Graded Week 12 NFL and college football selections for Circa Friday Football Invitational

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On Friday nights in the fall for more than a decade, football bettors would crowd a small, smoky sportsbook on the Strip to see two handicappers go head to head in a $10,000 winner-take-all contest. The contestants’ names were lit up outside on the marquee, adding an element of prestige to being a part of the Stardust Invitational.

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The contest concluded after the 2005 season — the Stardust closed on Nov. 1, 2006 and its two hotel towers were imploded in March 2007 — and it has been missed.

So it’s time to bring back memories of an old friend. In a tip of the cap to the Stardust Invitational, Circa owner Derek Stevens is putting up his money and putting his support behind a new VSIN-produced event, the Circa Friday Football Invitational.

The theme is the same, but the contest format is slightly different and improved. While there are still 16 handicappers in a bracket, all contestants are involved each week in a season-long competition, as opposed to the Stardust format that pitted only two handicappers a week in a head-to-head elimination duel. Stevens has boosted the prize money to $25,000.

The 16-handicapper field is officially set. Here are the contest details:

Sixteen handicappers compete — with no entry fee required — in a season-long contest with $25,000 in prizes awarded.

When: Friday, September 9 through Friday, January, 6, 2023 (18 weeks)

Where: VSIN studio at the Circa sportsbook

Contest plays: Five plays, college and NFL sides and totals (no props, team totals, first-half plays etc.) with one designated as the Best Bet (BB).

STANDINGS

GRADED WEEK 12 SELECTIONS

 

(Updated through Week 12, Nov. 28)

BOBBY “BUCKETS” BRUBECK
Indiana +10.5 L
Michigan-Ohio State Under 56 L
Washington State +1.5 L
Packers-Eagles Under 46.5 L
(BB) Steelers-Colts Under 39.5 L
Record (points): 28-30-2 (29)
Best Bets: 4-8 (4)

CHUCK EDEL
Wake Forest-Duke Over 67 L
Louisville-Kentucky Under 43 W
Michigan State-Penn State Over 52.5 L
Old Dominion-South Alabama Under 48 W
(BB) Hawaii-San Jose State Over 58 L
Record (points): 36-24 (36)
Best Bets: 5-7 (5)

BRIAN EDWARDS
Pittsburgh -7 W
Iowa State +10 L
LSU -9.5 L
Ravens -3.5 L
(BB) Commanders -4 W
Record (points): 27-33 (27)
Best Bets: 6-6 (6)

CHRIS “THE BEAR” FALLICA
Kansas +11.5 L
Georgia State +6 W
Washington State +1.5 L
Ohio State -8.5 L
(BB) Texas A&M +9.5 W
Record (points): 35-25 (35)
Best Bets: 9-3 (9)

X-STEVE FEZZIK (second eliminated)
Record (points): 21-28-1 (21.5)
Best Bets: 6-3-1 (6.5) 

JOEY “TUNES” FORTUNA
Syracuse -10 L
Appalachian State-Georgia Southern Over 62 W
Hawaii-San Jose State Over 58 L
Middle Tennessee-FIU Under 55.5 L
(BB) Browns +3.5 W
Record (points): 32-28 (32)
Best Bets: 6-6 (6)

DOUG KEZIRIAN
Indiana +10.5 L
Syracuse-Boston College Over 47 W
USC -4.5 W
LSU -9.5 L
(BB) Tulsa-Houston Over 67 P
Record (points): 36-22-2 (37)
Best Bets: 6-4-2 (7)

MARC LAWRENCE
Oregon State +3 W
Georgia Tech +35.5 W
Iowa State +10 L
Cardinals +3 W
(BB) Titans +2.5 L
Record (points): 31-27-2 (32)
Best Bets: 7-5 (7)

RANDY MCKAY
Indiana +10.5 L
Notre Dame +4.5 L
Raiders +3.5 W
Chargers-Cardinals Over 48 W
(BB) Colts -2.5 L
Record (points): 32-26-2 (33)
Best Bets: 7-5 (7)

X-MIKE NORTH (first eliminated)
Record (points): 16-26-3 (17.5)
Best Bets: 3-6 (3)

X-ERIN RYNNING (third eliminated)
Record (points): 24-30-1 (24.5)
Best Bets: 3-7-1 (3.5)

DAN SALEY
Kansas State -11.5 W
Duke +3.5 W
Michigan +8.5 W
Texas Tech +2 W
(BB) Coastal Carolina +14 L
Record (points): 30-28-2 (31)
Best Bets: 5-7 (5)

JAMES SALINAS
USC -4.5 W
Titans +2.5 L
Packers +6.5 L
Steelers +2.5 W
(BB) Saints +9 L
Record (points): 34-23-3 (35.5)
Best Bets: 6-6 (6)

PAUL STONE
Louisville-Kentucky Under 43 W
North Texas -14 L
Washington -1.5 W
Vanderbilt +14 L
(BB) Kansas State -11.5 W
Record (points): 33-26-1 (33.5)
Best Bets: 5-7 (5)
 
JEFF WHITELAW
Oregon-Oregon State Over 58 W
Tennessee-Vanderbilt Under 63.5 W
Browns +3.5 W
Commanders -4 W
(BB) Bengals -2.5 W
Record (points): 34-23-3 (35.5)
Best Bets: 7-3-2 (8)

X-CRIS ZENIUK (fourth eliminated)
Falcons +4 L
Texans +14 L
Eagles -6.5 W
Packers-Eagles Under 46.5 L
(BB) Seahawks -3.5 L
Record (points): 26-32-2 (27)
Best Bets: 4-8 (4)