2011-’12 #BeatTheMatrix CFB Bowl Challenge

I love Bowl season.  Good games, bad games, road trips, it is all a lot of fun.  And I enjoy hosting a Bowl pick’em challenge for readers, twitter followers and lurkers to participate in #BeatTheMatrix.  By the end of the season, fans have a much better idea about winners and losers than in week 1.  It is much harder to beat everyone and be 80%+ correct.  I use the same #FARR Matrix system and coaching effect to determine the bowl game winners.  My notes on how I read the CFBMatrix history for each team and Bowl game is on the side bar.

Click Here to go to the Home Page to see the
2011 Matrix pre-season pick results for every game and conferences

To take me on in the #BeatTheMatrix Bowl Pick’em Challenge.  At the bottom the page, you can fill in your entry information.  Every game is listed, pick your winners and see how they match up versus the Matrix picks.  You can print our the entire page right before you enter to follow both sets of Bowl picks.  To win you must (1) beat the CFBMatrix picks (2) beat all other entries and (3) be over 18.  One entry per person*.

Winner will get all 4 CFBMatrix 2012 CFB Guides for Total Wins, BCS Players, Individual Games Guide and Best Bets Guide, CFBMatrix apparel and a pair of tickets to a 2012 game for your favorite CFB team (or we can put together a set of new team apparel for you).  

People that enter and are following @cfbmatrix on Twitter will be eligible for our Bowl Season Drawing where we award some #CFBMatrix stuff to one random entry for every bowl game played.

Link: Entry form for the 2011-12 #BeatTheMatrix Bowl Pick’em Challenge

OR go to the bottom of the page

OR Join our ESPN Group for online picks and tracking click here

Jan 9, 2012 Update: Leaders are at 24 & 25 wins
The Matrix picks off FARR + HC Effect are 24-10.
Check your email if you have 24 or 25 wins to submit your total points for the NCG tonight for the tied breaker

Projected Bowl Records by Conference

ACC   3 – 5 MWC  2 – 3
BIG 12   4 – 4 PAC12  5 – 2
BIG TEN     4 – 6 SEC  6 – 3
BIG EAST   3 – 2 SUN BELT  0 – 3
CONF USA   2 – 3 WAC 1 – 2
MAC   2 – 3 Indep 1 – 1
Saturday,  December 17 Visitor CFBMatrix FARR Home CFBMatrix FARR Visitor ’11 Coaching Effect Home ’11 Coaching Effect Winner Notes
2:00 PM ET Temple vs. Wyoming NEW MEXICO BOWL
61% picked Temple
 #88  #102  0  +1  Temple Really even game.  Temple, at 8-4, has the exact record as predicted with FARR to start the season.  Wyoming is +1 game coach effect.  FARR gap is only 14 spots.  Matrix taking better recruiting over better coaching but not by much.
5:30 PM ET Ohio vs. Utah State IDAHO POTATO BOWL
61% picked Utah State
#106  #103  +3  +2  Utah State Incredibly close game on Matrix paper.  Really a coin toss with near identical FARR ranks and + game effect coaching. Sticking with the slightly better FARR rank with near even coaching. The team with better coaching effect won the close one.  Interesting trend?
9:00 PM ET San Diego State vs. Louisiana-Lafayette NEW ORLEANS BOWL
78% picked San Diego State
 #81  #100  0 +4  San Diego State Too big of a recruiting gap to consider the ULL Ragin’ Cajuns to win.  They beat no one on the road with a #85FARR or better.  But this is, in essence a home game for ULL.  SDSU had the exact record as expected. Coaching effect won again over recruiting.  Another close one.
Tuesday, December 20
8:00 PM ET Florida International vs. Marshall BEEF ‘O’ BRADY’S BOWL
74% picked FIU
#87  #72  +1  +1  Marshall Even 2011 coaching effect and FARR for the Thundering Herd easily better than FIU.  Beef Bowl? Thundering Herd?  Gotta be Marshall. Said this was one of the best ML values on the Board at +170.
Wednesday, December 21
8:00 PM ET No. 18 TCU vs. Louisiana Tech  POINSETTIA BOWL
96% picked TCU
 #70  #85  0 +1  TCU No coaching advantage for either side and TCU FARR is well beyond La Tech. Watch out for Boise State Syndrome game though!
Thursday, December 22
8:00 PM ET Arizona State vs. No. 7 Boise State LAS VEGAS
91% picked Boise State
 #37  #65

