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College Football Week 4 Picks: Hoping For A Slugfest In Soldier Field

College football gambling is a fickle beast. As soon as you feel like you have a grasp on things, everything flips. Unfortunately for us, Week 3 went the wrong way to send us back to the drawing board after seemingly no one could get to the finish line under the total. That’s bad for business in this space where Unders are king, but we’re not wavering because, friends, Fall is here.

Yes, the air has gotten a bit more crisp this week around the country and as temperatures drop, winds are picking up. That’s just how we like it. This week, we’re looking at some big games, rivalry spots, and a couple flat out weather-related plays in hopes of clawing back to the right side of .500. First, as always, we take a look at last week and the season as a whole.

Last Week: 1-4
2021 Season: 7-8

Onward and upward. Come get these winners (lines via Caesars Sportsbook).

Notre Dame (+6.5) vs. Wisconsin (Saturday, 12:00 p.m. ET)

We go to Soldier Field in Chicago for a neutral site showdown this week where the world is expecting a slugfest (the total is a brisk 45) and in a game between two good teams that lean on defense, I’m more than happy to take the underdog catching nearly a touchdown in this spot. I think this is a field goal game on either side, as I don’t have much confidence in either passing attack and just find it hard to see what separates these two squads by much more than that.

SMU (+9.5) at TCU (Saturday, 12:00 p.m. ET)

Rivalry game underdog. That’s the principle here as we go to the Iron Skillet Game, which isn’t a high profile rivalry game, but one that often delivers some drama and some fun. SMU had a wild ride last week, winning on a Hail Mary, and I wouldn’t be surprised if they’re involved in late drama again here. This is just too much candy to leave on the table in a rivalry spot.

San Jose State at Western Michigan UNDER 62 (Saturday, 2:00 p.m. ET)

It’s gonna be windy across the state of Michigan on Saturday, so any of your directional Michigan schools provide a comfortable spot to take an Under. In this space, I’ll be heading to Kalamazoo for an interesting non-conference matchup between the Broncos and Spartans. San Jose State prefers to slow things down and grind it out, and I think this total is a touch high considering weather and that Western’s game with Pitt (which has been a big Over team so far) is inflating this number a tad.

Colorado State at Iowa UNDER 44 (Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET)

Iowa’s defense is filthy. The main concern here is that the Hawkeyes might put points up with their defense, but I have no concerns about the Rams scoring too much in this one and, as we’ve seen this season, Iowa is more than happy to shorten a game and just sit on an opponent on their way to a win.

Kansas (+16) at Duke (Saturday, 4:00 p.m. ET)

I lost last week betting against Duke, but I am forced to go back to the well this week because we cannot allow this Duke team to be more than a two-touchdown favorite. Yes, it’s hideous to have Kansas. They are really bad, but this isn’t about the Jayhawks. I don’t think Duke is as good as the score last week indicated, as they jumped on Northwestern early and then were just able to hold on late. We’re playing the number and the Blue Devils and just hoping Kansas finds a way to keep this one close.

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‘Imeach Biden’: Noted Brainiac Rootin’ Tootin’ Lauren Boebert Somehow Misspelled ‘Impeach’ In Her Loopy Call To Impeach Joe Biden

Living up to her nickname of “Sarah Palin 2.0,” rootin’ tootin’ Colorado Congresswoman Lauren Boebert somehow managed to misspell the word “impeach” in a new press release announcing that she’s introducing articles of impeachment against President Joe Biden. Sent out Friday afternoon, the release includes a litany of wild right-wing accusations against the president, but more glaringly, it arrived with a logo that reads “IMEACH BIDEN.” Apparently proof-reading isn’t a conservative value.

You can see a screenshot of the misspelled logo below:

After realizing the mistake, Boebert’s team attempted to send out a correction, but by then, the damage was already done as the misspelled logo bounced around social media. As Kayleigh McEnany can recently attest to, screenshots last forever. As for the chances of Boebert’s call for impeachment being anything more than tossing red meat to her supporters, she accuses Biden of arming terrorists and blames Kamala Harris for getting the 13 servicemen in Afghanistan killed by not invoking the 25th amendment sooner. So yeah, don’t except much movement there.

