Sports with Shook: Who is the real football expert in the Shook family?

Nick Shook

If you happen to listen to the radio show that served as the inspiration for the name of this column, you should know that our weekly NFL picks received a new spin last week. “Quick Shots at Shook,” in which I make quick picks with no prior preparation, now includes the selections of my co-host Kory Kubasek’s girlfriend Maria, as well as the picks of my 9-year-old sister Brooke. The segment was aptly titled “Shook versus Rook versus Brooke.”

Now, my little sister has watched football for her entire life, thanks to the obsession that I share with my father and impose upon anyone significant in my life. But at the age of nine, she’s not too worried about which team is the favorite to win the Super Bowl in 2012, although she was quite stressed on Saturday after she found out the Bears had lost to the Packers.

She jumped into my arms when I walked in the door, but the happiness and smile quickly left her face, replaced by an expression of worry.

“I already got one wrong,” she said to me with concern in her voice. “I’m going to lose. Why did you even want mine, they’re all going to be wrong. You’re going to beat me.”

But deep down inside her little voice, I could sense her competitiveness coming out. She may know a whole heck of a lot less about the NFL than her 20-year-old big brother, but she didn’t want to lose: not to me, not to Maria — not to anybody.

Expert or not, we wanted her picks because this is the most unique and snarky child I have ever known in my life.

That graphic is not a mirage, an ink blot or a copyediting error. My 9-year-old sister picked more games correctly than I did. And I tied with Kory’s girlfriend — she picked her games based on uniforms and logos. This proves to me that the NFL leads the world in one major export: parity.

Audio from Sports With Shook

Be sure to tune into “Sports With Shook” every Friday from 2 to 4 p.m., hosted by Kory Kubasek, Austin Coley and Nick Shook, only on Black Squirrel Radio.

The New England Patriots found a way to somehow blow the most advantageous late-game moment in recent history by electing to run the clock and settle for a potential game-winning field goal attempt, because, you know, field goals and kickers are just so automatic in the NFL. New England kicker Stephen Gostkowski shanked the kick and the Cardinals won. No one called that before kickoff Sunday. Don’t try to convince me otherwise. Get that weak stuff out of here.

Continuing the breakdown of my failure, I always pick the Browns because I’m a hopeful (and thus, hopeless) homer for my team. But I wasn’t stupid enough to let my love for the Browns keep me from picking the Steelers to win.

The Detroit Lions failed to pull off a big road upset Sunday night, which didn’t come as a surprise, considering their secondary started Eric Wright and used Brandon McDonald as its nickelback in 2011. Both are now gone, but the secondary is equally as bad, and it showed in a 27-19 loss.

Reggie Bush knocked my socks off, 2005 USC Trojans-style by racking up 31 fantasy football points and rushing for 172 yards in the Miami Dolphins’ victory over the Oakland Raiders. Let me just put it simply: The Raiders are terrible. Any time a team trades a first round pick for a past-his-prime Carson Palmer, you know you’re screwed.

Both Brooke and Maria picked the St. Louis Rams to beat Robert Griffin III and the Washington Redskins. I don’t even think the Rams picked the Rams.

I haven’t told Brooke about her successful week yet. Just wait until she finds out she beat her big brother; she’ll never let me live it down.

My father called me on Sunday to update me on the activities of my sisters. Caitlin, 12, was cheering her heart out at her school’s CYO football game. Brooke had played a soccer game earlier that day, in which her team emerged victorious, 1-0.

She scored the lone goal.

I’m proud of all five of my sisters, and I couldn’t help but smile after seeing the fact that she beat me.

But it’s time to do some statistical studying of the NFL.

Because I’m not letting it happen again.

Disagree with Nick? Like his opinions? Have you always been the only Louisiana-Monroe Warhawks fan on the face of the earth? Tweet him @NickShookDKS