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Sean Forman Sims the NCAA Tournament

Posted by Sean Forman on March 16, 2009

Sean Forman of Baseball-Reference.com makes a guest appearance to present the results of his annual NCAA Tournament simulation. --JK

As I've done for the last six years, I've relied on a little bit of computer science to fill out my NCAA tourney pool. I have two young kids at home, a baseball site to worry about, and I've watched zero NCAA basketball games this year, so using my own scouting and intuition is obviously out.

What I do instead is rely on a rating service and simulation to compute the best (in this case, most likely) bracket to occur. Invariably, this leads to a boring bracket, but you'll find in the long run that better teams win more games in the NCAA tourney. Doing the simulation also provides some interesting answers to questions like "Which low seeds are most likely to make the Sweet 16?", and it presents it all in terms of probabilities.

The Method in a Nutshell

I've given several talks on this method (slides) if you are interested in a more detailed treatment. First, I use the Sagarin College Basketball Ratings Predictor to determine the relative strength of each team. These are Sagarin's most accurate ratings for predicting games and inherently take into account things like margin of victory, strength of schedule, game location, etc. I then, essentially, play the 63 games in the tourney (I assume the better play-in team wins) and repeat the process over and over (I stop at 1,000,000 simulations). Along the way, I track who wins each game and summarize the results.

What I Don't Do

There is no consideration for things like injuries, momentum, location of tourney games, etc. This is purely based on the complete season results for the teams. So if a team lost their star player in the final seconds of the conference championship game to a knee injury, this system won't take that into account.

The Results

As I said earlier, this system is going to present boring results: no #13 seeds in the Sweet 16, and no #6 seeds in the Final Four. In fact, just using the Sagarin Predictor to create your bracket will give you a similar (but not the same) outcome. For me, the interest is in the probabilities. For example, last year, I had Davidson losing in the first round, but they were a 20% shot to make the Sweet 16. Not bad for a #10 seed.

This first chart shows the percentage of times each team lost in a particular round ordered by their Sagarin Predictor rating. Notice that Gonzaga -- who Sagarin has as the 6th best team -- is not the sixth most likely to win the tourney thanks to their #4 seed and the hard road (through UNC) the Selection Committee gave them.

