I’m starting this week’s column with something a bit different – no college or pro football discussion for once.
Every Thanksgiving morning since 1999, at 8:30am my friends and I have played in a football game we simply called ‘The Turkey Bowl’. At first we started out playing tackle but injuries and age prompted us to add flags in the mid-2000s.
It was the one athletic event I HAD to win each year. As some of you reading this column know, clearly I’m no athlete. Hell, there’s a reason I always dreamed of going into sports broadcasting. But this was my one chance every year to prove I could hang with my much more talented and athletic buddies…and to lead a team, as QB, to victory.
Over the 21 games, I’d say my team probably won at least 2/3 of ’em…I was the MVP some years and the LVP in others. While most kids growing up looked forward to Christmas morning, to me, Thanksgiving was my favorite day of the year.
We started playing the game my junior year of high school and while some of the guys weren’t able to play in recent years and our number of players had been dwindling, it was still a tradition, OUR tradition.
And thanks to COVID, the streak will be snapped this Thursday. Sure I’m sad…but what a run we’ve had! Maybe we’ll bring it back again next year or the year after for a fond farewell. Like we’ve seen with college football, 2020 is just a strange year but we’ll get back to normalcy hopefully soon enough.
Thanks to all of the players we’ve had over the years…I’d guess over 100 different guys (including ‘expert’ pickers Lester and Steve…and by the way, both are phenomenal teammates to have played with) have participated and at least a couple handfuls worth of girls came and watched.
Most importantly – be safe out there, enjoy the football we can watch on TV, and be thankful for many things including the hope that this nightmare might be past us next year.
In other news, my college picks stink ATS, my NFL ones are worse but I’m going to strive to get back to .500 in both before the end of the season!
Week 13 CFB BOLD Predictions:
EC: Despite two early scares against the Arizona teams, USC starts to firmly establish itself as a College Football Playoff contender with a comfortable victory over a surprising previously 2-0 Colorado squad. They’ll need a lot of help in getting to #4 but possibly a cancellation and the opportunity to face BYU in the coming weeks may help add to the Trojans’ resume if they go down that route.
AL: Can’t believe we are not picking the juggernaut Penn State vs. Michigan game this weekend?? Come on EC!! The ‘Suck Bowl’ this year comes down to a close finish with Harbaugh’s new ‘generational QB’ leading the way and sending James Franklin back to State College with an 0-6 record. Might be the nail in the coffin for him…who would’ve thought that Bill O’Brien would have been a huge improvement over what they have now!?
JB: USC fans yet again think they find themselves staring at the light at the end of the tunnel of the Clay Helton era, only to have a(nother) last minute drive continue SC’s perfect season and keep their very slim playoff chances alive.
SM: Justin Fields bounces back from a subpar game (for him) and accounts for over 450 yards and 7 touchdowns in a 61-13 Ohio State win over Illinois.
(NFL picks, Best Bets, & my Pick 5 selections on the next page)