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December is supposed to be quiet. Then Kurt Busch gets booted/boots himself/mutually parts ways with Roger Penske.

Now, the sound of silence is louder than a cheesy soap opera argument. The only difference is that real jobs of really good people are on the line.  

With the stakes so high, why not randomly assess some odds and play with people’s careers?

December is supposed to be quiet. Then Kurt Busch gets booted/boots himself/mutually parts ways with Roger Penske.

Now, the sound of silence is louder than a cheesy soap opera argument. The only difference is that real jobs of really good people are on the line.  

With the stakes so high, why not randomly assess some odds and play with people’s careers?Odds Kurt Busch  joins Richard Petty Motorsports: Even money
Kurt Busch is a bigger name than AJ Allmendinger. Busch generates more media exposure. He’s really good at mentioning sponsors. For a program that needs an identity, there are worse people to hire.

The question is what kind of brand Busch provides. It’s one Jack Roush doesn’t like. It’s one a potential sponsor might not like, which is critical since they’re the ones driving this story. Just ask Best Buy. Plus, has Kurt Busch really changed?

Busch might be better to take a year off, rehab his image and look for a better long-term fix.

Odds AJ Allmendinger has a ride for 2012: 2/1

Allmendinger had his best season in 2011, gained momentum as the season progressed and made RPM relevant again. His reward…getting booted for Kurt Busch?  

Allmendinger will find work. Will it be starting and parking? Maybe. Even those rides are drying up. Doesn’t seem right to me either.

Odds Marcos Ambrose has a ride in 2012: 1/150
Why is Marcos Ambrose not on the hot seat? Good guy, but if you had to pick between Busch, Allmendinger and Ambrose, Road Race Man is third every time.

Odds Brian Vickers finds a ride in 2012: 3/1

Vickers at Penske makes a ton of sense. Vickers driving when Danica Patrick isn’t makes sense. That means neither will happen, which means Vickers will revert to a start and park. More time to skydive I suppose.



Odds Denny Hamlin rebounds with Darian Grubb: 5/1

Mike Ford and Hamlin had to call it quits. Ford is the Marty Schottenheimer of crew chiefs: good enough to get a driver to the cusp, maybe not all the way to a title.

Enter Grubb, who helped mold Whopper Man’s race team into Chase contenders and champions. Grubb has experience creating and changing culture. Looks promising, right?

Problem is the Joe Gibbs Racing culture just seems toxic. Kyle Busch is a million dollar talent who too often displays ten cents worth of common sense. Joey Logano can’t buy a break. Greg Zipadelli is out the door.  There’s a lot to cut through in order to create a stable ship, and that’s before you ever get to Hamlin’s psyche, which still seems scarred from Homestead in 2010. Have fun with that.

Odds Tony Stewart is still partying with the Sprint Cup 1/144,169
The real question is what hangover from 2011 will impact Whopper Man in 2012? He can’t hold that lightening in a bottle forever. Maybe his pet monkey can.

The Silly Season has no off button. Neither does this column, though it’s going to end now. Enjoy the weekend, and insert random catchphrase here.