Quick Hits: Predicting the first-round scores

The story goes, one day on a long ride to a playoff game at Thiel (which tells you how long ago this happened), Pat and Keith decided to pass the time by guessing not just the winner of each first-round playoff game, but the score. And there was born the expectations game: Do we expect a close game? A high-scoring game? A blowout? Does everyone agree on who will win? Those are the factors worth looking at.

Keith McMillan, Ryan Tipps, Pat Coleman, Adam Turer, Frank Rossi and Greg Thomas each take their guesses at scores for each first-round game. Plus, we have Logan Hansen’s odds to advance and at the bottom, a widget you can manipulate to get details on all 32 teams and compare teams head-to-head in a multitude of categories.

— Pat Coleman ( photo)

Mary Hardin-Baylor bracket
Keith’s take: UMHB 34, Hardin-Simmons 10
Ryan’s take: UMHB 31, Hardin-Simmons 14
Pat’s take: UMHB 34, Hardin-Simmons 7
Adam’s take: UMHB 38, Hardin-Simmons 17
Frank’s take: UMHB 44, Hardin-Simmons 10
Greg’s take: UMHB 35, Hardin-Simmons 10
Hansen odds to advance: UMHB, 93.7%
Strong consensus for a Mary Hardin-Baylor win, of around five scores to two.
Keith’s take: Berry 34, Maryville 10
Ryan’s take: Berry 34, Maryville 13
Pat’s take: Berry 35, Maryville 10
Adam’s take: Berry 31, Maryville 13
Frank’s take: Berry 37, Maryville 30
Greg’s take: Berry 28, Maryville 20
Hansen odds to advance: Berry, 70.8%
The first meeting was 38-3 and the second meeting isn’t expected to be much different.
Keith’s take: St. John’s 56, Martin Luther 0
Ryan’s take: St. John’s 52, Martin Luther 7
Pat’s take: St. John’s 62, Martin Luther 8
Adam’s take: St. John’s 63, Martin Luther 0
Frank’s take: St. John’s 54, Martin Luther 7
Greg’s take: St. John’s 58, Martin Luther 7
Hansen odds to advance: St. John’s, 100.0%
 St. John’s in a runaway.
Keith’s take: Whitworth 21, C-M-S 17
Ryan’s take: Whitworth 45, C-M-S 6
Pat’s take: Whitworth 24, C-M-S 6
Adam’s take: Whitworth 35, C-M-S 3
Frank’s take: Whitworth 49, C-M-S 14
Greg’s take: Whitworth 31, C-M-S 10
Hansen odds to advance: Whitworth, 92.1%
Wide range of scores by which Whitworth is expected to advance.
UW-Whitewater bracket
Keith’s take: UW-Whitewater 49, Eureka 6
Ryan’s take: UW-Whitewater 52, Eureka 10
Pat’s take: UW-Whitewater 58, Eureka 12
Adam’s take: UW-Whitewater 42, Eureka 6
Frank’s take: UW-Whitewater 41, Eureka 3
Greg’s take: UW-Whitewater 48, Eureka 7
Hansen odds to advance: UW-Whitewater, 99.9%
Whitewater by a lot.
Keith’s take: Trine 27, St. Norbert 17
Ryan’s take: St. Norbert 24, Trine 17
Pat’s take: Trine 42, St. Norbert 16
Adam’s take: St. Norbert 20, Trine 17
Frank’s take: Trine 37, St. Norbert 27
Greg’s take: Trine 28, St. Norbert 27
Hansen odds to advance: Trine, 70.5%
A split decision favoring Trine, but by varying margins.
Keith’s take: North Central 35, Hanover 14
Ryan’s take: North Central 48, Hanover 7
Pat’s take: North Central 51, Hanover 14
Adam’s take: North Central 56, Hanover 13
Frank’s take: North Central 47, Hanover 10
Greg’s take: North Central 40, Hanover 17
Hansen odds to advance: North Central, 98.3%
North Central advancing easily.
Keith’s take: Bethel 28, Wartburg 17
Ryan’s take: Bethel 31, Wartburg 23
Pat’s take: Wartburg 24, Bethel 13
Adam’s take: Bethel 28, Wartburg 17
Frank’s take: Wartburg 27, Bethel 24
Greg’s take: Wartburg 17, Bethel 14
Hansen odds to advance: Bethel, 67.2%
A pure 50-50 split decision which is likely headed for a recount.
