MATC Mathematics Club
Lecture #104

Madison Area Technical College
Madison, Wisconsin


Spring 2011 Presentation #104 (March 4, 2011)

Dr. James Swenson, UW-Platteville

"Power Rankings: Math for March Madness"

Abstract: Every spring, the NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Committee selects the teams that will compete for the national championship in ``March Madness.'' It is a major challenge to identify the most deserving teams: the Committee must evaluate the relative merits of teams that have played a limited number of games, against opponents of varying quality. We'll investigate the mathematics that could help the Committee judge how good each team is, taking into account the results of every college basketball game played in a given season.

Biography: Dr. James Swenson joined the UW-Platteville Mathematics Department in 2005. He earned the Ph.D. at the University of Minnesota, where he studied algebraic topology under the direction of Dr. Mark Feshbach. He likes to work with computers, watch sports, play games and drink coffee, and he feels fortunate in that his professional work has often involved each of these interests. It takes only one of Dr. Swenson to change a lightbulb.

Power Rankings 2011


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