 When they lost                 1 /     2 /     3 /     4 /     5 /     6 /  Never 
  1:0:North Carolina        0.012 / 0.113 / 0.285 / 0.151 / 0.160 / 0.101 / 0.177 / (177295)
  2:1:Memphis               0.038 / 0.158 / 0.265 / 0.203 / 0.120 / 0.096 / 0.120 / (119637)
  3:2:Pittsburgh            0.034 / 0.188 / 0.155 / 0.255 / 0.166 / 0.086 / 0.115 / (114870)
  4:3:Connecticut           0.010 / 0.269 / 0.226 / 0.224 / 0.106 / 0.080 / 0.086 / ( 85817)
  5:4:Duke                  0.017 / 0.202 / 0.285 / 0.202 / 0.139 / 0.070 / 0.085 / ( 85401)
  6:5:Gonzaga               0.063 / 0.227 / 0.396 / 0.111 / 0.096 / 0.051 / 0.057 / ( 56614)
  7:6:Louisville            0.017 / 0.166 / 0.227 / 0.231 / 0.175 / 0.094 / 0.091 / ( 90567)
  8:7:West Virginia         0.102 / 0.348 / 0.190 / 0.159 / 0.105 / 0.053 / 0.043 / ( 43286)
  9:8:UCLA                  0.132 / 0.286 / 0.292 / 0.136 / 0.083 / 0.037 / 0.035 / ( 34964)
 10:9:Missouri              0.059 / 0.271 / 0.362 / 0.149 / 0.074 / 0.047 / 0.038 / ( 37807)
 11:a:Kansas                0.158 / 0.438 / 0.163 / 0.122 / 0.070 / 0.030 / 0.019 / ( 19450)
 12:A:Arizona State         0.214 / 0.330 / 0.204 / 0.163 / 0.052 / 0.022 / 0.016 / ( 15547)
 13:b:Oklahoma              0.041 / 0.375 / 0.276 / 0.204 / 0.063 / 0.025 / 0.017 / ( 16701)
 14:c:Washington            0.186 / 0.363 / 0.274 / 0.109 / 0.038 / 0.019 / 0.011 / ( 10814)
 15:B:Michigan State        0.051 / 0.293 / 0.364 / 0.157 / 0.083 / 0.033 / 0.018 / ( 18392)
 16:C:Purdue                0.122 / 0.395 / 0.298 / 0.116 / 0.040 / 0.020 / 0.011 / ( 10898)
 17:d:Syracuse              0.094 / 0.436 / 0.230 / 0.164 / 0.047 / 0.018 / 0.011 / ( 10849)
 18:D:BYU                   0.218 / 0.530 / 0.124 / 0.081 / 0.027 / 0.013 / 0.007 / (  6672)
 19:e:Wake Forest           0.194 / 0.293 / 0.305 / 0.115 / 0.060 / 0.022 / 0.011 / ( 10864)
 20:E:Clemson               0.265 / 0.389 / 0.180 / 0.116 / 0.031 / 0.011 / 0.006 / (  6280)
 21:f:Villanova             0.072 / 0.549 / 0.242 / 0.082 / 0.037 / 0.012 / 0.006 / (  6056)
 22:F:Marquette             0.299 / 0.443 / 0.177 / 0.053 / 0.018 / 0.008 / 0.003 / (  3062)
 23:g:Illinois              0.125 / 0.608 / 0.202 / 0.039 / 0.019 / 0.006 / 0.002 / (  2384)
 24:G:Xavier-Ohio           0.125 / 0.344 / 0.367 / 0.111 / 0.037 / 0.010 / 0.004 / (  4420)
 26:h:Texas                 0.365 / 0.477 / 0.101 / 0.037 / 0.014 / 0.004 / 0.001 / (  1481)
 27:H:Utah                  0.400 / 0.320 / 0.190 / 0.058 / 0.023 / 0.006 / 0.002 / (  2232)
 28:i:Southern California   0.311 / 0.423 / 0.183 / 0.056 / 0.020 / 0.005 / 0.002 / (  1688)
 29:I:California            0.338 / 0.518 / 0.095 / 0.035 / 0.010 / 0.003 / 0.001 / (  1082)
 30:j:Tennessee             0.491 / 0.397 / 0.056 / 0.041 / 0.012 / 0.003 / 0.001 / (   958)
 31:J:Oklahoma State        0.509 / 0.385 / 0.054 / 0.038 / 0.010 / 0.003 / 0.001 / (   869)
 32:k:Wisconsin             0.437 / 0.298 / 0.199 / 0.049 / 0.013 / 0.003 / 0.001 / (   859)
 36:K:Ohio State            0.334 / 0.526 / 0.084 / 0.040 / 0.012 / 0.003 / 0.001 / (   697)
 41:l:Arizona               0.600 / 0.250 / 0.113 / 0.027 / 0.008 / 0.002 / 0.000 / (   368)
 42:L:Butler                0.494 / 0.443 / 0.048 / 0.011 / 0.003 / 0.001 / 0.000 / (   175)
 44:m:Florida State         0.563 / 0.256 / 0.144 / 0.030 / 0.007 / 0.001 / 0.000 / (   289)
 46:M:LSU                   0.506 / 0.433 / 0.047 / 0.010 / 0.003 / 0.001 / 0.000 / (   145)
 47:n:Minnesota             0.635 / 0.305 / 0.045 / 0.011 / 0.003 / 0.001 / 0.000 / (   123)
 50:N:Utah State            0.701 / 0.235 / 0.052 / 0.009 / 0.002 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (    59)
 51:o:Michigan              0.735 / 0.198 / 0.050 / 0.015 / 0.002 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (    65)
 52:O:Temple                0.786 / 0.151 / 0.046 / 0.014 / 0.002 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (    67)
 53:p:Maryland              0.662 / 0.293 / 0.035 / 0.008 / 0.001 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (    49)
 55:P:Texas A&M             0.782 / 0.191 / 0.021 / 0.005 / 0.001 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (    13)
 57:q:Boston College        0.689 / 0.239 / 0.060 / 0.010 / 0.002 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (    52)
 66:Q:Mississippi State     0.814 / 0.140 / 0.039 / 0.006 / 0.001 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (    14)
 68:r:Va. Commonwealth      0.868 / 0.097 / 0.029 / 0.004 / 0.001 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (     8)
 70:R:North Dakota State    0.842 / 0.131 / 0.021 / 0.005 / 0.001 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (    11)
 71:s:Siena                 0.666 / 0.293 / 0.030 / 0.009 / 0.002 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (    19)
 72:S:Cleveland State       0.806 / 0.136 / 0.049 / 0.008 / 0.001 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (    23)
 80:t:Dayton                0.898 / 0.084 / 0.015 / 0.003 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (     3)
 85:T:Northern Iowa         0.878 / 0.102 / 0.018 / 0.002 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (     3)
 92:u:Akron                 0.937 / 0.050 / 0.012 / 0.001 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (     0)
100:U:Stephen F. Austin     0.906 / 0.083 / 0.010 / 0.001 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (     0)
101:v:Western Kentucky      0.875 / 0.115 / 0.009 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (     0)
103:V:Portland State        0.875 / 0.102 / 0.021 / 0.002 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (     0)
104:w:Cornell               0.941 / 0.051 / 0.008 / 0.001 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (     1)
105:W:CS Northridge         0.962 / 0.031 / 0.006 / 0.001 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (     0)
118:x:East Tennessee State  0.966 / 0.030 / 0.004 / 0.001 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (     0)
130:X:American University   0.928 / 0.067 / 0.004 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (     0)
139:y:Robert Morris         0.949 / 0.045 / 0.006 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (     0)
156:Y:Morgan State          0.959 / 0.038 / 0.003 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (     0)
179:z:Radford               0.988 / 0.011 / 0.001 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (     0)
181:Z:Binghamton-NY         0.983 / 0.016 / 0.001 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (     0)
185:*:Morehead State        0.983 / 0.016 / 0.001 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (     0)
223:#:Chattanooga           0.990 / 0.010 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / 0.000 / (     0)

