Hello! Welcome to Play The House. This is a totally new and original feature, so let me start with the most boring part possible of any game, and that is explaining the rules.
Every Friday in this column, I will be posting statistical predictions for the coming game - laying out exactly how many yards I think Michigan players will get and what I predict the final score will be. You’ll have the chance to play against me - I will be ‘the house’ - in predicting the results of the coming game.
Really, though, you’ll be competing against each other, as some of you will do a better job against me and some of you will do worse. I am the baseline - it’s your job to pick me apart better than other participants will. Sound fun yet?
Okay, so you will have three chances to get the best score possible. Once I list every statistical prediction I can make, you get to choose three predictions where you think I’m too generous or too short. Then, you guess ‘over’ or ‘under’ for each of those three. Email me your guesses - i.e., “Wilton Speight ‘Over’,” “Chris Evans ‘Under’,” & “Tarik Black ‘Over’” - to email@example.com.
If you bet ‘over’ on Wilton Speight getting 272 passing yards, and he gets 300, that’s good. If you bet ‘over’ and he gets 400, that’s really good. You’ll get points based on your positive percentage points accrued - so 300/272 is 110% (so you get ten points), but 400/272 is 147% (so you get 47 points). Obviously you want to find the predictions where I end up being most wrong.
Oh, and guesses you get wrong count against your point total. If you guessed ‘under’ in the above example, you lose that number of points.
A couple more, very important details: You will not be able to double up or triple up on one prediction. The maximum number of points you can get from any one prediction is 50, so a perfect score any given week is 150. That will limit the number of people betting on low numbers just to get high percentages.
Also, please note: I’m using the word “guesses” rather than “bets,” because this is strictly for fun and not for money purposes. We have no money. We’re broke, just like you are. It’s just emailing your guesses in and then me publishing them in a spreadsheet once the game is over.
Lastly, when you email me your statistical predictions for the game, please send me a username that you want to go by, because on Monday I will publish how everybody did against each other in a spreadsheet, and you need some way to know which one was yours. If you don’t send in a username, I’ll use the first part of your email address instead.
And let’s get through a week of this and see how popular this is, and then I’ll talk about a season-long race and points accumulation. Alright, now - here’s the fun part.
Michigan Wolverines: Pass offense
Wilton Speight: 272 passing yards
Tarik Black: 94 receiving yards
Kekoa Crawford: 47 receiving yards
Eddie McDoom: 39 receiving yards
Zach Gentry: 18 receiving yards
Grant Perry: 17 receiving yards
Tyrone Wheatley, Jr: 17 receiving yards
Ian Bunting: 12 receiving yards
Donovan Peoples-Jones: 11 receiving yards
Chris Evans: 9 receiving yards
Nate Schoenle: 6 receiving yards
Notable zeroes: John O’Korn, Brandon Peters, Maurice Ways, Nick Eubanks, Nico Collins, Oliver Martin, & Sean McKeon
Michigan Wolverines: Run offense
Chris Evans: 112 rushing yards
Karan Higdon: 104 rushing yards
Ty Isaac: 38 rushing yards
Kareem Walker: 14 rushing yards
O’Maury Samuels: 5 rushing yards
Khalid Hill: 3 rushing yards
Tru Wilson: 3 rushing yards
Notable zeroes: Henry Poggi, Kurt Taylor, Ben Mason
Score & totals
Michigan pass offense: 272 passing yards
Michigan run offense: 279 rushing yards
Michigan total offense: 551 total yards
Florida pass offense: 188 passing yards
Florida run offense: 153 rushing yards
Florida total offense: 341 total yards
Michigan: 38 points
Florida: 20 points
So - once again, send in your three guesses to firstname.lastname@example.org. Feel free to pick any three stats above. If you want to change your prediction, just reply to your first email with the updated predictions.
Your deadline is, of course, kickoff on Saturday. Any other questions you may have, please ask in the comments. Good luck.