That's right, ladies and gentlemen. The longest standing tradition on Rock M Nation is back. The "Sweet Smell of Mediocrity™" has returned in the 8th annual installment of the Rock M Nation Bowl Pick 'Em Contest. For those of you who are new to these parts since last year, the contest is simple. I have lined out all of the bowl games with the point spread and the over/under. Once again this year, thanks to Google and their "forms" (whatever those really are), all you need to do is select (by clicking a bubble) your choices and submit them via the form.
As it goes from one year to the next, we've experienced considerable community growth and I really do want everyone to throw down, and not just RMN folks. All our friends from around SBN are welcome to join as well. As I find predictions from national pundits (usually in the form of a prediction with a score), I will go ahead and submit them as well, just so you can see how you stacked up. The contest will be open to entry until next Saturday (the 20th) at 10am (central), as the first game is then.
After typing in your RMN handle (and let me know if you have switched names and have entered previous years as another handle) you will see that the point spread is used as part of your selecting the "winner". For those of you who are not familiar with the point spreads, the first game is the New Mexico Bowl, where we find the line reading as "New Orleans Bowl: Nevada (-1) vs. UL-Lafayette". If you select Nevada, it means you not only believe they will win, but they will win by more than 1 point (kind of a stupid spread, but what are you going to do?). A UL-L selection means you either believe UL-L will win the game outright, or will be within 1 point if they lose. The second selection is the over/under. For this game, the O/U is 61. If you believe the teams will combine to score more than 61 points, you go with the over. If you believe they will combine to score less than 61 points, you go with the under. If you believe they are going to score 66 exactly, well...you should do well here. And because there is no real money involved, and we need all the help we can get, ties are wins for everyone :-)
As a community, and thanks to a big year last year, we are at 27,268-25,907, which is good enough for a .513average. Here is a link to the all-time tracking spreadsheet. I certainly understand there may be errors in there, but I defy you to find them at this point...that sucker is a BEAST.
In terms of prizes...I don't think we do anything beyond bragging rights, but if Bill wants to dip into the DEEP pool of RMN-generated funds, who am I to question him? Lines are courtesy of VegasInsider.com simply because they were the first I could find with both a line and the O/U. These lines (for the purposes of this contest) are locked, so if it moves later because of suspensions or whatever, it is what it is. You will not be able to change your picks once the contest closes, so keep that in mind.
Good luck everyone. Anyone who is nervous or otherwise about participating, please don't be. There is very little skill to this sort of thing on some level. Hell, I have flipped a coin for an entry in five of the years (yes, I actually flip the coin that many times) and the coin is ten games under .500 all-time. Make your clicks in whatever fashion you see fit and I bet you won't finish last. Someone who tries hard (like myself) will do that for you. But make sure you go all the way through the form...it is a bit long and sometimes people have not made it to the bottom or otherwise skipped picks.