Are you in the Bracket Of Death?

The following teams have byes in this year’s tournament: The Newlyweds, Double A’s, Gone Fishing, Dead Rabbits, Kiss My Ace, G& T’s, Twinning, Black Jesus, Theos, Blue Balls, Balls Deep, Teen Mom III, Big LeBocce, Amerika’z Most Wanted.

And as always our four brackets are named after the top 4 teams in the league. This year we have:

The Droppin Balls Bracket

The Dog Brothers Bracket

The Breakfast of Champions Bracket

The Los Moppines Bracket

Which bracket is the toughest? Or perhaps a better way to ask the question … which is the Bracket of Death?

Lets break it down!

You can take a close look at the brackets HERE.

What ways do we have to asses which bracket is better? Since we format our brackets using BCS (your winning percentage doubled + your opponents winning percentage) each bracket will have an approximately equal BCS. But …

  • We can add up the records in each bracket and see which is best.
  • We can also look at which teams had to forfeit games, meaning their actual winning percentage is higher than they are getting credit for.
  • We can look at past tournament success, and see which bracket has the most of that.
  • And finally we can look to Vegas, and see what Vegas has to say about which bracket is better (this is a lot of math by me, but its interesting, so what the heck I’ll do it).

As for which bracket has the best record, here’s the raw data:

.

Breakfast of Champions: .485

Los Moppines: .480

Droppin Balls: .439

Dog Brothers: 425

By this evidence the Breakfast of Champoins bracket is the best, closely followed by the Los Moppines bracket, then a big drop off in quality to the Droppin Balls bracket, who are closely followed by the Dog Brothers bracket.

Why is there a big drop in quality between the top two brackets and the bottom two? It turns out there is a reason. Due to the number of teams playing, the Breakfast of Champions bracket and the Los Moppines bracket have one more bye than the other two brackets. That means that the Droppin Balls bracket and the Dog Brothers bracket have one extra low ranked team bringing down their averages. If we take these extra teams out we get to view the brackets on an even playing field.

Here are the winning percentages of the each bracket adjusted so that each has the same number of byes.

Breakfast of Champions – .485

Los Moppines – .480

Droppin Balls – .467

Dog Brothers – .446

As you can see the big gap between brackets narrows, but the order actually remains the same.

Now you might be saying that even these records don’t paint an accurate picture of the quality of each bracket, because forfeits are included. I would agree! As we all know, if you don’t play all 30 games you have to forfeit the games you don’t make up. Theoretically some team could have a very good season but have to forfeit games due to uncontrollable circumstances (like, for example, Tim Maynard’s team only playing 15 games this year because he had to take the CPA exam, and presumably study for it too).

Here are the winning percentages of each bracket with the forfeits taken away, and only taking each team’s actual record into account.

Breakfast of Champions -.550

Droppin Balls – .527

Dog Brothers – .521

Los Moppines – .492

Under this most accurate depiction we see that the Breakfast of Champions bracket emerges as clearly the toughest bracket, with the Los Moppines bracket being clearly the easiest bracket (its good to win the regular season championship!)

Now you might say that this year’s performance isn’t the only relevant factor. Perhaps some teams are extra clutch. Perhaps some have a track record of excellent performances in the playoffs. How can we judge this? Well we can look at how many previous Turbo Bocce championships each bracket claims.

Here is that breakdown:

Dog Brothers – 11 (Phil Martino -3, George Christou – 3, Jim Whipple – 3, John Bauman – 1, Mark Streiff -1)

Los Moppines – 2 (Greg Griffo -1, Bryan Mullane – 1)

Droppin Balls – 2 (Andy Ingalls – 1, Anson Zeppetello -1)

Breakfast of Champions – 2 (Paul Colabufo -2)

Obviously the Dog Brothers Bracket has a clear advantage here.

Finally, as we so often do during the playoffs, we can look to Vegas to decide who is favored. This took at lot of math … I combined all the stats of every team in each bracket as if they were one big team, then fed those stats into our Vegas formula to determine which bracket would be favorites if they played each other. Here are the results …

In the match up between the Droppin Balls bracket and the Los Moppines bracket … the Droppin Balls bracket as the Vegas favorite with a 54% chance of winning.

In the match up between the Breakfast of Champions bracket and the Dog Brothers bracket … the Breakfast of Champions bracket emerges as the slight Vegas favorite with a 53% chance of victory.

And finally in the Droppin Balls bracket vs. Breakfast of Champions bracket match up, the Breakfast of Champions bracket emerges as a slight 52% Vegas favorite. So Vegas thinks the Breakfast of Champions bracket is the most difficult (of course Vegas is only looking at this year’s performances and knows nothing about who won what in previous years).

So who is the bracket of death? Well the Dog Brothers bracket has history on its side, while it seems like the Breakfast of Champions bracket did the best this season. Truthfully, there is no true bracket of death this year as the talent seems almost perfectly distributed … but of course that won’t due for this article. There must be a winner!

My first inclination when I looked at the brackets (before I did any math) was that the Dog Brothers bracket was the hardest, and I’m going with my gut here. My opinion for what its worth (which I know is nothing) is that the Dog Brothers bracket is the Bracket of Death!

What do you think?