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What Makes a Team's Winning Percentage Deviate from the Pythagorean Relationship? *

Difficulty
Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites Basic knowledge of Microsoft Excel and statistics
Material Availability Readily Available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
*Note: This is an abbreviated Project Idea, without notes to start your background research, a specific list of materials, or a procedure for how to do the experiment. You can identify abbreviated Project Ideas by the asterisk at the end of the title. If you want a Project Idea with full instructions, please pick one without an asterisk.

Abstract

What makes a winning team? Getting all the best players? Good coaches? Good chemistry? This project will show you how you can use math to help you test your hypothesis about what makes a winning team.

The Pythagorean relationship is a fundamental one in sports: it correctly predicts the records of 98% of all teams. But in 2% of cases, it fails. Why does it fail? Find teams that deviated substantially from their expected Pythagorean record (this information is available for baseball teams on www.baseball-reference.com. Then look at their situational statistics (this information is available on ESPN.com) and determine what they did that resulted in more or fewer wins than they otherwise should have had. Determine what the teams have in common.

Credits

Gabriel Desjardins

Cite This Page

MLA Style

Science Buddies Staff. "What Makes a Team's Winning Percentage Deviate from the Pythagorean Relationship?" Science Buddies. Science Buddies, 20 June 2014. Web. 24 Oct. 2014 <http://www.sciencebuddies.org/science-fair-projects/project_ideas/Math_p005.shtml>

APA Style

Science Buddies Staff. (2014, June 20). What Makes a Team's Winning Percentage Deviate from the Pythagorean Relationship?. Retrieved October 24, 2014 from http://www.sciencebuddies.org/science-fair-projects/project_ideas/Math_p005.shtml

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Last edit date: 2014-06-20

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