26 March 2012

Rating Systems Challenge 2012: Survival Model a Survivor

2 Kansas upset 1 North Carolina.
Image credit: Wikipedia
Click here for the most up-to-date March Madness 2012 coverage and Rating Systems Challenge results from RPBlog.

First things first: Jeff Sagarin alerted me to the fact that I made an error in constructing the bracket based on his system. I had him picking UNC to win their region. He actually picked Kansas. The proof is in the post. An error such as this would, obviously, have hurt his system after yesterday's games. In the rankings below I have rectified this mistake. Apologies to my readers and Mr. Sagarin.

Second things second: 1 Kentucky did just what every system expected, while 2 Kansas did what few systems expected, that being advance to the Final Four.

In fact, only five systems put Kansas in the Final Four, while fourteen picked Carolina. Moreover, five had UNC them in the final game and three had them winning it all.

Rank System R64 R32 S16 E8 FF NCG Champion PPR Total Pct Correct
1 Survival Model 250 200 280 240 0 0 Kentucky 640 970 99.8 75.0%
2 ESPN/USA Today Preseason 230 200 280 240 0 0 UNC 160 950 99.6 71.7%
3 Jeff Sagarin 230 200 200 240 0 0 Kentucky 640 870 96.9 68.3%
4 AP Preseason 210 220 280 160 0 0 UNC 160 870 96.9 68.3%
5 Pomeroy 220 180 200 240 0 0 Kentucky 640 840 94.0 65.0%
6 LRMC Bayesian 200 180 200 240 0 0 Kentucky 640 820 91.4 61.7%
7 ESPN Simulation Model 220 180 160 240 0 0 Kentucky 640 800 88.1 63.3%
8 ESPN Decision Tree 210 220 200 160 0 0 Kentucky 640 790 86.0 65.0%
9 Sonny Moore 230 200 200 160 0 0 Ohio St 480 790 86.0 66.7%
10 ESPN National Bracket 220 200 200 160 0 0 Kentucky 480 780 83.8 65.0%
11 FiveThirtyEight 220 180 200 160 0 0 Kentucky 640 760 78.8 63.3%
12 Pure Chalk 220 220 200 80 0 0 Kentucky 480 720 67.3 65.0%
12 AP Postseason 220 220 200 80 0 0 Kentucky 480 720 67.3 65.0%
14 Lunardi RPI 200 200 240 80 0 0 UNC 160 720 67.3 61.7%
15 Vegas 210 220 200 80 0 0 Kentucky 480 710 63.2 63.3%
16 ESPN CBPI 220 200 200 80 0 0 Kentucky 640 700 59.9 63.3%
17 ESPN/USA Today Postseason 220 200 200 80 0 0 Kentucky 480 700 59.9 63.3%
18 ESPN InsideRPI 200 180 200 80 0 0 Syracuse 160 660 46.9 58.3%
19 Nolan Power Index 190 160 200 80 0 0 Kentucky 480 630 37.5 55.0%

*Rank sorted by total points (Total), possible points remaining (PPR) and percentage of correct picks (Correct). "Pct" denotes where the brackets rank among the rest in the ESPN Tournament Challenge.


Victories by the Wildcats and the Jayhawks put the Survival Model back into first place, ahead of the preseason polls. Both preseason poll systems picked UNC to win it all. The demise of the Tarheels ended the ESPN/USA Today Poll's (preseason) perfect Final Four.

Finally, yesterday's outcomes significantly boosted the standing of the computerized systems published by Ken Pomeroy and the aforementioned Jeff Sagarin (whose system now occupies third place).


Rank System South East West Midwest Correct PPR
1 Survival Model UK OSU MSU KU 75.0% 640
2 ESPN/USA Today Preseason UK OSU L'Ville UNC 71.7% 160
3 Jeff Sagarin UK OSU MSU UNC 68.3% 640
4 AP Preseason UK Cuse Mizzou KU 68.3% 160
5 Pomeroy UK OSU MSU KU 65.0% 640
6 LRMC Bayesian UK OSU MSU KU 61.7% 640
7 ESPN Simulation Model UK OSU MSU KU 63.3% 640
8 ESPN Decision Tree UK OSU Mizzou UNC 65.0% 640
9 Sonny Moore UK OSU MSU UNC 66.7% 480
10 ESPN National Bracket UK OSU Mizzou UNC 65.0% 480
11 FiveThirtyEight UK OSU Mizzou UNC 63.3% 640
12 Pure Chalk UK Cuse MSU UNC 65.0% 480
12 AP Postseason UK OSU Florida UNC 65.0% 480
14 Lunardi RPI UK Cuse MSU UNC 61.7% 160
15 Vegas UK Cuse MSU UNC 63.3% 480
16 ESPN CBPI UK Cuse MSU UNC 63.3% 640
17 ESPN/USA Today Postseason UK Cuse Mizzou UNC 63.3% 480
18 ESPN InsideRPI UK Cuse MSU UNC 58.3% 160
19 Nolan Power Index UK Cuse Murray St UNC 55.0% 480

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