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Adjusting Winning-Percentage Standard Deviations and a Measure of Competitive Balance for Home Advantage

Listed author(s):
  • Trandel Gregory A

    (University of Georgia)

  • Maxcy Joel G

    (University of Georgia)

One measure of sports league competitive balance uses a ratio: the standard deviation of team winning percentages is divided by the so-called ideal standard deviation, which assumes a game between evenly-skilled teams is equally likely to be won by either team. In fact, a team is more likely to win when playing at home than when playing on the road. The extent of this advantage differs across sports leagues. Home advantage reduces the variability of season-long team records. Ignoring home advantage biases upward the traditionally measured ideal standard deviation and bias downward the ratio of standard deviations. The authors derive a balanced league standard deviation formula that accounts for home advantage, use it to recompute the ratio of standard deviations for major sports leagues, and consider how the adjustment affects comparisons of competitive balance across those leagues.

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Article provided by De Gruyter in its journal Journal of Quantitative Analysis in Sports.

Volume (Year): 7 (2011)
Issue (Month): 1 (January)
Pages: 1-17

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Handle: RePEc:bpj:jqsprt:v:7:y:2011:i:1:n:1
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  1. Craig Depken, 1999. "Free-Agency and the Competitiveness of Major League Baseball," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer;The Industrial Organization Society, vol. 14(3), pages 205-217, May.
  2. Marques António Cardoso, 2009. "Estimating Quality in Home Advantage and Competitive Balance in the Portuguese Football League," Journal of Quantitative Analysis in Sports, De Gruyter, vol. 5(3), pages 1-19, July.
  3. Smith Erin E & Groetzinger Jon D., 2010. "Do Fans Matter? The Effect of Attendance on the Outcomes of Major League Baseball Games," Journal of Quantitative Analysis in Sports, De Gruyter, vol. 6(1), pages 1-24, January.
  4. Ray Fair & John Oster, 2002. "College Football Rankings and Market Efficiency," Yale School of Management Working Papers amz2377, Yale School of Management, revised 01 Aug 2007.
  5. Rodney Fort, 2007. "Comments on ``Measuring Parity''," Journal of Sports Economics, , vol. 8(6), pages 642-651, December.
  6. Daniel Mizak & Anthony Stair & John Neral, 2007. "The adjusted churn: an index of competitive balance for sports leagues based on changes in team standings over time," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 26(3), pages 1-7.
  7. Allen R. Sanderson & John J. Siegfried, 2003. "Thinking About Competitive Balance," Vanderbilt University Department of Economics Working Papers 0318, Vanderbilt University Department of Economics.
  8. Entine Oliver A & Small Dylan S, 2008. "The Role of Rest in the NBA Home-Court Advantage," Journal of Quantitative Analysis in Sports, De Gruyter, vol. 4(2), pages 1-11, April.
  9. repec:ebl:ecbull:v:26:y:2007:i:3:p:1-7 is not listed on IDEAS
  10. Ray C. Fair & John F. Oster, 2007. "College Football Rankings and Market Efficiency," Journal of Sports Economics, , vol. 8(1), pages 3-18, February.
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