Yes, there was a bracket where Andy Bernard's Big Red won the tourney. Here it is:

REGION 2
----------
Connecticut_________
               _Connecticut_________
Chattanooga_________|               |
                               _Connecticut_________
BYU_________________                |               |
               _Texas_A&M___________|               |
Texas_A&M___________|                               |
                                               _Washington__________
Purdue______________                                |               |
               _Purdue______________                |               |
Northern_Iowa_______|               |               |               |
                               _Washington__________|               |
Washington__________                |                               |
               _Washington__________|                               |
Mississippi_State___|                                               |
                                                             _Cornell_____________
Marquette___________                                                |
               _Utah_State__________                                |
Utah_State__________|               |                               |
                               _Cornell_____________                |
Missouri____________                |               |               |
               _Cornell_____________|               |               |
Cornell_____________|                               |               |
                                               _Cornell_____________|
California__________                                |
               _California__________                |
Maryland____________|               |               |
                               _California__________|
Memphis_____________                |
               _Memphis_____________|
CS_Northridge_______|

FINAL FOUR
----------
Southern_California_
Cornell_____________|_Cornell_____________
                                          |_Cornell_____________
Duke________________ _Duke________________|
Arizona_State_______|

Literally, one in a million.

Probability of a Team Winning a Particular Game

We'll break this down a little more below. The numbers in parentheses are their Sagarin Predictor Rating followed by the probability of them winning that particular game.

