It’s officially August and if you haven’t taken your summer vacation yet, you’ve got about 1 more month left before Labor day. Those of you who have already spent some time in the Caribbean or Europe probably wish you were back there, instead of being stuck behind a desk dealing with the the day to day drudgery of work. Despite this reality, however, there is some fun just around the corner: the beginning of the NFL Betting season means it’s officially time to begin organizing an office pool.
Who’s the sports fan in your office? Is it Middle Management Larry, who’s always good for a laugh at the water cooler? Or is it enterprising Elaine, the office social life promoter who enjoys a football game with the boys? Either way, NFL betting office pools are a good way to have fun and boost comradery during the months before the holidays.
Offline Office Pools, Using Football Betting Squares
One of the most common, and easiest ways to organize an NFL office pool is using Football Betting Squares. Football squares are fun because winning prize money doesn’t rely on knowledge of sports, just pure luck. Here’s how it works:
- Pick an NFL or NCAA football team. Folks in Dallas, for example, might pick the Cowboys and their opponent over the course of a football season. Chicagoans will no doubt pick ‘Da Bears. Let everyone know what the office team is, and then make sure to let everyone know who the opponent is each week as the NFL or NCAA season advances.
- Create a Football Betting Squares Sheet. Football betting squares are commonly used for the Super Bowl, but can also easily be used on a week to week basis for any one football contest. If you’re familiar with the concept, you can make your own with pen and paper. Otherwise, we suggest you download an Office Pool Squares Document – Click here for an Excel Version. For specific instructions regarding how this particular Excel football squares document works, Click Here for Excel Document Football Office Pool Directions
- Setup the document. Setting up the pool sheet is relatively easy. Using our downloadable version or your own sheet, setup a 10×10 matrix of squares. At the top of the page, write your office’s team. On the left hand side of the page, (on the Y axis for graph nerds 🙂 ) write your opponent for the coming weekend. Finally, using the numbers 0-9, mark each of the 10 boxes across the top a random number, making sure not to use the same number twice. Do the same down the left hand side of the sheet, making sure that the sequence doesn’t necessarily match the string of numbers you used for the top of the page.
- Post the Document in your Common Area, or Email it to everyone. You don’t want to keep your office-mates in the dark about the football pool, so post it where everyone can see how it works.
- Setup a Prize System. Will it be “Winner take all”, or will smaller prizes be awarded based on the results from the game’s 1st quarter, half time, or 3rd quarter scores? Important: Make sure the total of all the money contributed to the pool equals or exceeds the prize money, or else you’ll be coming out of pocket to pay the winner…Ouch!
- Sell a square or squares to each participant. On a 10×10 office pool sheet, people often sell squares for $1, which of course means there’s a $100 grand prize, or $100 total in the pool to divvy up based on your own prize system. You can allow participants to increase the chances of winning by buying multiple squares.
- Watch the Game, then hand out the Prize money. The concept of football betting squares is straightforward: given the final score of the game, use the last digit in each team’s total points scored. Then, given these numbers, match the home team’s last digit to the opponent team’s last digit on your betting square sheet. The person who bought the square where the numbers intersect is the winner.
Example: Dallas scores 28, Patriots score 20. In this case, you would find the number 8 on the Dallas portion of the sheet, and the number 0 on the Patriots portion of the sheet. Then, see where the “8” Dallas Row and “0” Patriots Row intersect. The person who has this square is the winner.
Once you’ve determined who won the game based on the final score (or by quarter for smaller prizes) hand out the cash. This is the fun part: bask in the glory of being an amateur bookie. 🙂
Advanced Office Pools, Pick’em Contests, Football Survivor Online
If your office has lots of NFL fans who like to engage in casual betting, there are more advanced forms of office pools than the football squares sheet. If you’re going to run a pool over the course of the entire NCAA or NFL season, we highly recommend using an online office pool service. For a modest fee, you can setup your own office betting pool using a variety of different betting games. Some office groups prefer using Fantasy football game format for their season.
The following website, Office Football Pool Hosting – Click Here offers 4 different online office pool formats: “Football Pick’em”, “Share Pool”, “Fantasy Football”, and “Football Survivor”. In general, the cost for opening an account at this website for your pool is $30, plus a smaller fee for any number of participants beyond 10.
We’d also recommend looking at the Football Pool Formats/Games from these sites:
- Football Pool by Castle64.com
- JimsQuest Office Football Pool Software, 2009 NFL Ready
- Office Pool Manager Software, for Advanced Office Pools
- Bullz Eye: Links to 10+ Other Office Pool Football Betting Sites – Click Here
Remember, make sure it’s both legal in your office and in your local jurisdiction to host office pools. Seriously, you don’t want to get raided by the Feds over a $100 pool on the Cleveland Browns vs. New York Jets. It’s just not worth it 😉 .
Good luck and have fun this NFL Betting Season!