Build a Better Offseason: Recommendations for the Week of March 4

Among This Week's Recommendations: AleSmith's Horny Devil, "When the Garden Was Eden" and Syracuse v. Georgetown

Among This Week’s Recommendations: AleSmith’s Horny Devil, “When the Garden Was Eden” and Syracuse v. Georgetown

College football’s offseason is nearly two months old already, but that means there’s still a little under six months until the 2013 season. It’s an eternity for any college football fan, and while many of us indulge in watching other sports, it just can’t compare to fall Saturdays.

With that in mind, we bring you the first installment of a weekly feature here: “Build a Better Offseason.” Every seven days or so, we’ll provide recommendations on what to do with all your free time now that you’re not all-consumed by college football, specifically focusing on beers, books, movies and sporting events. There’s also “this week in shame,” which you can view at the bottom of each piece.

Beer

Horny Devil, by AleSmith Brewing Company in San Diego, CA (Belgian Strong Ale, 11% ABV)

Horny Devil is a delicious, citrusy brew that any Belgian ale lover is sure to enjoy. Like Duvels or Saisons? This is a great choice as almost a best of both worlds, while still giving you a taste that’s not overly fruity or heavy. I’ve only seen it in 750ml bottles, and distribution is currently limited to the state of California, minus the San Francisco Bay Area. So if you can get a hold of this, it’s a must-have.

Book

When the Garden Was Eden,” by Harvey Araton (2011)

The definitive narration of the cultural phenomenon that was the late-60s, early -70s New York Knicks basketball team. Sure, it helps to already be a fan of the Knickerbockers when first opening this book, but trust me, if you didn’t think this was the world’s most interesting basketball team beforehand, you’ll certainly believe it after reading. Araton’s perspective, as both a long-time fan and a beat writer for the team, also provides the exact tone you’d want from this oral retelling; honest to a fault and deeply caring about the subject matter.

Movie

Wreck-It Ralph (2012)

Yeah, you may be able to call this a kid’s movie, but it’s a lot more than that – as you soon figure out due to the character depth provided by John C. Reilly and the other talented (voice) actors. Without giving too much away, Reilly’s character, the titular Ralph, dives into a lot of the issues today’s adult faces in terms of dealing with careers and life while still finding joy in it all. And yet manages to avoid overdoing any of that. For those who missed it in theaters last year, it’s out on DVD tomorrow, and comes highly recommended from yours truly.

Sports

#17 Syracuse Orange at #5 Georgetown Hoyas, Saturday, March 9 at noon ET

The two schools most responsible for building the Big East into what it was meet for one final time as league rivals on Saturday. College Gameday’s set to be there to kick off the festivities early in a game likely to have Big East regular-season title implications. Interested party (hello) or not, it’ll be hard to look away. I’m personally looking forward to seeing a sea of orange shirts at the Hoyas’ home court, as well as Jim Boeheim grabbing a microphone and yelling “the Big East is officially closed” following what I’m praying is a Syracuse win.

This Week in Shame

Like most guys in a committed relationship, I’ve unwillingly seen my fair share of horrendous reality television (usually propagated by Bravo or ABC), and every so often become interested in what goes on within the program. This is a safe space to point out those programs while providing a quick FAQ for those unacquainted already.

The Bachelor: “The Women Tell All” – Monday, March 4 at 8 p.m. ET (ABC)

The “Women Tell All” episode each season functions as a way for all of the sad girls who showed up on the show to vent about their issues with each other and the guy who’s dumped all of them. This is usually entertaining, if only because many of the individuals that show up on The Bachelor/Bachelorette are train wrecks, and as such, fail to act like normal people would. It’s also an open casting call for producer/host Chris Harrison’s other sick game, The Bachelor Pad, which pits the biggest head-cases from past seasons against one another in a competitive, challenge-oriented environment. Not gonna lie, I’m excited.

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