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  • Issue # 14.6.1 “Ugly Redemption”

    Posted on April 4th, 2017 - 3:09 am Scott No comments

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    2017 NCAA Champions
    University of North Carolina Tar Heels
    #1-South (Memphis, TN)
    University of North Carolina
    Tar Heels
    (33-7)

    6th Title: ’57, ’82, ’93, ’05, ’09, ’17
    2017 Winningest Conference
    SEC Conference

    ACC Conference

    The Southeastern Conference
    (11-5)

    4th Time: ’06, ’07, ’14, ’17
    &
    The Atlantic Coast Conference
    (11-8)

    6th Time: ’04, ’05, ’10, ’15, ’16, ’17

    Monday, April 3, 2017 

    UNC WINS 6TH TITLE DESPITE POOR SHOOTING; ZAGS 2ND HALF FUNK
    Dboyz17 holds on to win pool while ChasCroix1 wins tiebreaker for 6th

    CERRITOS APT, CA (smt)- #1S-North Carolina shot 35.6%, only made 4 of 27 from long range (14.8%), and missed 11 free throws (57.7%) yet were able to hold off #1W-Gonzaga, 71-66, in a foul-marred game (22 fouls on each team).  With two injured ankles, Joel Berry made four threes (the rest of the team was 0 for 14) and scored 22 points (second straight final with 20+ points) to lead UNC to redemption after last year’s final loss to Villanova.  It was an ugly contest with UNC shooting 30% in the 1st half and Gonzaga shooting 28% in the second half and the refs plagued the game with fouls, a ticky tack flagrant 1 at a key point in the game, and missing an out-of-bounds hand by a UNC player in a tie-up that was possession UNC with under a minute left.  Despite the poor shooting all-around the teams did manage to combine to score 136 points which is more than the other mid-major finals involving Butler (120 and 94 points in back-to-back finals).

    UNC’s win gave Dboyz17 the 2017 HWCI NCAA Pool title and record $690 win (out of a record $1,780 pot), finishing with 148 points followed by MarchMindlessness (143), Alternative Picks (142), Agnes Scheweizhofer (135), and Flying Elvi (133).  The 136 total points gave ChasCroix1 the tiebreaker over The Juggernaut to win 6th.  Bigtenfan was in position to win the Bonus but a late foul put that in jeopardy; luckily UNC made just one of two free throws and he finished off by one point and was still the best finisher (32nd) among the 12 entries who were one off.

    Place Amount Winner Nickname Pts (Place) Yrs in Pool (#Ent) # Times Won (Total $)
    1st $690 Greg Z Dboyz17 148 (1st) 4 (5) 1st win
    2nd $355 Eric F MarchMindlessness  143 (2nd) 7 (9) 2 ($450; 5th ’14 )
    3rd $240 Nelson P  Alternative Picks 142 (3rd) 11 (14) 1st win
    4th $180 Andy F  Agnes Schweitzhofer 135 (4th) 20 (20) 2 ($212.50; 6th(Tied) ’12)
    5th $130 Brian S  Flying Elvi 133 (5th) 21 (21) 2 ($190; 2nd ’97)
    6th $ 85 Chuck D  ChasCroix1 132 (6th) 9 (16) 1st win
    7th $ 60 Alex K  The Juggernaut 132 (7th) 2 (2) 1st win
    Bonus $ 40 Benjamin D  Bigtenfan 116 (32nd) 6 (11) 2 ($330; 2nd ’14)

    [Twitter]We are now on Twitter (@HWCI_Pools).  Please follow!  I will post using #hwcincaa mini-updates during the day so you can follow without being on Twitter (and if you are, please use #hwcincaa).  Please join our Facebook HWCI NCAA Pool Group or post comments on our blog Read the rest of this entry »

  • Issue # 13.5.2 “23 Paths to Success” (History of our Pool)

