A week from now, we’ll all be poring over NCAA Tournament brackets making prognostications about teams like Davidson, VCU, Drake, Robert Morris, Baylor, and Portland State. Some of these teams we’ve barely heard of, let alone watched this season.
So, I thought, why not get the prognostications started a week earlier this year, and make them about the teams we’ve all been watching regularly for the last 10 weeks?
The Spartans Weblog is pleased therefore to announce the First Annual and World’s Only (As Far As We Know) Big Ten Tournament Bracket Contest.
The winner of the contest will win a free MSU 300 t-shirt made by richrobots. (Click on the link at the top of the right-hand column, or this previous post, for more details.)
The BTT bracket is now finalized. To submit an entry in the contest, post a comment to this blog post. Include your pick for the winner of each of the 10 games of the tournament. Scoring will be as follows:
- Round 1 winners (3): 1 point each
- Semi-finalists (4): 2 points each
- Finalists (2): 4 points each
- Champion (1): 8 points
- Total points available: 27
In keeping with the tempo-free statistics bent of this blog, the tie-breaker will be the number of possessions in the final game of the tournament. That figure will be calculated according to the Big Ten Wonk formula, averaged for the two teams in the final and rounded to the nearest whole number. For the less statistically-inclined, go ahead and pick a random number between 55 and 75.
Here’s an example of a contest entry, based on the assumption of the higher seed winning each game:
- Game 1: Iowa
- Game 2: Penn St.
- Game 3: Minnesota
- Game 4: Wisconsin
- Game 5: MSU
- Game 6: Purdue
- Game 7: Indiana
- Game 8: Wisconsin
- Game 9: Purdue
- Game 10: Wisconsin
- Tie-breaker: 65 possessions
(Feel free to drop the “Game” on each line to save time, but please include the numbers.)
- All entries must be received by noon on Thursday (before the tip-off of Game 1) to be valid.
- In the case of a tie between one or more contestants in both contest points and the number of possessions in the final, the winner will be determined by coin-flip or other random mechanism determined by the Spartans Weblog.
- The prize for the contest winner consists of one MSU 300 richrobots t-shirt (men’s or women’s fit) and associated shipping/tax costs for United State residents. No substitutions.
- Any non-MSU fans who might happen to be readers of this blog may enter the contest but, if they win, must either (1) forfeit the prize to the next highest finisher or (2) sign an affidavit swearing to wear the t-shirt during at least four MSU basketball games next season.
- The Spartans Weblog is the final authority regarding interpretation of the contest rules and determination of the winner.
Let’s see who can find the right combination of statistical analysis, gut intuition, and good old-fashioned luck and become the most fashionable Spartan fan on their block . . .