Tuesday, August 5, 2014

ESPN College Football Challenge: Week 1 Strategy + Roster

Last year was my best ever College Football Challenge, finishing in the top 100. Here's a recap of my strategy that I used last year:
  • QBs: Dual threat QBs (Mariota) or Option QBs who might throw a TD here or there (C. Fajardo) . The rushing yards and TDs really add up, just ask Keenan Reynolds.
  • WRs/RBs: Find a top 20 player going against a bottom 20 rushing or passing defense.  Obviously more credit for a player if they are in a run or pass heavy offense.
  • K: High scoring offenses against weakest opponent (Typically an FCS team)
  • Def: Find the best team against the weakest opponent  (Typically an FCS team)

What you have to watch out for is when a game can get too out of hand in a first half.  There were instances last year when Baylor was crushing at halftime and the starters didn't see time in second half.

Week 1 Roster

Alternate Week 1 Options
  • QBs: Bryce Petty (BAY) and Taysom Hill (OD)
  • RBs: Jahwan Edwards (BALL) 
  • WRs: Deontay Granberry (HOU) and Justin Hardy (NCCU)
  • K: Oregon Ducks
  • Def: Oregon Ducks and Florida Gators



ESPN Gridiron Challenge: Week 1 Strategy + Roster

ESPN Gridiron Challenge Strategy: Find the best balance of players that you can start week in and week out without having to adjust your roster. I've often found that swapping players to find the best match ups tends to lead to missed points. Just find a roster with a lot of potential and stick with out.

Week 1 Roster



Week 1 Value Options:
QBs: Matt Ryan ($5.8)
RBs: Montee Ball ($5.4)
WRs: Victor Cruz ($5.4)
TE: D. Pitta ($5.0)
Def: New York Jets ($4.2)

Friday, June 6, 2014

2014 Belmont Stakes Picks: Top 5 & Long Shot

The Preakness was solid one as I had the Trifecta box with my top three picks. I keep picking against California Chrome and I'm going to do it again. As much as we all want to see a Triple Crown, I think the number of races and distance catches up to him. 


  1. Wicked Strong (9)
  2. California Chrome (2)
  3. Tonalist (11)
  4. Ride on Curlin (5)
  5. Commanding Curve (3)

Longshot: Samraat (7)

Saturday, May 17, 2014

2014 Preakness Picks: Top 5 & Long Shot

Danza came up just a little short for me in the Derby, but it was a good race. Here are the quick Preakness Picks...
  1. Social Inclusion (8) - As long as he can sit on the pace, he should close it in the stretch.
  2. California Chrome (3) - I think he gets caught down the stretch.
  3. Ride on Curlin (10)
  4. Dynamic Impact (1)
  5. Bayern (5)
Longshot: Kid Cruz (7)

Friday, May 2, 2014

2014 Kentucky Derby Picks: Top 5 & Long Shot

In a field as big as the Derby, I like to make my picks based on strong value upsides. I'm going to make these picks short and simple:
  1. Danza (4)
  2. General a Rod (8)
  3. California Chrome (5)
  4. Dance with Fate (11)
  5. Wicked Strong (19)
Given the large field, I like to offer up two long shots: Chitu (12, 20-1) and Vinceremos (9, 30-1)

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

2014 Final Four: Pomeroy + LRMC Profiles

If you recall from my "Final Thoughts" post, I thought that this tournament could likely resemble the 2011 bracket. In 2011 there was a 3, 4, 8 and 11 seed, and the group included Kentucky and UConn. This year we have a 1, 2, 7 and 8 seed, which includes Kentucky and UConn.  Go figure.

I think we end up with a Gators v Wildcats championship game with Florida cutting the nets down. 


Tuesday, March 25, 2014

2014 Bracket: Elite Eight and Final Four Picks

The Sweet 16 is here, so let's check in on the teams who made it and how it stacks up to the profiles we created back in Part 3 and the Deep Sleepers Post. The teams highlighted were a part of the original list of most likely candidates to make the Elite 8, while the last three teams were all noted as teams with a profile to be a Deep Sleeper to the Elite 8.



To read the "Change" numbers, if a team has a "Positive (+)" change, it means they improved their OE or DE, and vice versa. Note that all of the Deep Sleepers have significantly stepped up their Defensive Efficiency.

Based on this past weekend's games, and sticking the likely profiles for the Elite Eight and Final Four, here are my picks for the weekend:

  • EE: Florida and Dayton -> FF: Florida
  • EE: Arizona and Wisconsin -> FF: Arizona
  • EE: Michigan State and UConn (If Niang was playing, this would be Iowa State because the pre-tourney 80 OE for UConn is too high for the model.) -> FF: Michigan State
  • EE: Louisville vs Tennessee -> FF: Louisville

Looking forward to another great couple rounds of games and seeing how the picks hold up.