Newbie, who loves Seahawks, is a winner

Sports Editor Bill Burt with Mary Kelleher, of Newburyport, and her brand new "I Beat Burt" sports tech T-shirt.

If you've been playing the "I Beat Burt" Contest for a few years and never won a T-shirt, well, you might want to stop reading.

This is a double-whammy.

Mary Kelleher, a 5th grade teacher at the Edward G. Molin Elementary School in Newburyport, entered the "I Beat Burt" Contest for only the third time this past weekend. And not only did she win a T-shirt, but she did it while openly rooting for her favorite team on Sunday night, the Seattle Seahawks.

"I chose (the Seahawks) to win because they are my favorite NFL team,'' said Mary.  "I get some strange looks when I say that in New England. Pete Carroll has been my favorite coach since he was the Patriots coach long ago."

Mary, who is married (Bob Kelleher) without children, watches pro football every Sunday, including all teams.

"I was youngest of seven children and our family was always athletic and competitive," she said. "To this day I still have fun throwing around a football with my students at recess. I loved to play sports as a kid. Tennis was my favorite, however I loved to play most all of them."

She said she only started playing the contest after seeing the entry blank in the newspaper. 

"I'm watching the games (anyway), so it's nice to see how many winning teams I can predict," said Mary. 

While the Seahawks have become her favorite team, she still roots for the Patriots. Except days like Sunday night.

"As for the Patriot's last loss, I think some poor choices by (Bill) Belichick in the fourth quarter did not help matters," said Mary. "The Seahawks were determined and it really showed in the way they played."


Burt not alone in struggles

Seven road teams won. Seven underdogs won. You know that means? Pot luck.

The 2016 NFL season reverted to form with upsets galore.

Of the 175 entries in Week 10, only 45, picked seven or more winners out of the 13 games.

I only had six wins. Each week a maximum of 10 T-shirts are awarded. The first tiebreaker is amount of points the Patriots scored (24). 

This week all of the winners had 24 points exactly.

If the Patriots had scored a touchdown on that last play in which Tom Brady overthrew Rob Gronkowski? There would have been a completely different list of 10 winners. That's how important the tiebreaker is, particularly when I have a tough week.

FYI: Week 11 is already posted on-line.


Week 10 winners:

Alexander Carter of Topsfield

Michael O'Neill of Beverly

Amanda Knowles of Gloucester

Seth Murray of Gloucester

Mary Kelleher of Newburyport

Richard Sharp of Newbury

Sal Gilardi of Gloucester

Jeffrey Smith of Salem, N.H.

Ed Campbell of Newburyport

Kenny Sawyer of Peabody