Nate Silver’s new website, FiveThirtyEight, is an operation designed at showcasing the statistical side of life. One of the site’s first endeavors is analyzing the 2014 March Madness field of 68.
A brass-tacks explanation of how Silver broke down the field goes like this: he compiled data sets from a selection of five computerized power rankings and two human rankings. From there he added in circumstantial adjustments (injuries, travel, etc.) and weighted pre-season rankings – in order to give a larger sample size. His resulting formula offers a percentage-based analysis of each team’s probability for making every round in the tournament.
Though Florida has the best Vegas odds to win, Silver has the Gators weighted just below the Louisville Cardinals. Of all the No. 1 seeds, Wichita State has the lowest percentage, falling below schools that are ranked significantly lower. Below is a chart showcasing every team that has at least a 2% chance of winning the NCAA Tournament.