Wednesday, December 12, 2012

2012 Gus Rankings: Bowl Edition

Want to know how Gus would perform in a bowl pick-em pool?  So do we.  Here's how he'd pick his winners and assign his confidence points.  (The final Gus Rankings are here, which incorporate last weekend's Army/Navy game.)  Confidence points are assigned in parenthesis by virtue of the difference in points in the Gus Rankings.  For games with the same difference in points, confidence points are then assigned by difference in ranking.  If that was the same, then the game with the higher ranked pair received more confidence (Gus is decidedly risk-preferring).  And Syracuse and West Virginia have the exact same record and the exact same number of Gus claimed his Mountaineer roots for the last confidence wager.

Addendum: By request, here are the final conference rankings:

1. SEC: 17.43
2. Big 12: 12.30
3. Big 10: 9.00
4. Pac-12: 8.25
5. Big East: 1.75
6. ACC: -3.25
7. MAC: -7.95
8. WAC: -8.43
9. MWC: -10.40
10. Sun Belt: -10.50
11. C-USA: -19.33

New Mexico

Nevada vs. Arizona Winner: Arizona (29)

Toledo vs. Utah State Winner: Utah State (9)

San Diego State vs. BYU Winner: San Diego State (26)
St. Petersburg

Ball State vs. UCF Winner: Ball State (18)
New Orleans

East Carolina vs. Louisiana-Lafayette Winner: Louisiana-Lafayette (10)
Las Vegas

Boise State vs. Washington Winner: Boise State (21)

SMU vs. Fresno State Winner: Fresno State (33)
Little Caesars

Western Kentucky vs. Central Michigan Winner: Western Kentucky (17)

San Jose State vs. Bowling Green Winner: San Jose State (32)

Duke vs. Cincinnati Winner: Cincinnati (30)

UCLA vs. Baylor Winner: UCLA (22)

Louisiana-Monroe vs. Ohio Winner: Louisiana-Monroe (13)
Russell Athletic

Virginia Tech vs. Rutgers Winner: Rutgers (28)

Minnesota vs. Texas Tech Winner: Texas Tech (23)
Armed Forces

Rice vs. Air Force Winner: Air Force (8)
Fight Hunger

Arizona State vs. Navy Winner: Navy (24)

Syracuse vs. West Virginia Winner: West Virginia (1)

Texas vs. Oregon State Winner: Oregon State (15)
Buffalo Wild Wings

Michigan State vs. TCU Winner: Michigan State (11)
Music City

Vanderbilt vs. NC State Winner: Vanderbilt (19)

Georgia Tech vs. USC Winner: USC (27)

Iowa State vs. Tulsa Winner: Tulsa (31)

Clemson vs. LSU Winner: LSU (12)
Heart of Dallas

Purdue vs. Oklahoma State Winner: Oklahoma State (25)

Mississippi State vs. Northwestern Winner: Northwestern (14)
Capital One

Georgia vs. Nebraska Winner: Nebraska (7)

South Carolina vs. Michigan Winner: South Carolina (16)

Wisconsin vs. Stanford Winner: Stanford (35)

Northern Illinois vs. Florida State Winner: Northern Illinois (2)

Florida vs. Louisville Winner: Florida (34)

Oregon vs. Kansas State Winner: Oregon (3)

Texas A&M vs. Oklahoma Winner: Oklahoma (5)

Pittsburgh vs. Mississippi Winner: Pittsburgh (4)

Kent State vs. Arkansas State Winner: Kent State (6)
BCS Championship

Notre Dame vs. Alabama Winner: Notre Dame (20)       

Monday, December 03, 2012

2012 Gus Rankings: Week 14

Here are the final Gus Rankings of the year.  (Army plays Navy next week but that should have no bearing on either end of the rankings.)  Notre Dame maintains a stranglehold on the top spot.  Stanford, Florida, Ohio State and Alabama round out the top 5.  Notre Dame claims the Gus National Title easily with a win over Alabama in the National Championship Game, though also has a fair chance to claim the GNT even with a loss to Alabama depending on how the remaining bowl games shake out.  A Florida win over Louisville presents the strongest threat to Notre Dame's top spot.  We shall see how it all shakes out!

