May 9, 2014
From Worst to Most Variable? Technical paper now available
Awhile back, I wrote a blog post entitled "Are the Worst Performers the Best Predictors?". It was a data analysis intended to draw out distinctions between informed predictions and actual performance. This was also inspired by the observations that the most probable champion often does not actually win the champaionship. The analysis featured PredictWise predictions and performance data from the 2013 MLB and NFL seasons.
This paper was an emergent effort, but I believe that I have a good idea of what is going on. The technical paper ("From Worst to Most Variable? Only the worst performers may be the most informative") is now public . For the technical paper, I added an additional analysis of 2014 NCAA Tournament data, and synthesized the resulting data using a hybrid phenomenological-predictive model. Using this somewhat unconventional approach, I was able to show that only the most consistently bad (and sometimes the consistently best) teams actually conform to expectation.
 Alicea, B. From Worst to Most Variable? Only the worst performers may be the most informative. Figshare, (2014). Datasets and analyses are also available as Supplemental Information.