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FiveThirtyEight's (Nate Silver) Bracket Probabilites

jeremytwoface's picture
March 18, 2014 at 12:13pm

Not sure if this has been posted or if anyone has checked it out yet, but it is pretty cool.

Nate Silver's new website, FiveThirtyEight.com has a neat bracket predictor on their sports page.

The bracket gives you the probability of every team to make it to certain rounds. Ohio State, for example, is given a...

75% chance of winning their first game
40% getting past the second round
20% chance of making it to the Elite Eight
9% chance to make it to the Final Four
4% chance to make the Championship Game
2% chance to win it all

According to the website, the formula for the odds is based on 
"power rankings, pre-season rankings, the team’s placement on the NCAA’s 68-team S-curve, player injuries and geography."

It looks like they will update the #'s throughout the tournament so that should be cool.

Something that I found interesting is that Ohio State is one of 6 teams (besides the #1 and #2 seeds) that have anything more than a 1% chance to be crowned champions. The other teams include Louisville (15% chance), Michigan State (6%), Duke (5%), Creighton (3%), and Kentucky (2%). So according to these probabilities, Ohio State has a better chance of winning the tournament than 11 other teams ranked the same or higher (not including #1 and #2 seeds). They have a better chance of winning their region than everyone but Florida and Kansas. Not sure what that means in the grand scheme of things, but I thought it was interesting.

Some other things I found interesting - 

- Louisville has the greatest chance to win the tournament at 15% followed by Florida (14%) and Arizona (13%)
- Virginia has a lower chance of reaching round 2 than Wichita State (96% to 98%), but has a better chance to win the whole thing (6% to 5%)
- Kansas has the best odds from the #2 seeds to win it all (6%)


You can read more about the formula and how they created the bracket here.



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