Third Annual thebowl.challenge: And they're off!!
The Most Wonderful Time of the Year began in earnest last night, as Utah got a mid-second-half rally to go up comfortably and then weathered a late-second-half rally from Navy to hold on for the win (SOC forthcoming all the time coming from Jeff). If you went to bed a little after midnight when Utah got up 35-25 with a minute and a half left (though why would you, if you stayed up that late anyway?) you missed a semi-wild finish, as the Middies threw (I know!) a 58-yard TD pass and recovered the onside kick with :50 left. Unfortunately lightning didn't strike twice for QB Kaipo-Noa Kaheaku-Enhada (cut-and-paste, bitches), as he threw a pick on Navy's second play after the recovery. Utah scrolled through their plays, selected "QB Kneel," and the game was over.
It took a while for it to happen, but the offensive shootout everyone predicted really got going in the second half, after an opening 30 minutes that only netted 17 points. After the mistake-riddled first half, the teams combined for 50 points in the second. I don't know why Utah spent the entire first half in their "we're playing a 1AA school" offense; it stands to reason that the Utes could have won comfortably if they had bombed away all game on Navy's miserable secondary, yet Utah only threw the ball like 6 or 7 times in the first half. When they got down 17-7 and Kyle Wittingham deemed it appropriate to actually open up the offense, yards and points came in bunches. In the end, this turned out to be a remarkably competitive game, as Utah outgained Navy 451-438, and yards per play averaged out to a 6.3 to 6.1 advantage for the Utes.
This is a roundabout way to say that Kristin is completely insane for having picked Utah with 32 confidence points. When I brought up the fact that she is currently in first place, her comments, in order, were, "you know I just randomly pick things," "well, I always get off to a good start," and "I really don't know what I'm doing." I'm sure we all feel better about ourselves now. Anyway, almost everyone started the season by treading lightly, as 21 of our MWB record-breaking 33 entrants picked the Utes to win, but only five people had more than 10-point confidence in it, and 12 of the 21 had a confidence level of 4 or less. Fred and Schill, who always have off-puttingly similar picks, each picked Navy to win with 25 confidence points. Oops. The table, in part, is below, and I still haven't figured out how to put a table in here and NOT have a friggin' half-page worth of nothing in front of it. Ah well. It's bowl season!!1!
|1||Charlie Weiss Cat||Kristin||1-0||496||32|
|2||Football in the Groin||J. Morgan||1-0||503||25|
|3||The Dur's picks = FAIL||J. Wise||1-0||504||24|
|6||Simply the Vest||Jeff||1-0||518||10|
|7||Joes defends hate crimes||The Dur||1-0||519||9|
|8||Do me, I'm gay||Todd||1-0||520||8|
|11||The Thunder||S. Lawrence||1-0||525||3|
|13||The Eye of Sauron||ADAM!!1!||1-0||527||1|
Aaaaand that's 15 people. There are five more people who picked Utah and had a confidence level of 1, and they are: my dad; James; Mike, Joanna's husband; Kevin; and Scooter. I'm trying to keep the table down to a brief 15, and you guys are screwing me with your similar picks.