Welcome back to the Forecast, fans.
I’m back in the leadoff spot this week, and apologize for the slight delay.
The EBAL opens play this week, which means we have big games happening left and right. But before I get to my picks, I have the honor of announcing yet another twist in the ongoing competition between Bill and myself. ("Survivor" has nothing on the surprises popping up in the Forecast). After Bill and I picked all but one game the same last week, it got worse this week. When we both blindly submitted our picks this week, we had picked the same winners with the same values. Creeeepy.
So, to keep things interesting and allow each other to have at least one point in play each week, we decided to add a sixth prediction. In addition to our five agreed upon games, we will each forecast a one-point "swing game" which we will each reveal at the bottom of our Forecast post. Whoever posts second must choose a different swing game.
And on with the picks…
(5) Foothill over San Ramon Valley: Plain and simple, this game boils down to defens and Foothill has the best one in the EBAL. End of discussion. Consider the schedule the Falcons have played to this point: Stagg-Stockton, Berkeley and Skyline. And to think they’ve allowed just 10 points in the three games. San Ramon Valley has performed well so far, but it hasn’t faced a defense this good. In the words of Pvt. Hudson, "Game over, man. Game over."
(4) Clayton Valley over Pittsburg: Through the first three weeks, the inconsistent Eagles look as though they are going to be one frustrating team to put your finger on. However, the team responded with a big win after its last loss. I’m betting on that again.
(3) Richmond over Hercules: I admit it. I’ve caught Oilers fever.
(2) Alhambra over College Park: Here’s one thing you can bet on — this will not be a defensive struggle. In the Battle of the Brandons (Rutley and Fragger) points will be scored, lots of points. College Park is due for a letdown after its miracle win at Acalanes last week. Just a word to the wise for the Bulldogs: Beware of blocked field goals.
(1) California over Monte Vista: Yep, I’m on the Grizzlies bandwagon. Bill and I both weighted this game at one point for a reason — it’s the freakin’ EBAL. Anything can happen and often does. Monte Vista hasn’t seen an offense this good since it played San Ramon Valley last December. And the Mustangs won that game 26-10. Hmmmm…
SWING GAME — Acalanes over Campolindo: It’s a rivalry game and anything can happen. But the Cougars are banged up, and the Dons are ticked off! I’ll be shocked if Acalanes doesn’t roll.