Championship Satiation

As you may or may not know, I’m a life long Cub fan. I grew up watching them both at home and at the ballpark. If you know anything about the Cubs, you know that they have gone over 100 years without winning the World Series. They actually haven’t been to the World Series in 65 years now either. They have come close a few times since I became a fan and they always seemed to miss it in heartbreaking fashion. This year after year of “not making it” has made me appreciate the smaller victories and the game itself.

It has also given me the desire to always root for the underdog, usually that team that has gone the longest without winning or attaining a certain level of achievement. So a few years ago I tabulated how long each team had gone without winning the championship of their sport. I did this for the four major US sports: baseball, football, basketball, and hockey.

That gives one point of reference of who is most “deserving” of winning it the next year, but it doesn’t take into account the championships won before that most recent championship. And also the collective memory of a fan base really only goes back about 20 or 30 years. Especially in sports nowadays. For instance almost none of the current fans of neither the Cubs nor the Cleveland Indians (1948) have seen them win the World Series. I think both groups of fans feel they are “deserving” to win it all this year.

So I created a spreadsheet which takes into account how many championships were won and when over the past 30 seasons (I say seasons since both baseball and hockey sat out a season each due to strikes). The spreadsheet gives weight to the number of teams each year since it’s slightly easier to win a championship against 20 other teams instead of 29 other teams. The spreadsheet also gives weight to more recent championships because you are likely to remember well if your team has one over the past 5 years and a little less likely over the previous 5 years. Weight is also given each time the team wins a championship and I also gave half credit for teams that go to the championship but lose. I figure they had their chance but were not able to do it.

The thinking behind the spreadsheet is that fans of teams that have won recently and/or often are more satiated in their desire for their team to win. Numerically the spreadsheet figures out that “satiation factor”. Given that most sports have 30 teams nowaday, in a perfect world each team would win once every 30 years. At the base level, one win over the past 30 years would yield a satiation factor of 1. But with weighting toward the more recent years, a win over the past 5 years would yield a satiation factor of 6 (5×6=30). It gets a bit more complicated since the factors for the periods of the past 5, 10, 20, and 30 years are averaged, but in general those are the principles behind the spreadsheet.

But then all the teams who have not won over the past 30 years would be on equal footing. What if we looked at the fan base of any given city? Chicago has five sports teams and one of them won 6 championships over the past 30 years. Or Boston has won 6 championships in 3 different sports over the past 5 years but hasn’t won in hockey for 37 years. The hockey fans are deserving, but if they are all-around sports fans they’ve been more than satiated.

So in order to differentiate the fans of a team that has not won in a city which has not won anything in a long time from the fans of a team in a city that has won recently or often, I took the spreadsheet to another level. I averaged the satiation factors for all the sports teams in a city to give each city it’s own satiation factor. This still takes into account the number of championships per seasons played by each team. This city satiation factor is then factored in (1/3 importance) with the satiation factor for the team. So for instance the Cubs may have not won in 30 years, but teams in other cities like Milwaukee where no team in the city has won in 30 years have a lower satiation factor.

Lastly as I was starting to finish this up, I wanted to determine an accurate satiation factor for Montreal. Since they now only have hockey, I thought it made sense to work in the numbers for the Canadian Football League. So for the Canadian cities this is also taken into account.

I actually completed the spreadsheet quite a while ago, but hadn’t gotten around to writing down an explanation of how it works. Since both the hockey and basketball playoffs are coming up, I will be relaying the findings for those sports shortly.

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~ by Frank on March 31, 2010.

6 Responses to “Championship Satiation”

  1. […] Satiation – Cities As the previous post explained, I have done some research into which cities and teams I think are the most deserving of the next […]

  2. […] series on the most deserving teams since the playoffs have begun. If you have not read it first, here is the original post in the series which describes how I came about determining a ’satiation’ factor for […]

  3. […] series on the most deserving teams since the playoffs have begun. If you have not read it first, here is the original post in the series which describes how I came about determining a ‘satiation’ factor for […]

  4. […] you have not read it first, here is the original post in the series which describes how I came about determining a ‘satiation’ factor for each team and […]

  5. […] you have not read it first, here is the original post in the series which describes how I came about determining a ‘satiation’ factor for each team and […]

  6. […] you have not read it first, here is the original post in the series which describes how I came about determining a ‘satiation’ factor for each team and […]

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