Handicapping "Think Tank" technical handicapping and statistics |

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My half-point calculator performs these types of calculations. |

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They're based on totals within half a point of the line in question. |

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Thanks, Ganchrow. I am curious as to how you came out with those percentages. The reason I ask is that I have been following totals lately and it seems I see a much higher percentage of the line at 7, 8 or 9 pushing than the percentages indicated on your table. Of course, that is only based on what I have observed since making that post. |

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Post your data and we'll see if it's off significantly. |

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These are the 1/2 point-radius "push" totals for 2008: Code: Total Pushes Games Freq. Std. Err. 7 9 113 7.96% 2.55% 8 29 459 6.32% 1.14% 9 81 783 10.34% 1.09% |

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I followed 52 games and seven of those games pushed, which is 13.46%. These were twice on the seven and eight and once on the nine and I forget what the other two were. Obviously, your data is more complete. Thus, I am more convinced that I just happen to hit a unique streak. In your data what does Std. Err. represent? |

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The Std. Err. refers to "standard error", which is simply the standard deviation of an estimated parameter and is related to the more colloquial term "margin of error". Simplifying a bit, we can say that for large data sets, we're 95% confident that the "true" population mean should within 1.96 standard errors of the observed sample mean. The standard error of the "win frequency" of a random binomial variable is given by sqrt(p*(1-p)/N), where p, is the observed win frequency, and the N the number of trials in the sample. So in your case of 52 games with a "success" rate of 13.46%, we have a standard error of sqrt(13.46%*(1-13.46%)/52) ≈ 4.733%. This means that, as a first order approximation, the true push rate for games fitting your criteria is (with 95% confidence) 13.46%±1.96*4.733%, or in other words, between between 4.18% and 22.74%. (Note that in the interest of illustrating the concept I've simplified the issue.) |

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