I have a confession to make. I have a little bit of a man crush. I'm only embarrassed to admit it because I don't think I've ever had a man crush on such a goofy looking guy. Sure, when Butler University returned to its second straight NCAA championship game as a surprise mid-major I shouted from the highest...couch top...that I heart Brad Stevens. But Brad Stevens was geek sheek before geeks knew there was a way out. In fact, Brad is so cool that when Kevin Garnett, Dwayne Wade, and the rest of the NBA started wearing fake glasses - he got contacts. And a job with the Celtics.
"What? Of course these are prescription. B-ball is hard on the eyes."
And yes, when the Giants won the 2010 World Series behind strong pitching, the late-season journeymen pick-ups, and the powerful forearms of Pat Burrell, I admit I had some fantasies where Pat and I were partners...in a detective agency in the 1950's...and solved all sorts of crazy shananigans together. In fact, they became so real, that I sometimes imagined he was in black and white during his at bats because it just made more sense to me.
"Dear Vinny, The feeling's mutual. Heart, Pat the Bat."
But this crush has been evolving over the past few years, partly out of respect for his on-field talent, but also in large part by the way he handles himself off the field. Last night, my 'hearting" him was solidified by his post-game press conference after the Sunday Night Football game. In case you haven't already figured it out...
Ewwww. Gross. No. Not Andrew Luck. Even at my age looks still matter a little bit.
Duh, it's Peyton Manning. Even in defeat and out of scripted commercials, this guy can do no wrong. Post-game, after praising the Colts and admitting the build-up to the game was "a little" emotionally exhausting he said, "I hope we get to see them again this year because that'll mean we're in the playoffs," then catching himself added, "We still have a long way to go before that, but the Colts look like they're headed there for sure." C'mon. "We still have a long way to go." Yeah, like four more wins as double digit favorites - starting with Washington at home next week. What a class act. I'll bet even if he weren't famous he would have landed a super hot Mrs. Aww Shucks Golly. Good job on life, Peyton. Good job on life.
As for the rest of Sunday, I've never been so excited by the possibility of going 7-8 ATS tonight when the New York Giants (-3.5) trounce the visiting Minnesota Vikings. I'm also excited that our Friday Five finally went over .500. Unfortunately the Bears lost their starting QB in the first half and the Texans defense finally showed up, so we were left with a 3-2 ATS record, but we'll take it as a sign of good things to come.
If you're a TSZ Insider, look for an e-mail detailing the Friday Five Contest beginning Week 9. I'll send it out this week with the contest rundown. It will be your opportunity to show off your handicapping skills to the world. Or the few hundred people a day to stop by The Spread Zone.
Enjoy the Monday Night Football like only gamblers can, my friends. And seriously - tonight will be a game that only gamblers can.
Vinny and Marco