Friday, August 8, 2008

Poll Position: What's The Next Great "Urban" Name?!?

I'm no social scientist, but I'd be willing to bet that the explosion of black children named Jalen has a whole heckuva lot to do with the shortlived run of The University of Michigan's Fab Five in the early 90's. For those of you unaware, the Fab Five was, and maybe still is, the most devastating assemblage of freshman talent ever to grace the courts of college basketball. With super big man Chris Webber, solid pivot Juwan Howard, and celebrated wings Ray Jackson and Jimmy King, the Fab Five revolutionized style and swagger in college hoops.

But perhaps the baddest Negro in the bunch was Jalen Rose, a Detroit youngster who played out of position at point gaurd, yet was undoubtedly the team's ringleader. Brash, arrogant, and with game to back it up, Rose is probably the guy most responsible for the crotchgrabbing, shorts hanging below the knees style of ball that many a purist has come to abhor. I bet Dick Vitale still has nightmares about #5.

It took a moment, but the name Jalen gradually gained popularity and seems about as ubiquitous as such "black" names as DeAndre and Brianna, which if I understand correctly, were the most popular black baby names in the late 90's. Personally, I think Jalen's a pretty cool name, so save the flames please. But it's time for a new challenger to the "urban" baby names throne. So, in the interest of keeping things breezy, I'm asking for your solicitations for next week's edition of Poll Position, entitled What's The Next Great "Urban" Name?

A couple of names are obvious. Barack Obama is sure to show up on the radar soon. I've already seen a handful of Kanyes and Lebrons. Ciara isn't really new, heck, we even have a commenter who goes by that name. I'm betting there's a baby girl named Beyonce, or Fantasia somewhere out there too. And yeah, I've already heard some woman calling her son by the name "Cam'ron". I could be wrong but I think that was the same sister I saw wearing that NOBITCHASSNESS shirt in the park. But I digress.

Note: this poll isn't about picking on "ghetto" names. Many people choose "trendy" names for their kids, and sometimes these names get plucked from pop culture. There's nothing "ghetto", urban, or even exclusively "black" about that. I mean, come on, look at how many white kids are called Tristan, Dakota, and Anastasia. So let's keep it clean, folks.

Leave your best suggestions below and I'll add the best ones to Monday's new poll. No duplicates, please.

Question: What's your nomination for the Next Great "Urban" Name?!?

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