Last week, I played it safe and took all home teams in the high school playoffs. Seven of the home teams came through for me, with Green Forest’s win at Harrisburg being the only stumbling block. I may get a bit more adventurous this week and pick some road teams.
I didn’t fare so well with my college predictions, hitting on only four of seven.
On to the guessing game:
1. Mississippi State at Arkansas (Game of the Week). Let’s see. MSU 6-4 overall and 3-3 in the SEC with wins against Auburn, Kentucky and Alabama. Arkansas is 6-4 with no quality wins at all, yet the Hogs are a 10-1/2 point favorite. This is a toss-up in my mind. If Arkansas opens up the offense like they did against South Carolina, they’ll win. If they revert back to playing Nuttball, as they did against Tennessee, they’ll lose. I’m not real optimistic, but I can’t make myself pick against the Hogs. Arkansas by three.
2. Hoxie at Gurdon. Hoxie won at Gurdon in last year’s playoffs and they’ll do it again.
3. Louisiana-Monroe at Alabama. Another SEC team beats up on another Sunbelt team. Bama big.
4. Lavaca at Corning. Corning.
5. LSU at Ole Miss. Even if Ole Miss was good (by their standards), they wouldn’t beat LSU. This year Ole Miss in bad (by anyone’s standards). LSU in a laugher.
6. Jessieville at Earle. My winner’s name is Earle.
7. Kentucky at Georgia. Kentucky could give the Bulldogs fits, but Georgia appears to be on a roll. Dawgs by seven.
8. Strong at Marked Tree. MT escaped last week, thanks to a late touchdown. I’m taking Strong.
9. Duke at Notre Dame. Even Notre Dame should be able to beat Duke in football.
10. Dumas at Newport. I have no idea why, but I’m picking Dumas in an upset.
11. Vanderbilt at Tennessee. The Volunteers will have to work a little harder this week, but they’ll beat Vandy.
12. Pocahontas at Ozark. Ozark beats Pokey.
13. Northwestern at Illinois. Northwestern in an upset.
14. Dardanelle at Highland. Highland wins and moves on.
15. Oklahoma at Texas Tech. The Sooners win a high-scoring game.
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I have always been interested in words and phrases. We have a lot of peculiar phrases in our language and sometimes I wonder how they came about. Phrases often were derived from a specific use. One of these phrases has come my way lately — close but no cigar.
I never really thought about what the words meant but generally accepted that the phrase meant one hadn’t actually hit the nail on the head. That’s one cliché for another.
After a little investigation I found that the phrase originated in the 1930s as carnival lingo to tell a patron who had fallen just short of winning the prize of a cigar that he was a loser.
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