Brad Miller wins NIT pool

It was a picture-perfect ending for Brad Miller: the Wolverines lose, and as a result, a Buckeye wins.

Brad Miller, an Ohio State alum who now attends Capital University Law School in Columbus, OH, won the championship of the 2nd annual BrendanLoy.com NIT pool when South Carolina defeated Ohio State’s hated rival, Michigan, in the NIT championship game Thursday night, 76-64. (Here’s a look at Miller’s bracket.)

Miller’s victory came at the expense of USC Class of 1987 alum Gary Kirby, who had led the pool since the tournament’s third day and entered the Final Four as the odds-on favorite to win the pool. But Kirby picked Michigan to win it all, so Miller’s correct pick of the Gamecocks in the title game — which is worth 25 points — was enough to overtake him.

The pool is scored on a 5-7-10-15-20-25 basis. Kirby went 6-for-8 in the first round, 15-for-16 in the second round, and predicted 6 of the quarterfinalists, two of the semifinalists and one of the finalists. But he got the champion wrong, and that did him in. Miller was 5-for-8 in the first round, 13-for-16 in the second round and 5-for-8 in picking the quarterfinalists — all worse than Kirby — and, like Kirby, was 2-for-the Final Four. But he got both finalists and the champion right.

Miller finished with 381 points out of a possible 477; Kirby had 365. Everyone started off wih a “free” 120 points because of first-round byes, so Miller had 261 out of 357 possible “earned” points (73%). That compares favorably to the “earned” point total of the 2005 champion, Tom K., who had 166 out of 332 “earned” points last year (50%), demonstrating both the quality of Miller’s picks and the relative predictability of this year’s NIT, which was, for the first time ever, seeded.

Speaking of K., the 2003 USC grad and Oregon Health & Science University grad student was rewarded for picking South Carolina to win the NIT for a second year in a row: he made a late surge to finish in third place, with 334 points.

Andrew Long, a 2002 USC grad and Long Beach, CA resident, finished fourth with 326, having picked Louisville to win the tourney. Silver Spring, MD resident Rick Boeckler, uncle of Becky Loy and the odds-on favorite to win this year’s women’s pool, surged into fifth with 325 points because he, too, picked South Carolina.

Miller, K. and Boeckler are the only contestants who picked the Gamecocks to win the NIT.

Complete standings here and after the jump.

1. Brad Miller 381
2. Gary Kirby 365
3. Tom K. 334
4. Andrew Long 326
5. Rick Boeckler 325
6. Kevin Pilz 321
7. Matt Scarborough 318
8. Ed Joyce 315
9. Ginny Zak 312
10. Paul Zak 309
11. Jamie McGinnis 304
11. Charles Fenwick 304
13. John Feeney 301
13. Tom Greca 301
13. Brian Dupuis 301
16. Terry Jones 300
17. Don LaPlante 296
18. David Whelan 295
18. David Kreutz 295
20. Brendan Loy 292
21. Dennis Chow 289
22. Chris Aemisegger 285
23. Conor Sullivan 282
23. William Murray 282
25. Nathan Evangelista 280
25. Jay Johnson 280
27. Rebecca Loy 279
28. Josh Rubin 278
29. Andy Wendeln 277
29. Lisa Velte 277
29. Wilson Loftis 277
29. Chris McLemore 277
33. Scott Schmidt 275
34. Frank Nolan 274
35. Kelleigh L. Domaingue 272
36. Larry Caplin 271
36. Kristy LaPlante 271
36. Chris Evans 271
39. Dan Dinunzio 270
40. Mike Quinn 269
41. Ted Zak 266
42. Randy Styles 265
43. Mark Gardner 263
44. Greg Rauen 262
44. Matt Wiser 262
46. Sergio Lopez 258
47. Kevin Curran 257
48. Andrew Hunter 255
48. Sandy Pilz 255
50. Jason Parsley 253
51. Brian Schmidt 248
52. Kate Spitz 247
52. Lauren Fowler 247
54. Greg Shtraks 245
55. Scott Fort 243
56. Scott Robertson 236
57. Earl Baker 234
57. George Heidkamp 234
59. Frank Sherman 230
59. Brandon Minich 230
61. Russell Caplin 226
62. Marc LaPlante 219
63. Danny Pilz 216
64. Joshua Carpenter 215
65. Mike Tran 206
65. Colin Pedicini 206
67. Melanie Dickson 201
68. Eddie Domaingue 198
69. Hannah McLaughlin 197
70. Bonnie Stone 189
71. Mike Wiser 187
72. Sarah Mason 184
73. Courtney Tawresey 182
74. Victoria Wags 168

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