Top 100 Oklahoma Embarrassments: 60-51
8:42 PM EDT on August 13, 2007
60. Mark Gastineau
In the 1980's, Ardmore native Mark Gastineau was one of the most feared pass rushers in the NFL. He surprised the football world by abruptly retiring in 1988, and eventually admitted he had done so to avoid steroid testing. He tried to resurrect his athletic career as a boxer, but that too ended in humiliation when it was revealed several of his opponents had been told to, and did, take dives. His ex-wife and estranged daughter eventually went on to star in the totally awesome show "Gastineau Girls" that was on the E! channel.
59. The Conviction of Ron Williamson
Ron Williamson was a former professional baseball player who retired to his hometown of Ada, where he was eventually convicted of the rape and murder of a local waitress. He developed deep psychological problems while incarcerated, and was eventually cleared on DNA evidence. This provided the basis for John Grisham's book The Innocent Man, and totally helps make our beloved state look super cool.
58. Dennis Rodman
Before he started putting on wedding dresses, Rodman starred at Southeastern Oklahoma State in Durant. Word on the street is that he still visits the area on occasion, and apparently even brought Madonna to Lake Texoma back when they were dating. In any event, any Oklahoman who has appeared on the television show Pros and Joes immediately makes this list, so if we've missed someone, let us know.
57. David Walters
Walters won an overwhelming 75 of Oklahoma's 77 counties in his bid to become governor, but was such a disaster in office that he didn't even run for re-election. His tenure is marked by accusations of -- and eventually admissions to -- many campaign violations. His failure as governor eventually led to the election of...
56. Frank Keating
Keating was seen as a very strong leader in the wake of the Murrah Building bombing, but devolped a serious case of foot-in-mouth disease that eventually overshadowed that. He managed to piss off basically everyone in the state, leading the Tulsa World to famously ask: ""Will anyone Gov. Frank Keating hasn't offended please stand up. Is anyone standing?" Whether it was saying that the best way to deal with the teacher's union was "Homicide" or his physical altercation with an Oklahoman reporter, Keating's lack of self-control ruined a once promising political career. Fortunately for him, he won't be remembered as the most out-of-control governor in the state's history, the title of which probably goes to...
55. David Hall
Hall was governor from 1971-'74, and was such a failure that in his re-election bid he received only 27% of the vote in the primary election. Immediately upon leaving office, he was indicted and eventually convicted of extortion and racketeering. He served almost two years in a federal prison! How many governors can say that?
54. Buddy Ryan
The Frederick native was a helluva football coach, and his sons went on to be successful coaches at OU and OSU, and in the NFL, but he makes this list for attacking his offensive coordinator on the sidelines of a game when coaching the Houston Oilers. You just can't do that, dude. That's one step away from Woody Hayes territory.
53. Jim Ross
It's bad enough that the #1 celebrity fan of Oklahoma football is Toby Keith, but when the runner up to that award is a WWE announcer, you know it's time for a talent infusion.
52. Anita Bryant
The Barnsdall native was a popular singer in the '60s and '70s before her career took a nosedive when she became a staunch anti-gay rights advocate who claimed that homosexuals were out to "recruit" America's children and said that the next step was to give rights to people who sleep with Saint Bernards. In recent years, she has admitted to making "mistakes" in her life, but seemingly has not publicly disavowed any of her previous stances.
51. Paul Harvey
The most amazing thing about Paul Harvey is his ability to blur the lines between his news stories, commentaries and the companies that are his advertisers. Seriously, have you ever heard someone who so seamlessly goes from his monologue to reading a plug for an advertiser and back again. It's awe-inspiring. Also, the dramatic pause when he says "Paul Harvey........ good day!" was obviously Jeremy Schaap's inspiration for his sign-off: "Jeremy Schaap....... E-S-P-N."
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