A hangover, a New Jersey spa and an ex-Goldman Sachs trader: The wildest college football bet of the offseason

A hangover, a New Jersey spa and an ex-Goldman Sachs trader: The wildest college football bet of the offseason

Article brief provided by ESPN
  • David Purdum, ESPN
August 27, 2022 6:35 PM
  • David Purdum, ESPN

    The story behind the wildest college football bet of the offseason begins on a Sunday night in April in Freehold, New Jersey, where two gambling buddies — a local restaurant owner with a hangover and a former Goldman Sachs trader — are chatting after hours at a Russian-style bathhouse.

    “Pete, listen, I have a bet for you,” says Robert Doran, who is at the spa trying to sweat out the tequila shots he took the night before at a wedding.

    Pete Kizenko, the banya’s 56-year-old owner, is intrigued. He likes to bet and sweat, always has. In 2012, he left his Moscow-based trading gig with Goldman Sachs to bring the Russian tradition of banyas to New Jersey and opened Bear and Birch.