After a promising start to my weekly “pick ‘em” college football season, I failed to break the bank last week. In fact, the bank broke me!
Havana Capital City Bank teller Keelin Smith did me in, hitting eight of 10 to my pocket-emptying five of 10 pickings. One of Keelin’s misses was the Florida State loss. The former Seminole player did at least gain a little solace with his win over me.
Now it’s times to crank up the ‘ol noggin and try to get back on a winning road. That may be anything but easy, as my next opponent knows a lot about “cranking up” and “the road.”
Alan Blackburn is a service advisor with Legacy Toyota in Tallahassee, a company he’s been with for 16 years. In all, Alan has been in the automobile business for 28 years, so, yes, he knows something about cars.
I first knew Alan when he was a young lad in Quincy, where he, his brother Bobby and his sister Debbie participated in Quincy Recreation Department programs. They were brought to the events by their mom and dad, David and Delores, who were perfect recreation department parents – the kind who always wanted to support the programs and the kids, doing anything possible to help.
In fact, David coached many seasons in both the football and baseball programs and was always a positive influence on the kids. Alan, Bobby and Debbie lost their mom quite a while back, then lost father, David, about two months ago. But they didn’t lose memories of two fine people. By the way, after recreation ball, Alan went on to letter three years in high school football, one year at Crestview, where the family lived during a job move, and two years at Munroe after the family transferred back home.
Alan is married to the former DeeDee Melvin, a Gadsden County lass, and they have a daughter, Savannah, and a son, Blake.
The couple has a so-called “mixed marriage” – DeeDee is a Gator fan, while Alan loves his Seminoles.
Alan starts his picks this way:
• Florida A&M over Savannah State – Rattlers are getting it together.
• Florida State over Northern Illinois – Hoping Seminoles get some things right this week.
• Tennessee over Florida – Vols at home in this rivalry.
• Boston College over Purdue – “BC” is an ACC team.
• Virginia over Louisville – Cavs’ team more experienced.
• Alabama over Texas A&M – Pure discipline.
• South Carolina over Vanderbilt – On a hunch.
• Texas Christian over Texas – Horned Frogs building quite a program.
• Kentucky over Mississippi State – Stoops is doing well.
• Stanford over Oregon – Ducks in a rebuilding mode.
And I hope I’m in a better mode than last week…
• Florida A&M over Savannah State – Georgia team won’t be able to shake these “rattles.”
• Florida State over Northern Illinois – Noles in need of a real ‘tune up’.
• Florida over Tennessee – Gators get their accelerator going.
• Boston College over Purdue – Eagles can get their motor running.
• Virginia over Louisville – Cavs put the brakes on Cardinals.
• Alabama over Texas A&M – Tide team is really housed in a garage.
• Vanderbilt over South Carolina – Commodores squeak this one out.
• Texas Christian over Texas – Frogs don’t play in a slow down zone.
• Mississippi State over Kentucky – Bulldogs running on all cylinders.
• Stanford over Oregon – Cardinals only PAC 12 team with any hope of parking in a Final Four space.
And I would just like to get to park anywhere as Alan and I differ THREE times!
By Joe Ferolito