In a week filled with upsets that spoiled the pick sheets of even the most seasoned players, longtime Pinellas prep coach and parent Mark Hampton — going by Ankeny Hawk — avoided many of the landmines to get 17 of 20 picks correct and take the early lead in the HomeTeam Pick 'Em Challenge.
Hampton, one of the better players last season, managed to score with underdog picks Mitchell, Newsome, Sickles and Osceola on his way to 17, which tied him with Pay Attention. But the tiebreaker — the combined points scored in the Lakewood-Countryside and Armwood-Durant games — was all Hampton's as well.
The total points were 82, while Hampton predicted 80, and PA came in high at 94.
Here are some other notables from the week:
* Only two people out of 109 picked Sunlake's 17-6 upset of Pasco — Mama Robin, and Walter.
* Only nine people picked Newsome over Tampa Bay Tech — Hampton, Bryan Fischer, Gabriel Bauman, Bailey Adams, Aaron VanCleve, Eric Ventura, Annie, Robert Jordan and MWill12.
* Only one player nailed the tiebreaker — Justin Miller. Good job. Now, anout that 13 for 20 performance...
* Nine people tied for third with 16 out of 20, including new player Josh Wilson of FloridaHSFootball.com and 2012 playoff contestants Bryan Fischer and Derek LaRiviere, who is also our Hernando corrospondent.
* Tom Ketchum, the top returning player from last year when he missed out on the regular season title by one point, was 15 of 20, which tied such notables as Perspective, Peezy, RJ Vilayvong and the great Jarrod Smith.
* Times staffer Matt Baker got 14 out of 20, which is, um, embarrassing. But not as embarrassing as his dog, Reggie, did, with only nine correct, leaving him in last place.
* Don't give up, Bailey (10), FlyWitDaJplane (11), Tim Carter (11), Ampski (12), Lattimo (12), MoreRon (12) and Shannon Sebek (12), it will get better.
* Oh yeah, as for me, I got 15, but that includes a ridiculous upset attempt by taking Spoto. I deserve to be flogged for that pick. So consider that a gift as a I spend the rest of the season destroying the field. Yeah, you heard me.
Here are the results: