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  1. The entry fee is $60, which pays for the entire season. There are no weekly entry fees. The entry fee must be paid before the player's first selected game begins in Week 1. If the entry fee is not paid by that time, the picks in Week 1 will not count.

  2. Each week, players will attempt to pick the winners of five football games picking against the Official Point Spreads posted on the Pigskin Mania website. Official point spreads are taken from The official spreads are those on the PM website and not the updated spreads on Choices of games are limited to those listed in the Official Point Spreads. NCAA games which involve an FCS team (formerly known as Division 1-AA) are not included in the point spreads. Both teams in a game have to be FBS teams for the game to be eligible to be played.

  3. A pick is declared a win only if the team selected BEATS the point spread. A tie or "push" counts as a loss for both teams.

  4. Each week, players must pick two NCAA games and two NFL games. For the fifth game, players have the option of picking either an NCAA or NFL game. This rule is in effect from Week 2 through Week 12. In Week 1 there are no NFL games scheduled therefore all picks are from the NCAA schedule. From Week 13 through the end of the season, players may pick any combination of games, up to five NCAA games or five NFL games.

  5. The weekly pool is on a Thursday through Monday schedule. Monday night games are part of the previous weekend's schedule. Games played Tuesday and Wednesday during the regular season are not part of the schedule and are not eligible to be selected. They will not appear in the Official Point Spreads. In Weeks 17 through 19, the pool will be on a Tuesday through Monday schedule to allow for all the bowl games to be eligible to be picked. Official Point Spreads for Weeks 17-19 will be posted on Monday night or Tuesday morning in time for players to have time to pick those games.

  6. The season will start with games on Thursday, Aug. 30. The season continues for 19 weeks. Week 19 includes the the Jan. 1 bowl games, the NFL Wild Card playoff games and the College Football Playoff championship game on Jan. 7, 2019.

  7. The deadline to submit picks each week is prior to the start of any one of the player's games selected. If a game has already started, a player may no longer pick that game, but can pick any other game that has not begun.

  8. The required mode of reporting picks is the Picks Page. If that is not available to you or if the Picks Page is not working, you can send picks by e-mail to If you are really in a pinch, you may text or phone in your picks to The Poolmaster's cell phone at (520) 444-3883.

  9. Once players make their picks, they can change any or all of those picks up until any one of their selected games has started. At the time any ONE of the five selected games has begun, all of the player's picks are locked and no further changes can be made to any of the picks with the exception of a cancelled game. (See Rule #20 regarding cancellation of games.)

  10. Players must make all of their picks at once. Players are not allowed to pick NCAA games, and then make NFL picks at a later time.

  11. Scheduled game times in the Official Point Spreads are listed with the point spreads as a courtesy. It remains the responsibility of the player to know the ACTUAL start time. In the event a game time changes, the actual time a game starts will determine whether it is eligible to be picked regardless of the time listed with the point spreads. Be advised there have been instances where weather or other considerations have caused game times to change to an earlier start, even as much as a day earlier. Likewise, if a game starts later than the time posted with the point spreads, it is eligible to be played up until the game actually begins. We will attempt to keep the listed game times current, but will not guarantee that the listed times are correct.

  12. If there is an error in the Official Point Spreads that is detected at least two (2) hours before the first scheduled game in the point spreads, it may be corrected and will become the official spread. If the incorrect point spread is not detected at least two hours before the first scheduled game, it will remain as the official spread. There will be no notification of errors that remain in the point spreads. It is considered part of the game for players to be aware of the actual spreads.

  13. It is the sole responsibility of players to remember to report picks. Players will not receive reminders. Players who do not report picks will receive zero points for the week.

  14. If a player forgets or is unable to submit picks until there are fewer than five remaining eligible picks, the player may submit as many picks as are available. For instance, if during the NCAA regular season a player doesn't make picks until after all NCAA games have been played, the player may submit 3 NFL picks and a Lock to try to score some points. When submitting fewer than five picks, choose No Pick in the drop-down menu where you cannot make a valid pick. No Pick is the first selection in the menus.

  15. When making picks, NCAA teams are designated by the name of their school. NFL teams are designated by their mascots. For example, when you select Arizona you have selected the Arizona Wildcats and not the Arizona Cardinals. The other NCAA teams with matching NFL teams are Buffalo (Bills), Cincinnati (Bengals), Houston (Texans), Miami (Dolphins), Minnesota (Vikings), Pittsburgh (Steelers), Tennessee (Titans) and Washington (Redskins).

  16. A game that has NO LINE or NL in the posted point spreads is not eligible to be picked. If a game with NO LINE is selected, a player can change that pick until the start of the player's first scheduled game as described in Rule #9. If the game is not changed before any one of the player's other games starts, it counts as a loss.

  17. A point spread of zero (0) will be designated as PK (pick 'em) on the point spreads which means the winner of the game covers the point spread.

  18. If a player picks both teams in the same game, the favorite in the game becomes the pick. If the game is a PK (pick 'em), the home team becomes the pick. The other pick is declared a loss.

