FOLLOW THE WEEK ON FACEBOOK
Bush League
March 10, 2014

Minnesota State Rep. Pat Garofalo (R) opined Sunday evening on the potential impact of condensing the National Basketball Association:

Garofalo later clarified to the Minneapolis Star Tribune that he was "talking about [the] NBA's high arrest rate and that they are the only major pro league that testing positive for marijuana is not a substance abuse violation."

However, the NBA's arrest rate isn't too far off from that of the public as a whole. (Deadspin estimated it to actually be lower than the national average.) And citing a lax marijuana testing policy to support a claim about street crime is an illogical leap stemming from the same sort of mentality that ascribes the word "thugs" to brash athletes. As Richard Sherman aptly put it when people freaked out about his post-game rant in the NFL playoffs, thug is "an accepted way of calling somebody the N-word." Jon Terbush

are you ready kids?
2:32 p.m. ET
Facebook.com/Spongebob Squarepants

Better drop on the deck and flop like a fish, landlubbers: SpongeBob SquarePants is set for a Broadway debut in 2016, Playbill reports. The SpongeBob Musical, which Nickelodeon first confirmed was in the works in February, will first head to Chicago on June 7 for a month-long tryout at the Oriental Theatre.

"One of our challenges has been to take an episodic art form, remain true to its spirit of non-sequiturs and outrageousness and then create a really strong storyline that will not only get people involved by pay off emotionally," director Tina Landau told the Chicago Tribune. "So we have a story and a subplot, but it's all spiced with the particular flavorings of the SpongeBob universe."

The plot Landau touts is described as follows: "Only one sponge can save the day. But he's going to need help from some of the greatest songwriters in rock and pop music history."

A star-studded score should help the longest-running Nicktoon make a smooth transition from screen to stage. David Bowie, John Legend, Aerosmith, Cyndi Lauper, and They Might Be Giants are among the artists signed onto the project.

Diehard fans of the sea sponge's earlier work will recall his first cinematic appearance, in 2004, was also pretty rockin'. Julie Kliegman

Second chances
1:14 p.m. ET

While the NFL and Tom Brady failed to reach a settlement on Monday, that still meant that Jane Rosenberg — the courtroom sketch artist who became infamous after her unconventional sketch of the usually handsome Patriots quarterback went viral — had to show up for work and get a drawing done.

However, while today's sketch captures less of the surreal qualities of the original, it still expresses Rosenberg's signature style.

Rosenberg told CBS that in the days leading up to Monday's anticipated second-chance sketch, she "had sleepless nights" with Tom Brady on her mind. "It was a nightmare," she said.

Before Monday's appearance in court, Rosenberg also showed CBS her practice sketch of Brady, in which he looks decidedly less like he's melting:

"I don't like knowing people are really watching what I'm doing," Rosenberg told CBS. She added to the New York Daily News that even doing her practice sketch was hard. "I still found him very hard to draw — from a photo as well. Something subtle goes on with his eyes."

Sweet dreams, Rosenberg. It's all over — for now. Jeva Lange

scandal
1:00 p.m. ET

Disgraced wrestling star Hulk Hogan sat down with Good Morning America on Monday for his first interview since WWE terminated his contract in July over a racist rant. He was caught calling his daughter's then-boyfriend the n-word in an old tape brought to light by Hogan's lawsuit against Gawker Media.

"I'm not a racist, but I never should have said what I said," Hogan said, reiterating an earlier apology. "It was wrong. I'm embarrassed by it."

He connected his use of the slur to the area he was raised in.

"People need to realize that you inherit things from your environment," he said. "And where I grew up was south Tampa, Port Tampa, and it was a really rough neighborhood, very low income. And all my friends, we greeted each other saying that word."

Hogan also divulged that he was suicidal in 2007, when the secret tape was believed to be filmed. Watch his full interview below. Julie Kliegman

balls
12:08 p.m. ET
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

The NFL and Tom Brady failed to reach a settlement Monday in the ongoing Deflategate controversy. After just minutes of talks in court, Judge Richard Berman sent everyone home, saying he will make a ruling in the case by Friday, but potentially as early as Tuesday, CBS reports.

In May, the New England Patriots quarterback received a four-game suspension after an independent report suggested he was likely involved in the team's deliberate tampering with footballs during the 2015 playoffs. Brady appealed his suspension and maintained he was unaware of any foul play on his team.

Lest you assume this national nightmare will finally end once Berman announces a decision, rest assured both sides have appeal options that will likely keep the scandal afloat for the foreseeable future. Julie Kliegman

groupies
11:28 a.m. ET
Jemal Countess/Getty Images

Whenever hordes of giddy fans camp out in a parking lot, there's a solid chance One Direction is somewhere nearby. But Harry Styles wasn't anywhere to be found at the Georgia church where crowds gathered in their cars and RVs Saturday night and into Sunday morning — it was former President Jimmy Carter the masses wanted to see.

When Carter, 90, announced in August that the cancer in his liver had spread to his brain, he stayed firm on his commitment to teaching Sunday school at Maranatha Baptist Church. The first Sunday afterward, more than 800 people waited in line to see the former president.

The crowds have only grown bigger since. People are driving hours and hours — and some are even flying — to make it to the church parking lot before 12:01 a.m. Sunday, when seat assignments in the pews are awarded. The line this Saturday was already a half-mile long by 9 p.m., The Washington Post reports.

"We're gung-ho people!" Pat Schroeder, a 93-year-old who roadtripped the 14 hours from Illinois with her kids, told the Post. Julie Kliegman

everything are actually the best
11:18 a.m. ET
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

As Obama continues to campaign for Congress' support for the Iran nuclear deal, he spoke to Jewish-American publication The Forward's editor-in-chief Jane Eisner about the deal, Israel's safety, and accusations of anti-Semitism.

But then Eisner broke out the tough questions for the president — what's his favorite flavor of bagel?

THE PRESIDENT: I was always a big poppy seed guy.

Q: Poppy seed.

THE PRESIDENT: So the poppy seed bagels at H&H Bagels — which somebody told me they closed —

BEN RHODES: They closed.

Q: It's closed, yes.

THE PRESIDENT: Which is shocking.

RHODES: My school was a block from H&H bagels.

THE PRESIDENT: I mean, I would walk down from —

RHODES: Columbia.

THE PRESIDENT: — Columbia just to get H&H bagels on Saturdays or on the weekends.

Q: And what do you like on a poppy seed?

THE PRESIDENT: Just a schmear.

Q: Just a schmear.

THE PRESIDENT: Lox and capers okay, but generally just your basic schmear. [The Forward]

There you have it. Read the rest of the interview over at The Forward. Jeva Lange

Into the wild
11:18 a.m. ET
JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images

President Obama should be prepared to survive just about anything after his trip to Alaska this week. While Obama is technically visiting The Last Frontier to talk about climate change, he's also going to make a quick detour to the Alaskan wilderness with survivalist Bear Grylls for an upcoming episode of NBC's Running Wild with Bear Grylls, set to air later this year. Obama will become the first-ever president to receive a "crash course in survival techniques" from Grylls, The Wrap notes.

Plenty of celebrities, from Kate Winslet to Channing Tatum, have appeared on the NBC show, in which Grylls takes a star on a wilderness adventure meant to both test and teach them. The specific challenges Obama will face as he ventures into the wild with Grylls remain unknown, though in a previous episode of Running Wild featuring guest star Michelle Rodriguez, Mediaite notes that Grylls went so far as to drink the celebrity's urine.

Dealing with congressional Republicans might look pretty easy after this. Becca Stanek

See More Speed Reads