Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Tonight's Kansas at Kansas State men's basketball game featured a number of streakiness-related storylines:

Even though playing on one's home court typically gives a team an advantage, for 24 straight years K-State had always come up short when hosting KU. Of course, the Wildcats hadn't done very well against the Jayhawks, regardless of venue; the above-linked article notes that, "The Jayhawks had beaten Kansas State 35 of their last 36 overall."

Anyway, K-State's 24-game losing streak to KU in Manhattan, Kansas (the Little Apple) is now over, thanks to an 84-75 Wildcat win.

Another streak ended by this game is that of KU's 20 straight wins to open up the season.

Finally, K-State frosh Jacob Pullen went a perfect 10-for-10 from the free-throw line. Pullen came into the game shooting .707 from the stripe; according to this online binomial calculator, the probability of a .707 free-throw shooter making all 10 attempts is only .03(assuming a player's free throw attempts are independent events, like coin-flipping, which has tended to be a reasonable assumption).


Meanwhile, over at West Virginia University, the Mountaineers went a woeful 1-for-22 on three-point attempts, in losing to Cincinnati. WVU entered the game shooting .378 from behind the arc, a fairly strong clip. Using the same online calculator as above, for a .378 team to make only 1 (or 0) out of 22 has a probability of .0004.

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