    Posted on April 3rd, 2017 - 5:48 pm Scott No comments

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    2017 NCAA Final Four @ PHOENIX, AZ
    The Final at University of Phoenix Stadium
    #1-West
    San Jose, CA
    vs. #1-South
    Memphis, TN
    Gonzaga University Bulldogs University of North Carolina Tar Heels
    Gonzaga University
    Bulldogs (37-1) 
    University of North Carolina
    Tar Heels (32-7)
    West Coast Conference
    Spokane, WA
    First Final (est. 1958)
    def. #16 South Dakota St. 66-46
    #8 Northwestern 79-73
    #4 West Virginia 61-58
    #11 Xavier 83-59
    #7E-South Carolina 77-73
    Atlantic Coast Conference
    Chapel Hill, NC
    11th Final (’46,
    ’57, ‘ 68, ’77,
    ’81, ‘
    82, ’93, ’05, ’09, ’16)
    def. #16 Texas So. 103-64
    #8 Arkansas 72-65
    #4 Butler 92-80
    #2 Kentucky 75-73
    #3MW-Oregon 77-76

    Sunday, April 2, 2017 

    CLASSIC BATTLE OF MAJOR VS MID-MAJOR #1’S
    11 can finish in top 7 and 65 can win Bonus

    EL SEGUNDO, CA (smt)- Gonzaga has only lost one time all year and some blame the weak West Coast Conference but has beaten a Big Ten, a Big East, a Big 12, and an SEC team en route to the finals.  North Carolina is representing the so-called best conference, the mighty ACC, who got 9 teams in but only they survived into the Sweet 16.  While the Bulldogs are making their first-ever finals appearance, the Tar Heels are making their 11th and second straight.  UNC is a slight 1.5 point favorite with an over/under of 153.5 points.

    In our 23rd year, there are 11 people still alive (once again, no one has more than one entry in the running) with 8 trying to win money for the first time with the Brian S (Flying Elvi) last winning in ’97, a span of 19 pools (17 years in the pool).  John W (Jbwsaijo) is the only person who is playing for the first time.  Nelson P (Alternative Picks) last played in ’12 being winless in all 10 years but his return will net him at least 6th place.  Andy F (Anges Schweizhoffer) has played 20 years and his only win was a share of 6th place in ’12 ($32.50 which was less than the $40 Bonus!).  Michael G (Spermicidal State) will try to win money in his 10th try.  John W (Jbwsaijo) will try to become the 24th person to win money in the first year of playing (just the 14th since ’99).  65 entries have a chance at the $40 Bonus.  Since final pool placement counts, it means that although 16 entries picked 144 as their total points in final tiebreaker, if the total ends up being 144, Jason R (Buccos 3) will win (finish with 119 pts) if Gonzaga wins or Greg Z (Dboyz17-2) will win if UNC wins (finish with 128 pts) (and would be the first person to get more than one entry in the money in the same year).

    If Gonzaga wins… If UNC wins…
    Place Amount Entry (Name) (Yrs in Pool-Won) Entry (Name) (Yrs in Pool-Won)
    1st $690 Parched Fatness (Mike M) (3) Dboyz17 (Greg Z) (4)
    2nd $355 Spermicidal State (Michael G) (10) MarchMindlessness (Eric F) (7-5th ’14)
    3rd $240 Dboyz17 (Greg Z) (4) Alternative Picks (Nelson P) (11)
    4th $180 GonzagaGirl (Angelina K) (5) Agnes Schweitzhofer (Andy F) (20-6th(Tied) ’12)
    5th $130 MarchMindlessness (Eric F) (7-5th ’14) Flying Elvi (Brian S) (21-2nd ’97)
    6th $ 85 Alternative Picks (Nelson P) (11) ChasCroix1 (Chuck D) (9)
    7th $ 60 Jbwsaijo (John W) (1) The Juggernaut (Alex K) (2)
    Bonus $ 40 TBD TBD

    A little history of our humble pool…
    Read the rest of this entry »

  • Issue # 12.5.1 “#1 vs #1”

    Posted on April 2nd, 2017 - 4:57 am Scott No comments

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    Saturday, April 1, 2017 

    SMART FOUL BY ZAGS AND SMART REBOUNDING BY UNC
    Dboyz17 takes lead and only Parched Fatness can dethone

