As we continue to expand both the number of pundits and types of pundits we track, we need your help. We are looking for volunteer Moderators and Trackers.
Moderators will take “ownership” of specific categories, helping to shape creative direction. For instance, we are considering tracking Economists in Finance and Pollsters in Politics, but these categories have gray areas that create scoring challenges. For instance, both economists and pollsters frequently revise their predictions/estimates, so how should we go about tracking them? And how should we think about margin of error? Rather than imposing our own views, we think it’s best to give authority to our users, who are more knowledgeable about these specialties than we are.
As far as Trackers, as we scale up the number of pundits we track, it becomes more difficult to catch all the predictions that are being made. As such, we are looking for Trackers who will help us screen the daily newsflow for new predictions in a given category or even for a specific pundit or television show.
Here are some of the categories for which we are looking for Moderators and Trackers, although if you have suggestions for new categories, we are all ears:
Finance: Economists (e.g. GDP, inflation), Stock Market (e.g. stock analysts, annual S&P predictions), General
Politics: Pollsters, General
Sports: NFL, MLB, NBA, NCAA Football, NCAA Basketball, Other (e.g. Hockey, Boxing, Horse Racing, Tennis, UFC/MMA)
Entertainment: General (e.g. Oscars, Emmys)
Use the “Whom should we track?” button on the bottom-right of the page to contact us and we will get back to you promptly. Thanks!
The 2013 NFL Draft was widely viewed to be more unpredictable than most. After grading the mock drafts of Mel Kiper (ESPN), Todd McShay (ESPN), and Mike Mayock (NFL.com), we can confirm that those views proved correct: all three pundits had a rough year. Todd McShay, who was #1 in mock draft accuracy in each of the past four years, had a particularly woeful showing.
Let’s start with our simple variability measure, which is based on the difference between when each player was projected to be picked and when he was actually picked. A lower variability score is better:
Variability 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 Average
Mayock 7.3 9.6 9.9 9.3 7.9 10.7 9.1
Kiper 10.1 8.8 10.4 7.7 8.5 11.7 9.6
McShay 10.7 8.7 8.8 6.8 7.0 21.5 10.6
The average variability for the three pundits from 2008-12 was 8.8, which underscores just how poor their 2013 performance (14.7 average) was. Big misses for all three included Sharrif Floyd going #3 to Oakland (he went #23 to Minnesota) and Eddie Lacy going late in the first round (actually went late second round). McShay and Mayock both whiffed on Geno Smith, picking him to go #6 to Cleveland (actual: #39 to Jets).
The worst projection of all, however, was McShay pegging Ryan Nassib going #7 to Buffalo (actual: #110 to the Giants). This was by the far the worst first-round projection since we started tracking the mock drafts in 2008.
Here are all the major hits and misses:
The variability metric can be significantly impacted by “outliers” such as Nassib, so we have calculated a host of alternative metrics, including:
- Capped Variability (lower = better): caps the maximum penalty of any pick at one round — for instance, McShay’s Nassib pick would be graded as 32 spots off rather than 103 spots
- Median Error (lower = better)
- Hit Rate (higher = better): pure percentage of how many picks were correct
Here are the results for these three metrics from 2008-2013.
Capped Variability 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 Average
Mayock 7.3 9.6 9.3 9.3 7.9 10.3 8.9
McShay 10.7 8.7 8.7 6.8 7.0 12.3 9.1
Kiper 10.1 8.2 9.5 7.7 8.5 10.9 9.3
Median Error 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 Average
Mayock 2.0 4.0 3.0 3.0 3.5 3.5 3.2
Kiper 3.0 3.5 3.0 4.0 3.0 3.5 3.4
McShay 4.0 4.0 3.0 3.5 3.0 5.0 3.8
Hit Rate 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 Average
Mayock 35% 28% 22% 28% 19% 28% 27%
Kiper 29% 25% 31% 28% 22% 25% 27%
McShay 16% 25% 34% 25% 16% 22% 23%
Will Tavon Austin win Offensive Rookie of the Year? Peyton Manning for MVP? Make your Predictions now on PunditTracker while the voting is still open — click here to submit your picks (use the VOTE NOW buttons).
After announcing the idea of PunditTracker early in 2012, we solicited suggestions from our readers on which pundits to track. The most requested financial pundit, by far, was Jim Cramer. In fact, during our interview with NPR last March, host Bob Garfield ended the discussion with the not-so-subtle request: “Two words: Jim Cramer”.
We are making Cramer the first in our PT Focus series, in which we take an in-depth look at a pundit’s track record. For those who are unaware, Cramer is the host of the popular show Mad Money on CNBC, providing general financial advice as well as specific stock recommendations.