On the other end of the spectrum, New Mexico State claims their own national title-- Gus' Worst Team in America.  New Mexico State edged out Southern Mississippi over the last weekend; perennial favorites Akron and Massachusetts finished just behind the Aggies.

As these are the final Gus Rankings, Gus would have the BCS as follows:

National Championship Game: Notre Dame (At-large) vs. Stanford (Pac-12 champions)
Rose Bowl: Wisconsin (Big 10 champion) vs. Florida (At-large)
Fiesta Bowl: Kansas State (Big 12 champion) vs. Oregon (At-large)
Sugar Bowl: Alabama (SEC champion) vs. San Jose State (At-large)
Orange Bowl: Florida State (ACC champion) vs. Louisville (Big East champion)

The National Title Game features the top two teams, Notre Dame and Stanford (technically, Stanford and Florida are tied-- if you put Florida in the title game, simply swap Florida for Stanford).  As Stanford is the Pac-12 winner, the Rose Bowl gets first choice in replacing them and the highest remaining team is Florida.  They would face Wisconsin, automatic qualifiers from the Big 10.

The Fiesta Bowl gets the next choice of teams.  Kansas State, champions of the Big 12, automatically qualify.  The next highest remaining eligible team is Oregon at #6.  Alabama automatically makes the Sugar Bowl as SEC champions; the Sugar Bowl is left to choose between two other automatic qualifiers-- Louisville as Big East champions, and...San Jose State!  (Gus overlooked the Spartans last week on the incorrect assumption that a non-BCS-conference automatic qualifier needed to be a conference champion.  No such requirement exists.)  Everyone knows Northern Illinois' story by now, and they do finish at #16 in the final Gus Rankings...but San Jose State outpaces them at #14, and both teams are well ahead of Big 10 champion Wisconsin (#37) and Big East champion Louisville (#29).  SJSU, as the highest remaining eligible team, heads to the Sugar Bowl.  That leaves the Orange Bowl with Florida State (ACC champions) and Louisville.

Next week, we'll update the rankings to capture Army/Navy and pick the winners of every bowl game.

Monday, November 26, 2012

2012 Gus Rankings: Week 13

Here are the updated Gus Rankings.  Notre Dame still holds the top spot, followed by Florida, Ohio State, Stanford and Oregon.

At the other end of the spectrum, Southern Mississippi holds a slim one point advantage over Massachusetts for the last spot.  Southern Mississippi has the distinction of being the only FBS team to schedule all 12 of their games against FBS opponents and lose them all.  Don't sleep on the Aggies of New Mexico State, however-- they have one remaining game next weekend against 8-loss Texas State.  A loss there should clinch the bottom spot for the perennial last spot contenders.

Here are the updated Gus BCS predictions (check the rules and assumptions from last week):

National Championship Game: Notre Dame (At-large) vs. Florida (At-large)
Rose Bowl: Nebraska (Big 10 Champion) vs. Stanford (Pac-12 champion)
Fiesta Bowl: Kansas State (Big 12 champion) vs. Oregon (At-large)
Sugar Bowl: Alabama (SEC champion) vs. Kent State (At-large)
Orange Bowl: Florida State (ACC champion) vs. Rutgers (Big East champion)

Following the letter of the BCS law, Kent State makes it by virtue of being in the top 16, winning their conference and finishing ahead of Rutgers/Louisville.

Swap Florida and Alabama and that's exactly how I see things shaking out after this weekend.

Also interesting to note that unless something weird happens this weekend, 3 of the top 4 teams in the final BCS rankings will not only have not won a conference title, they won't have played in a conference championship game.  Notre Dame isn't in a conference, and both Florida and Oregon's one-loss kept them from their respective conference championships.

As a side note: What if Navy and/or Army were undefeated and a factor in the BCS?  The point is moot-- the current structure of the BCS allows only 40-50 of the 124 FBS teams the ability to win the title, and Army/Navy aren't in that minority-- but would the BCS decision be pushed back by a week?

Monday, November 19, 2012

2012 Gus Rankings: Week 12

Here are this week's Gus Rankings.  Notre Dame holds a sizable advantage over #2 Ohio State.  Stanford finds itself at #3 after their win over Oregon, Nebraska sits at #4 and Alabama is at #5.

