The Alternative Rankings

Dave Barend : The Alternative Rankings


by Dave Barend

"Your husband is nuts."

My wife had to expect she'd hear that line many times after she married me. But probably not from someone staring directly at our refrigerator.

You see, about 353 homemade magnets depicting the names of every Div 1 college hoops team adorn that refrigerator. Apparently some people call that nuts. I, however, call it: The College Hoops Fridge Rankings. CLICK HERE to see the high tech rankings.

Yes, I actually made all of those magnets. I should clarify that when I say "I", that really means my wife and I. And I should further clarify that "my wife and I" really means just my wife.

But she enjoys it, well, not the making of magnets or that people think she married a loon. Those same people, however, always follow that up with an assertion of how lucky I am to have her. Yeah, that she enjoys immensely.
And yes, each week every single team is re-ranked on our stainless steel Samsung. Should my daughters arrive home with something that they quite liberally label art, they are free to show me. But they dare not put it on my fridge.

Now if this all sounds nuts to you too, imagine how it sounded to the person who sold us our refrigerator. 
Salesman: Would you like one with French doors, sliding shelves, a hidden ice maker, a . . .? 
Me:  Just magnetic, please. 
Salesman: Just magnet . . .? What?

My wife then covered her head in embarrassment as I proceeded to describe the beauty that is the College Hoops Fridge Rankings. A prolonged silence followed, as the salesman looked completely befuddled at me then at my wife. He eventually turned to me with the inevitable reply of, "Do you have any idea how lucky you are?"

Now you just might be wondering - "Why?" Well, my family could be at the kitchen table and a dispute breaks out over whether Furman is ranked higher than Wofford. Or we could have a guest looking at our refrigerator while wishing to know if East Tennessee State is in the top 50. What are the odds of those scenarios? About zero.

But same is true for the odds that our house explodes, and yet my wife makes me pay thousands to Farmers Insurance for that. So I provide us the safety of additional insurance with the College Hoops Fridge Rankings. Who's ranked #243, you ask?  "Yeah, we cover that."
This would seem to suggest that I should have the rankings on every wall of my house, right? Well of course not - that would be nuts.
I will admit that there are times when I'm in my basement and I'd like to know where, say, Belmont is ranked. Do I walk upstairs to my kitchen? No I do not. I have my daughters do so.

Another seemingly logical question you might have is:  "Aren't there rankings easily available on the Internet?" Well, none of those rankings have the teams' nicknames. Nor are they displayed in each team's colors. "Wait a minute, you actually had your wife color coordinate and add the nicknames on these stupid things?" Well, and laminate them too. Yeah, I've heard tell that I'm lucky.

And yes, I realize that nicknames and team colors are on the Internet, and so is the Grand Canyon. The thing is, Google doesn't let you touch the Grand Canyon. But you can touch the College Hoops Fridge Rankings. Yup, the College Hoops Fridge Rankings - "the Grand Canyon of college basketball rankings". (Trademark pending.)
That's right, in my kitchen and on my fridge is something truly unique - the World's only 3D college hoops rankings. My girls can grab them, hold them, cut their fingers on them, and hear me lose my mind should they get blood on them. It's truly fun for the whole family.

Honestly, there's really something special about putting the rankings up by hand - or, more accurately, by my daughters' hands. Kind of like Fenway Park's scoreboard. It's old school. You know, if "old school" could be used to describe something that's never been done before.

If you'd like to actually see the weekly College Hoops Fridge Rankings, you are free to come to my home. Or you can just go to Please don't feel compelled to leave a comment. I've already been told that I'm lucky.