This latest screw-up for Boebert arrives on the heels of her admission that she used campaign funds to pay her rent and utility bills, which is a major violation, and now has the gun-toting congresswoman facing even more scrutiny from the Federal Election Commission. Boebert was already under the FEC microscope for reimbursing herself for $22,000 worth of mileage and neglecting to report her husband’s $478,000 income as a consultant to an energy firm. In her defense, she’s still learning how the branches of government work. Congresswomaning is hard.

(Via southpaw on Twitter)

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George R.R. Martin Is Promising A Whole Lot Of Dragons In ‘Game Of Thrones’ Prequel Series ‘House Of The Dragon’

While making a recent podcast appearance, Game of Thrones creator George R.R. Martin shared some new details about the upcoming HBO spinoff House of the Dragon, which the author reveals will live up to its title. Martin stopped by The Stuff Dreams Are Made Of podcast, which is actually hosted by Ryan Condal, the showrunner of the prequel series that will focus on the Targaryen civil war that ravaged Westeros and set the stage for the events of the original Game of Thrones series.

In the last six minutes of the in-depth podcast, Martin fielded a question about what he’s most excited about when it comes to House of the Dragon, and surprise, it’s the dragons. According to the author, there’s going to be a lot of them. Via Winter is Coming:

I’ve always thought this was a cool story, it’s one I like, so I’m looking forward to seeing it come alive onscreen. And of course I’m looking forward to the dragons, obviously I love the dragons. And we had three of them in Game of Thrones, but now we have like 17 of them. And hopefully they’ll each have their own personalities, they’ll be instantly recognizable when you see them, the colors and all of that, cause the dragons do have personalities in the books, and it’ll be great to see that come alive, and the dragonriders. That’s all pretty cool.

In addition to Martin’s revelation that the prequel will outpace the original series in sweet dragon content, HBO has announced the addition of seven new cast members:

House of the Dragon is set to premiere on HBO in 2022.

(Via The Stuff Dreams Are Made Of)

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St. Vincent, King Princess, And Others Cover The Velvet Underground On A Just-Released Tribute Album

A couple months ago, I’ll Be Your Mirror: A Tribute To The Velvet Underground And Nico was announced. The project is precisely what the title indicates it is: a tribute album, with covers of every song from the band’s debut record. Since the project was announced, a lot of highlights from it have been shared: Kurt Vile’s cover of “Run Run Run,” Matt Berninger’s rendition of “I’m Waiting For The Man,” Courtney Barnett’s take on “I’ll Be Your Mirror,” and Iggy Pop and Matt Sweeney’s version of “European Son.”

Today, the album is out, meaning that some of the other standout cuts are now available. Among them are St. Vincent and Thomas Bartlett’s version of “All Tomorrow’s Parties,” Michael Stipe’s cover of “Sunday Morning,” King Princess’ rendition of “There She Goes Again,” and Fontaines DC doing “The Black Angel’s Death Song.”

When the album was announced, Vile said of it, “I literally covered ‘Run Run Run’ when I was a kid. In my late teens with my band at the time. So it was pretty cosmic, let’s say. There is a direct connection to certain indie bands and beyond w/ the Velvets. That’s why the Velvets are a classic. You know it can have doo-wop in there and things like that, but it can also have this jagged noisy thing, and it immediately let me feel like I could do anything. The possibilities are endless. You’re completely free. Unapologetic and effortless.”

Stream the full album above.

I’ll Be Your Mirror: A Tribute To The Velvet Underground And Nico is out now via Verve Records. Get it here.

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Report: The Warriors Agreed To Deals With Avery Bradley And Langston Galloway

The Golden State Warriors agreed to a pair of contracts with an eye on rounding out the back end of their roster. According to Anthony Slater and Shams Charania of The Athletic, the team came to terms on a training camp deal with veteran guard Langston Galloway.

The pair also reported that another veteran perimeter player, Avery Bradley, will get the chance to compete for the final spot on the team’s roster ahead of the 2021-22 season.

One of the more prominent names that has been around the Warriors in recent days is Isaiah Thomas, whose quest to land with a new NBA team led to him having a cup of coffee with the team in the lead-up to training camp. Slater reported that the two sides will not move forward together, although Thomas did perform well in his opportunity with the team.

Galloway plied his trade for the Phoenix Suns last season, averaging 4.8 points per game while connecting on 42.4 percent of his threes. He appeared in two games during the team’s run to the NBA Finals. Bradley, meanwhile, had stints with the Miami Heat and Houston Rockets last year, as he was part of the trade that saw Miami acquire Victor Oladipo and averaged 6.4 points per game between his two stops. Like Thomas, he worked out with the Warriors earlier this week.