At the bottom of the spectrum, Southern Mississippi charges to a one point edge over Akron.  Since Southern Mississippi finishes with 7-loss Memphis, Akron finishes with 3-loss Toledo, and Massachusetts ends with 6-loss Central Michigan, the Golden Eagles seem to be in line to take the title of worst FBS team.

At this stage of the game, it's fun to project whom Gus would place into each of the BCS game.  The bowl lineup is as follows:

National Championship Game - BCS #1 vs. BCS #2
Rose Bowl - Ben Ten Conference Champion vs. Pac-12 Conference Champion
Fiesta Bowl - Big 12 Conference Champion vs. At-large
Sugar Bowl - SEC Champion vs. At-large
Orange Bowl - ACC Champion vs. At-large

Note that the Big East Conference champion does not automatically qualify for a particular bowl, so they can be viewed as a mandatory at-large.

Should a conference champion qualify for the National Championship game from a conference that is tied to another bowl, that bowl gets first choice on replacing that team from the eligible pool of teams.  If both teams are conference champions, the #1 BCS team is replaced first.

In 2013, at-large spots are filled in the following order: Fiesta, Sugar, Orange

Conference champions are determined by the highest spot on the Gus Rankings should any discrepancies arise.

So that gives us the Gus BCS:

National Championship Game: Notre Dame (At-large) vs. Stanford (Pac-12 champion)
Rose Bowl: Nebraska (Big 10 Champion) vs. Oregon (At-large replacement for Stanford)
Fiesta Bowl: Kansas State (Big 12 champion) vs. Florida (At-large)
Sugar Bowl: Alabama (SEC champion) vs. Clemson (At-large)
Orange Bowl: Florida State (ACC champion) vs. Rutgers (Big East champion)

Notice that Clemson is higher than Florida State in the Gus Rankings but cannot win the ACC as they are not in the ACC Championship Game.  But not a bad slate!  As far as my two cents, I think we end up seeing the following-- we'll see how things can change over the next two weeks:

National Championship Game: Notre Dame vs. Alabama
Rose Bowl: Nebraska vs. Stanford
Fiesta Bowl: Kansas State vs. Oregon
Sugar Bowl: LSU vs. Clemson
Orange Bowl: Florida State vs. Rutgers

A few notes:

- I think Florida State beats Florida this weekend in Tallahassee.  That should eliminate Florida from BCS consideration.

- Stanford beating UCLA two weeks in a row would be impressive; should that not happen, Stanford will be out of the BCS (well, they could lose next week, Oregon State could beat Oregon, then Stanford could come back and beat UCLA in the Pac-12 title game).  The real issue for the Fiesta Bowl is if Oregon makes it to the Rose Bowl.  Let's say they want to take a big name to offset the less-than-big-name of Kansas State; Oregon fits that role beautifully and they'd take Oregon in a heartbeat if they could.  On top of that, they should be able to since they choose from the at-large pool first.  Only the Sugar Bowl would likely have the chance to beat them to Oregon, but that doesn't really make sense for anyone involved for Oregon to end up in New Orleans.

But the Fiesta Bowl can't take Oregon if they end up as Pac-12 champions.  There shouldn't be any SEC teams left at that point; one will likely be in the title game, and the Sugar Bowl will get the first replacement pick and likely take another SEC team.  Conferences can't have any more than two teams, so that eliminates Texas A&M.  Oklahoma would be an interesting pick for a rematch with Kansas State, and I wouldn't normally think them to do that...but who is left?  Clemson to Tempe?  Rutgers?  Oregon State would have three losses in this scenario so they're out, Texas would as well.  This scenario probably won't happen but it's definitely feasible...that would be an interesting decision to make.  If I had to guess, I'd probably say Oklahoma, but the Fiesta Bowl folks can't be liking that too much.  They just can't expect Clemson to draw across the country, and you can say the same for Rutgers in light of the UConn experience a few years ago.

- I suppose you could make the argument for a two-loss Georgia (or maybe Florida) team in the Sugar Bowl instead of LSU.  Georgia would have made the SEC title game and had a better in-conference record, but (1) LSU is the home-state team and (2) it's not like the Sugar Bowl has looked to find the best remaining teams to fill their slots in the past (see: Michigan, 12 months ago).

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

2012 Gus Rankings: Week 11

Here are this week's Gus Rankings.  Notre Dame maintains the top spot with a healthy 7 point edge over Ohio State.  Alabama is third after last week's loss to Texas A&M, Oregon is fourth and Kansas State fifth.

