Each week, commenter RandBallsStu (BRANDING!) tracks down a former Minnesota sports figure about whom you might have forgotten. This is usually hilarious. Stu?
Name: Fred Smoot
Claim to Fame, Minnesota: where to begin? Let’s start on the field. After a nice run with Washington, the Minnesota Vikings signed the cocksure free agent to a 6-year $34 million deal to play opposite Antoine Winfield at cornerback. You may remember his infamous quote, “75 percent of the world is covered by water. The rest is covered by Smoot.” Steve Smith must have been running on grass-colored water, then. That said, he did return an interception for a touchdown against former Packers and Jets quarterback Brett Favre. He lasted two unhappy years with the Purple before being released. I think that about covers everything about Smoot’s tenure in Mi—oh, yeah.
Claim to Fame, Minnesota’s Lakes, Rivers, Streams and Waterways: was allegedly one of the most enthusiastic participants in the Love Boat scandal that remains my favorite Vikings off-the-field incident not involving Keith Millard. If you need to refresh your memory, the Smoking Gun has the criminal report handy for your perusal. The subject matter may be considered unsafe for consumption at work, unless your employer is extremely forgiving. Smoot ended up paying just over $1,000 in fines and performing 48 hours of community service for his troubles.
Claim to Fame, Everywhere Else: Smoot returned to Washington after Minnesota let him go, and played three more seasons with the squad. The Mississippi State product was All-SEC in his junior and senior years, and was Washington’s 2nd-round pick in 2001. [Proprietor note: It is truly sad that his time and the time of new Mississippi State WR coach/chili temperature enthusiast Tim Brewster did not overlap there. Smoot would never bring a pellet gun to a bear hunt. Maybe something even less appropriate, but not a pellet gun].
Where He Is Now: as noted in this 2011 piece from the essential DC Sports Bog, the retired Smoot is spending time in his Atlanta-area “Smoot-A-Plex” and has a number of business ventures on his plate (not including the Smoot SMACK Energy Bar and bringing a Waffle House to Washington DC), and is looking to break into the sports media business. He’s a guest on the Holden & Danny Show on DC sports radio.
Is He On Twitter: it doesn’t appear so, which is a shame.
Has He Been in a Twitter Fight with Patrick Reusse: no. Again, a shame.
Glorious Randomness: As the father of a teenage daughter, my irrational fears are legion. In addition to my concern that she’ll be the victim of a Taken copycat abductor (unlike Liam Neeson, the very particular set of skills that I’ve acquired over a very long career is limited to internet jokes about Renville County), I now am terrorized that I’ll send her a text asking her whereabouts, and she’ll respond with “Smoot-A-Plex.”
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