Game  1:Louisville           (  7 - 0.983)
        Morehead State       (185 - 0.017) 
Game  2:Ohio State           ( 36 - 0.666)
        Siena                ( 71 - 0.334) 
Game  3:Utah                 ( 27 - 0.600)
        Arizona              ( 41 - 0.400) 
Game  4:Wake Forest          ( 19 - 0.806)
        Cleveland State      ( 72 - 0.194) 
Game  5:West Virginia        (  8 - 0.898)
        Dayton               ( 80 - 0.102) 
Game  6:Kansas               ( 11 - 0.842)
        North Dakota State   ( 70 - 0.158) 
Game  7:Southern California  ( 28 - 0.689)
        Boston College       ( 57 - 0.311) 
Game  8:Michigan State       ( 15 - 0.949)
        Robert Morris        (139 - 0.051) 
Game  9:Connecticut          (  4 - 0.990)
        Chattanooga          (223 - 0.010) 
Game 10:BYU                  ( 18 - 0.782)
        Texas A&M            ( 55 - 0.218) 
Game 11:Purdue               ( 16 - 0.878)
        Northern Iowa        ( 85 - 0.122) 
Game 12:Washington           ( 14 - 0.814)
        Mississippi State    ( 66 - 0.186) 
Game 13:Marquette            ( 22 - 0.701)
        Utah State           ( 50 - 0.299) 
Game 14:Missouri             ( 10 - 0.941)
        Cornell              (104 - 0.059) 
Game 15:California           ( 29 - 0.662)
        Maryland             ( 53 - 0.338) 
Game 16:Memphis              (  2 - 0.962)
        CS Northridge        (105 - 0.038) 
Game 17:Pittsburgh           (  3 - 0.966)
        East Tennessee State (118 - 0.034) 
Game 18:Tennessee            ( 30 - 0.509)
        Oklahoma State       ( 31 - 0.491) 
Game 19:Wisconsin            ( 32 - 0.563)
        Florida State        ( 44 - 0.437) 
Game 20:Xavier-Ohio          ( 24 - 0.875)
        Portland State       (103 - 0.125) 
Game 21:UCLA                 (  9 - 0.868)
        Va. Commonwealth     ( 68 - 0.132) 
Game 22:Villanova            ( 21 - 0.928)
        American University  (130 - 0.072) 
Game 23:Texas                ( 26 - 0.635)
        Minnesota            ( 47 - 0.365) 
Game 24:Duke                 (  5 - 0.983)
        Binghamton-NY        (181 - 0.017) 
Game 25:North Carolina       (  1 - 0.988)
        Radford              (179 - 0.012) 
Game 26:Butler               ( 42 - 0.506)
        LSU                  ( 46 - 0.494) 
Game 27:Illinois             ( 23 - 0.875)
        Western Kentucky     (101 - 0.125) 
Game 28:Gonzaga              (  6 - 0.937)
        Akron                ( 92 - 0.063) 
Game 29:Arizona State        ( 12 - 0.786)
        Temple               ( 52 - 0.214) 
Game 30:Syracuse             ( 17 - 0.906)
        Stephen F. Austin    (100 - 0.094) 
Game 31:Clemson              ( 20 - 0.735)
        Michigan             ( 51 - 0.265) 
Game 32:Oklahoma             ( 13 - 0.959)
        Morgan State         (156 - 0.041) 

Making Sweet Sixteen

Game 33:Louisville           (  7 - 0.817)
        Ohio State           ( 36 - 0.140)
        Siena                ( 71 - 0.041) 
Game 34:Wake Forest          ( 19 - 0.513)
        Utah                 ( 27 - 0.280)
        Arizona              ( 41 - 0.150) 
Game 35:West Virginia        (  8 - 0.550)
        Kansas               ( 11 - 0.405)
        North Dakota State   ( 70 - 0.027) 
Game 36:Michigan State       ( 15 - 0.656)
        Southern California  ( 28 - 0.266)
        Boston College       ( 57 - 0.072) 

Game 37:Connecticut          (  4 - 0.721)
        BYU                  ( 18 - 0.252)
        Texas A&M            ( 55 - 0.027) 
Game 38:Purdue               ( 16 - 0.484)
        Washington           ( 14 - 0.451)
        Mississippi State    ( 66 - 0.046) 
Game 39:Missouri             ( 10 - 0.669)
        Marquette            ( 22 - 0.259)
        Utah State           ( 50 - 0.063) 
Game 40:Memphis              (  2 - 0.805)
        California           ( 29 - 0.144)
        Maryland             ( 53 - 0.045) 

Game 41:Pittsburgh           (  3 - 0.778)
        Tennessee            ( 30 - 0.112)
        Oklahoma State       ( 31 - 0.105) 
Game 42:Xavier-Ohio          ( 24 - 0.531)
        Wisconsin            ( 32 - 0.265)
        Florida State        ( 44 - 0.181) 
Game 43:UCLA                 (  9 - 0.582)
        Villanova            ( 21 - 0.379)
        Va. Commonwealth     ( 68 - 0.035) 
Game 44:Duke                 (  5 - 0.781)
        Texas                ( 26 - 0.158)
        Minnesota            ( 47 - 0.060) 

