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Who will win? We handicap the spellers

Updated: May 31, 2006, 6:38 PM ET
By Darren Rovell | ESPN.com

The National Spelling Bee has gone prime time, and we all know what that means: Sports books are now taking bets on particular letters in the championship word and whether the winner will be wearing glasses. Folks, this is not a joke anymore.

With that in mind, here are my top eight picks in this year's competition, all of whom survived Wednesday's early rounds.

1. Samir Sudhir Patel, Colleyville, Texas: This kid is amazing. It's his fourth appearance in the event and, to put it ...

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