Friday, Jan. 9: Thanks to Florida’s 24-14 victory over Oklahoma, Tony Bolita claimed his second straight P&D “Experts” title.
“It really happened! Florida beating Oklahoma means that I’ve won the pool, and by one game, Bolita said in an e-mail to me Friday. “Part 2 of unbelievable is that I’ve won a pool for 2 straight years. I have in fact NEVER done that! God, this has been fun, and I really appreciate how you keep inviting me back to be a part of it!”
Tony finished with 22 right, one ahead of me, of course (since we were tied entering the final game). Matt Dahlseid (19) and Justin Rust (18), two of my part-time staffers finished third and fourth, followed by P&D graphic artist Matt Richardson (17) and P&D regional editor Randy Dockendorf (17). Joe Van Goor (17) led the radio contingent with 17 right, followed by Brady Donovin of KYNT (16).
Here are the rest of the competitors: Scott Morrison (16), Shauna Marlette (16), Steve Imming (16), Keith Brockberg (15), Mike Keitgest (15), Heidi Henson (14) and Jeremy Hoeck (13).
Thursday, Jan. 8: As something like this should, the title of the Press & Dakotan’s “Experts” bowl prediction contest will come down to the national championship game.
Tony Bolita, the former P&D mailroom supervisor turned California baseball bum (actually, he’s a warehouse supervisor who spends his weekends attending college sporting events, mostly baseball), and I are tied with 21 correct predictions out of 33 games.
We differ on the BCS championship game, making for an exciting finish. Tony has taken the Florida Gators, while I have Oklahoma. The winner gets bragging rights for the year, since most of the people entered are too broke to put any money on it and company rules forbid that, anyway.
Friday, Jan. 2: And then there were two.
With four games remaining, all but the top two individuals have been mathematically eliminated from title contention in our “experts” bowl standings, Tony Bolita and myself.
After Utah’s big win over Alabama, I have moved into a tie for the lead with 19 correct picks. Made calls like Colorado State (1 of 3 to get it right), Utah (1 of 4) and Rice (1 of 5) have given me the tiebreaker.
But the battle is far from over. Tony, the former P&D mailroom supervisor turned California warehouse manager, and I differ on three of the four games left. We agree on Texas, but I have Buffalo, Tulsa and Oklahoma, while Tony has UConn, Ball State and Florida.
Matt Dahlseid sits two off the lead but cant catch both leaders, as his four match mine. Joe Van Goor, Justin Rust and Matt Richardson sit at 16 right.
On the other end, Jeremy Hoeck has been guaranteed a last place finish, as is two off the pace he will not have a tiebreaker on either of the people he could catch.
One double-props for Friday. Heidi Henson, the P&D special sections editor, was the only person to pick either Ole’ Miss and Kentucky on the day … and she picked them both.
Thursday, Jan. 1: After two big days of games, Tony Bolita still holds his slim lead in the “experts” bowl standings, correctly picking 19 of the 27 games that have been played so far.
With a current streak of 7 straight, I have moved to within one with 18 right. Matt Dahlseid sits in third with 17, followed by Matt Richardson (16) and a host of people at 15: Brady Donovin, Randy Dockendorf, Shauna Marlette, Joe Van Goor and Justin Rust.
Seven games remain on the schedule, capped by the national championship game between Oklahoma and Florida.
Wednesday, Dec. 31: After a rough day, Tony Bolita is still holding on to the lead in the “experts” bowl predictions standings.
He remains at 11 right, with Shauna Marlette, Matt Dahlseid and myself right behind him at 10 right. Justin Rust, Matt Richardson and Joe Van Goor stand at 9 right.
Mike Keitges picked up two right Tuesday, moving him out of his cellar tie with Jeremy Hoeck. Jeremy sits at just 5 right.
Randy Dockendorf gets the kudos for the day, as the only person who picked Oregon over Oklahoma State.