This is my third version of making the Best Pic field prediction. My first two lists (see below) are at times laughable, in retrospect. Amelia get a nomination? Ha! Of course, at the time I could only imagine the Oscar bait offered up by the pairing of Hilary Swank and Mira Nair. Critically panned, including by the Flyer's own Hannah Sayle.
And Nine? Oh, brother. Not many folks had a good thing to say about that — Chris Herrington certainly didn't think it was worth the trip.
So, with the hindsight of actually seeing some of these films, and with an education derived from Oscar-indicating honors, such as from the Producers Guild (why do producers need a guild? They run the world!) and the Golden Globes, here's my current guess on the Best Picture 10. With an * if it's new to my guess list.
Oscars X 3.0:
Knowledge Bowl, Match 8, Southern Baptist Educational Center (SBEC) Trojans vs. Covington Chargers. Aired December 19th, 2009.
Round One: SBEC 110, Covington 50
Round Two: SBEC 90, Covington 60
Round Three (Lightning Round): SBEC 95, Covington 10
Final: SBEC 295, Covington 120
The Game: The match got off to a bumpy start, as host Jim Jaggers grabbed the Lightning Round questions instead of the toss-up batch. Whoops. The teams then settled in as it began proper, the contest remained within striking distance until the Lightning Round proper, when SBEC went great guns on the buzzers.
Stat of the Week: SBEC rang in early 10 times in the match — and only missed one. Dynamite.
I was stuck out in East Memphis when I got the call, but I immediately began putting my thoughts together about what I would write about Poppa Willie, who I met more than a decade ago, when, as an emissary of Rooster Blues, I walked through the door at Royal Recording Studio.
From that first moment, he was the epitome of cool.
I was with Ike Turner, who was cutting Here & Now at Royal, and I got to listen firsthand as the two pioneers traded insults, shared war stories, and, finally, rolled up their sleeves and began work on the album.
Ever since, I knew I could walk into Royal any time and be welcomed by Poppa Willie, who would sit behind his desk, his shoes off and his feet propped up, and hold court as a revolving cast, ranging from Solomon Burke and Al Green to obscure chitlin' circuit dee-jays and up-and-coming rappers, stopped by.
Knowledge Bowl, Match 7, Raleigh-Egypt Pharaohs vs. Evangelical Christian School Eagles. Aired December 12th, 2009.
Round One: Raleigh-Egypt 10, ECS 170
Round Two: Raleigh-Egypt 20, ECS 160
Round Three (Lightning Round): Raleigh-Egypt 10, ECS 20
Total: Raleigh-Egypt 40, ECS 350
The Game: This was a one-side affair. ECS sewed it up early by building a big lead and kind of forcing Raleigh-Egypt to capitulate while there was still plenty of game left. Blow outs are much more common than close matches. With the TV set lights on you, it's hard not to feel that mounting pressure every time your opponent buzzes in. To ECS' credit, they didn't take their foot off the gas.