Greetings! You’ll forgive us if this post is a bit disjointed, as we’re trying to keep an eye or two on the compelling Men’s Final at Wimbledon. Over on this side of the Atlantic, where a great men’s tennis player has gone the way of dinosaurs and reasoned political discourse, we’re talking about something far more interesting (at least to yours truly), Pac-12 football win totals!
We took our initial hack at the early season total odds a couple months ago, and will probably set things a little more in stone shortly before the season starts. Now some national outlets are jumping on the season total train. This week, it was the fine folks at College Football News and the Cover 3 podcast.
CFN takes a purely figures-driven look at projected win totals, as it threw a bunch of different figures (its own projection, three different sportsbook numbers, and last season’s win total), punched everything into a gonkulator (technical term), and spit out the number of...6.63! I don’t know how you win 6.63 games but my History major brain tells me that I can round that up to seven. CFN doesn’t say whether the Underpants Gnomes were involved, but I’ll take a 7-5 season if you offered it to me.
UPDATE: The young Spaniard Carlos Alcaraz has defeated Novak Djokovic to win his first Wimbledon title! Though Alcaraz was the top seed, he was a decided underdog, as Novak was -190 to win at Caesar’s.
The gang at Cover 3 sees WSU much like we do, decidedly in the middle of the middle group of conference teams. These folks use the Caesar’s book, which sets WSU’s win total at an even six. (BOOOOOOOOOOO!)
The consensus has the Washington State Cougars toeing that 6-6 line, though resident dunce cap-wearer Danny Kanell is rather bullish on the Cougs hitting at least seven wins. Take that for what it’s worth! The saddest piece of WSU analysis is the part where Bud Elliott talks about how Miami is raving about Frederick Mauigoa, calling him their best linebacker. Dammit.
If you’re interested in the WSU piece only, it begins around the 37:00 mark of the embedded video.
Despite the fact that resident buffoon Elon Musk is trying to drive a stake into Twitter, there are still some good nuggets to be found. One which I enjoyed was this, from College Football Nerds, which demonstrates the fact that college football playoff expansion will almost certainly not lead to more parity within the sport, just like expansion from the BCS to the CFP did not.
I’ve long been shouting into the darkness about this, and will never come off my stance that the CFP should never expand past six. If you truly want more teams to have access to the title game, the last thing you should want is for the underdog types being forced to win more games to get there. Will I be watching all the playoff games? Of course! College football is my favorite sport, voluminous warts and all. I just wish the playoff expansionists would all admit that the college football playoff is a television show, designed to entertain everyone far more than to determine the best team.
One note - I believe the thread author meant “3-loss Pac-12 teams” and not “3-win.”
Many think college football playoff expansion increases parity. But the data suggests the opposite. @TomFornelli has been banging this drum and he's right.— College Football Nerds (@CFBNerds) July 11, 2023
In this we'll show you the data, the consequences, and at the end, share one good thing that expanded playoffs bring.
This Week in Parenting
Team Kendall returned from its two-week sojourn about the country on late Saturday evening, culminating a trip that went from Florida to Indiana to Washington and back. The final leg of the trip brought the first flights that actually ran on time. Hooray?
While we were hopelessly delayed in DFW enroute to Spokane, we had a good view of the ramp from the international terminal. After what felt like three days, we decided to play, “Guess where that wide-body jet is heading.” That’s how desperate things got, though I did nail the plane heading to Frankfurt. At one point, I noticed the 11 year-old taking a pic of a plan as it backed out, so I asked what he was doing. “Taking a picture for my Snap story.”
Yes, because I know what that is. (I do not, in fact, know what that is)
That was likely the last Snap story he’ll tell (photo?) for a while, as he decided to not check his pockets before jumping in my parents’ pool. In he went, along with the phone in his pocket. Oops. That’ll be it until Christmas! Thankfully it won’t cost us anything extra, since it only worked with wifi, and was a phone we’d bought in Germany a couple years ago.
The week was filled with the usual spoilery, particularly the gigantic ice cream pie that grandma made, as per usual. There was also an inaugural parents vs. kids wiffle ball matchup. Things were looking good for the old people after an inning, as we led 4-1. Here’s the part where I skip over everything else that happened, because it got ugly for the parents.
The next night was home run derby at the grandparents’ house. I won’t mention who won. OK HELL YES I WILL! THE OLD MAN WENT DEEP 16 TIMES TO DEFEAT NEPHEW TYSON BY THREE LONGBALLS ALL HAIL THE GREATEST ASSEMBLY STREET HOME RUN HITTER OF ALL TIME I AM NEVER GOING TO LET ANYONE FORGET IT!
The kiddos also found out that the parents and grandparents have been planning a Thanksgiving trip to Maui. So if you’re anywhere near Kihei during that week, you’d probably do well to steer clear. Well, unless you plan to hit up Maui Brewing Co. If that’s the case, let me know and we’ll meet for a beer or four.
We got back to the house at midnight Saturday, and the 11 year-old had a baseball tryout at 8:30 a.m. Sunday morning. I’m here to tell you that setting the alarm for 0730 on a Sunday stung me to my core, but such is life with kiddos. I dropped him off at 8:30, and took off on a jog after all the sign-in procedures, assuming things would be wrapped up shortly after I got back. After barely surviving 4.5 miles, I sat to watch for a bit. First it was outfield drills, and I assumed that would be it. Nope. Next it was infield drills. Surely they’re done now, right? Wrong. Another dad goes, “Finally they get to hit.”
So roughly an hour after I told Mrs. Kendall I thought it was over, I learned that the kids haven’t even hit yet. I asked the dad, “What the hell did they do for the first hour? Stare at each other?” Luckily, Mrs. Kendall was willing to swap out. Turns out the one-hour tryout lasted nearly four hours. Oh, and did I mention that the heat index was 95 degrees WHEN THE TRYOUT STARTED AT 9 A.M.???!!!
RFK Jr.’s Inside Job
How a conspiracy-spewing literal Kennedy posing as a populist outsider jolted the Democratic Party.
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