This is who running back Reggie Bush is starting to resemble. He's beginning to look a lot like Tony Mandarich.
|Bush's off-the-field pursuits make his subpar play stand out more. (Getty Images)|
The legend of Mandarich grew so rapidly and suckered so many people it remains one of the great draft con jobs of all time. What Mandarich did was take a good college career –- he was an All-American player at Michigan State, an Outland finalist and twice was the Big Ten lineman of the year -– added some Guns N' Roses tatts, talked smack about how he could beat up Mike Tyson, acted like he loved the smell of Napalm in the morning and soon enough, people bought the tough guy act. He was right.
Sports Illustrated put Mandarich on its cover and actually wondered if he was the best offensive line draft prospect in history. Incredibly, Mandarich was selected by the Green Bay Packers ahead of players like Deion Sanders and Barry Sanders.
Mandarich is without question the most overrated draft prospect in the history of sports. And this is where Bush comes in. He's not so far behind Mandarich when it comes to creating a magnanimous image that isn't real. Not so far at all.
In fact, as I revise my list of the top 10 most overrated athletes of all time, not just draft selections, but all professional athletes, Bush is quickly advancing past the top five. My top 10 now goes something like this:
10. Vince Carter -- His terrible shooting makes him one dimensional.
9. Chris Webber -- Average NBA career but grand name recognition.
8. Jose Canseco -- Has had more of an impact on baseball post-career with his mouth than he ever did with his bat.
7. John Daly -- Could easily be top three.
6. Bo Jackson -- Both overrated and underrated. Overrated because his career was so short; underrated because he is one of the best athletes sports has ever witnessed.
5. Reggie Bush -- This from former Denver offensive lineman and current analyst Mark Schlereth: "You look at Reggie Bush. Reggie Bush doesn't know how to run between the tackles right now. He's a guy that's an edge runner. He's a guy that right now is not fulfilling his part of this offense."
4. Joe Namath -- 220 interceptions, one championship and a lot of horrible seasons.