At the bottom of the rankings, Massachusetts scored their first win of the season last week at Akron, pushing the Zips to the bottom of the rankings.  Not deterred, New Mexico State trails Akron by only two points for the title of Gus' worst team in the land.

Conference rankings are as follows:

1. SEC: 13.07
2. Big 12: 9.20
3. Big 10: 6.92
4. Pac-12: 6.67
5. Big East: 0.13
6. ACC: -0.58
7. MAC: -6.83
8. WAC: -7.00
9. Sun Belt: -7.30
10: MWC: -8.20
11. C-USA: -14.50

Tuesday, November 06, 2012

2012 Gus Rankings: Week 10

Here are this week's Gus Rankings.  Notre Dame still holds the top spot after its narrow win over Pittsburgh last weekend.  Alabama, Ohio State, Oregon and Kansas State round out the top 5.

On the bottom end, New Mexico State surged into the bottom position with their loss to 7-loss Auburn.  The lead is not likely to last, however-- 2-loss San Jose State is on the schedule next week for NMSU while the eagerly awaited Akron/Massachusetts battle looms at InfoCision Field.

Monday, October 29, 2012

2012 Gus Rankings: Week 9

This week's Gus Rankings are here.  (And our apologies, but last week's rankings got lost in the shuffle of travel.  You can find those here.)

Notre Dame finds itself alone at the top yet again, resting on a three point edge over second place Ohio State.  Alabama is two points behind the Buckeyes in the third spot, which itself has a six point edge over co-No. 4's Kansas State and Oregon.

At the other end of the spectrum, Massachusetts holds a two point edge over Akron for the title of the worst team in America.  November 10th can't come soon enough!  Your faithful blogger is not above driving the two hours to witness the Game of the Century, either.  Good seats still available!

Conference rankings are as follows, with the ACC becoming the first BCS conference (if my memory is correct) to capture a negative average team score in any week:

1. SEC: 7.929
2. Big 12: 7.000
3. Big 10: 5.417
4. Pac-12: 5.083
5. Big East: 0.250
6. ACC: -0.500
7. Sun Belt: -4.500
8. WAC: -4.857
9. MWC: -5.500
10. MAC: -5.583
11. C-USA: -9.833

Monday, October 15, 2012

2012 Gus Rankings: Week 7

This week's Gus Rankings are here.  Notre Dame takes over the top spot for the first time in Gustory, followed by Ohio State, Florida, Alabama and Oregon State.  On the other end of the spectrum, Massachusetts catches Akron at the bottom of the list.  New Mexico State is still in the hunt for the worst team but they are seeing some separation by the Minutemen and the Zips.

Another fun aspect of the Gus Rankings, as far as I'm concerned, is the ability to compare the best with the worst in an absolute sense; namely, is Notre Dame better than Akron and Massachusetts are bad?  Last week, the bads held the edge, while Notre Dame reclaimed that title this week (+19 to -18).  Stay tuned for this season's epic race away from 0.

One more fun note: Cincinnati has played 3 FBS teams through 7 weeks.  Thanks for breaking a 5, Cincy!  The same is true of Texas-San Antonio, though they'll get a pass for the time being as they're a FBS newcomer, and furthermore aren't in a BCS conference.  That being said, Cincinnati still isn't the lowest rated zero-loss team-- that would be the Ohio Bobcats, checking in at #28.

Monday, October 08, 2012

2012 Gus Rankings: Week 6

Here are this week's Gus Rankings.  Ohio State takes over the top spot with the victory over Nebraska.  Notre Dame, Florida, South Carolina and Stanford-- the highest ranked one-loss team-- round out the top 5.  Notre Dame and Stanford play next week in South Bend, with the winner being well positioned to take the top spot.

At the other end of the spectrum, Massachusetts closed some of the gap between themselves and Akron.  Akron still "leads" all FBS schools at -15, but Massachusetts is just one point back (ahead?).  The title of the worst team in FBS football may well be decided on November 10 when the Minutemen visit Akron-- or perhaps on November 24, when Rice travels to UTEP.

