Dave’s Free Play, Thursday 11/26/15

  • November 26, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving to all, and here’s a cool story for everyone courtesy of Brian Bosworth.

The Boz did something outstanding last week, right before the start of the last Oklahoma home game for this season.

One of Bosworth’s teammates from the great 1985 Oklahoma team that won the national championship was Derrick Shepard. Shepard passed away from a heart attack back in 1999. Now his son, Sterling Shepard, is concluding his own terrific career with the Sooners.

It so happens that among Bosworth’s collection of memorabilia is a Sooners Illustrated magazine from that storied season, with a team photo on the cover. Bosworth brought his copy of the magazine to the 30th reunion dinner held in early October, and asked all his attending teammates to sign the cover with the intent of presenting it to Sterling at the right time.

That right time was last week, just before Derrick Shepard’s son would take the field for his final home game. It doesn’t even need to be stated that Sterlin’s reaction was something special.

Great gesture by The Boz, and a really nice story.

Happy Thanksgiving!

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My Wednesday is 3-1 with a late play in college basketball still to be decided. Gotta love that great Alaska Shootout if you’re a sports junkie craving some late night viewing. My only loser on the day was the hockey call on the Blues, which lost in OT. The NBA Hornets, along with UConn and Maryland were all good results.

We’re heading into December, and I’m going to keep the guaranteed special on the table for the remainder of the calendar year. For all the details on how my program works, along with costs and info on the guarantee, simply email me directly at cokin@cox.net.

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Tough luck on the Wednesday comp, as the Blues got nipped in overtime by the Penguins. Here’s a college basketball comp for the holiday.

527 GEORGIA TECH  VS.  528 ARKANSAS

Take: GEORGIA TECH -5.5

I can’t say what will happen with this Arkansas team once they get a little more experience. But for now the Razorbacks figure to be somewhat vulnerable. Mike Anderson is a Nolan Richardson disciple, and he likes to utilize that same frenetic style that Richardson made so popular years ago. But off last year’s highly successful 27-9 campaign, this year’s Arkansas entry is sorely lacking in experience and they’re a team I expect to suffer some growing pains, particularly early in the season.

Georgia Tech has a coach on the hot seat in Brian Gregory, and unless he’s oblivious to the rumors, Gregory knows it’s important to get out of the gate quickly and quite some of the critics. Mission accomplished through the first three games, as the Yellow Jackets started 3-0. But the last game was a setback as Georgia Tech was upset at home by East Tennessee State. This was not an awful performance by Tech, and it appears as though the dog just happened to play a really strong game. But it’s still a loss to a smaller conference outfit that is probably a borderline Top 200 team, and the Gregory buzz is once again underway.

I think Gregory needs a win here and I feel he has a matchup that’s favorable. One thing the Yellow Jackets are doing really well so far is taking care of the basketball. If they avoid turnovers against Arkansas, the team should get some very makable looks from close range.

Georgia Tech needs to avoid allowing this to turn into a track meet that results in long range missiles being fired at both ends of the court. If that happens, Arkansas probably wins the game and Gregory moves another step closer to the end of the plank. But I have some confidence that Georgia Tech can win the matchup duel thanks to their experience, and that being the case, I’ll take my chances laying the points in this game.