by Kevin Blackistone
In 1869, in Cardiff, N.Y., -- just south of Syracuse's Carrier Dome where this week's 17th-ranked men's college basketball team plays -- some farmers digging a well announced they found petrified remains of a giant man. (No, he was not the first big stiff Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim recruited.) He was 10-feet tall. And the fellow who spoke for the discovery, a cigar maker named George Hull, started charging 50 cents to see the Cardiff Giant turned to stone.
But a Yale paleontologist, who inspected the find, debunked it as nothing more than a tall tale after finding it was made of gypsum. The would-be amateur anthropologists confessed to fashioning fiction.
Yet, people continued to flock to see the hoax and -- now at the Farmers' Museum in Cooperstown, N.Y., -- still do.
After all, we love fakes. Elvises. IDs. The Colbert Report.
How about the college basketball poll?