Thursday, October 31, 2013

Pick Ten: Big Ten, MIAC, and UMAC

This week's collegiate cross country conference championships are a reminder that the competitive season, along with the DtB fantasy contests, are coming to a close. This week will mark the penultimate contest of the Pick Ten in 2013.  We'll also feature two more weeks of Yes/No questions, and throw in some bonus questions to make it interesting.

This weekend will crown conference champions in the Big Ten, UMAC and MIAC.  On Saturday, the UMAC will run in New Brighton at a meet hosted by the University of Northwestern.  Also on Saturday afternoon, the MIAC's annual competition will take place at Como Park Golf Course.  On Sunday, the Gophers will travel to West Lafayette for the Big Ten Championship, hosted by Purdue.

Pick Ten has a simple concept: predict the finish place for each of 10 Minnesota athletes/teams at their conference meets. You will score points for each athlete who scores at or above the finish place you predict for them, following the 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 scoring system.

For example: If you pick Laura Docherty to place first in the Big Ten, and she places first, you get 10 points. If you pick Docherty to place first and she finishes second, you get zero points. If you pick Docherty to finish third in the race and she places first, second or third, you get 6 points, since that's the place you picked her for.

To play Pick Ten, cut and paste the list of names/events below into an e-mail and add your place predictions -- 1st or 2nd or 3rd...10th. Send your predictions by 12:00 P.M. CST on Saturday, November 2nd to DtBFantasy [AT] gmail [DOT] com. Make sure your full name is in the e-mail. We'll announce the winner of this Pick Ten contest next week as well as crown a grand champion for the year. As with our Yes/No contests, we don't offer any prizes, so no one needs to fear running afoul of NCAA or other anti-gambling regulations.

Pick 10 ... Big Ten and MIAC Championships:University of Minnesota Women:
University of Minnesota Men:
John Simons (University of Minnesota):
Laura Docherty (University of Minnesota):
St. Thomas Men:
St. Benedict Women:
John Subialka (St. Johns):
Rebecca Hare (Gustavus):
Martin Luther (Men):
North Central University (Women):

To Help You Make Your Picks ...

The Gopher men finished fifth at Big Tens last year. Currently, there are three nationally ranked teams from the Big Ten - Wisconsin, Michigan and Indiana. The Gophers are ranked behind these three teams and are thirty-first overall in the National Rankings.  John Simons finished eleventh at Big Tens in 2012 and the top six runners in that meet have graduated.  He is a sub-four minute miler and All-American on the track.  

The Gopher women placed fourth at Big Tens last year. They are currently ranked fifteenth in the nation after strong showings at the Griak and Wisconsin Adidas Invitational. The competition will be fierce:  other ranked teams in the conference include Michigan State - sixth, Michigan - fourteenth, Indiana - twenty-one, Wisconsin - twenty-eighth and Penn State - twenty-ninth.  Laura Docherty ran to a ninth place finish at 2012 Big Tens and four of those runners have since graduated.

St. Thomas men finished second at MIAC in 2012. They are ranked sixth overall in the region behind St. Olaf (first), Carleton (fifth) and ahead of St. Johns (eighth). St. Ben's women finished fifth at MIAC in 2012. There are four MIAC women's teams ranked in the top ten in the regional poll. They include Carleton (second), St. Olaf (third), St. Benedict (fourth) and St. Thomas (eighth).

Rebecca Hare finished fourth at MIAC in 2012 as a sophomore.  She went on to finish thirteenth at Regions and 133rd at Nationals in 2012.  John Subialka was the tenth place finisher at the MIAC meet in 2012.  He was the conference champion in the 10,000 Meters on the track last spring.

Martin Luther men finished fourth out of eight teams at the 2012 UMAC Championships.  North Central women finished third in the same meet last year.  The only UMAC team in the regional rankings is St. Scholastica women led by prohibitive conference favorite Chelsea Johnson, and they are ranked fifth in the region.

Here are the Conference Championship Meet Websites:

Good luck!

The fantasy contest question from last week was: Will 18 or more runners at the Anoka Grey Ghost run faster than Bill Andberg's (at the time) world age-best 18:33 5k as a 65 year old? The answer was no.  Five players answered correctly and Lori Anne Schwiesow is now in first place with 23 points.  Dimitri Drekonja has 22 and Pat Foley is tied with Mary Varney for third with 21.  No one answered the Photo ID question correctly last week, so there were no extra points awarded. The handsome gentleman is none other than Bill Andberg.  In one picture he is talking with Emily Lanin.

Photo ID
Guess we have to go with a younger demographic, so we have a high school photo of this week's "mystery man."  He's just won the Swain Invitational in Duluth.  He would go on to become an Olympian, among his many accomplishments, and he'll be involved in the sport this weekend in his present job.Who is he and who is he shaking hands with?  Hint on that.  The place where the meet was held is named after him.  
Photo from the collection of Gene Niemi

The 2013 Pick Ten standings are as follows: Mike Henderson leads with 152 points, followed by Jesse Schoen with 136. Patrick Eastman is third with 132 points.

For full standings of both contests, please visit DtB Fantasy Corner.

No comments: