By Brendan Loy
With four bowl games left in the college football season — the Fiesta Bowl tonight, the Orange Bowl tomorrow night, the GMAC Bowl Wednesday night, and the “National Championship Game” Thursday night — 24 contestants are still mathematically alive to win the 5th annual Living Room Times Bowl Pick ‘em Contest. Details after the jump.
Also, an aside: I am tentatively planning a liveblog & livechat Thursday night, during the Alabama-Texas game, using Cover It Live’s new “Open Chat Option” (which means the chat & blog will be in the same window). It’ll start at 6:00 PM Mountain Time (that’s 8pm Eastern, 5pm Pacific). Stay tuned for more on that.
With each correct bowl pick worth 4 points, and 4 bowls left, the contestants “still alive” are simply those currently within 4 points of the current leader. Because contestants can change their picks up until shortly before kickoff of each game, and no one (not even me) can see anyone else’s picks until they become final at game time, it is impossible to be more precise than that. It’s a bit like Schrödinger’s Pick ‘em Contest until kickoff. :)
Some of the contestants currently 4 points behind David K. will most likely be eliminated as soon as the Fiesta Bowl gets underway tonight — if they picked the same team as David, that alone will eliminate them, regardless of the game’s result. A similar pattern will repeat itself for each subsequent game, and it is even possible the leader could clinch victory at the beginning of a game, rather than its conclusion. But we shall see. Last year’s contest, using the same scoring rules, went down to the wire, with Amy Booth edging Sören Hammerschmidt because of the outcome of the title game.
In any event, here are the contestants who, for now, still have a chance to win:
1. David K. — 20 points (20-10)
2. Brandon Allen — 19 points (19-11)
2. Jon Schuman — 19 points (19-11)
2. Neil Waechter — 19 points (19-11)
5. Kevin Curran (kcatnd) — 18 points (18-12)
5. Todd Morris — 18 points (18-12)
5. Doug Mataconis — 18 points (18-12)
5. Brian Dupuis (DUP) — 18 points (18-12)
5. Esteban Coca — 18 points (18-12)
5. Mike Marchand — 18 points (18-12)
5. C. Fenwick — 18 points (18-12)
12. T. Delli Santi — 17 points (17-13)
12. Michael Holtsberg — 17 points (17-13)
12. Carolyn Blessing — 17 points (17-13)
12. Jon Caplin — 17 points (17-13)
12. Alec Taylor — 17 points (17-13)
12. Scott Fort — 17 points (17-13)
12. Conor Sullivan — 17 points (17-10)*
19. Jeff Freeze — 16 points (16-14)
19. Sergio Lopez — 16 points (16-14)
19. Sean Waterman — 16 points (16-14)
19. Robert Dokes — 16 points (16-12)**
19. Brandon Minich — 16 points (16-14)
19. Jay Johnson — 16 points (16-14)
*Sullivan entered the contest late, and thus did not make any picks on the first three bowls.
**Dokes neglected to make a prediction for the Sun Bowl or the International Bowl.
Given the number of contestants above them, it would probably take something of a perfect storm for the folks tied for 12th or 19th to win. But the folks tied for 2nd and 5th are most definitely still in it. Last year, Amy Booth, Michael Walsh and K. Borders were 1 point behind Sören Hammerschmidt heading into the championship game. Walsh and Borders were eliminated when the game started — because they had made the same prediction as Sören — but Amy rallied to win the contest on the strength of Florida’s victory. (In the event of a Pick ‘em Contest tie, the first tiebreaker is who picked the right national champion, so a contestant rallying from 1 point behind, heading into the final game, will always defeat the leader who was 1 point ahead but got the final game wrong.)