    SANTA FE SPRINGS, CA (smt)- #1W-Gonzaga had a 14-point second-half lead only to see #7E-South Carolina score 16 straight points in 3 1/2 minutes to lead by 2 with 7:06 left.  The Zags then responded with a 7-0 run of their own in the next 3 1/2 minutes and then held on to a 77-73 win to advance to their first Final.  Up by 3 with 13 seconds left and playing defense, the Zags did what every person always yells at the TV, FOUL to give two free throws instead of allowing a game-tying three.  Gonzaga’s Josh Perkins did thisperfectly leaving just three seconds left (of course, USC helped by taking their time for the shot).  As expected, South Carolina made the first, missed the second but couldn’t get the rebound and the Zags sealed the game with two free throws.

    Trying to get the rebound off a missed free throw, however, was no problem for #1S-North Carolina.  The Tar Heels were comfortable with a six-point lead with under a minute left only to see #3MW-Oregon cut it to one.  UNC missed two free throws but they got the offensive rebound so Oregon fouled again.  Incredibly, UNC missed both free throws again, and more incredibly, UNC got the offensive rebound again running out the final four seconds for a 77-76 victory to return to the final for the second consecutive year and 11th overall (5-5).

    Dboyz17 was one of 11 to get both teams correct to take a five-point lead with 136 points.  If UNC wins he will be our 21st different champion of our pool.  But if Gonzaga wins, Read the rest of this entry »

  • Issue # 11.4.3 “Carolinas vs Pacific Northwest”

    Posted on March 31st, 2017 - 2:45 am Scott No comments

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    2017 NCAA Final Four @ PHOENIX, AZ
    First Semifinal Second Semifinal
    #7-East
    New York, NY
    2017 New York
    #1-West
    San Jose, CA
    2017 San Jose
    #3-Midwest
    Kansas City, MO
    2017 Kansas City
    #1-South
    Memphis, TN
    2017 Memphis
    University of South Caroina Gamecocks Gonzaga University Bulldogs University of Oregon Ducks University of North Carolina Tar Heels
    University of South Carolina
    Gamecocks (26-10) 
    Gonzaga University
    Bulldogs (36-1) 
    University of Oregon
    Ducks (33-5)
    University of North Carolina
    Tar Heels (31-7)
    Southeastern Conference
    Columbia, SC
    First Final Four (est. 1908)
    def. #10 Marquette 93-73
    #2 Duke 88-81
    #3 Baylor 70-50
    #4 Florida 77-70
    West Coast Conference
    Spokane, WA
    First Final Four (est. 1958)
    def. #16 South Dakota St. 66-46
    #8 Northwestern 79-73
    #4 West Virginia 61-58
    #11 Xavier 83-59
    Pac-12 Conference
    Eugene, OR
    2nd Final Four (
    ’39)
    1-time champion
    def. #14 Iona 93-77
    #11 Rhode Island 75-72
    #7 Michigan 69-68
    #1 Kansas 74-60
    Atlantic Coast Conference
    Chapel Hill, NC
    20th Final Four (’46,
    ’57, ’67’ 68, ’69, ’72, ’77, ’81, ‘82, ’91, ’93, ’95, ’97, ’98, 00, ’05, ’08, ’09, ’16)
    5-time champions
    def. #16 Texas So. 103-64
    #8 Arkansas 72-65
    #4 Butler 92-80
    #2 Kentucky 75-73

    Thursday, March 30, 2017 

    UNC BACK IN FINAL FOUR WHILE OTHER THREE TEAMS IT’S A NEW EXPERIENCE
    21 battle for 7 spots; More than $85 raised for GHTC

    EL SEGUNDO, CA (smt)- North Carolina is making its record 20th appearance in the NCAA Final Four which is 18 more than the other three schools combined.  Both Gonzaga and South Carolina are making their first Final Four appearance and Oregon is making its first since the very first year the NCAA tournament was held, 1939.  Each team has had a close call while each team has had a double-digit win in the Regional semifinal or final.  South Carolina and Gonzaga have had a pair of 20+ point wins while UNC has broken 90 points twice.  South Carolina, a 7 seed is representing the strength of the SEC who have the most wins in the tournament while North Carolina is representing the last vestige of the powerful ACC which had 9 teams to start and are down to one.