Cramer currently has an F grade on PunditTracker.com. Let’s walk through how we arrive at that score.
First, here are the parameters by which we evaluate Cramer’s stock recommendations:
- We started tracking his picks on January 1, 2011.
- We score only his “Featured” picks on Mad Money and not those made in other segments such as the “Lightning Round.” Our reasoning is that the Featured picks are unsolicited recommendations for which Cramer has presumably done more research than for picks given as live responses to viewer questions.
- We measure the performance of his picks relative to that of the S&P 500 index over the corresponding period.
- We assume a three-month holding period, unless Cramer reverses his stance on a given name (e.g. says Buy XYZ and then says Sell XYZ within the three months), in which case we “close out” the original recommendation. This holding period is based on the idea that Cramer tends to revisit his picks each quarter. (Note: We also have calculated performance using a six-month holding period; we are happy to provide the data if there is interest).
- The baseline stock price is the opening price two days after the recommendation is made, in order to account for any day-one “Cramer bump” effect.
- The hit rate is the percentage of Cramer’s picks that outperform the index. We equate sell ratings to short recommendations (i.e. they are scored as correct if the stock underperforms the S&P).
With the parameters out of the way, let’s now delve into the details of Cramer’s performance.
Given our assumed three-month holding period, we have now graded two years worth of Cramer’s picks: those made from January 2011 through December 2012. That amounts to 552 calls overall, of which 254 outperformed the index (46% hit rate).
On average, Cramer’s picks returned -0.08% versus the 1.35% S&P 500 return over the corresponding period. That amounts to 142 basis points of quarterly underperformance, or 568 basis points on an annualized basis, which amounts to an F grade in our grading system. (We award an A for 500+ basis points of annual equity outperformance and an F for 500+ basis points of underperformance).
Let’s now break down his results by year and by quarter:
|Cramer's Picks (three-month holding period)||-1.6%||1.1%||-0.1%|
|Relative performance (basis points)||-207||-89||-142|
|Hit Rate (% that outperformed)||48%||44%||46%|
Here were Cramer’s ten best and worst picks during the two years:
10 Best Picks
10 Worst Picks
Cramer underperformed the index on both his Buy and Sell recommendations, although his sells did even worse, with the stocks rising 4.9% on average versus 3.2% for the S&P.
Buy Sell (Short)
# of Picks 494 122
Cramer 1.1% -4.9%
S&P 2.4% -3.2%
Relative -135 -173
We will provide quarterly updates on Cramer’s performance going forward.
Can you pick stocks better than Jim Cramer? For those new to PunditTracker, we allow users to compete with pundits. Click here to visit our Finance page and start making predictions on various financial events, including Apple’s quarterly performance tomorrow (using the “Vote Now” buttons).
With the playoffs tipping off tomorrow, let’s revisit how the pundits did with their regular season predictions. We are tracking the predictions of 35 ESPN pundits across 11 categories: 6 division winners, 2 conference winners, overall champion, MVP, and Rookie of the Year. In this post, we will analyze the 6 division winners and MVP/ROY, assuming that LeBron James and Damian Lillard win the player awards, respectively.
The table is ranked by Yield, although you can sort by # correct as well. As a reminder, the Yield metric calibrates predictions for boldness by measuring the average payout (using Vegas odds) had you placed $1 bets on each of the pundit’s selections.
