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AJ1969
04-01-2006, 05:03 PM
From the BBC: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/4581374.stm

Surprise secret to soccer appeal

The element of surprise elevates football above other sports
American football, basketball and baseball have millions of followers, but they can't match soccer for sheer excitement, says a team of scientists.
The reason is its element of surprise, claim researchers from Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico, US.

Football is more likely to produce an unexpected result, such as a "giant killer" win in the FA Cup.

Scientists analysed results from more than 300,000 games played over the past century.

They reviewed five sports: national hockey, football, baseball and basketball in the US, and English football.

The team decided to make unpredictability - how often a leading team is overcome by an opponent with a worse record - the best measure of how exciting a league is.

"If there are no upsets, then every game is predictable and hence boring," co-author Eli Ben-Naim told New Scientist magazine.

The results of the analysis showed that the "upset frequency" was highest for soccer, followed by baseball, hockey, and basketball. American football came last on the list, and so was labelled the least exciting sport.

But there was a twist in the tail.

When the scientists looked only at data from the past 10 years, English Premiership football and baseball swapped places.

One interpretation of the finding might be that soccer has become more predictable in recent years.

Which excites you most?

AJ1969
04-01-2006, 05:26 PM
Sooooo predictable

elliott
04-01-2006, 07:51 PM
The whole point of American football is that any team can win any game and in theory every team has the same chance of winning the Superbowl.

This of course doesn't work.

Adlerhorst
04-01-2006, 08:03 PM
Originally posted by elliott
The whole point of American football is that any team can win any game and in theory every team has the same chance of winning the Superbowl.

This of course doesn't work.

Superbowl winners for the last 15 years (from 1991 onwards)

1991 - NY Giants
1992 - Redskins
1993 - Cowboys
1994 - Cowboys
1995 - 49ers
1996 - Cowboys
1997 - GB Packers
1998 - Broncos
1999 - Broncos
2000 - St Louis
2001 - Ravens
2002 - Patroits
2003 - Bucs
2004 - Patroits
2005 - Patriots

10 different winners (cannot remember who the Ravens used to be so might only be nine)

Premiership/ Div 1 winners in the same period - 5, and three of those only won it once (Chelsea, Blackburn & Leeds)

As an american would say, you do the math. ;)

elliott
04-01-2006, 08:09 PM
Indeed, but that's the theory

Steve in Phoenix
04-01-2006, 08:16 PM
Personally I would say hockey is the most exciting simply because anything can happen in a split second.

Its quite common for two or three goals to be suddenly scored in less than 30 seconds and the whole game changes.

PalaceFan in Alabama
05-01-2006, 01:01 AM
Originally posted by Steve in Phoenix
Personally I would say hockey is the most exciting simply because anything can happen in a split second.

I prefer to watch boxing without the Ice ;)

There again Lizzy28 plays Hockey, so maybe some of the BBS should pop along and see if anything exciting happens :hmph:

PalaceFan in Alabama
05-01-2006, 01:05 AM
On a more serious note, people go to watch sports for many different reasons. I normally fall asleep watching basketball, watching Ice Hockey is a great evening in a box with plenty to eat and drink, mind you the same can be said of going to any sport in the US.