Mount Union bracket
Keith’s take: Mount Union 49, Denison 21
Ryan’s take: Mount Union 63, Denison 7
Pat’s take: Mount Union 28, Denison 10
Adam’s take: Mount Union 49, Denison 20
Frank’s take: Mount Union 67, Denison 3
Greg’s take: Mount Union 42, Denison 14
Hansen odds to advance: Mount Union, 98.7%
Mount Union wins in a day which is a struggle for the Denison offense.
Keith’s take: Centre 28, W&J 27
Ryan’s take: Centre 38, W&J 31
Pat’s take: W&J 34, Centre 24
Adam’s take: Centre 31, W&J 24
Frank’s take: Centre 37, W&J 34
Greg’s take: Centre 28, W&J 24
Hansen odds to advance: Centre, 76.7%
Non-unanimous consensus that Centre wins one of the best games of the day.
Keith’s take: John Carroll 41, Randolph-Macon 17
Ryan’s take: John Carroll 49, Randolph-Macon 13
Pat’s take: John Carroll 42, Randolph-Macon 14
Adam’s take: John Carroll 42, Randolph-Macon 16
Frank’s take: John Carroll 40, Randolph-Macon 13
Greg’s take: John Carroll 35, Randolph-Macon 17
Hansen odds to advance: John Carroll, 85.4%
John Carroll winning easily.
Keith: Muhlenberg 23, Delaware Valley 20
Ryan: Muhlenberg 28, Delaware Valley 27
Pat: Muhlenberg 34, Delaware Valley 17
Adam: Muhlenberg 35, Delaware Valley 32
Frank: Muhlenberg 34, Delaware Valley 31
Greg: Muhlenberg 31, Delaware Valley 28
Hansen odds to advance: Muhlenberg, 56.0%, the lowest odds of any predicted winner.
Unanimous picks of road teams are rare, but note that five of the six pick margins of three or less.
Brockport bracket
Keith’s take: Brockport 35, Framingham St. 7
Ryan’s take: Brockport 49, Framingham St. 10
Pat’s take: Brockport 48, Framingham St. 10
Adam’s take: Brockport 38, Framingham St. 6
Frank’s take: Brockport 42, Framingham St. 10
Greg’s take: Brockport 42, Framingham St. 13
Hansen odds to advance: Brockport, 97.7%
Brockport moving on in the style of their choosing.
Keith’s take: Husson 10, RPI 9
Ryan’s take: RPI 23, Husson 21
Pat’s take: RPI 30, Husson 17
Adam’s take: RPI 24, Husson 20
Frank’s take: RPI 30, Husson 27
Greg’s take: RPI 20, Husson 10
Hansen odds to advance: RPI, 62.6%
RPI in a non-unanimous game that’s generally expected to be close.
Keith’s take: Frostburg St. 42, Western N.E. 14
Ryan’s take: Frostburg St. 42, Western N.E. 10
Pat’s take: Frostburg St. 45, Western N.E. 10
Adam’s take: Frostburg St. 45, Western N.E. 10
Frank’s take: Frostburg St. 44, Western N.E. 14
Greg’s take: Frostburg St. 38, Western N.E. 7
Hansen odds to advance: Frostburg State, 92.4%
Frostburg advancing with ease.
Keith’s take: Johns Hopkins 42, MIT 10
Ryan’s take: Johns Hopkins 45, MIT 7
Pat’s take: Johns Hopkins 45, MIT 16
Adam’s take: Johns Hopkins 43, MIT 14
Frank’s take: Johns Hopkins 35, MIT 17
Greg’s take: Johns Hopkins 38, MIT 10
Hansen odds to advance: Johns Hopkins, 96.8%
 Johns Hopkins winning the brainiac bowl.

We invite you to add your predictions in the comments below, or tweet at us at @D3Keith, @NewsTipps, @d3football, @adamturer, @frankrossi and @wallywabash. Download the Around the Nation podcast on Mondays, where Pat and Keith review the picks and the highlights from the weekend’s playoff games.


Around the Nation Podcast 224: Prelude to a bunch of barnburners

If the second round of the playoffs is your big turkey dinner with all the trimmings and every side you could want, then the first round is like that tray of vegetables and dip that you end up nibbling on while you wait. You can smell that turkey, the stuffings, the greens, the bread, but you have to wait.

