What was biggest local story of 2012: Dwightmare, UCF, Bobby Bowden or Gators?

Running off at the typewriter. …

Since this is the final "Running Off" of the year, let's review the biggest and best, whiniest and worst of 2012.

Biggest sports story of local interest: (1) Dwightmare and resulting collateral damage in Magic organization. (2) Former Florida State coach Bobby Bowden becomes all-time winningest coach in major-college history after NCAA strips away Joe Paterno's victories. (3) Will Muschamp's Gators unexpectedly compete for the national championship. (4) UCF joins Big East. (5). UCF gets hammered by NCAA for lack of institutional control.

Biggest national sports story: (1) Penn State child sex abuse scandal. (2) LeBron finally gets his championship. (3) Denver Broncos sign Peyton Manning, trade Tim Tebow to the Jets. (4) College football announces playoff format. (5) Lance Armstrong defrocked and is shown to be just another drug cheat.

Orlando Magic version of "Auld Lang Syne":

"Should the Dwightmare be forgot and never brought to mind?

And please forget the Gilbert Arenas trade,

Now that Otis has resigned!"

Most profound local sports disappointment: (1) Former UCF athletic director Keith Tribble gets fired when he becomes focal point of NCAA cheating scandal. (2) State NFL teams continue to stink out loud. (3) Big East crumbles just as UCF joins. (4) Former Gator Tebow gets all the New York hype, but no playing time with the Jets. (5) Florida State gets knocked out of national championship hunt after loss to lowly N.C. State.

Biggest head-slapping local sports surprise: (1) WKMG Channel 6's David "Ping" Pingalore reports that Dwight Howard tried to get Stan Van Gundy fired — and he's right! (2) Magic hire a GM (Rob Hennigan) and a head coach (Jacque Vaughn) who've never been a GM and a head coach before. (3) Former Magic President Bob Vander Weide suddenly resigns because he says he wants to spend more time with his family — and then gets a divorce. (4) Apopka High gets pounded in two of its first three games and then marches to the Class 8A state championship. (5) Tiger Woods breaks his PGA Tour slump by winning the Arnold Palmer Invitational — and every Perkins waitress in town gets tingly all over!!!

UCF version of "Auld Lang Syne":

"May the NCAA be forgot as we party on New Year's Day,

Let's drink a toast to the Big East,

Even if it's no better than C-USA!"

Most positive local sports development: (1) Orlando does itself proud by masterfully hosting NBA All-Star Game. (2) Local politicians finally OK funding to renovate embarrassingly outdated Citrus Bowl. (3) Former Magic coach Stan Van Gundy heads winning campaign to raise money for Seminole County schools. (4) Jameer Nelson re-ups with the Magic and shows Dwight Howard what loyalty is all about. (5) Orlando Solar Bears return to the ice after being in hibernation for 10 years.

Most inspirational sports story: (1) Linsanity. (2) Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o becomes a Heisman finalist after his grandmother and girlfriend died hours apart in September. (3) The Indianapolis Colts rally around their first year coach Chuck Pagano's battle with leukemia and make the playoffs. (4) South African Oscar Pistorius — the double below-the-knee amputee who runs on two prosthetic legs — competes in the 400 meters at the London Olympics. (5) Adrian Peterson comes back from devastating knee injury and has a chance to break single-season NFL rushing record.

Florida Gators version of "Auld Lang Syne":

"Coach Boom has made us whole again and done it passionately,

May Urban Meyer be forgot,

So he can spend time with his family!"

Biggest bonehead: (1) ESPN analyst Rob Parker for questioning whether Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III is black enough. (2) Jose Canseco for saying that global warming might have saved the Titanic. (3) Metta World Peace for wishing everyone a "Happy Labor Day" on Memorial Day. (4) Ohio State player Cardale Jones for tweeting: "Why should we have to go to class if we came here to play football? We ain't come to play school." (5) NFL replacement refs.

Best sports quote: (1) Dwight Howard: "I've always put loyalty above everything." (2) Stan Van Gundy: "Dwight and I really like each other." (3) Arnold Palmer after receiving the Congressional Gold Medal in recognition of his service to the country and for promoting excellence and sportsmanship: "I'm particularly proud of anything that the House and Senate agree on." (4) LeBron James after winning NBA title: "It's about damn time." (5) Bubba Watson after winning Masters: "I've never got this far in my dreams."

Florida State version of "Auld Lang Syne":

"Let's raise a glass to the ACC and toast our Seminole boys,

Jimbo's given us a championship,

But he better beat Northern Illinois!"

mbianchi@tribune.com. Follow him on Twitter @BianchiWrites. Listen to his radio show every weekday from 6 to 9 a.m. on 740 AM.

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