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The Plot Of ‘Dear Evan Hansen’ Recreated Using Only Quotes From Reviews

It’s hard to define exactly what makes a movie a great candidate for Plot Recreated With Reviews, the feature in which I attempt to piece together an entire movie using only expository quotes from movie reviews. Like the Supreme Court said of porn, I can’t explain exactly what it is, but I know it when I see it. All I know is that when I hear the phrase “problematic musical,” I start getting an itchy command-C finger.

Which brings us to Dear Evan Hansen, a much-ridiculed film adaptation of an award-winning musical, in which 27-year-old Ben Platt reprises his Tony-winning stage role in the lead (his father, perhaps not coincidentally, was a producer on the movie). Indeed, “actor too old” seems to be the main bullet point in the let’s-all-dunk-on-this-movie memo that apparently went out to Twitter a few weeks ago. But honestly, I’ve seen actors that old play high school characters before, and I’d almost always prefer competent actors looking slightly too old to convincing young people who can’t act. And yet, the movie does seem plainly dunkable, in a fairly self-evident kind of way.

In reading all these reviews, I think Tribune News Service critic Katie Walsh put her finger on it when she wrote that Evan Hansen was, “one of the most bizarre cinematic portrayals of a teenager, due to all the effort to make Platt, a certifiable hunk, look and seem like a nerdy social outcast with crippling anxiety.”

How do you make an obviously hot guy into a nerdy outcast? Give him a bad wig and some ugly shirts, obviously. Remember when Bradley Cooper played The Elephant Man on stage by simply making a weird face the whole time? God I loved that.

Anyway, I’ve introduced it enough, let’s recreate that plot!


Ben Platt, who also starred in the stage version, reprises his role as Evan Hansen; at 27, he is three years older than Drew Barrymore was when she played an undercover high school student in “Never Been Kissed.” –Detroit News

Evan is a deeply shy, anxiety-ridden loner –Detroit News

Over the summer he fell out of a tree and broke his arm. –SF Chronicle/Fort Worth Report

Clunky flashbacks illustrate this. –Philadelphia Gay News

“What, are you five?” is the running joke. -Fort Worth Report

A sweaty-palmed mess, his darting eyes and coiled body language repel other students as he sings lustily about feeling unseen. –NY Times

He confides only in Jared, whom Evan considers a friend, though Jared quickly corrects him: “family friend.” –AZ Central

On the first day of his senior year Evan writes himself a letter as a pep talk, an assignment from his therapist. -Detroit News

“Dear Evan Hansen,” it begins, and it includes all sorts of affirmations about having a good day by just being normal and fitting in that he knows, deep down, he won’t be able to achieve. -Detroit News

“I wish that anything I said mattered to anyone,” Evan grumbles in his halting manner. –CNN


Thanks to a backup at the library’s printer (hate when that happens!), the letter winds up in the hands of Connor Murphy (Colton Ryan), a troubled classmate of Evan’s. -Detroit News

Connor zeroes in on Evan, screaming at him, scrawling his name on the cast of his broken arm, and snatching his letter. –Tribune News Service

Evan is in an agony of expectation that the bully will post the letter on social media. Instead, the boy kills himself. -San Francisco Chronicle

When the letter is found by Connor’s parents (played by Amy Adams and Danny Pino), they treat it as a suicide note addressed to Evan, who they assume, due to its intro, was their son’s only friend. -Detroit News

They lavish him with the attention he never gets at home, and their mood lightens considerably each time Evan shares more heartwarming made-up stories about their son, who in reality was not at all lovable. –National Review

Evan goes along, then begins building on the lie… CNN

…going so far as to enlist an acquaintance to help fabricate an email exchange between Connor and himself. -NY Times

The deception — and self-deception — works for a while, helping those grieving while transforming Evan from a friendless outcast into an object of sympathy at first, and eventually lifting his status. -CNN


Complicating the issue is Evan’s borderline-stalker crush on Connor’s sister, Zoe (Kaitlyn Dever, who has been playing high school-age roles since 2013’s “The Spectacular Now”). If this ruse gets him a little closer to her, what’s the harm? -Detroit News

Evan gets close to Zoe by spinning stories about how much her brother idolized her, even as she describes her brother as a monster whose constant emotional abuse made her life a living hell. –AV Club

