...talks about how UConn hasn't been in contact and how they're out. (HT: UMHoops)
Just a note: Writing your picks in the comment section is NOT a valid entry. You must enter your picks using the form below or at this link. Feel free to discuss your picks here, but you must submit the form in order to enter the contest.
[ED: Bump. Get your picks in!]
After a great first year of Pick Six on MGoBlog, we’re back by popular demand. Unfortunately, we never had a results post in order to honor the original creators . (The MGoBlog summary will be posted after Blue-Gray Sky releases their results from 2009) This year I will be handling the technical details but we are going to have somebody else write the recaps. If you are interested in the job of writing the weekly summaries send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Onto the contest. Here's how it works.
1. We divide the top 25 into 5 groups of 5 based on the preseason AP Poll: 1-5, 6-10, 11-15, etc. For this year's poll, the groups are:
- A: Southern Cal, Alabama, LSU, Oklahoma, Oregon
- B: Georgia, Florida State, Michigan, South Carolina, Arkansas
- C: West Virginia, Wisconsin, Michigan State, Clemson, Texas
- D: Virginia Tech, Nebraska, Ohio State, Oklahoma State, TCU
- E: Stanford, Kansas State, Florida, Boise State, Louisville
2. Before the season starts you pick one team from each group, plus one unranked team. You're trying to pick the teams you think will finish highest in the final AP poll (after the bowl games).
3. Each week we'll try to update and publish the standings in a spreadsheet so you can track the progress of your teams. You get 25 points for having the #1 team, 24 points for the #2 team, on down to 1 point for the #25 team. Unranked teams get zero points.
4. The winner is the person with the most points (i.e. the highest ranked teams) after the bowl season. The midseason standings are only for entertainment purposes. Only the final AP poll counts.
5. And the grand prize? I will personally give the winner 10 meaningless upvotes. Plus, last year some guy named Brian offered a small prize.
Throughout the season someone will hopefully give regular updates on the progress of the contest in the Diaries.
That's it for the Pick Six: short, sweet and simple. The entry form closes on Thursday August 30 before the first kickoff, so get your picks in now. Good luck!
I've been busy so I haven't been promoting the contest as much this year. So, here's a quick reminder to enter the contest today before football kicks off.
Use the form in the comments below, or read the directions at the original page http://mgoblog.com/diaries/pick-six-2012
The standings live here as always. BlueBarron gave the proper sacrifices to the Ctrl+F deities and has returned to the top 20.
This week Southern Miss and Florida State drop out of the polls. Georgia Tech returns as one replacement and Virginia enters the poll for the first time since 2007. It will come as no surprise to you that Virginia was not a very popular pick this year. Only 2 people selected Virginia as their unranked team. What may come as a surprise is that MaizeAndBlueWahoo was not one of the two. Instead he chose Boston College. I wonder if he’s regretting his decision to choose all of his most hated teams.
Individual Ballot Analysis
Brooklyn Blue is on a 3-week stay at the top of the leaderboard. This week he has 105 points. The perfect ballot has changed slightly with the losses by Oklahoma State and Clemson. With 119 points this week, the perfect ballot is LSU, Stanford, Arkansas, Michigan State, Southern Cal and Houston.
There are four people tied for last place who all have the worst possible score. They’re only getting points from Oklahoma and TCU for a score of 21 points.
Judging Your Picks
It has been a long time since MGoBlog has been able to claim that it’s readers had better than average skill at predicting the outcome of this college football season. This week a completely random ballot and the average MGoBlog ballot are both earning 54 points.
Games To Watch
There are a ton of good games to watch this weekend. It might just be the best weekend in college football. The top team from every group is playing in a game that is at least somewhat tough.
- #1 LSU (leader of Group A) vs. #3 Arkansas (leader of Group C)
- #4 Stanford vs. #22 Notre Dame
- #8 Houston (leader of Unranked) vs. Tulsa
- #11 Michigan St (leader of Group D) vs. Northwestern
- #10 Southern Cal (leader of Group E) vs. UCLA
While the last two games may not sound that tough, Northwestern picked off Nebraska earlier this season and they’re playing at home. Teams don’t just walk into the vaunted Ryan Field and expect an easy victory.
USC is far and away the best team in the Pac-12 South but they’re ineligible to go to the title game. Right now UCLA is a game ahead of Utah but Utah has an almost guaranteed victory over Colorado on Friday. That means Saturday night UCLA will know they are playing for their spot in the Pac-12 title game.
Since it’s Thanksgiving I’d like to share what I’m thankful for.
I’m thankful for Georgia and Virginia Tech quietly putting together good seasons. I’m also thankful for Stanford getting back into the top 5.
I am not thankful for Arizona State. They have forever disappointed me with their losses to UCLA, Washington State and Arizona the last three weeks. That is about as far from a murder’s row as you can get in the BCS.
What are your non-Michigan thanks?
