Saturday, March 3rd, 2012...4:22 pm

Bracketology 101

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Every year, people across the United States predict how the field of teams will play in the Division I NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament by filling out a tournament bracket for the postseason play. Recently, Amy Langville and I published techniques of creating personalized brackets with math. This past week, I discussed these ideas as part of the Distinguished Lecture Series of the Mathematical Association of America.

A highlight of the talk, at least for me, was creating our own ranking during the talk. How do you do it? Want to try yourself? Here are two lectures that give details on March Mathness and creating your own brackets.

  • Full length lecture created as part of a webinar series on applications of linear algebra supported in part by the Associated Colleges of the South. Includes instructions on using the Java application that will rank basketball teams.
  • Short presentation on how to create your ranking with the Java application.

Finally, here is a link to Java code to rank!

Start honing your math models. When you have something you like, want to test it against others? Try the Princeton University Press March MATHness pool! For more details see their March Mathness blog.

Good luck!

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