It all leads to a moment where Evan goes viral worldwide, only for the falsehoods to karmically fall back on him. –USA Today


Evan breaks into song as a means of communicating his feelings; the songs, by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, are always earnest, and intended to gain the sympathy of the audience. -Detroit News

The person standing next to Evan when he’s belting out a show tune sometimes notices and sometimes doesn’t. –Minneapolis Star Tribune

During songs, the other actors must pick an expression to plaster on their faces for long periods, like people forced into uncomfortable close-ups just before “The Young and the Restless” cuts to commercials. -Minneapolis Star Tribune

Three of the women sing as though they have Irish accents. -SF Chronicle


Alana (Amandla Stenberg), a hard-charging overachiever with her own secrets, creates The Connor Project, a fundraising arm to spiff up the orchard where Evan and Connor supposedly hung out together. -AZ Central

She and Evan bond over the list of the nerve-smoothing medications they’re on -National Review

…in a scene where she tries to play the “we are a lot alike card.” -FortWorthReport

Evan is eventually roped into a charitable tribute to Connor that becomes his triumph as well as his undoing, while his mother (Julianne Moore) is off at work and is mostly in the dark and misses the whole thing where her son goes insanely viral because of a friendship he never had. -Detroit News


At the heart of the film is Platt’s annoyingly tic-laden performance, which never comes off as authentic or believable. -Detroit News

His trying to seem young is so sweatily effortful. -Tribune News Service

…exaggerated and precious, so that every time his mouth quivers before he says something, you want to tell him to get a grip and spit it out. -SF Chronicle

Hunched, twitchy, wide-eyed… -AV Club

…too much Viola Davis-level snot-crying -Minneapolis Star Tribune

…awkward postures and constantly darting eyes… -Tribune News Service

Some of the knock-kneed stammering insecurity that you might naturally accept in a 17-year-old looks positively weird in a grown man. -SF Chronicle

He looks embalmed, or at least like a mannequin. -AZ Central


Overly manipulative, creepy, saccharine -Detroit News

Treacly and manipulative -NY Times

insufferably twee -SF Chronicle

well meaning -USA Today

has its heart in the right place and is a film with good intentions –Bowling Green Daily News

pretty much an unmitigated disaster. –The Atlantic


It’s a strangely unconvincing attempt at an inspirational story. -Detroit News

Aw, man, that’s too bad. The story about leveraging fake grief for clout and popularity actually sounds kind of good. But wait, didn’t Bobcat Goldthwait already make that movie? Maybe he should do a remake where he plays the high school kid. I’d watch that.

Vince Mancini is on Twitter. You can access his archive of reviews here.

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Marvel Is Now Suing To Avoid Losing Rights To Spider-Man, Iron Man, And Other Iconic Characters Due To Copyright Termination

Disney is no stranger to lawsuits, but the latest series of entanglements the company is entering into could cost the Mouse some serious money if they lose. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Disney’s Marvel unit has officially filed several lawsuits today that will ultimately decide who officially owns some of the Marvel universe’s biggest players such as Iron Man, Spider-Man, Dr. Strange, Ant-Man, Hawkeye, Black Widow, Falcon, and more.

The complaints, according to The Hollywood Reporter, come against the heirs of some of the biggest names in the comic books industry such as Stan Lee, Steve Ditko, and Gene Colan. The suits filed against these families seek to establish that several Marvel characters are ineligible for copyright termination as they are works made for hire. However, if Marvel’s justification for their ownership of the characters doesn’t hold up in court, the studio (and subsequently parent company Disney) will have to share ownership of these characters, potentially costing the company billions over time.

The lawsuits come shortly after the administrator of Ditko’s estate filed a notice of termination on Spider-Man following the character’s 50th anniversary. You see, according to copyright law, authors — or their heirs — are entitled to reclaim rights once granted to publishers after waiting a statutory set period of time, in this case that time being 50 years. If the termination notice goes through and Marvel’s lawsuits don’t intervene, Marvel will ultimately lose the rights to Spider-Man in June 2023.

To add even more pressure to Disney, Ditko’s estate isn’t the only one sending termination notices and taking action. This past May, Larry Lieber — Marvel legend Stan Lee’s brother — filed termination notices and the heir to Black Widow creator Don Rico has lawyered up as well. Interestingly enough, these heirs are largely being represented by Marc Toberoff, the same lawyer who fought DC Comics to give the rights to Superman back to his creators Jerry Siegel and Joe Schuster. Ultimately, Toberoff lost that case to DC’s lawyer Dan Petrocelli at O’Melveny — the very same lawyer now representing Marvel in what is sure to be an interesting time for the company and comic book enthusiasts.

