Daily Archives: March 26, 2013

Silver dislikes chances for a WSU or KU championship

Nate Silver, the New York Times statistical wizard known for his accurate predictions in the 2008 and 2012 presidential elections, gives Wichita State University a 24 percent chance of reaching the Final Four but only a 1.2 percent chance of winning the championship. “Wichita State has had as favorable a tournament as any team in the country so far,” Silver wrote. “Its win against No. 1-seeded Gonzaga on Saturday got lots of attention, but the team also crushed No. 8-seeded Pittsburgh in its first game, a team that the computer rankings regarded highly. As their reward, the Shockers will face an overachieving La Salle team in the Round of 16. Their next game, against Ohio State or Arizona, would be much tougher.” Silver put the odds of another University of Kansas championship at 4.5 percent, down from 7.9 percent. “The decline in Kansas’ winning odds might seem a bit punitive,” he wrote, “but the Jayhawks played three underwhelming halves of basketball before finally turning it on against North Carolina late on Sunday. Kansas will have much less margin for error against No. 4 seed Michigan, its opponent on Friday, and then in a potential matchup against Florida over the weekend, two teams that are well-regarded by the model.” Silver sees Louisville as the most likely winner, with a 32.4 percent chance.

Smart to back off on collective bargaining

Good for the Legislature for backing off on a bill that would limit the collective-bargaining rights of teachers. Instead, lawmakers decided to give groups representing teachers, school superintendents and local school boards the rest of the year to work on the issue, the Associated Press reported. “Hopefully, some good can come out of this,” said Rep. Marvin Kleeb, R-Overland Park. But as Sen. Laura Kelly, D-Topeka, noted, “It should have been done this way in the first place. It would have created a lot less angst.”