Here are the standings. Don’t mock using Ctrl+F to find your name or else half of your teams will lose, your score will go down by 17 points and you’ll drop 57 places in the rankings. Just ask BlueBarron. If you’ve forgotten your username or have any other questions email email@example.com
Lots of “new” teams entered the poll this week. TCU, Florida State, Notre Dame and Baylor re-enter the poll to replace Georgia Tech, Texas, Cincinnati and Auburn. Florida State and Notre Dame will make a lot of readers happy since they were 2 of the top 4 most popular teams to be picked -- 36% and 35% of the people picked them. Texas was the most popular unranked team so their loss hurt 30% of the contestants. At the same time only 99 total people picked Georgia Tech, Cincinnati or Auburn, so basically nobody would notice if I didn’t point out their loss.
Individual Ballot Analysis
Brooklyn Blue stays on top of the rankings this week with 93 points. His highest ranked team is Oklahoma at 5th but he also has the 8th, 9th, 11th and 12th place team. The perfect ballot has 110 points this week coming from the same six teams: LSU, Oklahoma State, Arkansas, Michigan State, Southern Cal and Clemson.
At the other end of the standings there was a lot of shakeup in the race for worst. TCU, Florida State and Notre Dame had been killing people the last few weeks. Now that they’re ranked again there is a new person all alone in last place with 25 points. It’s also the first time in several weeks that the person in last place does not have the worst possible entry. They chose Notre Dame and are getting a whole 2 points more than the theoretical worst possibility.
Judging Your Picks
This week the MGoBlogosphere is bringing negative value to their picks. A completely random entry should earn 54 points but the contest’s median and mean is 52 points. If you have more than 52 points you’re an above average MGoBlog. Cheer up though, if you’re reading this, then you’re above average in my mind no matter what your Pick 6 score is.
Games to Watch
According to ESPN’s schedule the weekly ESPN3D game is Vanderbilt at Tennessee. That is 5-5 Vanderbilt with roughly the 75th best offense in the country playing at 4-6 Tennessee with roughly the 86th best offense in the country. Wouldn’t the offenses have to be able to move the ball to take advantage of that 3rd dimension?
I guess the punts will look spectacular.
Here are the games that could shake up the Pick Six standings.
#18 USC at #4 Oregon
8 pm on ABC
Oregon has one last test before they crush Oregon State and then crush whoever manages to not lose themselves out of contention for the Pac-12 South title.
#17 Nebraska at #20 Michigan
Noon on ESPN
I don’t need to talk you into watching this game.
#5 Oklahoma at #25 Baylor
8 pm on ABC
Which 8 pm game will score more points? This one or the USC-Oregon game? My money is on this one. Five of Baylor’s nine games have had a total of more than 80 points.
#13 Kansas State at NR Texas
8 pm on FX
If Texas can beat Kansas State at home they should be ranked next week. I’m not sure if Texas will be able to catch up to Auburn’s record for number of entrances and exits from the poll, but they can try.
NR Cincinnati at NR Rutgers
Noon on ESPNU
There are no Big East teams in the AP poll this week. West Virginia is receiving the most votes but they aren’t playing this week. With a strong win this week and a couple of losses Cincinnati might make it back into the poll. But you shouldn’t actually watch the game. First, it will probably be terrible. Second, it is on at the same time as the Michigan game. Third, only 4 people actually picked Cincinnati as their unranked team so chances are you don’t care at all whether or not they’re ranked.
Standings are here. Ctrl+F is your friend if you don’t want to read through 1149 names to find yours.
I’m too pissed off at Arizona State and West Virginia both dropping out of the rankings this week to offer up much commentary.
Texas sneaks back into the poll and Southern Miss is ranked for the first time since 2004 just like I very safely predicted last week. Why did they have to do it at the expense of my teams though? Blerg.
Nebraska and Michigan are the only other big losers, dropping about 10 places in the poll. Everyone else has only moved slightly, including Alabama who only drops 2 spots.
This week it will be TCU or Ohio State who crawl back into the rankings.
Individual Ballot Analysis
Week 10 brings us the eighth lead change of the season. BrooklynBlue is in the lead this week with 94 points coming from Oklahoma, Stanford, Virginia Tech, Michigan State, Southern Cal and Houston.
He trails a perfect ballot by only 11 points. The perfect ballot this week is unchanged for the third week in a row: LSU, Oklahoma State, Arkansas, Michigan State, Southern Cal and Clemson. That lineup would earn you 105 points.
The bottom five had a bit of a shakeup as Texas got three people out of dead last place. Two of last week’s loveable losers remain and are joined by three new members of the last place club. They have to enjoy it while their infamy lasts though, TCU might just rocket them up the standings all the way to 1110th.
Judging Your Picks
Not much change from last week. MGoBlog’s picks have a median of 50 points while a completely random ballot would earn an expected 51 points. If you have over 50 points then you are officially above average. If you have under 50 points, then you should look in a mirror and repeat to yourself
Games to Watch
#10 Virginia Tech just beat #20 Georgia Tech by 11 points and #11 Houston is crushing unranked (and coachless?) Tulane. This weekend one might want to keep an eye on these games
#19 Nebraska at #12 Penn State
noon on ESPN
Probably the lowest scoring BCS game of the weekend. A very good defense going up against a questionable offense and a good defense going up against a bad offense. It will provide an interesting contrast to the noon points-fest of Texas at Missouri (on FX). I don’t want to steal jamiemac’s thunder but you should probably consider taking under 43 in the Nebraska game and over 59 in the Texas game.