Game 45:North Carolina       (  1 - 0.875)
        Butler               ( 42 - 0.063)
        LSU                  ( 46 - 0.061) 
Game 46:Gonzaga              (  6 - 0.710)
        Illinois             ( 23 - 0.268)
        Akron                ( 92 - 0.013) 
Game 47:Syracuse             ( 17 - 0.470)
        Arizona State        ( 12 - 0.456)
        Temple               ( 52 - 0.063) 
Game 48:Oklahoma             ( 13 - 0.584)
        Clemson              ( 20 - 0.345)
        Michigan             ( 51 - 0.068) 

Making Elite Eight

Game 49:Louisville           (  7 - 0.590)
        Wake Forest          ( 19 - 0.208)
        Utah                 ( 27 - 0.089)
        Ohio State           ( 36 - 0.056) 
Game 50:West Virginia        (  8 - 0.361)
        Michigan State       ( 15 - 0.292)
        Kansas               ( 11 - 0.242)
        Southern California  ( 28 - 0.083) 
Game 51:Connecticut          (  4 - 0.495)
        Purdue               ( 16 - 0.186)
        Washington           ( 14 - 0.177)
        BYU                  ( 18 - 0.128) 
Game 52:Memphis              (  2 - 0.539)
        Missouri             ( 10 - 0.308)
        Marquette            ( 22 - 0.082)
        California           ( 29 - 0.049) 
Game 53:Pittsburgh           (  3 - 0.623)
        Xavier-Ohio          ( 24 - 0.163)
        Wisconsin            ( 32 - 0.066)
        Tennessee            ( 30 - 0.056) 
Game 54:Duke                 (  5 - 0.496)
        UCLA                 (  9 - 0.290)
        Villanova            ( 21 - 0.137)
        Texas                ( 26 - 0.057) 
Game 55:North Carolina       (  1 - 0.590)
        Gonzaga              (  6 - 0.314)
        Illinois             ( 23 - 0.066)
        Butler               ( 42 - 0.015) 
Game 56:Oklahoma             ( 13 - 0.309)
        Arizona State        ( 12 - 0.252)
        Syracuse             ( 17 - 0.240)
        Clemson              ( 20 - 0.165) 

Making Final Four

Game 57:Louisville           (  7 - 0.359) 
        West Virginia        (  8 - 0.201)
        Michigan State       ( 15 - 0.135)
        Kansas               ( 11 - 0.120)
        Wake Forest          ( 19 - 0.093) 
Game 58:Memphis              (  2 - 0.336)
        Connecticut          (  4 - 0.272)
        Missouri             ( 10 - 0.158)
        Purdue               ( 16 - 0.070)
        Washington           ( 14 - 0.068) 
Game 59:Pittsburgh           (  3 - 0.368)
        Duke                 (  5 - 0.294)
        UCLA                 (  9 - 0.155)
        Villanova            ( 21 - 0.054)
        Xavier-Ohio          ( 24 - 0.052)
Game 60:North Carolina       (  1 - 0.439)
        Gonzaga              (  6 - 0.203)
        Oklahoma             ( 13 - 0.105)
        Arizona State        ( 12 - 0.089)
        Syracuse             ( 17 - 0.076) 

Making the Title Game

Game 61:Memphis              (  2 - 0.216)
        Louisville           (  7 - 0.185)
        Connecticut          (  4 - 0.165)
        West Virginia        (  8 - 0.096)
        Missouri             ( 10 - 0.085)
        Michigan State       ( 15 - 0.051) 
Game 62:North Carolina       (  1 - 0.278)
        Pittsburgh           (  3 - 0.201)
        Duke                 (  5 - 0.155)
        Gonzaga              (  6 - 0.107)
        UCLA                 (  9 - 0.072)
        Oklahoma             ( 13 - 0.042) 

Champs

Game 63:North Carolina       (  1 - 0.177)
        Memphis              (  2 - 0.120)
        Pittsburgh           (  3 - 0.115)
        Louisville           (  7 - 0.091)
        Connecticut          (  4 - 0.086)
        Duke                 (  5 - 0.085)
        Gonzaga              (  6 - 0.057) 

While the #1 or #2 seeds are the best bets to make the Final Four, the probability of the Final Four being all #1's or #2's is actually quite small. Figuring out who not to pick is, of course, the hard part.