  19. If a player duplicates a pick, only one of those picks will count. The other pick is declared a loss.

  20. Cancelled Games. In the unlikely event that a game chosen by a player is cancelled, the player can replace that pick with a game that has not yet begun. Players may replace picks on cancelled games even if some of their other games they picked have started. If another pick has started, the only pick that can be changed is on the cancelled game. If none of the player's other games have started, Rule 9 applies and the player may change any or all of the games. If an NCAA game is cancelled and a player is not aware of the cancellation until after all NCAA games have been completed, the player may choose an NFL game even if it results in failure to meet the requirement of 2 NCAA + 2 NFL + option. If a player does not replace the cancelled game before all the weekend games are completed, the pick becomes a loss. To submit a replacement pick, go to the Picks Page and select your replacement pick in one of the drop down menus. For the remaining selections select "No Pick" which is the first choice in each of the menus. If the Picks Page is unavailable to you, you may submit the replacement pick by email at, text or phone message at (520) 444-3883.

  21. Lock of the Week (The Jon Wilner Rule)

  1. Each week, players have the option of declaring one of their picks a "LOCK."

  2. The Lock of the Week must be one of the five games in your picks.

  3. If you pick a Lock that is not one of those five games, the Lock is omitted from your picks.

  4. Players are awarded an additional 0.5 points for picking their Lock of the Week correctly, and are penalized 0.5 points for an incorrect pick.

  1. The Pigskin Special

  1. Each week, The Poolmaster will designate one game as the Pigskin Special. The designation will go to the one game each week - either NCAA or NFL - that appears to be the game that is generating the most attention from the fans, media, social media and sports talk shows. The Poolmaster will accept input from players, but reserves the right to make the final selection.

  2. Anyone who selects the Pigskin Special among their five games assumes the same risk as if they played a Lock of the Week. Choosing the game correctly results in an additional 0.5 points. A loss results in minus 0.5 points.

  3. Players do not have the option of removing the premium point value on the Pigskin Special. If you play the Pigskin Special, whether or not you are aware it is the Pigskin Special, you risk the additional points.

  4. The Pigskin Special is in addition to the Lock of the Week, which creates the potential for a maximum high score of 6.0 points for a perfect week with the Lock and Special and a possible low of -1.0 point for someone who plays both and loses all their games.

  5. The Pigskin Special will be selected and posted on the website with the weekly update. If there is NO LINE on the game on Thursday, there will be no Pigskin Special that week. In the event a Pigskin Special in a given week has no line early in the week, the game can be changed by midnight Wednesday. If it is not changed, the Founding Fathers have the authority to schedule two Pigskin Specials in the same week at a future date.

  1. Players' point totals are the sum of total wins, points for the Lock of the Week and points for the Pigskin Special.

  2. Season standings are based on players' point totals.

  3. All prize money, including weekly prizes, will be paid out at the end of the season.

  4. Pigskin Mania and all Mania pools fall under the specific definition of "social gambling." The organizers make no profit and take no cut from any entry fees. All entry fees minus the cost of hosting this web site are paid out to winners or held on account for future pools. Account balances and expenses are indicated on the Accounts page and the Prize Money page, respectively.

  5. Weekly Prizes: A player must pick all five games correctly to win a weekly prize. Picking all five games correctly, including the Lock of the Week AND the Pigskin Special for a score of 6.0 is worth $60. Picking all five games correctly which results in a score of 5.5 or 5.0 pays $30. A score of 5.0 where the player picks four of five games correctly does not pay a prize. (NOTE: The final week of the season the last two seasons has included only 5 games requiring a special rule regarding perfect weeks. Since there are 10 games in Week 19 this season, perfect weeks in Week 19 will be treated the same as the previous 18 weeks.)

  6. Season Prizes: Season prize money will be awarded to the top 100 players and ties in the standings. Prize money for the Top 25 finishers will be determined by percentage of the pot remaining after weekly prizes, prizes to 26th through 100th place, and expenses. (The projected dollar amounts in the chart below are based on 910 entries and the same ratio of weekly prize money per player as in the 2017 season.)

Place Share Projected Place Share Projected Place Share Projected
1st 25.00% $4,770 11th 2.40% $519 21st 1.40% $303
2nd 10.50% $2,269 12th 2.30% $497 22nd 1.30% $281
3rd 9.00% $1,945 13th 2.20% $475 23rd 1.20% $259
4th 7.50% $1,621 14th 2.10% $454 24th 1.10% $238
5th 6.00% $1,297 15th 2.00% $432 25th 1.00% $216
6th 4.00% $864 16th 1.90% $411 26th - 50th (each) $120
7th 3.75% $810 17th 1.80% $389 51st to 100th (each) $60
8th 3.25% $702 18th 1.70% $367
9th 3.00% $648 19th 1.60% $346
10th 2.50% $540 20th 1.50% $324
  1. There will be no tiebreakers for final standings. If there is a tie, players involved in the tie will split prize money. Example: If there is a two-way tie for third, prize money for third and fourth place will be combined and divided evenly among those two players.

  2. The PM Rules Committee is made up of the 8 active Founding Fathers. The Founding Fathers will rule upon any unusual circumstances which arise and require formation or interpretation of a rule. The list of Founding Fathers can be found on the Founding Fathers Page. All rulings will be made in the best interests of the game. Any Founding Father who is involved in the circumstance in question will not participate in the ruling.

Updated: June 25, 2018