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Random Musings

On this page you will find random musings on various aspects of mathematics. There is not set schedule for these thoughts. Keep coming back here often. I hope that you find it interesting.
Wojciech Komornicki
Chair, Department of Mathematics

Vol 3: March Madness

March Madness is upon us so I thought the following may be appropriate:

The official selection committee of the NCAA Division I Men’s basketball tournament will convene this weekend to choose and seed the teams for this year’s contest. Researchers at the University of Alabama have developed a new method for placing chosen teams into brackets that could decrease team travel costs and increase attendance.

According to a recent article from Inside Science, Alabama researchers Sharif Melouk and Burcu Keskin have developed a model that, unlike most previous research, only focuses on the first full weekend of the tournament.

“The Alabama researchers' model uses the selection committee's seeding and disperses the games over the eight locations where the second and third round games are played,” wrote Chris Gorski for Inside Science. “They weigh the priority of the teams, giving the highest seeded teams the best chance to play close to home, and attempt to minimize the amount of miles traveled by the tournament teams.”

Operations researcher Michael Fry (University of Cinncinnaty) was also interviewed for the article saying, “Melouk [and Keskin] demonstrxate that the NCAA could greatly benefit from using mathematical modeling.” Fry also added that using the model could reduce the cost of transporting basketball teams by more than $1 million.

Source: Inside Science

Mar 21 2012

Past Musings:
27 Jan 2012
16 Jan 2012