Conference rankings through Week 6:

1. SEC: 3.643
2. Big 12: 3.500
3. Pac-12: 2.833
4. Big 10: 2.250
5. Big East: 0.500
6. ACC: 0.417
7. Sun Belt: -2.000
8. WAC: -2.286
9. MWC: -2.900
10. MAC: -3.167
11. C-USA: -4.333

Monday, October 01, 2012

2012 Gus Rankings: Week 5

This week's rankings are here.  Oregon State shares the point lead with Stanford though claims the top spot by virtue of a better record.  Alabama and Ohio State are tied for the third spot, and Notre Dame rounds out the top five.  On the other end of the rankings, Akron stakes themselves to a two point advantage for the final spot.

At this point it's fun to see a visual disconnect from records and point totals...a few examples:

Highest point total for a team with no wins?  Vanderbilt finds itself at 0-3 against FCS competition but at an even 0 points due to the fact that their three losses-- Georgia, South Carolina and Northwestern-- are all undefeated.  Northern Illinois, USC, Nevada, Penn State and Connecticut all have three wins and are below the Commodores in the standings.

Lowest point total for a team with no losses?  FCS newcomers Texas-San Antonio also find themselves at 0 points despite winning both of their games against FCS competition (and all three of their games against non-FCS competition as well-- one more win the rest of the way and the Roadrunners finish .500 or better in their first year at Division I's top level.) 1-4 Kentucky outpaces UTSA, as does 1-3 Auburn and South Florida, and 1-1 Pittsburgh as well.

Monday, September 24, 2012

2012 Gus Rankings: Week 4

Here are this week's Gus Rankings.  Stanford again leads the pack despite the off week; Notre Dame, Florida, Oregon State and Alabama round out the top 5.  At the other end of the spectrum, Massachusetts holds down the final position with a two point "lead" over Akron, Idaho and New Mexico State.

As we have mostly concluded the non-conference portion of the schedule, it is worthwhile to look at conference rankings.  The following is the average team score within each FBS conference:

1. SEC           1.429
2. Big 12        1.300
3. Pac-12        1.167
4. ACC           0.750
4. Big 10         0.750
6. Big East      0.125
7. WAC          -0.714
8. Sun Belt     -0.800
9. MWC         -1.300
10. MAC        -1.393
11. C-USA     -1.583

Monday, September 17, 2012

2012 Gus Rankings: Week 3

Week 3 of the Gus Rankings are here.  This week, Gus crowns a new #1-- Stanford, fresh off it's victory over USC.  Stanford's 3 wins come over USC (2 other wins), Duke (1 other win) and San Jose State (1 other win).  Their 4 points lead the other 123 FCS teams.

At the other end of the spectrum, Massachusetts joins Akron at the bottom of the rankings.  Massachusetts is enjoying their first season as a FBS member, and thus their first season in the Gus Rankings.  This year's other first timers are Texas State, Texas-San Antonio and South Alabama.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

2012 Gus Rankings: Week 2

Welcome to this year's installment of the Gus Rankings! As in years past, we'll be providing our own ranking system for college football; you can find a rundown of the methodology here.

Per the system, it's impossible to generate a ranking after one week of Week 2 is the first ranking of the year.  And Gus opines that the best two teams in the land thus far are...Iowa State and UCLA.  Both have a maximum Week 2 score of 2 points; namely, each team has won both games, and each team that they have defeated has won their other game as well.

And it only took two weeks for Gus to determine the worst team in the country!  The University of Akron comes in at -2 points, the lowest score possible.  In the converse of above, each team that Akron has lost to also lost their other game of the season.

For those interested, the Fighting Justin Rosses (Indiana) come in at a tidy #29, tied with board favorite West Virginia.

You can find the Week 2 rankings here.

Friday, April 20, 2012


The Economist published my response to this article.
SIR – You suggested that the supply of Somali shillings is fairly fixed despite a number of forgeries (“Hard to kill”, March 31st). In fact, it was the introduction of forged notes that ultimately removed the incentive to increase the supply of shillings in circulation.
The 1,000 shillings note exchanged for roughly $0.13 when General Muhammad Aideed employed a printing firm to reproduce the note in 1996. As the number of notes in circulation grew, the exchange value fell to just $0.03, which is the cost of producing an additional note. Since the exchange value equals the cost of production, forgers can no longer profit by increasing the supply. Today, the Somali shilling is a commodity money. Its supply is governed by the cost of ink and paper required to produce a note.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Underdog betting fever: Catch it!

