FanPost

Chances of Iowa Big Ten Title (lots of math)

I'm trying to figure out what scenarios give Iowa the B10 title.  I'm not "showing my math", mostly because it is late and this took more time to summarize than I thought.

I'm taking team strengths from Sagarin's PREDICTOR.  Add 3 points to home team, compare strengths, that's your spread.  I'm assuming a spread of 0 means a 50/50 chance of either team winning, a spread of 20 or more means no chance of the underdog winning, and a linear distribution in between.  Those are not well-founded assumptions - especially the last one - and any thoughts you have on it are appreciated.

This all assumes there are only four contenders for a 0-loss or 1-loss B10 championship - that Purdue and jNW won't be one them.

Sagarin PREDICTOR ratings:
tOSU     85.78
Iowa     83.76
MSU     81.67
Wisc     79.08
Ill     76.15
Mich     75.72
PSU     69.46
jNW     69.21
Purdue     66.58
Ind     63.86
MN     61.12

Odds of an Iowa win for each of the remaining games:
Wisc-H     0.7
MSU-H     0.625
Ind-A     0.925
jNW-A     0.8
tOSU-H     0.525
MN-A     1

So, onto it.

1. Chances of Iowa winning out, and being outright B10 champs: 17%

2. Chance of Iowa losing one and only one remaining game - 38%
a. That "only one loss" being to tOSU (15% chance).  Assuming this happens, the chances of the following also happening are:
i. tOSU has an 80% chance of running the table.  If they do that, we would half the time finish tied for first with only them with one loss, and half the time tied for first with them and MSU.  tOSU would likely win all tie-breaking scenarios and be crowned B10 champ.  (We would definitely not win ANY tie-breaking scenarios.)
ii. tOSU has a 20% chance of losing at least one other game, finishing behind us in the standings.  Half the time we would be outright B10 champions, and half the time we would be tied with MSU but hold the tie-breaker, being declared B10 champions.

b. That "only one loss" being to MSU (10% chance).  Assuming this happens, the chances of the following also happening are:
i. MSU has a 50% chance of running the table.  If they do that we would finish behind them.
ii. MSU has a 41% chance of losing only one more game - we would finish tied with them with one loss.  They would hold the tie breaker and be declared champs.
iii. MSU still has a 9% chance of losing two or more other games (likely at jNW and at PSU), finishing behind us in the standings.  We would be outright champs.

c. That "only one loss" being to Wisc (7% chance).  Assuming this happens, the chances of the following also happening are:
i. Wisc has a 29% chance of running the table.  If they do that, we would half the time finish tied for first with only them with one loss, and half the time tied for first with them and MSU.  In the two-way tie we lose the tie-breaker, and in the three-way tie the rules are poorly written but I believe for all intents and purposes we would also lose this tie-breaker.
ii. Wisc has a 71% chance of losing at least one other game, finishing behind us in the standings.  Half the time we would be outright B10 champions, and half the time we would be tied with MSU but hold the tie-breaker, being declared B10 champions.

d. That "only one loss"being to jNW, Indiana, or MN: 6%.  Assuming this happens, the chances of the following also happening are:
i. Well, there would be a strong chance someone would tie us at the top - MSU, Wisc, and/or tOSU.  I believe we would win the tie-breaker every time.

3. Chance of Iowa losing two or more remaining games - 45%.  I'm not going to try break that one out.  But folks, it could happen.  It did last year.

OUTRIGHT 0-LOSS CHAMPS: 17%
OUTRIGHT 1-LOSS CHAMPS: 5%
1-LOSS AND WIN-TIE-BREAKER CHAMPS: 10%

There you have it folks.  32% chance of a Rose Bowl.

Unless otherwise expressly indicated by BHGP editors, this FanPost is strictly the viewpoint of the author and is not endorsed by BHGP in any way.

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