The Dickinson Red Devils emerged from nowhere a year ago to sweep through Helmet Bowl II and claim the National Championship. Can they do it again?
At the beginning of Round 1 of Helmet Bowl III, the Wooster Fighting Scots rode the wave of their #16 Seed play-in position to challenge the champs. Sadly for them, the effort has waned as the week continued. With 72 hours remaining, it appears the Scots will retire with the North Coast Athletic Conference Championship in hand, experience that may helmet them for HB4, but little else.
We have watched, and as Helmet Bowl fans of yesteryear know, the Navy Midshipmen faltered in HB1 and HB2 under false high hopes. This helmet, and others the Academy team don, deserves deep runs in this contest. Is this the year? They drew #15 Worcester Poly Technic's unique goathead helmet and we all wondered. Now, though, they have more than twice the votes of the Engineers and, more importantly, have the third most votes in all of Helmet Bowl. However, the #1 and #2 vote-getters are also in the East Region, so they still must step up their game to make a play here.
Maryland is another team with a top-notch helmet that surprisingly failed to make noise in the contest in years past. Not anymore. The Terrapins (dang, we misspelled it above) have the second most votes in Helmet Bowl and are dismissing the Bentley Falcons nice looking shield helmet in Round 1.
Meanwhile, Fitchburg State has about 100 votes more than the Bates Bobcats and are set for the upset (#13 beating #4 here). Of course, there are about three days left, so either team could simply kick it up a notch and take the round. We are watching closely.
A NOTE: Due to some engineering errors, the Helmet Bowl bracket shows the winner of the #1 v #16 match play the winner of the #2 v #15 in Round 2. We've found a way to reset and will take a few minutes at the conclusion of Round 1 (at noon Monday) to do so. Now, the Round 2 match-ups will look like this:
Winner of 1v16 plays winner of 7v10
Winner of 5v12 plays winner of 3v14
Winner of 4v13 plays winner of 6v11
Winner of 8v9 plays winner of 2v15
Voting will be paused at noon Monday for about 15 minutes or so while we take care of this. Thank you for your patience.
The DII West Virginia Yellow Jackets are handing it to the Ivy League's Princeton Tigers in Round 1. But look out: The Alvernia Golden Wolves have doubled up a very attractive Hobart Statesmen helmet and put a lot of votes in the ballot box. Looking at voting totals and looking at the new bracket grid, the Wolves could advance deep in this region, gaining momentum as they do.
Another note: Look, we are going to let you in on a little something here about this contest. Helmet Bowl II took in well more than a half-million votes, but that can be a bit deceiving. Remember, the conference and national contests go for several weeks and start with nearly 800 teams. What does it take to win a single round? Hard to say. Depends on who you play and how deep into the contest you ask about. However, we will tell you that if you pop your head into a freshmen English class – you know, the one with 300 students crammed into an auditorium – and ask them to vote a few times a week for your helmet, you'll most likely emerge a winner most weeks. We know, we know – winning most weeks won't get you the championship. Start somewhere, get a thousand votes a week, and you'll soon see the winning pile up. Here's some ideas.
Currently, bot these match-ups measure just about a 100 vote difference. We like the Salve Regina Seahawks helmet for its bright colors and unique way of combining the S and R. If they can figure out how to double their voting in the next week, they could challenge the mighty Terrapins, mentioned above.
In the other match-up, the Falcons are rightly beating the Robert Morris Colonials. The chrome feathers are attractive and powerful. The patriots could come back to beat them, but the winner much implement a strong strategy in Round 2 verses Navy to challenge. Which team has it in them?