(HC Fired)

 +3  Arizona State This pick really annoys me.  I don’t have any metrics for teams with fired coaches and Boise doesn’t play enough quality teams to get a trend (LSU played a tougher schedule this year than BSUs toughest games from the last 5 years).  If I didn’t know the teams and just saw the Matrix numbers, I would still stick with ASU.  No emotion of gut feelings EVER on a pick.
Saturday, December 24
8:00 PM ET Nevada vs. No. 21 Southern Miss HAWAII BOWL
74% picked Southern Miss
#96  #54  +3 0  Southern Miss This one should not be close.  Although Nevada is a +3 on the season it was against no one of the #FARR level of S. Miss.  The Matrix nailed USM win total exactly.  Even w/ a HC leaving this is a solid pick.
Monday, December 26
5:00 PM ET Missouri vs. North Carolina INDEPENDENCE BOWL
83% picked Missouri Tigers
 #35  #38  0  -3
(HC Gone)
Missouri Even if UNC retained their HC, the field adjustment factor is too great.  If at home, UNC would be the pick, but they beat no one with a FARR better than #50 on the road in ’11.  Missouri was picked to win 7 in the Matrix and that’s what they did.  Matrix likes consistency.
Tuesday, December 27
4:30 PM ET Western Michigan vs. Purdue LITTLE CAESARS BOWL
70% picked Purdue
 #101 #59 +1  +2  Purdue AQ vs Non-AQ.  Take the AQ most every time especially teams from MAC, Sun Belt, WAC and most of the MWC & Conf USA
8:00 PM ET Louisville vs. North Carolina State BELK BOWL
52% picked NC State
 #45  #34  0 -1  NC State Both teams were nearly exact to FARR expectations for 2011.  Easy pick for the Bowl on the Matrix trends.
Wednesday, December 28
4:30 PM ET Toledo vs. Air Force MILITARY BOWL
52% picked Toledo
 #82  #93  +1  0  Toledo Better FARR and even coaching numbers on the year.  Another easy Matrix pick
8:00 PM ET California vs. No. 24 Texas HOLIDAY BOWL
74% picked Texas
 #37  #13  +1  -4 Texas Tedford is terrible on the road and Brown and staff are simply terrible.  Cal beat no one in 2011 with a FARR under #27 and Texas beat no one with a FARR under #31.   Gut versus stats. Gut says Cal but sticking with stats.  I usually lose with the gut.
Thursday, December 29
5:30 PM ET Florida State vs. Notre Dame CHAMPS SPORTS BOWL
65% picked FSU
 #5  #11  -3 -3 Florida State Two HCs coming of very disappointing seasons.  Problem is Kelly is working on 3 straight and this is Fisher’s first downer.  Hot Seat for Kelly in 2012 after the Domers lose to FSU to end the season
9:00 PM ET Washington vs. No. 12 Baylor ALAMO BOWL
78% picked Baylor
 #34  #41  -2  +1 Washington Sark and the Huskies are bad on the road, but Baylor had just 4 road game and went 1-3 for a -1 coach effect.  This is a coin flip game in my reading of the Matrix trends. Bowl location will be a factor.  UW to win (close)
Friday, December 30
12:00 PM ET Brigham Young vs. Tulsa ARMED FORCES BOWL
70% picked BYU
 #60 #74  +1  +1 BYU Solid coaching in 2011 and both nearly performed as expected.  Easy pick with FARR gap at 14 in favor of BYU.
3:20 PM ET Rutgers vs. Iowa State NEW ERA BOWL
51% picked Iowa State
 #39 #71  -1 +5  Rutgers Big FARR gap. Rhoads had one of the best coaching years in CFB in 2011 but Rutgers plays the Matrix expectations very well.
6:40 PM ET Mississippi State vs. Wake Forest MUSIC CITY BOWL
87% picked Miss State
