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March Madness: How To Cheat At Brackets

March Madness - West Host

In Back to the Future 2, bad-guy Biff uses a sports almanac from the future to place sure-thing bets on sporting games in his present. At WestHost, we might not have an almanac, but we do have the next best thing…

The NCAA March Madness Predictor is an example of the power of programming. Created by WestHost techie, Cameron Bird, this online predictor offers a cheat’s way of forecasting the results of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament.

Cameron came up with the idea for the code after a losing streak in previous office sweepstakes.

“I know next to nothing about College ball,” says Cameron. “While I’ve gone to plenty of games at USU, I have never been into the whole March Madness thing. This year, rather than try to learn which teams are historically good and which are bad, I decided to predict which teams would do well myself.”

Rather than write a script based on official team and player statistics, Cameron decided to base his prediction calculator on another, slightly more serendipitous factor.

“My predictor uses shortened URL web traffic data to calculate which team will win. If a team has a lot of traffic through a Bit.ly link, like Coastal Carolina for example, they will do very well in my bracket.”

If Cameron’s predictor is right, Tenessee will beat Coastal Carolina in the finals. This may sound unlikely, but every tournament has its Cinderella teams.

“I would not be surprised if I was the only bracket with this particular match-up,” says Cameron. “My perspective is, there are always unforeseen teams that do better than expected and my hope is that it just turns out to be Coastal Carolina and Tennessee who are probably the worst two teams in the competition, historically.”

To test out Cameron’s March Madness Predictor yourself visit http://predictor.cbird.westhostsite.com/. To discover other feats of programming genius, brought to you by the WestHost family, visit the website.

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