MANSFIELD -- The 2019 Source Mania Challenge is heading into its final weekend.

More than 500 registered entries got into the act. There are 15 local prize packages on the line. By Monday night, we'll have a winner.

Larry Phillips mug shot

Richland Source managing editor Larry Phillips

Scores are weighted in each round, so a similar record may not yield the same number of points.

Unfortunately, the winner will not come from our "Expert Panel," a phrase that provokes at least a giggle if not an outright belly laugh.

You have to dive deep in the entry pool, among those who registered for Source Mania 2019, to find the bracket of our leading expert.

Sports reporter Curt Conrad is tops among our small group, posting a 47-17 record for 81 points and 35th place. Former Mansfield Senior basketball coach Effie James and I have identical 45-19 records, but Effie was far better at forecasting deeper into the tournament, hence his edge in points, 79-70. That places James at 58th, while I suffer along at 164th.

Then there's Knox Pages reporter Grant Pepper. One would think a former basketball player at Ohio Northern would have a keen insight into the sport. Grant is disproving that theory at a stunning rate. He checks in with a 34-30 mark, good enough for 59 points. Grant places 306th in our standings.

At the moment, Sancho88 is atop the leaderboard with a 50-14 mark for 97 points. Shellbell has an identical record but trails by a single point at 96. Dunk1 is also 50-14 with 94 points to place third.

The standings can be found at this link.

There are only three games left. Auburn plays Virginia on Saturday at 6:09 p.m., while Michigan State battles Texas Tech at 8:49 p.m. The two winners collide for the national title on Monday night at 9 p.m.

We'll announce the winners on Tuesday, April 9.

I've lived in Richland Co. since 1990, married here, our children were born here. This is home. I have two books published on a passion topic, Ohio high school football. Others: Buckeyes, Cavs, Bengals, Reds, History, Disney.

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