 #30  #63  0  +4  Miss State Not sure if Mullen shopping himself in a self-proclaimed “I’m on everyone’s list” (whatever ave. HC) is going to hurt MSU, but this was a team that the Matrix went 12-0 on every pre-season game pick.  Luck 13?
10:00 PM ET Iowa vs. No. 14 Oklahoma INSIGHT BOWL
88% picked Oklahoma
 #42  #9  -2  -2  Oklahoma Two HCs with equally subpar years.  For Ferentz it is #4 out of 5 years he is under coaching the Hawkeyes.  Big FARR gap and Sooners should roll if they are interest and not suffering more Boise State Syndrome
Saturday, December 31
12:00 PM ET Texas A&M vs. Northwestern TEXAS BOWL
65% picked Texas A&M
#36  #43  -4  +1  Texas A&M Northwestern is really good on the road under Fitz but just a slightly above average year.  Sherman getting the boot may be a blessing.  Matrix sticking with best FARR as usual.
2:00 PM ET Georgia Tech vs. Utah SUN BOWL
86% picked Georgia Tech
 #47  #58  +2 +4 Georgia Tech Awesome HC clash!  Both have had and just had great over coaching years.  Expecting it to likely be close but no matter, GT wins it, maybe.
56% took Illinois
 #40 #15 -3  -3  UCLA Two teams finally relieved of their chronically under performing coaches.  No one will watch this bowl unless there is money on it or you are a die-hard junkie.  Matrix takes the talent to win.
3:30 PM ET Cincinnati vs. Vanderbilt LIBERTY BOWL
57% took Vanderbilt
 #50 #61 +3 +3  Cincinnati Even coaching and recruit to win, not win to recruit.  Bearcats
7:30 PM ET Virginia vs. No. 25 Auburn Chick-fil-A
70% picked Auburn
 #57 #11 +4 -1  Auburn Talent over talent.  While London had a great year  and rising recruited talent it shouldn’t be enough if the Tigers show up to play.
Monday, January 2
12:00 PM ET No. 19 Houston vs. No. 22 Penn State TICKETCITY BOWL
57% picked Houston
 #62 #21  0  -1  Penn State While Houston was 11-1, that was the exact record expected.  The Cougar had a huge schedule and talent advantage and anything less than 11-1 was poor coaching or bad QB injury.  They have really showed me nothing new.  Taking the best FARR as it is a huge gap.
1:00 PM ET No. 20 Nebraska vs. No. 9 South Carolina CAPITAL ONE BOWL
52% picked South Carolina
 #22  #19  0 +2 South Carolina Solid bowl game!   Even FARR and good coaching.  Spurrier did the best job of his career this year with his talent.
1:00 PM ET No. 17 Michigan State vs. No. 16 Georgia OUTBACK BOWL
71% picked Georgia
 #31  #6  +2 -1  Georgia Two solidly coached teams in 2011.  Talent in UGA much better and they win if they show up.  UGA and Richt have a bad habit of tanking bowl games since the beat the crap out of another over ranked non-AQ in Hawaii
1:00 PM ET Ohio State vs. Florida GATOR BOWL presented by
bad coaching
77% picked Ohio State
 #7  #8  -4
Interim HC
-4  Ohio State This is just two big names going at it.  Time to retool for 2012.  OSU kids playing to impress Meyer and Muschamp did what he did with the HC and staff at Texas.  Underperformed.
5:00 PM ET No. 10 Wisconsin vs. No. 5 Oregon ROSE BOWL
79% picked Oregon
 #28 #16  +3 +1  Oregon Simple FARR stats for the Ducks.  In the last 3 years when playing a team with a better FARR rating they are 4-4.  When playing a team with a worse FARR rating 29-2. This one is over before its over.
8:30 PM ET No. 4 Stanford vs. No. 3 Oklahoma State FIESTA BOWL
71% picked Oklahoma State
