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Join date : 2012-01-30
Age : 33
Location : Eau Claire, WI

PostSubject: Re: Predictions   Mon Apr 16, 2012 6:08 pm

I'll be releasing an epic preview/predictions post sometime the week prior to the first game. I already posted some previews and some estimates of worst-case/best-case scenarios for each team based on past results earlier this year (check down a few threads).

This week, I'll begin a weekly league release to go out Wednesday or Thursday to everyone's local media. It'll be pretty short (basically a template for what will come during the regular season every week), but it will contain a lot of the same elements as last year's weekly posts by me. Standings, playoff scenarios, what each game means for each team, and year-by-year game history (league play only). Seriously wish someone would have warned me before blowing up the old forums so I could save some of the posts, but whatever. Just means I have to re-research everyone. Again.

I'll sum up what every power ranking and prevailing thought is about the season. You can slice the league into tiers, and kind of lump everyone into two groups to make it simpler. The tiers are listed again in a previous thread, based on past results. I think that you can group the league into two parts--one group of favorites and everyone else lurking as a dark horse. (Of the other teams, I think you can split it again, because I think there are a few teams that could have long years based on their schedules).

I'll be asking coaches (8 doing it so far! 8 coaches participating in the coaches poll--not too late for the other four to join in. Call or email me!) to rank their top five teams during the season at different points. Based on past results, last year, buzz going into this year and all that other stuff that happens in my brain between marathon video game sessions, here's what I think will end up comprising the top 5...

Pioneers, Dragons, Rage, Predators, Force.

It's not that I don't think the other 7 are as good--I just see the overwhelming amount of evidence (records, scores, etc) pointing to that fact. So, if you want something nice for your bulletin board, here you go.

Rough Riders - A team that's coming together. The scrimmage tape shows a squad that physically matches up against anyone else in the league. The mental errors and turnovers will need to be fixed for them to contend this year (they had almost 5 turnovers a game last year). They play in a very good division--half their games are against the Pioneers and Dragons, so we'll see how well they can contend with two of the top teams in the Midwest.

Thunderhawks - A talented squad that couldn't put together many four-quarter games last year. Consistency will be what makes or breaks their season--too many big names on this roster to suffer through another 2-5 type year. Their division is wide open--all four teams can make a case to win it. Menomonie's is talent.

Crush - For a team fielding a good number of college-aged kids, they sure won a lot of close games last year. This year's roster is more of the same, but they should be improved after last year's effort. Like Menomonie, the division is wide open, and the Crush's case is experience in close games. (Or youthful energy or whatever--take your pick).

Giants - Their history can only carry them so far, but how many of you knew this team HOSTED a playoff game last year? Eh? Not many. They would probably win most other leagues in Wisconsin or Minnesota. I'd like to see how they adjust to their new coaching staff. I have no idea what else this team brings since I haven't heard from them all offseason, sadly. I know last year they were quite capable.

Storm/Gladiators/Spartans - They get grouped together because whichever of these teams can win the bulk of the round robin (and maybe steal a game from the Force) will be on their way to the playoffs. The Storm keep getting better, the Gladiators have some of the best players in the league at key positions and the Spartans have a track record for fast starts to the season. Storm--fix that leaky D. They have a couple of great guys on that side of the ball, but they gotta keep the scores under 30. Gladiators--stay healthy. Injuries really hurt them last season. Spartans--staying healthy is key since they have such a small roster. Talented, but there isn't a lot of depth beyond the front lines. Winning a few games to start the year will be key.

I can see the season playing out in a number of ways...but for pre-season prognostication, based on everything I've posted to this point...

Playoff locks - Pioneers, Dragons, Force. I'm not going too far out on a limb here.

Central division - I think the top two teams will make it from the central. The Rage and Predators enter the season as favorites, but as every ranking and prevailing thought indicates, all four of these teams are really close in talent. The Thunderhawks have the toughest schedule of the division's teams.

East division - Whoever emerges from the Storm/Gladiators/Spartans scrum will probably be in the playoffs. If one of those teams sweeps the other two squads, that's a .500 season on its own. Gladiators and Storm have the schedule advantage here to make the playoffs.

West division - Not saying the Giants and Rough Riders can't make it--they can--but the schedule isn't in their favor. They'll probably have to split their Pioneers/Dragons games to have a chance. The East division teams will have the schedule edge, so the pressure is already on for these clubs.

So, you're looking at two teams from each division making the playoffs in this scenario. (I love seeing my posts on bulletin boards, by the way. Nothing satisfies my inner ego quite like it, haha)
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PostSubject: Re: Predictions   Mon Apr 16, 2012 4:35 pm

I am guessing that Not_Guilty plays for the Minnesota Spartans. Just a hunch. Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: Predictions   Mon Apr 16, 2012 7:17 am

MN Spartans over Preds this fri. @ Carson Park, 7PM UNDER THE LIGHTS! 21-17
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PostSubject: Predictions   Sun Apr 15, 2012 10:56 pm

Man this board is quiet this year. We've got liven this place up a little.

Who's got some predictions? Division champs, Elite Bowl Champs, MVPs, etc.....
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