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Yeah, this happened in real life, too

Eye Pokes, Cookies and Trash: The World of Taunting

Sam Young thought for a minute and then started uncontrollably laughing as he recalled the story. Every player has one, something so ridiculous said to them it sticks in their mind years after. Someone trying to get under their skin -- or in Young's case, in his eye -- to throw off their game. Instead, they just made them laugh.

They are called taunts. And they can come from opposing players or on signs from fans. They can be creative, boring or downright mean. Most can't be repeated. Here are some that can:

  • Sam Young: "OK, here we go. This one's weird. Freshman year, Georgia Tech. So I'm pass setting and their defensive tackle comes over and gets some pressure on me and he pokes me in the eyes. I'm sitting there, one of my eyes is all blurry, and I'm going 'What the hell?'

    "And he just goes, 'Captain Insano shows no mercy.' This is my first college game and so, I mean, quoting Waterboy. I'm just sitting there. I didn't really have any response to that. I don't know if you can top that one."

  • Sam Young: "You get the occasional finger, I guess."
  • Asaph Schwapp: "At Michigan State this year, I was going out for a little pregame warmup. I shaved my head before the game and everybody started yelling 'Rogaine.' That was pretty funny."
  • Eric Olsen: "I like when you get a penalty and fans yell 'It's all your fault. It's all your fault.' That's a good one. But, a guy from Mike Turkovich's high school, when we played them, told me I was 'softer than his grandma's cookies.' That was, that had to be the best thing I ever heard in my whole life.

    "It was when I played his high school, Poly Prep played Valley Forge. We play them every year and one of the Valley Forge guys said that to me. We beat them every year, obviously I crushed Turk's team and Turk.

    "Who says that on the football field?"

  • Eric Olsen: "There was a sign at Penn State that said 'Rudy was offsides' and they had a screenshot. I don't know if they edited it or if it was real or what, but he was offsides. It was funny."
  • Corwin Brown: "Oh man, not in front of the cameras. I've heard a lot of them. But some guys get creative out there. But it's all in fun."

  • Jappy Oliver: "I've been had. Especially in basketball. There's one guy, you might not even know him, he got in a car wreck and was killed, his name was Terry Furlow, went on to Michigan State, I played against him in high school and he played with Dr. J and the 76ers. I remember he slapped one of my shots into the stands and to go and chase it. That was a good one.

    "That was in high school in the sectionals. What do you do. I didn't chase it, I can tell you that, but there wasn't much I could say to that."

  • Raeshon McNeil: "I have to say, hahaha, Georgia Tech freshman year, Darrin (Walls) came out there, Darrin's not the biggest guy, especially not freshman year and he came out with his little cut-off shirt on and their fans were pretty pumped up, pretty loose by that time. One guy's out there and he's like 'Do y'all have a weight room in South Bend?'

    "That's my boy but we gave him crap about that for the longest. Oh man. I think he went out there with a long-sleeve shirt on every game after that. I don't think he went back out there with his cut-off on. It was pretty funny."

  • Terrail Lambert: "One of my close friends I went to high school with, his name is Whitney Lewis, the greatest athlete I've ever been around hands-down. It was a 7-on-7 tournament back in California on Ventura College's campus. We were playing Valencia, I believe, and it was the championship game and all day they are double-covering him and whatnot and the corners on the opposition, they are running their mouths all day.

    "There was a couple seconds left and our quarterback just lobs it in the air on a post pattern and it's underthrown. He jumps up, grabs the ball over the DB's head, he's double-covered mind you, grabs the ball over the DB's head with one hand. While he's still in the air, he manages to bounce the ball on top of his head to make fun of him, basically, and then he hits the ground. He dropped it, put his hands on his hips and said 'They don't call me Superman for nothin'.' Then he walked off.

    "I looked at my cousin (Philadelphia Eagles running back) Lorenzo (Booker) and was like 'Wow.' He was just there on the sidelines. I guarantee you he remember it like it was yesterday."

  • Harrison Smith: "It wasn't so much of a taunt but when I was in middle school, though, this guy returned a kick on us and the kicker was running after him, about five yards from him and he held out the ball right in front of his face and high-stepped like 20 yards."

  • Kyle McCarthy (who was told by USC fans "Have you heard of the sun" because of his lack of tan): "Yeah. I've heard a bunch of taunts but that one stuck out for me because I didn't have any of my friends around me. It was just me and I couldn't say anything back because it was a fan. But I've had my fair share of taunts.

    "A lot of things on the field can't be printed. A kid told me that he was a five-star recruit in high school one time. I thought that was pretty weak. I was like 'Stop living in your glory days.' I kept on him all game because of that one."

  • Pat Kuntz: "Best taunt? I always give them the Dikembe (finger wag) whenever I bat down passes, that's all I know. I say 'No, no' (waving finger). They haven't made any laws against the Dikembe in college football yet, so I'm going to push the limit.

    "There's people who talk trash and there are some terrible ones. There are some people who get after you a little bit. But that center from Stanford, he was pretty weak when it came to that.

    "Actually, last year against USC, I think it was (Drew) Radovich, he made fun of my neck roll that I used to have. I was just like 'Oh, sweet name, dude.' He was like 'Sweet neck roll.' I was like 'Sweet name.'