Prob. of only #1 or #2 in Final Four =
(.359 + .135) * (.336 + .272) * (.368 + .294) * (.439 + .105) = 11%

Some Cinderellas (#6 Seeds or Lower into the Sweet 16)

 6-UCLA                 (  9 - 0.582)
 6-West Virginia        (  8 - 0.550) 
 6-Arizona State        ( 12 - 0.456)
 7-Clemson              ( 20 - 0.345)
10-Southern California  ( 28 - 0.266)
12-Wisconsin            ( 32 - 0.265)
 6-Marquette            ( 22 - 0.259)
 8-BYU                  ( 18 - 0.252)
 7-Texas                ( 26 - 0.158)
12-Arizona              ( 41 - 0.150) 
 7-California           ( 29 - 0.144)
 8-Ohio State           ( 36 - 0.140)
 9-Tennessee            ( 30 - 0.112)
 8-Oklahoma State       ( 31 - 0.105) 

In general, #8's and #9's are really bad Cinderella picks because (1) they are playing a comparable team in the first round and (2) they are virtually guaranteed to play one of the five best teams in the second round. On the other hand, #6's and #12's only have to get past a #4 seed, who has a significant chance of being upset in the first round.

Final Four Teams

The percentage of times each team won the regional:

Making Final Four
Indianapolis Regional
 1-Louisville           (  7 - 0.359)
 6-West Virginia        (  8 - 0.201)
 2-Michigan State       ( 15 - 0.135)
 3-Kansas               ( 11 - 0.120)
 4-Wake Forest          ( 19 - 0.093) 

Glendale Regional
 2-Memphis              (  2 - 0.336)
 1-Connecticut          (  4 - 0.272)
 3-Missouri             ( 10 - 0.158)
 5-Purdue               ( 16 - 0.070)
 4-Washington           ( 14 - 0.068) 

Boston Regional
 1-Pittsburgh           (  3 - 0.368)
 2-Duke                 (  5 - 0.294)
 6-UCLA                 (  9 - 0.155)
 3-Villanova            ( 21 - 0.054)
 4-Xavier-Ohio          ( 24 - 0.052) 

Memphis Regional 
 1-North Carolina       (  1 - 0.439)
 4-Gonzaga              (  6 - 0.203)
 2-Oklahoma             ( 13 - 0.105)
 6-Arizona State        ( 12 - 0.089)
 4-Syracuse             ( 17 - 0.076) 

To Win it All

North Carolina       (  1 - 0.177)
Memphis              (  2 - 0.120)
Pittsburgh           (  3 - 0.115)
Louisville           (  7 - 0.091)
Connecticut          (  4 - 0.086)
Duke                 (  5 - 0.085)
Gonzaga              (  6 - 0.057) 

The Bracket

Here is the bracket, I'll be submitting in my pools this year.

REGION 1
----------

Louisville__________
               _Louisville__________
Morehead_State______|               |
                               _Louisville__________
Ohio_State__________                |               |
               _Ohio_State__________|               |
Siena_______________|                               |
                                               _Louisville__________
Utah________________                                |               |
               _Utah________________                |               |
Arizona_____________|               |               |               |
                               _Wake_Forest_________|               |
Wake_Forest_________                |                               |
               _Wake_Forest_________|                               |
Cleveland_State_____|                                               |
                                                             _Louisville__________
West_Virginia_______                                                |
               _West_Virginia_______                                |
Dayton______________|               |                               |
                               _West_Virginia_______                |
Kansas______________                |               |               |
               _Kansas______________|               |               |
North_Dakota_State__|                               |               |
                                               _West_Virginia_______|
Boston_College______                                |
               _Southern_California_                |
Southern_California_|               |               |
                               _Michigan_State______|
Michigan_State______                |
               _Michigan_State______|
Robert_Morris_______|