    Twenty-one entries still have a chance to finish in the top 7 money spots and we won’t know who the pool champion is unless Oregon and South Carolina win.  After the semifinals, the Bonus scenarios will be listed for the total points in final tiebreaker.

    Craig H (who didn’t participate in the main pool) was the only person to get all four First Four games correct (Mt. St. Mary’s, Kansas St, UC Davis, USC) to win the 7th HWCI NCAA First Four for Charity.  With 16 entries I will donate $32 and since we got more than 161 entries (new record 178), I will donate another $25.  Generous donations by Charles D, Bob S, and Jeff2 H has brought the total to $85.10 that I will donate to the IEEE Global Humanitarian Technology Conference as a Beginner Patron.  More money could still trickle in and the donation will be made when registration opens in June.  In total, the 7 years has raised $593.98.

    [Twitter]We are now on Twitter (@HWCI_Pools).  Please follow!  I will post using #hwcincaa mini-updates during the day so you can follow without being on Twitter (and if you are, please use #hwcincaa).  Please join our Facebook HWCI NCAA Pool Groupor post comments on our blog

       Tids & Bits – South Carolina has set a school record with 26 wins and won their first tourney game since ’73… This is the first time Read the rest of this entry »

  • Issue # 10.4.2 “The Vet and the Other SEC Team”

    Posted on March 27th, 2017 - 1:49 pm Scott No comments

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    The Amazing Race is back!  Season 29 starts Thursday March 30 10/9c

    Sunday, March 26, 2017 

    UNC WINS BATTLE OF BLUE BLOODS, USC WINS BATTLE OF SEC TEAMS
    Jbwsaijo jumps to 1st but it’s Dboyz17 who is guaranteed money

    ROSEMEAD, CA (smt)- The Carolinas are in.  The battle of the SEC saw rivals #7E-South Carolina (the other USC) and #4E-Florida play for more than 14 minutes with neither side taking more than a 3-point lead (from 44-41 Florida to 65-63 South Carolina).  But Maik Kotsar ended that with a jump shot to give the Gamecocks a four-point lead with 1:57 left.  The last minute saw Florida still down by four but they had their chances as South Carolina missed four free throws but the only thing the Gators could come up with were two painful turnovers in losing 77-70.  South Carolina joins #1W-Gonzaga in making their first Final Four and one of these teams will make their first Final as they will face off in the early game Saturday.

    The battle of the blue bloods, part 2 (after #2S-Kentucky beat #3S-UCLA two days ago) proved to live up to its billing in the first part and the last ten minutes.  #1S-North Carolina and Kentucky battled early with the Tar Heels holding on to a 34-30 lead with 4:30 left.  But then the game turned out to be a slog to watch, one of the poorest performances for the tournament, as the middle 20 minutes (4:30 1st half to 9:30 2nd half) saw both teams grind out to a partly 19 points each (15 of those 38 points on free throws).  Kentucky missed all six three-point attempts and made just 7 of 27 shots overall while committing two turnovers.  UNC turned the ball over eight times and was just 2 of 8 from three-point range and made just 5 of 17 shots.  Imagine taking just 17 shots in 20 minutes?  Ugly.

    But luckily for us, the teams turned it up sprinting to a 24-22 (Wildcat advantage) finish in the last 9:30.  Kentucky got on track outscoring UNC 17-6 to take a 64-59 lead with under 5 minutes left.   But then UNC went on a 12-0 run to take a 71-64 lead with 53 seconds left.  After missing 8 straight three-pointers, the Wildcats hit 3 threes in the final minute (two in 8 seconds aided by an inbound 5-second violation and the last aided by UNC missing the front end of a 1-and-1), with Malik Monk somehow shooting over two defenders to tie the game at 73 with 8 seconds left.  But instead of a timeout, Read the rest of this entry »

  • Issue # 5.2.2 “Finish Strong”

    Posted on March 20th, 2017 - 2:15 pm Scott No comments

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    Sunday, March 19, 2017 

    LATE RALLIES AND HEART PROVIDE DRAMA
    King Kobra remains in the lead by 4 points as 45 entries are eliminated

    CERRITOS APT (smt)- No single play to discuss today (i.e., no dumb foul, no dumb flagrant-1, no dumb technical), just pure basketball drama.  #1S-UNC and #3MW-Oregon went on a doughnut run with the Tar Heels rallying from 5 down with 2:56 left to score the last 12 points and the Ducks rallying from 4 down with 2:01 left to score the last 7 points to knock off hopefuls #8S-Arkansas and #11MW-Rhode Island, respectively.

