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How To Set Up a Football Pool

Setting Up a Football Pool

There are several ways of how to set up a football pool, including the three most famous methods: setting up a Superbowl Pool, an NFL Playoffs Pool and a College Football Bowl Pool. I’m going to discuss the latter two today and return to the subject of a Superbowl Pool tomorrow. We’ve discussed the Last Man Standing Pools before, but all three of these are entirely different. My version of a Superbowl Pool might be different than the mainstream, so the NFL Playoff Pool I discuss below may be the Superbowl Pool you’re thinking of.

Since my favorite kind of football pool is the College Football Confidence Pool, let’s start there.

College Football Bowl Pool

The Bowl Season Confidence Pool appeals to my need for complexity and overkill in a good football bet or fantasy football challenge, so you’re going to love this one. The college football pool gets more complicated every year, since there seem to be more bowl games every season. The great thing about this gamble is that you have to pick the winner of every single bowl game in the season, from the Gaylord Hotels Music City Bowl to the BCS Championship Game.

Set the Wager

First off, collect a group of football fans to join in the pool. Then set an entry fee. $10 or $20 is pretty common, so this is pretty much a penny ante bet. This pool is winner-take-all, so if you can get 10 people to join, you’re playing for $100 to $200.

Get a Bowl Schedule

Next, get a bowl schedule or make out a bowl schedule. All you need is every single bowl game, including the two teams, the name of the bowl game and the date it’s scheduled all on one piece of paper. It’s best if you have a blank or a line next to each bowl game, but that’s not necessary.

Copy off a copy of this bowl schedule for each team in the pool. Hand them out and have each person write down their pick to win each bowl game. But it doesn’t stop there.

Rank the Games According to Confidence

You’ll need to have counted the number of bowl games, because you want everyone to assign a point value to each bowl game on the schedule. This number indicates a person’s confidence that the team they picked is going to win that game.

For instance, there were 34 bowl games in the 2009-2010 college bowl season. That means you would have 34 games to rate in order of confidence. You have one point value between 1 and 34 to assign to each game, in ascending order of confidence.

Confidence Pool Picks

So you would assign one bowl game 34 points, one bowl game 33 points, one bowl game 32 points, and so on, all the way to a 1 point pick. The game you have the most confidence in the winner, you assign a 34 to. The game you have the least confidence in, you assign a 1 to.

Therefore, if you were absolutely confident Alabama would beat Texas, you might pick Alabama and assign them a 34. But if you thought Texas would win, but had very little confidence they would, you would assign a 1 to that game.

As the college bowl season continues, you simply keep track of everyones picks and keep score as the game happens. Whichever teams that win, they get the point value assigned to that team. If you picked a loser, you get a 0 for that game. Whoever has the most points at the end of the bowl season wins.

NFL Playoff Pool – Superbowl Pool

The NFL Playoff Pool goes just like an NCAA March Madness Pool. You fill out a bracket with who you think will win each game, then assign a point value for each successful pick. Generally, the later you go into the postseason, the more a win is worth. I prefer to see point values double with each successive week, so there are more potential points at stake late in the Superbowl Pool.

Get an Blank NFL Playoff Bracket

Print off or make your own blank NFL playoff bracket, including the seeding for each of the 12 teams and where they start in the playoffs. The eight wildcard teams should occupy the spot in the first set of brackets, while the four teams with byes should be placed on the second set of brackets, to indicate they will play in week 2 of the playoffs.

Pass Out Brackets – Fill Out Brackets

Pass out a copy of the bracket to everyone in the playoff pool, but not before they pay their entry fee. (Once again, the entry fee is probably going to be $10 to $20. Some get bigger.) Have everyone fill out a bracket with their picks.

NFL Playoff Pool Scoring System

In this Superbowl Playoffs Bracket, each win in the Wildcard Week will be worth 1 point, for a total of 4 points up for grabs. In the Division Playoff Round (NFL Playoffs Week 2), you’ll have four more games, each worth 2 points. Therefore, a total of 8 points are up for grabs in Week 2.

In the NFC and AFC Championship Game week (NFL Playoffs Week 3), each win will be worth 4 points, for a total of 8 potential points. Finally, in the Superbowl, if you pick the Superbowl winner, you receive 8 points. In all, there should be a total of 28 points that you can accumulate, if you pick perfect in all 11 games.

NFL Playoff Pool Point Value

  • Week 1 – Wildcard Playoff Games = 1 point per win
  • Week 2 – Divisional Playoff Games = 2 points per win
  • Week 3 – AFC and NFC Championship Games = 4 pts per win
  • Week 4 – The Superbowl Game = 8 pts per win

If you pick the right team, you get the points. If you pick the wrong team, you get zero points. You’ll have to be careful when picking your Superbowl teams, because if they get beat out immediately, you have no chance of gaining points in later weeks. So when you set up your football pool, choose wisely.

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This entry was posted on Thursday, January 14th, 2010 at 10:58 pmand is filed under College Football, Football. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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