PFC Commish and Dirty Dogs manager Scott Buehre will be taking home the Landrum Memorial Trophy once again. In the six seasons of the PFC, the Dogs have been to the Patriot Bowl four times, winning three. He defeated the Blue Falcons, who were attempting to become the first manager to go worst-to-first since . . . Buehre. The Dirty Dogs will face the Mutinous Apes and SoonerJack in the Liberty Bowl.
SoonerJack manager Jack Bruesch met Kevin Pyle's Lucky Enuf in the 2019 OIL Bowl with a chance to become the first OIL manager to win four championships. But it was not meant to be, and Lucky Enuf took home the Lawson Memorial Trophy. Undeterred, Bruesch regrouped in 2020, dispatched Lucky Enuf in the semifinals, and defeated DominationStation in the OIL Bowl to tie Pyle's record for championships. Congratulations, Bruesch. Good luck in the Liberty Bowl.
Over his first six seasons in the OIL, Mutinous Apes manager Walt Musselman won 21 games. He "boasted" a .269 winning percentage and averaged 3.5 wins per season. But 2020 was a crazy year. After a solid draft and astute in-season management, Musselman finished the regular season 8-5 before running the table in the playoffs, defeating the Brewmasters, War Pony, and top-seeded Negligent Discharges en route to their first AFC championship. Congratulations to Muss, who will now face the NFC and PFC champions In the Liberty Bowl.
What a wild ride 2020 has been. It started with (and will end with) a global pandemic, saw the biggest bet in OIL history made at the cabin, and transitioned into the most contentious presidential election of our lifetimes. But none of that prepared any of us for this crazytown of a championship week.
SHAWNEE –– They say the good ones make their own luck, and, after winning his fourth championship (and second in a row), it's safe to say Pyle is pret-tay, pret-tay, pret-tay good. It wasn't the dominance we saw in 2018, but it was enough for Pyle to secure a first-round bye and record-fourth OIL championship. Congratulations, Pyle.
After winning two out of the first three OIL Bowls, Lucky Enuf endured a six-season stretch where they averaged only six wins per year. That was followed by a three-year stretch where they averaged a whopping 10 wins per year . . . but failed to reach the OIL Bowl. But the last two seasons have each ended in a championship, bringing Pyle's career total to four. That breaks the three-way tie for most championships previously shared by Pyle, Bruesch, and Cliburn.
Bruesch did not bring home the Lawson Memorial Trophy, but he tied Cliburn with a record-fifth OIL Bowl appearance. SoonerJack is a perennial contender, and he'll be back next year.
SHAWNEE –– Four years after Championship Week heartbreak, the Rebel Alliance have claimed their first AFC title. Roe began his season with arguably the AFC's best draft class (ranked third by RateMyLeague.com) and then added breakout star TE Darren Waller in free agency. That was enough to win nine regular-season games and achieve the second-highest OPR OIL-wide. But the Rebels finished one game behind Steel Reign, dropping them to the AFC's second seed. However, given the opportunity to prove who the better team was on the field, the Rebels beat Steel Reign in the Thunder Bowl to claim their first championship.
Roe survived below-par games from QB Russell Wilson, WRs Tyreek Hill and Anthony Miller, and TE Darren Waller in large part due to Fitzgerald's team underperforming even worse.
Despite the loss, it was a great year for Fitzgerald. His Steel Reign squad won 10 regular-season games while he spent the season in Prague, Czech Republic. So, who's the real winner here?
AMARILLO –– Picked to finish second by RateMyLeague.com, the Vandals were a contender all season. But they had to defeat fifth-seeded The Xtreme, the top-seeded Nightmares, and second-seeded Team Tadlock to claim their first championship.
2019 was Lutonsky's third in the OIL. He went 9-4 his first season before suffering through a 4-9 season in 2018. But he drafted well in 2019, made the right moves in-season, and got hot at the right time. His semifinal upset of the Nightmares was one for the ages, as the Nightmares' 2019 season ranked sixth in OIL history (out of over 300 individual seasons). Congratulations to Tonk. His jersey will be ordered soon.
Tadlock seemed poised to be the one celebrating his first championship. He went 10-3 in the regular season, and, after the Vandals upset the number-one Nightmares, Team Tadlock was the clear favorite going into the Patriot Bowl. Alas, it was not meant to be. It wasn't a disaster for Tadlock, as he scored enough points to have won the AFC's Thunder Bowl. But he ran into a buzz saw in the PFC's Patriot Bowl, and can't be faulted for the Vandals' 194 points. Congratulations on a good season and best of luck next year, Tadlock.
Six teams. Four managers seeking their first championship. Three trophies. Two previous champions. Welcome to Championship Week 2019. Analysis after the jump.
Stephen Brosh drafted QB Patrick Mahomes in the 10th round and complemented him with a strong ground game, led by Adrian Peterson and Dalvin Cook, and deep WR corps. His Vultures upset the defending champions and second-seeded Cocks before defeating the now three-time runner-up Doughboys in the Thunder Bowl. In the Liberty Bowl, he faced two teams with higher OPRs, but he slayed them as well. The Vultures manager will now receive a bevy of prizes: the Killman Memorial Trophy; a custom team jersey; the Tenequer Memorial Trophy; and a custom team mini-helmet. Congratulations, Brosh.
The Vultures finished with a record of 12-4. They scored 143.28 points per game and an OPR of 1.034 (16th). Over the season, they made 19 transactions, ended the season with 10 drafted players remaining on their roster, and finished on a 10-game winning streak (including the Liberty Bowl).