#24 Auburn at #14 Georgia
3:30 on CBS
The only real challenge standing between Georgia and the SEC East championship. I don’t think anybody knows what to make of Auburn this year, while Georgia is an uninspiring 7-2 team coming off a 63-16 win against New Mexico State. You’ll be busy during this game but look for updates on the scroll.
#6 Oregon at #3 Stanford
8 pm on ABC
The Pac-12 North will be decided this weekend. Who they will face is up in the air. UCLA could be their opponent. Whoever wins this week will almost certainly be in the Rose Bowl if they’re not in the championship game. If they make it to the championship then the loser will probably be in the Rose Bowl. How do you think that game will turn out for the Big 10?
West Virginia at #23 Cincinnati
noon on ABC/ESPN3
After a loss to Louisville last week West Virginia’s Big East Title is looking unlikely. If they win out they still have a chance though. Cincinnati is alone in first place with a conference record of 3-0.
Wisconsin continued its slide down the rankings. Michigan State and Clemson pick up a loss and drop out of the Top 10. The leaderboard was full of people who had picked those three teams last week so this caused a big shakeup in the Pick Six standings.
Elsewhere in the country, the Texas schools, A&M and Tech, both dropped out of the rankings. That leaves Houston as the only school from Texas ranked in the AP poll. I wonder when the last time there was no Texas school ranked. Is it possible we’ll see that happen this year? Probably not. Who is going to beat Houston?
Georgia Tech and Auburn get back into the rankings, so no new unranked teams this week. Southern Miss is hanging on right at the edge of the poll. A weak team could drop out and put USM into the poll for the first time since 2004.
Individual Ballot Analysis
Despite all the losses last week, the perfect ballot hasn’t actually changed teams. It is still LSU, Oklahoma State, Arkansas, Michigan State, Southern Cal and Clemson. It has dropped from 109 points last week to 97 points this week though.
We have two new leaders this week. AMazinBlue and orobs climbed up to first place with slightly different entries. They both have Alabama, Stanford, Arkansas and Michigan as their unranked team. In Group D and E they made different choices though. AMazinBlue chose Michigan State and West Virginia which was worth the same amount as orobs’ choice of Georgia and Southern Cal.
At the complete opposite end of the leaderboard, there are now five people who have the absolute lowest possible number of points. All five picked Oklahoma for 19 points and all their other picks are unranked.
Judging your Picks
Last week the MGoBlogosphere had the unfortunate shame of having a worse median ballot than a completely random one. Fortunately this week we’ve improved to the same as a random ballot.
Someone who made their picks completely randomly would expect to earn 51 points. The median of the Pick Six entries is 52 points and the mean is 51 points.
Weekly Brian Watch
I have not given an update on how Brian has been doing in a while. It happened to coincide with a slide down the rankings
|5||52||87||Everything looking good|
|6||70||79||Texas was blown out by Oklahoma|
|7||84||77||Texas loses to Oklahoma State|
|8||307||58||West Virginia loses to Syracuse! Wisconsin gets close loss to Michigan St|
|9||551||52||Wisconsin loses to Ohio State|
He now has undefeated Boise State and Stanford with one good win (USC) between them but no really good wins. Then Wisconsin, West Virginia and Texas all have two losses with one combined good win (Nebraska) and Notre Dame has 3 losses with one good win (Michigan State). That is the perfect recipe for a completely average rank.
Games to Watch
#10 South Carolina at #8 Arkansas
(7:15 pm on ESPN)
Two of the 3 best second-tier SEC teams face each other. This should probably be won handily by Arkansas handily now that South Carolina is without Marcus Lattimore and their QB situation has been Spurriered. But who knows, Arkansas didn’t look that great against Vanderbilt last week.
#17 Kansas State at #3 Oklahoma State
(8:00 pm on ABC/ESPN2)
After starting out 7-0 Kansas State will probably lose their second game. It’s entirely possible they’ll lose their final 5 games of the season. Next week home against Texas A&M is probably their only chance to not have at least a 4 game losing streak. They play at Texas and home against Iowa State after that.
#6 Oregon at Washington
(10:30 pm on FSN)
If Oregon can get by Washington who was briefly ranked two weeks ago then they’ll set up a Pac-12 showdown with #4 Stanford next week. If Washington somehow pulls the upset then they’ll shoot back into the rankings probably around #20.
Am I forgetting anything? Oh, I guess maybe you could watch
#1 LSU at #2 Alabama
(8:00 pm on CBS)
The second-favorite choice from group A (Alabama was on 33% of the entries) facing the least favorite choice (LSU was on 3%). It probably won’t actually affect the standings very much though. The loser will still be in the Top 10 unless it’s a blowout and probably will stay in the Top 5 if it’s close.