Heard it From Hoard: Column 37
New Year's Day not only marks the start of Big East play for the Bearcats. It's also your first opportunity to compete for great prizes - including a $1000 scholarship - at Struggleforthesteak.com!
For those of you who aren't familiar with the "Struggle," it's a staple of our radio broadcasts. Before each game, color analyst Chuck Machock, engineer/producer Mo "Goose" Egger, and yours truly, predict how many points the Bearcats will score. The person who comes the closest receives a point (hitting it right on the nose is worth 2 points). The person at the end of the year with the most points receives an expensive streak dinner from the two losers. Additionally, the person who finishes last is forced to live with the humiliation of being the waiter at the annual Struggle for the Steak dinner.
I was the winner last year and Mo was the big loser - thus the recent photo of him serving me a mammoth steak at the original Montgomery Inn. In the tradition of the cafeteria lady at your high school, he even wore a hairnet. He also wore a name tag that simply said "Loser."
The Montgomery Inn is also the permanent home of the Struggle for the Steak (or SFTS) trophy. As you can see in the second attractive photo of Mr. Egger, it features a PetSmart doggie steak, baked potato, and asparagus spears affixed to a plate. Perhaps only the Masters green jacket is a more unique prize.
I honestly have no idea how the SFTS tradition started, but it has certainly developed a loyal following. I can't tell you how many people have mentioned that they remain in their car listening to the radio after driving home from a game at Fifth Third Arena until they've heard the results. The concept was even copied (with permission) by the radio crew at Le Moyne College in upstate New York.
Once again this year, you can play along with us at Struggleforthesteak.com. It's easy, fun, and best of all - free. Simply go the website, register, and then make your prediction before each UC game (beginning with the Big East opener vs. Louisville). You'll receive points based on how accurate your predictions are and the person with the most points at the end of the year receives great prizes courtesy of our sponsor (and the official auditing firm of the contest) Jackson, Rolfes, Spurgeon & Co. Special thanks go out to our pal Roger Spurgeon who helps make the SFTS bigger and better every year.
One of the prizes is an invitation to join us at the celebratory dinner, and recently John Lake from Fairfield was the guest of honor. John is a long-time Bearcat fan and it was great to hear that he and his daughter had been competing against each other in their own version of the contest for years. We'll see if he can defend his online title in 2008.
As for this year's competition within the radio crew, I have the current lead with 6.83 points (we've had some ties, including the first-ever three-way tie after the Xavier game). Chuck is in second place with 3.3 points. And surprise, surprise, Mo is in last place with 1.83 points. He might as well just leave the hairnet on.
So don't forget to log on and sign up at Struggleforthesteak.com. We're saving a spot for you at the dinner table.
Finally, young Sam Hoard isn't trusted with a steak knife yet but is getting the hang of a plastic spoon as you can see in this week's obligatory photo of the handsome lad.
Happy New Year and good luck!
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