Vice Sports discusses Starting Ten

Vice Sports did a story on two guys who forked a college basketball post-season game I made up on a forum a few years back. What they’ve done is way cool, because they took my silly idea and broadened to go well beyond just college basketball using their own algorithms for other sports all using Excel. It’s really nerdy, but I dig it.

You can see the spreadsheet for the 2016 game.

Here’s the original premise of my game:

1. You pick a roster of any 8 players from the NCAA tournament field.
2. You score as many points as each of your drafted players scores in the NCAA tournament.
3. You get a multiplier for the seed of his team. (i.e. if Nate Wolters of 14th seeded South Dakota State scores 18 points, you would earn 252 points.)
4. “First Four”/play-in round games do not count towards the players point total.
5. Deadline is tip-off of the first games on Thursday.

We were playing around with the spreadsheet and thought it would be better to give you some more flexibility to take higher-seeded guys if we added a multiplier to each round the player scores points in.

So the 1st round (of 64) is just x1, each round after adds a x1 so:

Round of 32: x2
Sweet 16: x3
Elite 8: x4
Final 4: x5
Championship: x6

So now if you have a guy who is a 1 seed who scores 20 points in the sweet 16, instead of being worth only 20 points, it’d now be worth 60 points. If he’s was on a 2-seed team that’d be 120 points and so forth. If you pick this year’s VCU and manage to get them to the Final Four? Jackpot. But what’s nice is, a 18 point game from a 3-seed in the Elite 8 is worth 216 points (18 x 3 x 4) which will make up a lot of ground from the guy who scored 288 points for his 16-seed who had a guy scoring 18 points in their one-and-done game. Make sense?

There’s no draft, so players can pick the same people which adds to strategy. The game has been going on since 2012, and we’ve expanded it from Starting 8 to Starting 10 and then last year, down to Starting 5 (plus a bench player to make six) because it’s a lot of housekeeping. It’s still a well-attended and fun game. Some dudes on the internet found the game via a subreddit and have been riffing on the whole concept since then with their people, going beyond college basketball and using all manner of sports and real world activities. It’s bananas.


This entry was posted on Monday, February 5th, 2018 at 3:38 am and is filed under Basketball, computer rankings, Features. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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