We all have to wait. And now, not only do we have to wait, but we’re hungry.

Pat Coleman and Keith McMillan get you all lined up for Saturday’s first-round games, with the usual previews from Adam Turer and Frank Rossi. Plus, we hear one Division III quarterback remind us exactly why it’s so important to be able to run the ball in the playoffs, and we’ll talk with Mark Baltz, the Division III coordinator of officials. He tells us how officiating crews get selected and what type of evaluations they go through in the playoffs, not to mention how far they can travel. Plus, there’s a well-known former NFL player who is now a Division III football head coach, and Andrew DiDonato, the head coach at Grove City, has some advice for Earlham and all those who are trying to pick a football program up off the mat.

That and more in the Around the Nation podcast. The Around the Nation Podcast is a regular conversation between Pat Coleman and Keith McMillan and guests covering the wide range of Division III football.

Hit play, or subscribe to get this podcast on your mobile device.
Full episode:

You can subscribe to the Around the Nation Podcast in Apple Podcasts, and many other places. You can also get this and any of our future Around the Nation podcasts automatically by subscribing to this RSS feed:

Link: Our full NCAA playoff coverage
Mentioned in the podcast: Around the Nation on officials: It’s a thankless job, but these folks do it

Photo: Conor Davies running with the ball, trying to escape a Union safety. (RPI athletics photo)

Theme music: DJmentos.


Quick Hits: Clinching time

We detail in the game day podcast how many teams might clinch on Saturday. Here our crew will tackle the game of the week, potential upsets, and tell you who might clinch today aside from, say, Mount Union.

Our regular crew is Keith McMillan, Ryan Tipps, Pat Coleman, Adam Turer and Frank Rossi. Our sixth spot each week goes to a guest prognosticator, and this week’s is Sean Greene, who does play-by-play for Wesley football games on WDEL radio as well as Wesley’s video stream.

— Pat Coleman

Which game is the Week 10 game of the week?

Keith’s take: No. 10 North Central at No. 13 Illinois Wesleyan. I’ll go with the Titans for a second straight week instead of E8, NJAC clashes and an NCC win could have a cascade effect.
Ryan’s take: No. 10 North Central at No. 13 Illinois Wesleyan. I think IWU should be ranked higher, and I’ve got them pegged to win.
Pat Coleman
Pat’s take: No. 10 North Central at No. 13 Illinois Wesleyan. I’m going to assume most of my colleagues here have good reasons, so read theirs.
Adam Turer
Adam’s take: No. 10 North Central at No. 13 Illinois Wesleyan. I think the Cardinals are the more talented team, but the Titans have been the more impressive team so far. With a win, IWU can clinch its first outright CCIW title since 2009.
Frank Rossi
Frank’s take: Cortland at No. 3 Brockport. I explain why in the ATN Friday podcast.
Sean’s take: No. 10 North Central at No. 13 Illinois Wesleyan. IWU clinches the CCIW Pool A with a win, while the loser gets a potential Pool C-crushing second loss. Doesn’t get much better in Week 10.

Which Top 25 team is most likely to get upset?

Keith’s take: No. 4 UW-Whitewater. UW-Stevens Point beat Oshkosh last week, but this only happens if Warhawks relax after clinching a playoff spot.
Ryan’s take: No. 14 Trine. I think the Thunder have floated high up the poll, and with the way the MIAA has been this year, another shakeup would fit right in.
Pat Coleman
Pat’s take: No. 18 Salisbury. Wesley has had Salisbury’s number in recent years, so hopefully they lead by enough that a missed PAT won’t matter.
Adam Turer
Adam’s take: No. 18 Salisbury. Wesley may take its frustration of missing the playoffs for the first time since 2004 out on the Sea Gulls.
Frank Rossi
Frank’s take: No. 14 Trine. Yo, Adrian. Your inconsistent season has shown you know how to score plenty. Trine seems fatigued, and here’s your chance to knock them out.
Sean’s take: No. 18 Salisbury. In 13 years calling Wesley games, they are 11-1 against their Route 13 rivals. Curious to see if Wesley’s scheme changes against the triple-option after the death of head coach/defensive coordinator Mike Drass.

