Tuesday, March 8

Where Does Home Field Advantage Come From?

Interesting excerpt in Sports Illustrated from new book Scorecasting: The Hidden Influences Behind How Sports Are Played and Games Are Won. ESPN calls it 'Freakonomics for sports', which makes the book sound like it's right up my alley, and I certainly enjoyed the part I read. Unfortunately, SI doesn't make it's articles available for free on the web anymore, so I can't link it for you. Here's the Wikipedia summary and some related resources:

+ Home advantage
Sports Illustrated, in a 17 January 2011 report, reported that home crowds, rigor of travel for visiting teams, scheduling, and unique home field characteristics, were not factors in giving home teams an advantage. The journal concluded that it was favorable treatment by game officials and referees that conferred advantages on home teams. Sports Illustrated stated that sports officials are unwittingly and psychologically influenced by home crowds and the influence is significant enough to effect the outcomes of sporting events in favor of the home team.[3]
+ More on home field advantage and why the price of beer at Wrigley is the largest influence on the Cubs' financial success: A Conversation With Tobias Moskowitz

+ Book excerpt: Wertheim's Scorecasting

+ The curse of the No. 1 draft pick
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