Mason Swartz couldn’t bring himself to pick against his favorite team.
Turns out, most entrants in Week 4 of the Kenosha News Football Poll didn’t pick against Swartz’s favorite team, either.
The Chicago Bears’ loss to the Oakland Raiders in London last weekend was certainly one of the biggest upsets during Week 5 of the NFL slate.
Swartz didn’t pick that upset to happen in the Football Poll, but he picked every other game correctly.
An online entrant, Swartz was one of two contestants to go 14-1 — missing only the Bears-Raiders game — along with fellow online entrant and last week’s winner, Peter Krystowiak.
Swartz prevented Krystowiak from repeating, however, because he was closer in the tiebreaker game, which involved the Bears’ biggest rival.
Swartz predicted the Green Bay Packers to defeat the Dallas Cowboys, 24-23. The Packers won, 34-24, so Swartz was 11 total points off on the tiebreaker game. Krystowiak predicted a 24-20 Packers’ win, making him 14 points off on the tiebreaker, just three away from Swartz.
Ironically, Swartz said he had a feeling the Bears might lose to the Raiders, and he’d have gone a perfect 15-0 had he followed that instinct.
But he couldn’t make that prediction.
“I had a feeling,” said Swartz, 39, a Kenosha resident who graduated from Bradford.
“I almost went with the Raiders. I just couldn’t do it. I didn’t want to jinx the Bears, so I went with them, and they lose.”
Swartz said he’s been entering the Football Poll for about “seven or eight years” and has one prior win. Like most contestants, he said the high school games were the toughest to pick.
In this poll, the high school games that tripped up most entrants were Indian Trail’s defeat of Racine Horlick and Wilmot’s win over Burlington. But Swartz went a perfect 7-0 in the high school games.
“Those are the toughest ones,” he said. “... You’ve just got to hope to get lucky sometimes.”
At least luckier than the Bears in London.
Here is a closer look at the Football Poll:
Week 1—Arnold Parise
Week 2—Bill Curran
Week 3—Peter Krystowiak
Week 4—Mason Swartz
Week 4 results
Racine Case def. Bradford; Franklin def. Tremper; Indian Trail def. Racine Horlick; Central def. Elkhorn; Wilmot def. Burlington; Greendale Martin Luther def. St. Joseph; Saint Francis def. Christian Life; Carthage def. Elmhurst; Ohio State def. Michigan State; Michigan def. Iowa; Minnesota def. Illinois; Wisconsin def. Kent State; Vikings def. Giants; Raiders def. Bears; Packers def. Cowboys (tiebreaker score, 34-24).