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Patrick Goldstein and James Rainey
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'The Blind Side's' Hancock picks winners

November 10, 2009 |  1:12 pm

Last Friday I asked "The Blind Side" writer-director John Lee Hancock to put on his prognosticator's cap and pick the outcome of some of the weekend's top college football games. After all, Hancock comes from Texas, the cradle of college football, where his brothers and dad all played ball. So if anyone's an expert, it should be him.

Johnleehancock So how did he do? I was going to joke that he shouldn't give up his day job, but to be fair Hancock did about as well as any professional handicapper, picking five winners against four losses. For my money, his best pick was to go with lowly Vanderbilt against the top-ranked Florida Gators. Even though Vandy was a 32.5-point underdog, it hardly seemed like enough points to make up for Florida's powerhouse offense. But Vanderbilt managed to hold Florida to 27 points and beat the spread. Hancock also picked his alma mater, Baylor, to beat the spread against heavily favored Missouri. In fact, they won the game, making Hancock a winner too.

In the loss column, Hancock took USC but gave 11.5 points, which made him a loser, since USC beat Arizona State by only five points. And worst of all, he picked Texas A&M to cover the spread against Colorado, even though as a Baylor alumnus he has little love for the Farmers. It turned out that Colorado beat Texas A&M, 35-34, thanks to a one-handed catch by wide receiver Patrick Devenny in the waning moments of the fourth quarter, giving Colorado the victory and making Hancock a loser.

Overall, I'd still say it was a pretty solid performance. Hancock's film opens this weekend Nov. 20th, so I suspect he's hoping for even better numbers for "The Blind Side" at the box office, Hollywood's equivalent of football's weekly betting game. 

Photo: John Lee Hancock. Credit: Al Seib/Los Angeles Times.