There's a good degree of lazy in all of us. As such, I have really enjoyed the good folks at Beyond the Bets tracking the success of our underdog wagering theory for Major League Baseball. Their latest post is here. The original academic paper is here, it came out in print at Applied Economics a few months ago.

In short, there are a number of reasons to believe that betting on underdogs early in the baseball season will generate persistent profits. It was true over the eleven seasons we looked at, it was really true last year, and seems to be going well again in 2012. Through the first 60 games this year, blanket betting underdogs would generate a profit of 10.31, a rate of a touch under 17%.

Insofar that the viability of a theory is its ability to predict, we've generated a pretty good one here.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Fed Valentines

I love this new meme. And it is just in time for Valentine's day.

Friday, February 03, 2012

Propapalooza V

We're running up against it, time-wise, but nonetheless, it's time for this year's Super Bowl prop battle. You can check out Propapaloozas I, II, III, and IV if you so desire. Like Kim Jong-il and his North Korean soccer squad, I've won every single Propapalooza by a score of 432-1.

You can find this year's props here.

Generally, longtime TPS supporter Rob Holub and I go toe-to-toe, though you are more than welcome to take your five and post them in the comments (paging Will Luther). The general idea is to take bets that are roughly 50/50 in nature (or worse-- that means you want to be finding any line around -120 or higher.) Thus, feel free to take the Giants giving 10.5 to the Patriots at +475...but taking the Patriots on the flip side of that wager at -750 isn't fair game. Winner is who hits the most of their 5!

Matt's picks:

Will first kickoff of Super Bowl XLVI result in a touchback - No: +115

Will the game be tied after 0-0 - Yes: Even (+/-100)

Stephen Gostkowski - Total Field Goals Made 1.5 - Over: -105

Big 10 team points (-63.5) vs. Tom Brady passing yards: -115

Victor Cruz - Will he score a TD? - Yes: +120

Rob's picks:

- Team to score first - New York Giants: -115

- New England rushing yards 102.5 - Under: -115

- Tom Brady 4th Q TD pass – Yes: -115

- Aaron Hernandez over 5.5 receptions: -115

- LeBron James points/rebs/assists (-3.5) vs. Deion Branch rec yards: -115

As an aside, the novelty props are always enjoyable. I don't believe there is a linkable pdf for the novelty props, but if you click here and then find "Novelty Props" in the right column, there's a whole section of fun things to wager on. Some of my favorites:

- Kelly Clarkson - How Long Will it Take Her to Sing the National Anthem (From first note starts until she completes saying Brave), over/under 1:35. I think that's a bit long-- last year, Christina Aguilera sang the national anthem and I'd say she has a tendency to lengthen it out. I say Clarkson keeps it crisp. Under.

- Who will the Super Bowl MVP of the Game Thank First:

Coaches/Owner +400
Does not Thank Anyone +250
Family +500
God +125
Teammates +200

I think there's a large chance that either Tom Brady or Eli Manning end up at the MVP here. And I think both of them go right for the teammates first. Teammates, +200. Great value here in my opinion.

What Color will the Gatorade (or Liquid) be that is dumped on the Head Coach of the Winning Team:

Blue +1000
Clear/Water even
Lime Green +550
Orange +250
Red +800
Yellow +200

It could be a crapshoot, certainly, and maybe I'm looking too much into it...but aren't both teams prominently blue and red? And who drinks blue Gatorade? Red at 8:1...similarly great value here.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Chinese soccer, or the lack thereof

I think the question posed is interesting-- Why is Chinese soccer so bad?-- and a lack of land space could be a factor but it feels unconvincing. I think the larger issue to explain is the relative success of the women's team compared to the men's-- in my opinion, that makes the problem several degrees of magnitude more complex.

And I can confirm that the Chinese-- quick to trumpet their accomplishments and their future-- are equally quick in bashing their soccer team. Within 30 minutes of arriving in Shanghai our guide had taken to telling jokes with the Chinese soccer program being the clear butt of the laughs.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Puerto Rican baseball decline

I'll break the 2012 ice!

Here is a great piece from the NYT, via MR, on Puerto Rican baseball and its decline-- a beautiful example of unintended consequences and collective action problems. An interesting read, do the Will Luther-whole-thingamajig.