaccurately today by The Big Lead (who later changed what they said) and SI’s Campus Clicks (who has not changed what they are saying). The bylaw Mark put down is fictitious and was added for humor, not fact. Bylaw 34.4.3? Mark Titus, #34, for 3. A joke. The NCAA? Aside from the title, they were never a part of it. Mark was told to remove the merchandise counter as a PRECAUTION, not as a CEASE AND DESIST in any kind of way.

A little deeper reading of CLUB TRILLION shows that Titus isn’t above clowning on anyone, as evidenced by the pranks he pulls on Turner:

I’m going to give you the “John Mayer Lyric For Evan” at the end of each post, and I want everyone reading this to send Evan a Facebook message with nothing but the lyric. Imagine getting 1,000 Facebook messages from people that say the exact same thing. I think it’s a fitting way to get him back for his girlfriend ruining my last project. Anyway, I’ll maintain this prank until he knows what’s going on or (and this is my most desirable scenario) he deletes his Facebook.

Titus also takes the achievement suggested by the name of his site very seriously:

As you surely know, I got a steal last night in our game against UNC-Asheville. What you probably didn’t know is that Coach Matta expects me to at least look like I’m trying when I’m out there playing. Anybody can get a trillion by sitting in the corner and sucking on their thumb while the other nine guys duke it out. It takes a man to get a trillion while playing hard.

I’m adding this site my must-read blogroll, which now consists of SbB, Titus’ site, and the Indian pitchers.