Saturday, October 09, 2010

Bet on Adam and Kyrie and bet against Paula and Roy

Wherein my three favorite contestants are also the worst

Note: All information below is based on data before the 10/09/2010

To quickly get everyone up to speed:
  1. There's a public radio game show called Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!
  2. Someone has created a WWDTM database
  3. Found out about the database from Popehat.

I decided to pull some numbers and see if anything interesting popped out. Not really, so feel free to stop reading here.

I pulled game totals for the panelists with the most number of appearances -- after Provenza, the next most appearances was 14. Database includes number of points everyone scored per game, so that's something you could play around with. Or maybe review for shows recorded in Chicago versus those not and create home and away statistics. I won't be doing either of those.

Also of potential interest is how well the panelists do in the final round -- who can hold onto a lead and who comes from behind. But the ability to suss that out looks to be outside the realm of the database.

What I would like to see in the database is Bluff the Listener data. I'd like to know how well these guys bluff. And what happens when they have the real answer versus when they don't. Maybe I'll try to work on this.

Number of games played
Basic stuff: numbers 1st, 2nd, and 3rd; and total games played. Ties are a separate column in the database; here, I've combined them. So Charlie Pierce's 53 wins is 37 solo wins plus 16 ties for first.

Name1st place2nd place3rd placeTotal games
Charlie Pierce533118102
Roxanne Roberts503515100
Adam Felber6228999
Paula Poundstone23324499
Roy Blount, Jr.35352797
Mo Rocca20323486
Tom Bodett24242270
Kyrie O'Connor4119969
Amy Dickinson15191650
PJ O'Rourke10101939
Sue Ellicott7171539
Paul Provenza7151234

Total Points
Assign three points for 1st, two for 2nd, and one for third; calculate total.

NameTotal Points
Adam Felber251
Charlie Pierce239
Roxanne Roberts235
Roy Blount, Jr.202
Paula Poundstone177
Kyrie O'Connor170
Mo Rocca158
Tom Bodett142
Amy Dickinson99
Sue Ellicott70
PJ O'Rourke69
Paul Provenza63

Percentage of First Place Wins
First place total divided by number of games played.

Name1st place percentage
Adam Felber62.63
Kyrie O'Connor59.42
Charlie Pierce51.96
Roxanne Roberts50.00
Roy Blount, Jr.36.08
Tom Bodett34.29
Amy Dickinson30.00
PJ O'Rourke25.64
Mo Rocca23.26
Paula Poundstone23.23
Paul Provenza20.59
Sue Ellicott17.95

Percent of Total Points

Assume three points for a win, and multiply by games played. Divide this into actual number of points earned. Does this work as some sort of efficiency rating?

NamePercent of total points
Adam Felber84.51
Kyrie O'Connor82.13
Roxanne Roberts78.33
Charlie Pierce78.10
Roy Blount, Jr.69.41
Tom Bodett67.62
Amy Dickinson66.00
Paul Provenza61.76
Mo Rocca61.24
Sue Ellicott59.83
Paula Poundstone59.60
PJ O'Rourke58.97

Most likely to finish third
Like first place, but for last place.

Name3rd place percentage
PJ O'Rourke48.72
Paula Poundstone44.44
Mo Rocca39.53
Sue Ellicott38.46
Paul Provenza35.29
Amy Dickinson32.00
Tom Bodett31.43
Roy Blount, Jr.27.84
Charlie Pierce17.65
Roxanne Roberts15.00
Kyrie O'Connor13.04
Adam Felber9.09


Blogger questionlp said...

Hey Bill, I'm the maintainer of the Wait Wait statistics page and database. I'm glad to see someone putting the data that I've collected to good use.

I have been recording which panelist had the correct bluff for a while, but have not had a chance to update the code to display that on the page. I am also thinking about a re-design of the page, so I'll try to include that piece in there as well.

10/12/2010 03:26:00 PM  

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