Is Brock Lesnar the Biggest ‘D-Bag’ in South Dakota?
It's usually quite an honor to be singled out as the number one anything from your home state, but that's not the case here.
Early on, the Webster native's life was full of positives. He grew up on a dairy farm, joined the National Guard at age 17, went 33-0 in wresting his senior season at Webster High School, won the National Junior college wrestling championship at Bismarck State, and later the NCAA Division I heavyweight wrestling championship at the University of Minnesota.
Shortly after that, he joined the pro wrestling circuit, where he was dubbed 'The Next Big Thing'. As a pro, Lesnar racked up nearly as many 'feuds' as he did titles, as he battled, in an out of the ring, with just about everyone ion the sport. Does that make him a 'D-Bag'? Hardly? This is wrestling after all, where (SPOILER ALERT) very little that happens that isn't carefully scripted out.
Some of the incidents involving Lesnar were real, like the series of lawsuits and injunctions filed against him by World Wrestling Entertainment in the mid-2000's when Lesnar left the circuit to wrestle in Japan. Those issues were ultimately settled out of court, and Lesnar returned to the WWE in 2012.
Lesnar also angered some wrestling fans when he walked away from the sport in 2004 to tryout for the NFL. After impressing scouts at the combine, he made the Minnesota Vikings' practice squad, but was injured in a cycling accident, and despite making a full recovery, was cut by the team at the end of the 2004 pre-season.
He then launched a career in mixed martial arts, eventually topping the MMA's earning list when he brought in $5.3 million in 2011.
In naming Lesnar South Dakota's 'Top D-Bag', Thrillist cracked:
Luckily he’s too busy growing a third forehead to read this.
So does Brock Lesnar qualify as a 'D-Bag' or was he just playing his role as a pro wrestler/entertainer?
For South Dakota's runner-up, Thrillist chose a guy who HAS engaged in more 'D-Bag'-like behavior during his professional career: Pat O'Brien.
The Sioux Falls native, Washington High School and University of South Dakota graduate, was a mainstay on CBS Sports from 1981 to 1997, where he broadcast from the Super Bowl, Final Four, World Series, NBA Finals, and Winter Olympics, without incident.
O'Brien switched from sports to entertainment broadcasting in 1997, hosting Access Hollywood, Entertainment Tonight, and The Insider, over the next nine years. During those years, O'Brien's personal life was in the news quite often, starting with an infamous drunk voice mail incident in 2005, that eventually led to O'Brien checking himself into rehab for alcohol abuse.
In 2008, O'Brien went into rehab a second time, and was later fired from The Insider after an insulting e-mail about a co-worker was discovered.
'D-Bag' behavior? Probably. But are Lesnar and O'Brien really that awful, or do they suffer from a much smaller pool of candidates from a state like South Dakota?
So who would you nominate as the Rushmore State's biggest 'D-Bag'? Go to our Facebook page and let us know.