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Closest to the Pin Recap

Your participation raised $3,415 for Villanova Men’s Basketball.

The Closest to the Pin Contest returned for its seventh season in December and covered Villanova's nine home conference games plus its January 29 out-of-conference game vs. Virginia at Wells Fargo Center.

In addition to the prize awarded to the contestant earning the most points over the ten-game contest, a contribution of $5 will be made to Villanova Men's Basketball for each prediction posted, up to a maximum $500 per game and $5,000 for the Contest.

SB Nation has no responsibility for this aspect of the contest; the contribution will be funded entirely by the VUHoops staff., and was a cumulative competition consisting of the home BIG EAST games.

Our past Champions are:

  • 2015-16 Season: The Arch
  • 2014-15 Season: drpainosaurus
  • 2013-14 Season: PacADAM
  • 2011-12 Season: Dom & Scott0220 (Tie)
  • 2010-11 Season: Regred
  • 2009-10 Season: Andy'06

Contestants predict the final score prior to tip-off of each game. Points will be awarded to the three contestants with the smallest absolute difference between their predicted scores and the actual final score of the game without regard to whether the contestant correctly picked the winning team. The contestant coming closest to the final score earns three (3) points, second closest earns two (2) points and third closest earns one (1) point. If the player with the most accurate prediction picks the score exactly (i.e., a "Hole-in-One"), he or she earns three (3) bonus points (i.e., 6 points in total). There can be more than three contestants earning points in the event of one or more ties.

The contestant accumulating the most points over the ten-game contest will win bragging rights as this season's best prognosticator among the faithful, plus a $50 gift certificate from that can be used toward the purchase of Villanova gear.

About Our 2016-17 Champion: Thhe Shakes played only one round but picked the exact final score, which earned him six points. We caught up with him last week and learned a little bit about how he pulled that off.

Ed: What inspired you to play that round against Georgetown?

Thhe Shakes: "I read every day (usually multiple times a day) but don't post very often. I just like learning and hearing other people's stories. But man, the Georgetown rivalry just gets me so fired up I had to comment!"

Ed: How did you pick the winning score?

Thhe Shakes: "I was going to write 75-66, but decided, hey it's Georgetown. We've got to win by double digits."

Ed: Why didn't you play in other rounds to increase your chances of winning the 1st place prize?

Thhe Shakes: "I actually never thought to look at the standings. If I realized I had jumped into first I would have tried again against Butler and Creighton!"

Ed: How did you pick your handle "Thhe Shakes"?

Thhe Shakes: "Shakes was my nickname when I was in the band at Nova. It stuck since day one. I think more people remember that than my real name."

Ed: How did you wind up at your current address in Wichita, Kansas?

Thhe Shakes: "I joined the Air Force after I left Villanova, which brought me to Wichita. Now I work at the Hopping Gnome Brewery and am attending Wichita State. I'd love to see my current and former schools match up against each other in March!"

Contestants Tied for Second Place: Esteban d'Amur, jkolod01, johnpaul99, nynovascott

Players Earning Points in Multiple Rounds:

  • Earned Points in 3 Rounds: RJG09
  • Earned Points in 2 Rounds: Esteban d'Amur, jkolod01, johnpaul99, nynovascott, A35Blaze, NovaFlyer, RamonUsategui, jwscones, PokerChris, Steve92, Will Schreefer, and Larry1965

Players With the Closest Predictions (Off By 3 or Less Total Points)

Contestant Opponent Nova Prediction Opponent Prediction Nova Actual Opponent Actual
Contestant Opponent Nova Prediction Opponent Prediction Nova Actual Opponent Actual
ThheShakes Georgetown 75 64 75 64
McMohanski Georgetown 76 64 75 64
tpstone Virginia 61 58 61 59
Esteban d'Amur Virginia 62 58 61 59
RJG09 Virginia 63 59 61 59
RJG09 Georgetown 76 63 75 64
Rogmcc23 Georgetown 74 65 75 64
Stevie V Providence 77 67 78 68
Sweetness and Light Georgetown 76 65 75 64
mike-vu91 Georgetown 76 62 75 64
Mort11 Georgetown 72 64 75 64
Terchmil Virginia 63 58 61 59
WP Sheridan Georgetown 78 64 75 64

Best Performance of the VUHoops Crowd:

Georgetown Game: Crowd predicted a 81-66 victory; actual score was 75-64.

Worst Performance of the VUHoops Crowd:

Marquette Game: Crowd predicted a 79-66 victory; actual score was 93-81.

Money Raised for Villanova Men's Basketball:

Contestants posted 683 predictions over the ten rounds of the contest, raising $3,415. A contribution was made last week in that amount; proof of payment provided below.

Rule Changes Planned for the 2017-18 Contest:

Next year, one bonus point will be awarded for each contestant whose prediction falls within 1-5 points of the actual final score. Contestants picking the score exactly will be awarded three bonus points.

Thanks to everyone who played in this year's contest. See you next year!