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Closest to the Pin Contest Returns This Week

With the Cat’s 2010-11 season officially kicking-off against Bucknell on November 12, it’s once again time to fire-up our Closest to the Pin Contest. Andy ’06 is our reigning champion.

On Wednesday we'll open up the window for VUHoops readers to post their predictions for the Bucknell game (please don't leave your predictions on this post!)

Inspired by our VUHoops Hall of Fame balloting over the summer, we have secured some great prizes for our contest winners. They are certain to be a focal point of any office, man-cave or ladies' lair (well, maybe not the latter). Here’s what this year’s Closest to the Pin Contest winners will receive:

First Place: Paul Arizin signed and framed 11x14 photo with certificate of authenticity. Arizin was arguably the most storied of all Nova basketball players, a member of the Basketball Hall of Fame, and selected as one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA history.

Second Place: Ed Pinckney signed 8x10 photo from 1985 NCAA Championship Game with certificate of authenticity. "E-Z Ed" was named the 1985 NCAA Tournament’s Most Outstanding Player after leading Villanova to its only NCAA title, defeating Patrick Ewing’s Georgetown Hoyas in the championship game forever known as "The Perfect Upset."

Third Place: Kerry Kittles signed 8x10 photo with certificate of authenticity. Kerry holds Villanova’s records for most points scored (2,243) and steals (277). He was the 8th pick in the 1996 NBA Draft and went on to a distinguished, albeit injury-shortened, eight-year NBA career with the Nets and Clippers, averaging 14.1 PPG.

Contest Logistics & Rules

• Readers should use a consistent User Profile (i.e., user name) throughout the contest.

• Approximately 48 hours before game time, we’ll open the window for readers’ predictions.

• The window will close promptly at tip-off

• Readers are allowed only one prediction for each game

• Predictions that duplicate a prior predication from another reader are not permitted. On a best-efforts basis, we will identify "dupes" before game time and adjust the reader’s prediction to reflect the closest available score available at the time of discovery of the dupe that preserves the reader’s intended margin of victory.

• There will be three "Closest to the Pin" winners for each game awarded- gold, silver and bronze medals. Winners will be determined without regard to whether the contestant picked the winning team (we don’t want to tempt a Nova fan to improve their chances of winning by voting against the Cats) based on the smallest absolute difference between the predicted scores and the actual scores. For example, for Nova’s 2009 win over Ole Miss (VU 79- OM 67), Andy ’06 predicted a score of 81-67 and won the gold medal winner with combined absolute difference of 2 points (i.e., [ABS (79-81)] + [ABS (67-67)]. In the case of a tie for any of a gold, silver or bronze category for an individual game, at least one gold, silver and bronze medal will be awarded and duplicate medals will be awarded to each reader in the tie.

• Points will be associated with medals as follows:

- November Games (warm-up): Bulls-eye = 5 points; Gold (non-bulls-eye) =2.5 pts; Silver = 1.5 pts; Bronze = 0.5 pts.

- December - March Games (except Rivalry Games below): Bulls-eye = 10 points; Gold (non-bulls-eye) =5 pts; Silver = 3pts; Bronze = 1pt.

- Rivalry Games (Dec 3 vs. St. Joe's, Jan 29 vs. Georgetown, Feb 12 vs. Pittsburgh, and Feb 21 vs. Syracuse): Bulls-eye = 15 points; Gold (non-bulls-eye) =7.5 pts; Silver = 4.5 pts; Bronze = 1.5 pts.

• Points accumulate beginning with the Bucknell game on November 12 and ending with the final regular season game, on March 5, against Pittsburgh.

• A leader board will be published after each game.

Winners: The three readers with the most cumulative points will take the first, second and third place prizes. In the event of a tie, the three winners will be determined through predetermined tie breakers. The first tie breaker will be the number of times the contestants won medals over the course of the season, without regard to type. If there is still a tie, the next series of individual tie breakers will be the smallest absolute point difference between the predicted scores and the actual scores of the March 5th Pitt game (tie breaker 2), January 29 Georgetown game (tie breaker 3), December 3rd St. Joe’s game (tie breaker 4), February 21st Syracuse game (tie breaker 5), and the February 5th West Virginia game (tie breaker 6. If there is still a tie, the winner will be determined through a coin flip by Ed ’77.

Prizes: See above. The first place winner has the option of swapping the first place prize for either of the second or third place prizes. The runner-up has the option of swapping the second place prize for the third place prize. The second runner up gets whatever’s left!