    Other teams turned it on as well with #3S-UCLA down by one finishing the game on a 33-20 run in the last 13:32, #7MW-Michigan down by two finishing the game on a 24-18 run in the last 9:16, #1MW-Kansas up by one finishing the game on a 36-17 run in the last 12:00, #3E-Baylor down two finishing the game on a 17-11 run in the last 4:42 (a sequence that began with Manu Lecomte scoring 8 points in 45 seconds), and #8E-South Carolina down two finishing on a 42-33 run in the last 12:03. #2S-Kentucky narrowly won the ’14 rematch vs. #10S-Wichita St taking a tie game with 12:15 left and holding on to a three-point win thanks to two gutsy blocks on the final two Shocker possessions.  On the last one, it looked like the Wichita St. player could’ve leaned in to draw a foul on the three-point shot but didn’t.

    Comeback kids #11E-USC never trailed by their magic number of 10 (just 9) and took the lead with under 5 minutes to go but couldn’t hold on against Baylor.  #11MW-Rhode Island played well but scored just 26 points in the second half allowing Oregon to rally.  Playing in their home state, South Carolina scored 65 points in the second half against #2E-Duke.

    King Kobra increased the lead to four points (96) over Hrosen2 and EEChick1400.  Five went 7-1 for the day with only 9ers in’18 (7th-Tied, 88) getting at least five right the previous day.  Ten went 12-4 for the round.  On the flip side, Read the rest of this entry »

  • Team Distribution

    Posted on March 16th, 2017 - 12:07 pm Scott No comments

    Unofficially, we set a new record with 176 entries.  Will be vetting throughout the day but all look good to go.  If have at least 175 entries, we will add our first 7th place prize.  In the meantime, you’ll notice a new menu item above “Team Dist“.  This will show what team everyone picked to make each round.  In our pool, there are 17 teams that could win the pool led by North Carolina with 30, Villanova with 27, and the Zags with 25.  There are 7 1st round games where it was unanimous the underdog would lose.  Locally, UCLA was picked by 16 to win the title, 7 have St. Mary’s reaching the Elite 8, and 9 have USC making the Sweet 16.

    Other oddities include one picking St. Mary’s to win it all, 23 having Oregon in the Final Four despite injuries, one having Seton Hall in the final, two having Vermont in the Final Four, and one picking Florida to win it all.  Oh, wait, that last one is Ken B (Gators Resurgence) so that is not odd 🙂

  • #1 Duke escapes

    Posted on March 20th, 2011 - 2:17 pm Scott No comments

    Another missed free throw, another heart-stopping ending as Duke came close to being the second #1 seed to fall after blowing nearly a 15-point lead after Michigan went on a 16-2 run.  Washington and North Carolina exchanged dumb plays with Washington inexplicably taking a half-court heave with 3 seconds left but then getting bailed out by a UNC player all by himself tipping the missed shot out of bounds to give Washington another chance.  Both both top seeds move on meaning no change in the standings after the first two games.

  • #1’s Still Top Choice

    Posted on March 18th, 2009 - 3:41 pm Scott No comments

    For the 43 entries received thus far, the top three teams picked to win it all are all #1 seeds and the 4th team is Memphis, which should’ve been a #1 seed.  UNC leads with 14 followed by fellow 1’s Louisville (8) and Pitt (7).  Memphis (5) edges out Oklahoma (4) with the remaining #1 seed UConn being picked by just 2.  Three others have a vote each.  11 teams haven’t been picked by anyone to win their first game.  Not much love for UCLA or USC (neither being picked past the Sweet 16) and Northridge is still looking for that one person to pick them to beat Memphis. 😉