I’ll tell ya what, I trust this guy more than that fraud Joey Brackets and his Lego hair
Michigan – “I completed my own (informal) bracket alongside our study by literally flipping a coin 63 times,” Kwak said. “I wanted to see if this outperformed the hard thought-out selections made by the study participants in our mock tournament. I did three sets of that and my average scores were better than the average of study participants.”
In his newly published study in the Journal of Gambling Studies, Kwak wanted to understand why so many losing March Madness players returned the following year for more punishment. A third of the population—more than 100 million hoop hopefuls—partake in betting brackets during the three-week men’s college basketball tournament.
Winning odds are insanely low: one in 128 billion for 63 perfect game predictions—far below that of a winning lottery ticket. Last year, Warren Buffet offered $1 billion for a perfect winning bracket, but the highest scoring known bracket among ESPN.com subscribers was still 18 games off.
For all the hype, research and time taken to make the oh-so-careful selections there’s scant evidence that knowledge of the game makes any difference at all in bracket performance.
“A grandmother who’s never seen a game has a similar chance of doing as well as her grandson who spends eight hours a day watching and researching basketball,” Kwak said.
This is wrong. I don’t care that Professor Kwak is way smarter than me, he’s not right. I don’t even see how what he’s saying is possible. If you just flipped a coin for every game there is no way you’d do better than the average person with basketball knowledge filling out their bracket. The general premise is wrong because not every game is a 50/50 game. The 16 seed does not have the same chance of winning as the 1 seed when they play each other. In fact history tells us that the 1 seed has a 100% chance of winning. Kwak and his magic coin could have all four one seeds losing to the 16 seeds fairly easily. People always remember the big upsets in the tournament but the truth is that they really don’t happen that often. Now, if you started flipping a coin on every game you were unsure of I guess that makes sense. But isn’t that essentially exactly what everyone does? You may not have the coin out but you’re pretty much just guessing.
So I don’t want to call Professor Kwak a liar here but instead I’ll put my bracket up against his coin flip bracket all day erry day. Maybe for a price Kwak? If you read this, you know where to find me @therealballgame.