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Thursday, 22 October 2020 15:01

Kibbles and Picks 2020 - Week 7

Now that’s a familiar feeling.

My Week 6 looked an awful lot like my Week 5 – an identical 8-6 record. Unfortunately, while I was able to gain a game last week, this week saw Stella perform much better, to the tune of 10-4. Thus, she has bumped her lead back up to six games.

Coincidentally, six games is the number on which we differ here in Week 7. Hence, if I’m able to run the table, I can fully erase her lead. Of course, if SHE runs the table or goes big, I’m going to be sitting in a significant hole with nearly half the season gone. We’ll just have to wait and see.

Published in Sports
Saturday, 17 October 2020 14:30

Kibbles and Picks 2020 - Week 6

That certainly was a week.

Neither Stella nor myself were particularly prescient in Week 5 – I blame the fact that we made our picks while at camp and were distracted; Stella is of the mind that we should accept full responsibility for our picks regardless of situation – but I managed to be just a teensy bit better, pulling an 8-6 record in the 14 games played, while Stella landed at 7-7.

I gained a game! Granted, there aren’t going to be many weeks when she only manages .500 – if I’m only able to cut her lead by one in those circumstances, it’s going to be a long season.

There’s a chance of a big swing this week – we are at odds in eight of the 14 scheduled contests (though we’ll see if all of them actually get played). As always, this presents an opportunity for either a) me to eliminate her lead, or b) her to significantly extend it. We’ll have to see how it goes.

(Note: I know we’re late in dropping this week’s edition, but we figured that with no Thursday night game, we could delay in an effort to have a better sense of how the schedule would actually shake out.)

Published in Sports
Thursday, 08 October 2020 15:08

Kibbles and Picks 2020 - Week 5

Another week, another increase to Stella’s lead.

This time, she’s gained two more games, extending her cushion to five. I’ll be real – being down this much after just four weeks isn’t ideal. However, it does mean that I have plenty of time to try and catch up. All I need to do is, you know … pick better.

Weeks like Week 4 – a mediocre 8-7 – certainly aren’t going help my case. Particularly when Stella is putting up a 10-5. But as long as we keep having those sorts of weeks, where we’re at odds on a good number of games, I at least have a shot at cutting into her lead (or at least keeping things manageable).

Week 5 is another big one – Stella and I differ on seven of the week’s 15 scheduled matchups (though we’ll see if all 15 actually wind up getting played) – so I once again have a shot at cutting into her lead. Heck, if I pull off a miracle, I could even take the lead myself (although we all know that the likelihood of such an occurrence is miniscule at best).

Published in Sports
Thursday, 01 October 2020 13:39

Kibbles and Picks 2020 – Week 4

And Stella’s lead grows again.

While neither she nor I were able to match our Week 2 success, we both had reasonable performances in Week 3. However, her reasonable (10-5-1) was slightly better than my reasonable (9-6-1), allowing her to bump her season lead back up to three games.

She’ll have a shot at increasing that lead significantly this week – we differ on seven games this go-round. If I nail it, I can erase her lead before it gets out of hand. If she nails it, well … then her lead will get out of hand. Cross your fingers for the former, but expect the latter – I feel like Stella’s poised to go on something of a run.

Published in Sports
Thursday, 24 September 2020 13:03

Kibbles and Picks 2020 – Week 3

I’ve got some good news and some bad news.

The good news is that I had a heck of a run in Week 2. I missed on just three of the week’s 16 games, putting up a 13-3 record. As you might imagine, that was good enough for me to take a bite out of Stella’s early lead.

How big, you ask? Well … that brings me to the bad news.

See, Stella had a really good week as well, outdoing Week 1’s 11-5 record by one. That 12-4 means that my huge week only managed to reduce her lead by a single measly game. Any progress is good progress, but still – I could have used a bigger swing.

Maybe I’ll get it this week, where Stella and I once again differ on seven games. But here’s the thing – I only have so many 13-3’s in me. And behind her adorable face is a ruthless commitment to making sure I know just how big a fluke last season was. So … we’ll see?

Published in Sports
Thursday, 17 September 2020 19:12

Kibbles and Picks 2020 – Week 2

Sigh. Here we go again.

