nep-spo New Economics Papers
on Sports and Economics
Issue of 2020‒09‒14
seven papers chosen by
Humberto Barreto
DePauw University

  1. Dynamic Bayesian forecasting of English Premier League match results with the Skellam distribution By Robert C. Smit; Francesco Ravazzolo; Luca Rossini
  2. Psychological pressure and the right to determine the moves in dynamic tournaments – Evidence from a natural field experiment By Mark Kassis; Sascha L. Schmidt; Dominik Schreyer; Matthias Sutter
  3. Experimental Evidence on Forecaster (anti-) Herding in Sports Markets By Christoph Buehren; Tim Meyer; Christian Pierdzioch
  4. Analysing a built-in advantage in asymmetric darts contests using causal machine learning By Goller, Daniel
  5. Betting market efficiency in the presence of unfamiliar shocks: The case of ghost games during the COVID-19 pandemic By Fischer, Kai; Haucap, Justus
  6. Cognitive Performance in the Home Office - Evidence from Professional Chess By Künn, Steffen; Seel, Christian; Zegners, Dainis
  7. The Impact of Winning an NCAA Basketball Championship on Applications, Enrollment, and Academic Quality By Austin F. Eggers; Peter A. Groothuis

  1. By: Robert C. Smit (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, The Netherlands); Francesco Ravazzolo (Free University of Bolzano‐Bozen, Faculty of Economics and Management, Italy); Luca Rossini (Queen Mary University of London, United Kingdom and Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, The Netherlands)
    Abstract: The scoring and defensive abilities of association football teams change over time as a result of the trading of players, injuries, tactics and other management factors. As such, we develop a hierarchical Bayesian dynamic model based on the Skellam distribution, where the scoring abilities are changing over time and different across teams. In this paper, we introduce a unique method used to handle promotion and relegation within the league. The model uses three different seasons and the forecasting ability has been measured and validated on the 2018-2019 English Premier League season. The model predicts the outcome of the matches correctly about 60% of the time.
    Keywords: Bayesian hierarchical models, dynamic models, English Premier League, football data, Skellam distribution
    JEL: C11 L83 Z20
  2. By: Mark Kassis; Sascha L. Schmidt; Dominik Schreyer; Matthias Sutter
    Abstract: In this paper, we show that the right to determine the sequence of moves in a dynamic team tournament improves the chances of winning the contest. Because studying dynamic team tournaments – like R&D races – with interim feedback is difficult with company data, we examine decisions of highly paid professionals in soccer penalty shootouts and show that teams whose captains can decide about the shooting sequence are more likely to win the shootout. So, managerial decisions matter for outcomes of dynamic tournaments and we discuss potential reasons for this finding.
    Keywords: Dynamic tournament; sports professionals; psychological pressure; value of decision rights; penalty shoot-outs; behavioral economics
    JEL: C93 D00 D81 D91 Z20
    Date: 2020–08
  3. By: Christoph Buehren (Clausthal University of Technology); Tim Meyer (Helmut Schmidt University); Christian Pierdzioch (Helmut Schmidt University)
    Abstract: We experimentally analyzed whether (anti-)herding behavior of forecasters in sport-betting markets is influenced by the incentive structure of the market (winner-takes-all vs. equal payment of most accurate forecasts) and by personal traits of forecasters. We found evidence of anti-herding in forecasts of the German Bundesliga. Self-reported knowledge and, more surprisingly, winner-takes-all incentives reduced anti-herding. On average, forecasts were less accurate with stronger anti-herding. Winner-takes-all incentives and self-reported knowledge improved forecasts.
    Keywords: (Anti-)Herding, Sports forecasting, Experiment, Survey data
    Date: 2020
  4. By: Goller, Daniel
    Abstract: We analyse a sequential contest with two players in darts where one of the contestants enjoys a technical advantage. Using methods from the causal machine learning literature, we analyse the built-in advantage, which is the first-mover having potentially more but never less moves. Our empirical findings suggest that the first-mover has an 8.6 percentage points higher probability to win the match induced by the technical advantage. Contestants with low performance measures and little experience have the highest built-in advantage. With regard to the fairness principle that contestants with equal abilities should have equal winning probabilities, this contest is ex-ante fair in the case of equal built-in advantages for both competitors and a randomized starting right. Nevertheless, the contest design produces unequal probabilities of winning for equally skilled contestants because of asymmetries in the built-in advantage associated with social pressure for contestants competing at home and away.
    Keywords: Causal machine learning, heterogeneity, contest design, social pressure, built-in advantage, incentives, performance, darts
    JEL: C14 D02 D20 Z20
    Date: 2020–09
  5. By: Fischer, Kai; Haucap, Justus
    Abstract: Betting markets have been frequently used as a natural laboratory to test the efficient market hypothesis and to obtain insights especially for financial markets. We add to this literature in analyzing the velocity and accuracy in which market expectations adapt to an exogenous shock: the introduction of soccer ghost games during the COVID-19 pandemic. We find that betting odds do not properly reflect the effect of ghost games regarding changes in home advantage. Furthermore, we present evidence for a slow to non-existing adaption process with respect to new match results, indicating a lack of semi-strong efficiency. Based on these findings, we also identify very simple but highly profitable betting strategies which underline our rejection of the efficient market hypothesis.
    Keywords: Home Advantage,Betting Market,Efficient Market Hypothesis,Ghost Games
    JEL: G14 Z20 Z21 Z23
    Date: 2020
  6. By: Künn, Steffen (Maastricht University); Seel, Christian (Maastricht University); Zegners, Dainis (Erasmus University Rotterdam)
    Abstract: During the recent COVID-19 pandemic, traditional (offline) chess tournaments were prohibited and instead held online. We exploit this as a unique setting to assess the impact of moving offline tasks online on the cognitive performance of individuals. We use the Artificial Intelligence embodied in a powerful chess engine to assess the quality of chess moves and associated errors. Using within-player comparisons, we find a statistically and economically significant decrease in performance when competing online compared to competing offline. Our results suggest that teleworking might have adverse effects on workers performing cognitive tasks.
    Keywords: productivity, teleworking, chess, COVID-19
    JEL: H12 L23 M11 M54
    Date: 2020–07
  7. By: Austin F. Eggers; Peter A. Groothuis
    Abstract: Objective: We analyze how winning a national championship in men’s basketball influences both the quantity and academic quality of students attending the university. Methods: We use a fixed effect regression technique on a fourteen-year panel data set of universities to analyze the influence of winning a men’s basketball national championship on a university’s admissions and academic profile. Using this technique, we examine if student applications, admissions rate, academic yield or academic quality changes at the victorious institution. Results: Our findings suggest that winning a national championship has no effect on applications nor the admissions rate at a school, but does increase the enrollment yield for both male and female students. We also find that there is a slight increase in the quality of students who enroll as measured by academic test scores and high school rank. Conclusion: Our results indicate that winning an NCAA men’s basketball national championship does not serve to increase the number of applications or admissions rate to a school. The relatively minor increases in student quality and enrollment outlined in this study seem to contradict the idea that a successful men’s basketball program, as measured by winning a national championship, could be used as a marketing tool by a university to enhance its academic profile. Key Words:
    Date: 2020

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