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Michael C. Hall Has Ominously Revealed How He Found ‘Dexter’ Again After All These Years

Dexter: New Blood is nearly upon us (well, less than two months away), and the show’s new trailer confirmed a lot. Not only did we get a peek at Debra, but Dexter’s born-in-blood son, Harrison, somehow tracks down his dad after a decade, despite Dexter picking up an alias and an upstate New York location, presumably where he thought he could have a nice “retirement” from serial killing. Debra will hang in the background, presumably speaking to our antihero much like Dexter’s dad, Harry, did all those years ago. I hope she lets us all know how mad she is to be dumped into the ocean during a damn hurricane, but for the most part, all eyes will be on Dexter as he struggles to keep his sh*t together at the sight of blood.

On that note, star Michael C. Hall sat down for a little “Becoming Dexter” video for Showtime. In doing so, he revealed that it was surprisingly easy to pick up the knife again, at least, metaphorically. Because it sounds like Dexter Morgan never left really left him. While referencing how the trailer shows Dexter goofing off with locals and handily embedding himself into the fold with a nice-guy visage (“cultivated affability” is how he described things), Hall revealed how smooth the process felt to glide back into his character’s shoes.

“It’s like discovering this person that you thought you put away, he’s been there all along,” Hall declared in the video. “You just turn the cameras back on.” He added that it was “really pretty easy to give over” to Dexter’s “really formidable dark side.” Oh boy.

Showtime’s Dexter: New Blood premieres on November 7.

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Pat Sajak Has Admitted He’s ‘Closer To The End’ Of His Time Hosting ‘Wheel Of Fortune’

Wheel of Fortune became a family business this season when Pat Sajak’s daughter, Maggie, joined the show in a variety of social media roles. But while Maggie isn’t officially slated to replace her father hosting the show, his time on the show is apparently “closer” to the end than many expected.

Sajak and Vanna White have helmed the legendary syndicated game show for decades now, and they’re under contract for at least two more seasons at the Wheel. But in a recent interview Sajak admitted that retirement is on the horizon in the coming years. Speaking to Entertainment Tonight before the second season of Celebrity Wheel of Fortune debuts later this fall, the two agreed that they’re in the final stages of their time on the show:

“We’re certainly closer to the end than the beginning,” Sajak, 74, candidly shared. “I’d like to leave before people tune in and look at me and say, ‘Ooh, what happened to him?’”

“I wouldn’t bet on seeing us in, like, 10 years, I would say,” Sajak added, before asking White, “Is that fair [to say]?”

“Probably, yes,” White, 64, concurred with a smile.

The show is making some other changes this year, including letting contestants make the show’s final spin instead of Sajak taking the turn for himself. But despite admitting there’s an endgame for Sajak and White on Wheel, don’t expect any big moves at the podium anytime soon. Sajak has publicly talked about retirement in the past, but it sounds more like he’s simply admitting an obvious fact rather than making plans to leave. At least until his contract is up in 2024.

[via Entertainment Tonight]

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Trae Young’s First Signature Sneaker Through Adidas Will Come In Five Colorways

Last year, adidas announced that Trae Young would become the latest basketball player under its umbrella to receive a signature sneaker. While details have trickled out in the months since — with Young even debuting one colorway of the Trae Young 1s — adidas revealed on Friday that the Atlanta Hawks’ star’s full line of sneakers and apparel will drop on Oct. 1, with his sneakers receiving five different colorways.

The main look on the sneakers is the Trae Young 1 ICEE, which the All-Star guard had worn in the past and showed off on the cover of SLAM Kicks recently. Two of the other colorways are the ICEE Cotton Candy and the Peachtree, while the remaining pair are a collaboration with Jermaine Dupri’s record label, the SO SO DEF and the SO SO DEF ATL.

Beyond the sneakers, adidas will have a line of apparel dropping to celebrate the big milestone in Young’s career.


Young and the Hawks enter this season with high expectations following last year’s surprising run to the Eastern Conference Finals. That run was sparked by Young taking his game to a new level, as he was the driving force of the team’s offense all year long. Young averaged 25.3 points and 9.4 assists per game last season.