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College Playoff (12/20/10)

By Paul Bessire

Monday, December 20 at 8:20 PM ET
I will always recap the weekend in football each Monday afternoon. It is very important to us to be transparent and to honest about our picks. In addition to working on bowl picks and trying to post the NFL picks by Tuesday night, I am also traveling all across the Midwest and, of course, I am dealing with car and weather issues right now. In other words, after a day of Christmas shopping-turned tire replacing-turned shoveling, I'm going to keep the blog pretty short this week so I can focus on other content in the fairly small window of time that I will have this week in the safety and warmth of my own home.

While the early games on Sunday were not ideal, we still went 10-4 with all "normal" or better (57%+ to cover) picks in the NFL this week (with one more pending tonight). After back-to-back 11-5 weeks with those picks in the NFL, that's strong. In total, with the college regular season, conference championship and bowl games during that stretch, we are 44-20 ATS and O/U with normal or better picks in the last three weeks. We'll take that.

The Football Numbers (though December 18 Bowls and NFL Week 15):

  • ATS Locks of the Week: 2-0 (BYU -11.5 won 52-24; Atlanta -6.5 won 34-18)
  • Year-to-Date ATS Locks of the Week: 22-9 (71%)
  • All-Time ATS Locks of the Week: 71-20-3 (78%)
  • YTD Daily Top ATS Plays: 59-24 (71%)
  • Paul's Picks ATS Week: 3-3 (with MNF game remaining)
  • YTD Paul's Picks ATS: 75-47 (61%)
  • YTD ATS All Games: 56%
  • YTD O/U All Games: 56%
  • YTD SU (NFL and FBS vs FBS College): 73%

College Football Playoffs: Last week on our Twitter feed @predictmachine I unveiled the results of our college football playoff. To me, the most logical approach to a college football Division IA playoff includes 16 teams. This ensures that the 11 conference champions each make the playoffs. It also allows for four weeks of playoff football - which happens to be the exact duration of the bowls. We'll use our power rankings to seed teams (bracket below). I wanted to use the actual BCS rankings, but that would leave our #3 team, Boise State out of the bracket, which is ridiculous. I played out the on Thursday. Each matchup was played in two different ways: 1) Results of 50,000 simulations of the game and 2) Results of one simulation of the game. I advanced teams based on the latter in order to illustrate what one playoff possibility could look like (and to differentiate the results from our power rankings or actual bowl results).

Here is what happened in the college football playoffs:

First Round Results:
1) Oregon Ducks 63
16) FIU Golden Panthers 3

8) Arkansas Razorbacks 19
9) Alabama Crimson Tide 28

5) Stanford Cardinal 41
12) Nevada Wolf Pack 24

4) TCU Horned Frogs 17
13) UCF Golden Knights 21

6) Wisconsin Badgers 27
11) Virginia Tech Hokies 23

3) Boise State Broncos 31
14) UConn Huskies 9

7) Ohio State Buckeyes 21
10) Oklahoma Sooners 31

2) Auburn Tigers 52
15) Miami (OH) 17

Round 2 Results:
1) Oregon Ducks 37
9) Alabama Crimson Tide 27

5) Stanford Cardinal 42
13) UCF Golden Knights 10

6) Wisconsin Badgers 20
3) Boise State Broncos 21

10) Oklahoma Sooners 44
2) Auburn Tigers 41

Semifinal Results:
1) Oregon Ducks 41
5) Stanford Cardinal 28

3) Boise State Broncos 24
10) Oklahoma Sooners 21

College Football Championship Results
1) Oregon Ducks 24
3) Boise State Broncos 20

NFL Playoff Odds:
Check in with Twitter tomorrow afternoon to see our updated projected playoff teams and teams' odds of winning the division, earning a wild card and winning the Super Bowl. If you want to know the chances of anything happening that we do not publish, reply on Twitter or contact us directly.

As usual, if you have any of your own suggestions about how to improve the site, please do not hesitate to contact us at any time. We respond to every support contact as quickly as we can (usually within a few hours) and are very amenable to suggestions. I firmly believe that open communication with our customers and user feedback is the best way for us to grow and provide the types of products that will maximize the experience for all. Thank you in advance for your suggestions, comments and questions.

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ResultsFinder Highlight: Using the ResultsFinder for the week of February 1st-7th, one could find that the NFL Lock of the Week in the Super Bowl (Denver +6) easily covered as the Broncos defeated the Panthers 24-10. All-time, in the NFL Playoffs, Locks of the Week are 20-5 (80% ATS). This includes Super Bowl against-the-spread picks, which are now 5-2 (71% ATS). All-time on the site, all against-the-spread NFL Playoff picks are now 46-20 (70% ATS).

The Super Bowl was profitable in other ways as well. Not only did the UNDER (45.5) for the full game cover, the halftime side (Denver +4.5) and total (UNDER 23) did as well. And props were just as strong as all "normal" or better Super Bowl 50 player prop bets went 11-2 (85% props) to generate a return of +$592 for a normal $50 player using play value recommendations. Including all published props, game picks and halftime picks, all playable picks on the site for Super Bowl 50 went 38-11 (78%) and generated a profit of +$1,028 for a normal $50 player.

Elsewhere in sports, all "normal" or better (greater than 57% confidence) NBA against-the-spread and over/under picks combined to go 8-3 (73% ATS and O/U) over the last week and all "normal" or better against-the-spread picks in college basketball went 10-5 (67% ATS) over the same stretch.

Check out the Shop or Individual Picks pages now to learn more.

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