Super Bowl Squares
Last year I wrote a post about super bowl squares:
I received an email this morning from a friend: “Is there any sort of a statistical breakdown for which are the best numbers to have in a Super Bowl squares pool (for entertainment purposes only)?”
Now, if my friend were going to use this information to gamble, it would be highly unethical. However, since he clearly stated that it was for “entertainment purposes only,” I feel that I can conduct a study with a clear conscience.
If he had wanted to gamble on it, here is a quick explanation of how that usually takes place. (According to that website: “Basically, if you are at a party where you don’t have betting squares you are a Communist.”)
Well, here is the updated graph, though it’s not really that much different than last years graph. (It looks to me like football-reference.com only has the scores page with counts updated through week 1 of the 2012 NFL regular season. )
Somethings to note:
- 2-2 is still the worst square by far. It’s only happened 5 times in the history of the league. The fair odds for this square are over 2800-to-1.
- The best squares are, no surprise, 7-0 and 0-7, occurring 582 and 577 times, respectively.
- The other great squares to have are in order, 0-3, 0-4, 4-7, and 7-4. All of these have occurred over 480 times each.
- These 6 outcomes (7-0, 0-7, 0-3, 0-4, 4-7, and 7-4) account for almost 23% of all the NFL games ever played.
The six (the count data from football-reference isn’t complete so the table says 5) games that ended in the 2-2 square all-time are:
- Toledo Maroons tie Milwaukee Badgers, 12-12. October 8, 1922.
- Green Bay Packers tie Chicago Bears, 12-12. September 30, 1928.
- Buffalo Bills over Houston Oilers, 22-12. October 8, 1961.
- Kansas City Chiefs over Cincinnati Bengals, 42-22. October 26, 1969.
- Buffalo Bills over Miami Dolphins, 42-32. December 5, 2004.
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers over Oakland Raiders, 42-32. November 4, 2012.