 #26 #32  +2 +3 Stanford I don’t like this Matrix pick much.  OSU was just so good in that last game against a Sooner team that should have at least kept it competitive.  But the FARR says Stanford.  Luck + emotional letdown of the BCS NC diss = Winner for the Matrix 🙂
Tuesday, January 3
8:30 PM ET No. 13 Michigan vs. No. 11 Virginia Tech MAYHEM SUGAR BOWL
82% picked Michigan
#11 #18 -2 0 Michigan The Hokies are a rock on the road in the ACC but they didn’t do anything special this year.  Played one solid and got beat twice.  Michigan is a solid team.  Beat thrice.
Wednesday, January 4
8:30 PM ET No. 23 West Virginia vs. No. 15 Clemson ORANGE BOWL
83% picked Clemson
 #29 #23 -1 +1 Clemson ACC>Big East #23 FARR > #29 FARR.  +1>-1 coaching effect 2011.  Tigers
Friday, January 6
8:00 PM ET No. 8 Kansas State vs. No. 6 Arkansas COTTON BOWL
82% picked Arkansas
 #77 #25 +7 +2 Hogs Single greatest season against the Matrix.  Truly amazing but they got drawn to play a very well coached team as well.  FARR gap is huge and Hogs should blow them out but can’t say enough about Snyder this year.  Magic.
Saturday, January 7
1:00 PM ET Southern Methodist vs. Pittsburgh BBVA COMPASS BOWL
64% picked SMU
 #66 #39 -1 -2 Pitt Too big a FARR gap here.  Both HCs coached down this year.  Pitt had more than their share of injuries.  AQ  over non AQ nearly every time.
Sunday, January 8
9:00 PM ET Arkansas State vs. Northern Illinois Danica Patrick Bowl
56% picked N. Illinois
#90 #84 +8
HC Gone
 +3  NIU This would be a lean to Ark State but +8 games just went to Ole Miss.  Magic year for Ark State but NIU was pretty darn good as well.  Both team won in blow outs and squeekers.
Monday, January 9
59% picked Alabama
 #1  #3  -1  +1 Alabama I hope the Matrix is wrong here.  LSU just completed one of the, if not the toughest, 13 game undefeated schedule ever.  Win or lose, they are my 2011 Natty Champ.  Bama played no one OOC and LSU beat the PAC12 and Big Champ away from Baton Rouge.  Both teams are awesome away from home and Matrix going with the better recruiter by a hair – BAMA

Make your picks from the drop -down menus below and submit for the #BeatTheMatrix 2011 Bowl Challenge

*Disclaimer for the #BeatTheCFBMatrix Bowl Pick'em Challenge
- No purchase necessary.
- There can be only one winner of the 2011 #BeatTheMatrix Bowl Challenge.  The winner is determined by the people that run the CFBMatrix, collegefootballmatrix.com and @CFBMatrix websites and Twitter accounts.
- All decisions and awards are final
- Anyone over 18 is eligible to participate in the Challenge.
- Odds of winning are based on the number of total entries and the success of the CFBMatrix system picks.
- The Challenge opens for picks on Dec 6th, 2011 and closes 1 hour before kick off of the 2011 CFB Bowl season on December 17th, 2011 in the New Mexico Bowl
- Only one entry per Twitter account and follower of @CFBMatrix
- The winner of the contest must have more picks right than the CFBMatrix bowl picks as listed above and beat out all other contestants for number of games picked correctly
- If there is a winner, it will be determined after the final bowl game is played January 9th, 2012.
- The winner of the Challenge will be posted on this page by January 15, 2012

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