Which non-purple team clinches an automatic bid this weekend?

Keith’s take: The Yellow Jackets from Randolph-Macon, although The Game is more fun with something to play for.
Ryan’s take: Eureka. The Red Devils haven’t gotten much national love yet, so I’m sure they’re itching to show their stuff in the postseason.
Pat Coleman
Pat’s take: Brockport. No purple in them Golden Eagles.
Adam Turer
Adam’s take: Randolph-Macon. The streaking Yellow Jackets just need to get past Ferrum to make this season one of the least wacky in recent ODAC memory.
Frank Rossi
Frank’s take: Husson. Gallaudet’s SOS is less than .200. The thought that they could beat the Eagles is highly unlikely in the ECFC.
Sean’s take: Claremont-Mudd-Scripps.No violet, lavender, mauve, or lilac to be found in the shadow of Mount Baldy. The Cardinal and Gold-clad Stags win the SCIAC for the first time since 1987.

Which game are you following that nobody else on this panel is following?

Keith’s take: Amherst and Trinity (Conn.). Because I’m endlessly fascinated by projecting how the NESCAC’s best would fare if it chose to participate in the playoffs.
Ryan’s take: Wash. U. at Millikin. Neither are going to the playoffs, but the Bears continue to show why they belong in the CCIW.
Pat Coleman
Pat’s take: Middlebury at Hamilton. The Rocking Chair has been won by Middlebury more times than I care to count, but some inconsistent results just have me wondering if the Continentals might take it home.
Adam Turer
Adam’s take: Defiance at Earlham. I probably won’t be the only one. But if the Quakers can’t defeat winless Defiance this week, I don’t know when the record-breaking losing streak will end.
Frank Rossi
Frank’s take: Potentially up to 16 of them in nine East Region conferences and Pool B in our “In the Huddle” D3BlitzER whiparound show, noon to 4 p.m. ET on the D3Huddle Facebook channel.
Sean’s take: Rowan at Montclair State. The 6-2 Red Hawks could still play into the East Regional Rankings which would benefit Frostburg or Salisbury for seeding or a Pool C bid.

Who will still be tied for first in the ARC after this week’s games?

Keith’s take: Simpson and Wartburg.
Ryan’s take: Wartburg and Dubuque. Simpson has been hanging on too closely in games this season to remain with the leaders.
Pat Coleman
Pat’s take: Simpson and Wartburg. Wartburg won’t have much trouble with archrival Luther and Simpson has surprised all season, so now we should expect the win.
Adam Turer
Adam’s take: Dubuque and Wartburg. The Knights take care of Luther with ease at home, while the Spartans get past Simpson on the road. That sets up a winner-take-all showdown in Week 11.
Frank Rossi
Frank’s take: Wartburg and Simpson. Simpson has played somewhat better defense than Dubuque this season. And Wartburg is playing a much lesser opponent.
Sean’s take: Wartburg and Dubuque. Wartburg should conquer the Norse, but Dubuque won’t need to rely on a Simpson missed PAT this year to stay on top (painful topic for Wesley fans).

Who goes into a rivalry game on a down note?

Keith’s take: Hard for me not to say Cortland here, although the Red Dragons can surprise us all.
Ryan’s take: Gettysburg. The Bullets have a very tough Muhlenberg team before taking the field against century-long rival F&M for the Lincoln Trophy.
Pat Coleman
Pat’s take: Cortland. A super down note that’s probably included minus-40 yards rushing.
Adam Turer
Adam’s take: Hanover. The Panthers could play rival Franklin for the Victory Bell and the HCAC title in Week 11. But first, they have to get past a hot Rose-Hulman team. The Fightin’ Engineers have more recent big-game experience.
Frank Rossi
Frank’s take: Amherst. Trinity has steadily regained traction after a stunning loss to Williams. The Bantams nip the Mammoths before The Biggest Little Game in America next week vs. the Ephs.
Sean’s take: Carnegie Mellon. While they’re studying to cram Case Western Reserve’s Pool C dreams in the Academic Bowl, Westminster could pin a fourth demerit on the Tartans’ report card.

We invite you to add your predictions in the comments below. Download the Around the Nation podcast on Fridays, where Pat and Keith review the Quick Hits that were prescient, and the Quick Misses that were terribly off base.