REGION 2
----------

Connecticut_________
               _Connecticut_________
Chattanooga_________|               |
                               _Connecticut_________
BYU_________________                |               |
               _BYU_________________|               |
Texas_A&M___________|                               |
                                               _Connecticut_________
Purdue______________                                |               |
               _Purdue______________                |               |
Northern_Iowa_______|               |               |               |
                               _Purdue______________|               |
Washington__________                |                               |
               _Washington__________|                               |
Mississippi_State___|                                               |
                                                             _Memphis_____________
Marquette___________                                                |
               _Marquette___________                                |
Utah_State__________|               |                               |
                               _Missouri____________                |
Missouri____________                |               |               |
               _Missouri____________|               |               |
Cornell_____________|                               |               |
                                               _Memphis_____________|
California__________                                |
               _California__________                |
Maryland____________|               |               |
                               _Memphis_____________|
Memphis_____________                |
               _Memphis_____________|
CS_Northridge_______|


REGION 3
----------

Pittsburgh__________
               _Pittsburgh__________
East_Tennessee_State|               |
                               _Pittsburgh__________
Oklahoma_State______                |               |
               _Tennessee___________|               |
Tennessee___________|                               |
                                               _Pittsburgh__________
Florida_State_______                                |               |
               _Wisconsin___________                |               |
Wisconsin___________|               |               |               |
                               _Xavier-Ohio_________|               |
Xavier-Ohio_________                |                               |
               _Xavier-Ohio_________|                               |
Portland_State______|                                               |
                                                             _Pittsburgh__________
UCLA________________                                                |
               _UCLA________________                                |
Va._Commonwealth____|               |                               |
                               _UCLA________________                |
Villanova___________                |               |               |
               _Villanova___________|               |               |
American_University_|                               |               |
                                               _Duke________________|
Texas_______________                                |
               _Texas_______________                |
Minnesota___________|               |               |
                               _Duke________________|
Duke________________                |
               _Duke________________|
Binghamton-NY_______|


REGION 4
----------

North_Carolina______
               _North_Carolina______
Radford_____________|               |
                               _North_Carolina______
LSU_________________                |               |
               _Butler______________|               |
Butler______________|                               |
                                               _North_Carolina______
Illinois____________                                |               |
               _Illinois____________                |               |
Western_Kentucky____|               |               |               |
                               _Gonzaga_____________|               |
Gonzaga_____________                |                               |
               _Gonzaga_____________|                               |
Akron_______________|                                               |
                                                             _North_Carolina______
Arizona_State_______                                                |
               _Arizona_State_______                                |
Temple______________|               |                               |
                               _Syracuse____________                |
Syracuse____________                |               |               |
               _Syracuse____________|               |               |
Stephen_F._Austin___|                               |               |
                                               _Oklahoma____________|
Clemson_____________                                |
               _Clemson_____________                |
Michigan____________|               |               |
                               _Oklahoma____________|
Oklahoma____________                |
               _Oklahoma____________|
Morgan_State________|


FINAL FOUR
----------

Louisville__________
Memphis_____________|_Memphis_____________
                                          |_North_Carolina______
Pittsburgh__________ _North_Carolina______|
North_Carolina______|

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3 Responses to “Sean Forman Sims the NCAA Tournament”

  1. Neil Paine Says:

    What's remarkable is that the only places where our systems differed were Arizona State's Elite 8 chances (I had ASU beating the 'Cuse & OU), UCLA vs. Duke in the Sweet 16 (I had the Bruins pulling the upset), and the Memphis-UNC title game (I had Memphis winning it all). Not bad for two fairly different statistical methodologies...

  2. Sean Forman Says:

    Neil,

    Arizona State is probably the better team to get into the Elite 8, but since they have a harder row to hoe, they are a worse bet to make it (IMO) to that round. I have to say that I think the way yours provides the score is pretty sweet.

  3. Why Simulate Says:

    Sean,

    Why actually simulate the games? Can't you just figure out what would happen in an infinite number of simulations through simple multiplication and addition of the different probabilities of making a round/facing a team/beating that team? Is it because simulation lets you look at individual matchups more easily?