In Week 1, I managed to go a perfectly mediocre 8-8. Not great, but hey – none of us really know anything in this weird season. Hitting on half seems pretty good, right? Sure – right up until my dog goes 11-5.

Stella, staying true to her vow to leave no doubt that last year was a fluke, has leapt out to a three-game lead in the season’s first week. Things were relatively tight going into the late games, but she trounced me there, picking three of the four winners, whereas I needed that Steelers win on Monday night to even get to .500.

Obviously, there’s a lot of season left; this lead is far from insurmountable. Hell, we’re at odds on seven of this week’s contests, so I could potentially just erase that lead in one fell swoop. Of course, Stella could potentially put me in a hole so deep I spend the next two months just trying to dig myself out. But hey – that’s why they play the games!

Published in Sports
Thursday, 10 September 2020 14:33

Kibbles and Picks 2020 - Week 1

That’s right – we’re back!

Kibbles and Picks, the internet’s preeminent man-versus-dog football prognostication feature, is returning for its eighth year. I will once again be attempting to pick more NFL winners than my adorable dog Stella. Last year, after a four-year stretch of futility, I finally managed to win the Kibbles and Picks season title. That triumph was just my second in the history of the feature, leaving my all-time record at 2-5.

Stella was not amused.

As such, she has sworn to take me down and reassert herself as the top dog. And that effort to reclaim her crown starts … now.

The conflict starts strong this season, with the two of us differing on seven games in Week 1. It often happens that one competitor has a big week early and builds an immediate imposing lead. Will this be someone’s big week for 2020? If it is, well … we can probably guess whose.

Published in Sports

Well, that was … better? Not by much, but by a little.

There wasn’t really anywhere to go but up after our abysmal Wild Card performance – Stella and I both went 1-3 – so there’s that. And we definitely did go up – just not by much.

Stella and I both went 2-2 in the Divisional Round. We went one-for-two on our mutual picks, which hey – not bad. We had Kansas City beating Houston – we sweated that first quarter or so out before Patrick Mahomes and company stepped on the gas and absolutely curb-stomped the poor Texans. On the flip side, we (along with literally everyone else in the world) had the Ravens beating the Titans. Imagine our surprise when Baltimore struggled and Tennessee’s Derrick Henry basically turned into the second coming of Earl Campbell.

As for our differing games: I picked the Vikings for some idiotic reason, only to watch them get easily handled by the 49ers. Stella picked the Niners because she’s not dumb. Meanwhile, I lucked out with my Packers pick; it seemed solid, but then we got to the end of the game and the Seahawks had a real chance of pulling it out. Happily, Green Bay held out, meaning that I avoided going 1-3 for the second weekend in a row.

And so, we’re tied going into the Conference Championships. Granted, it’s at 3-5, but a tie is a tie – it’s anyone’s game. And we will have a winner, because we are at odds on one of the weekend’s two contests.

Published in Sports
Tuesday, 07 January 2020 12:50

Kibbles and Picks 2020 – Divisional Round

Well then. That didn’t go well for anybody, now did it?

Despite our shared regular season excellence, Stella and I both managed to lay a pretty significant egg during the Wild Card round. Of the four games I picked, I got exactly one right – Seattle over Philly. Of course, Stella also got exactly one right – Houston over Buffalo. The two predictions we shared – New England over Tennessee and New Orleans over Minnesota – were both sadly, heartbreakingly wrong.

Published in Sports

That’s it. I did it.

Despite Stella’s best efforts – a stellar 12-4 in Week 17 – I have managed to finally win another Kibbles and Picks title.

After winning in 2014 (the feature’s second year), I spent the next four years being shut out by my dog. This is all in good fun, of course, but I’d be lying if I said the streak wasn’t wearing on me a little. It’s ridiculous and I know it’s ridiculous, but on the other hand – my dog was better at picking football games than me.

But now, finally, courtesy of a respectable 10-6 final week, I am the Kibbles and Picks Champion. It was close – Stella cut my four-game lead in half with her performance – but ultimately, I came out on top. Sure, it was far from a dominating win, but it was a win. After too many close calls over the past four years, I’ll take what I can get.

Final regular season records

Allen: 161-93-1

Stella: 159-95-1

-

But now, we’re in the playoffs; the slate is wiped clean. Stella will seek her revenge over the course of the next month as we attempt to pick our way through the postseason.

Published in Sports
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