Pundit Atl Ctl SE NW SW Pac RoY MVP # Yield
Kevin Arnovitz BOS IND MIA OKC SA LAL Lillard James 6 $1.47
Nick Friedell BOS IND MIA OKC SA LAL Lillard James 6 $1.47
Dave McMenamin BKN IND MIA OKC MEM LAL Lillard James 5 $1.27
Israel Gutierrez BOS IND MIA OKC SA LAC Davis Paul 5 $1.21
Brian Windhorst BOS IND MIA OKC SA LAL Lillard Durant 5 $1.12
Beckley Mason BOS IND MIA OKC SA LAL Lillard Durant 5 $1.12
Mike Mazzeo BOS IND MIA OKC SA LAL Lillard Durant 5 $1.12
David Thorpe PHI CHI MIA DEN SA LAL Lillard James 4 $1.11
Marc Stein BOS IND MIA OKC SA LAL Davis James 5 $1.04
Chris Palmer BOS IND MIA OKC SA LAL Davis James 5 $1.04
Larry Coon BOS IND MIA OKC SA LAL Davis James 5 $1.04
Royce Webb BOS IND MIA OKC SA LAL Davis James 5 $1.04
Tom Haberstroh BOS IND MIA OKC SA LAL Davis James 5 $1.04
Maurice Brooks BOS IND MIA OKC SA LAL Davis James 5 $1.04
Arash Markazi BOS IND MIA OKC SA LAL Davis James 5 $1.04
Chris Forsberg BOS IND MIA OKC SA LAL Davis James 5 $1.04
Ian Begley BOS IND MIA OKC SA LAL Davis James 5 $1.04
Vegas Favorites BOS IND MIA OKC SA LAL Davis James 5 $1.04
Scoop Jackson BOS IND MIA OKC MEM LAC Drummond Paul 4 $1.02
Justin Verrier BOS IND MIA DEN SA LAL Lillard Durant 4 $0.98
R. Shelburne BOS IND MIA OKC MEM LAL Lillard Paul 4 $0.93
Tim Legler BOS CHI MIA OKC SA LAL Lillard Durant 4 $0.90
Keith Lipscomb BOS CHI MIA OKC SA LAL Lillard Durant 4 $0.90
John Hollinger BOS IND MIA DEN SA LAL Davis James 4 $0.89
Chad Ford BOS IND MIA DEN SA LAL Davis James 4 $0.89
Adena Andrews BOS IND MIA OKC MEM LAL Davis James 4 $0.84
Jackie MacMullan BOS CHI MIA OKC SA LAL Davis James 4 $0.82
Tim MacMahon BOS CHI MIA OKC SA LAL Davis James 4 $0.82
Chris Ramsay BOS IND MIA DEN MEM LAL Davis James 3 $0.70
J.A. Adande BOS IND MIA OKC SA LAL Davis Durant 4 $0.69
Chris Broussard BOS IND MIA OKC SA LAL Davis Durant 4 $0.69
Michael Wallace BOS IND MIA OKC SA LAL Kidd-Gilchrist Paul 4 $0.69
Henry Abbott PHI IND MIA OKC SA LAL Drummond Durant 4 $0.69
Jack Ramsay PHI IND MIA OKC SA LAL Sullinger Wade 4 $0.69
Bruce Bowen BKN IND MIA OKC SA LAL Davis Durant 4 $0.69
Adry Torres BKN IND MIA OKC MEM LAL Davis Durant 3 $0.50
Here is a breakdown of the percentage of pundits that got each category correct, alongside the Vegas implied odds for each winner before the season began. For instance, not one of the pundits picked the Knicks to win the Atlantic while only two picked the Clippers to win the Pacific, even though Vegas gave each of them 24% odds.
Category % of Pundits Vegas Odds
Knicks Win Atlantic 0% 24%
Pacers Win Central 86% 57%
Heat Win Southeast 100% 95%
Thunder Win Northwest 86% 86%
Spurs Win Southwest 83% 64%
Clippers Win Pacific 6% 24%
LeBron James Wins MVP 54% 36%
Damian Lillard Wins ROY 31% 29%
Finally, let’s look at the Finals and Championship predictions for the group.
(Reg Season 2012)
East West Champion
Kevin Arnovitz $1.47 MIA OKC MIA
Nick Friedell $1.47 MIA LAL MIA
Dave McMenamin $1.27 MIA LAL MIA
Israel Gutierrez $1.21 MIA LAL MIA
Beckley Mason $1.12 MIA OKC OKC
Brian Windhorst $1.12 MIA OKC MIA
Mike Mazzeo $1.12 MIA LAL MIA
David Thorpe $1.11 MIA LAL MIA
Arash Markazi $1.04 MIA LAL LAL
Chris Forsberg $1.04 BOS LAL LAL
Chris Palmer $1.04 MIA LAL MIA
Ian Begley $1.04 MIA LAL MIA
Larry Coon $1.04 MIA LAL LAL
Marc Stein $1.04 MIA LAL MIA
Maurice Brooks $1.04 MIA LAL LAL
Royce Webb $1.04 MIA OKC MIA
Tom Haberstroh $1.04 MIA LAL MIA
Scoop Jackson $1.02 MIA LAL MIA
Justin Verrier $0.98 MIA OKC MIA
R. Shelburne $0.93 MIA LAL MIA
Keith Lipscomb $0.90 MIA OKC MIA
Tim Legler $0.90 MIA OKC MIA
Chad Ford $0.89 MIA LAL MIA
John Hollinger $0.89 MIA SA MIA
Adena Andrews $0.84 MIA LAL LAL
Jackie MacMullan $0.82 MIA LAL LAL
Tim MacMahon $0.82 MIA LAL MIA
Chris Ramsay $0.70 MIA LAL LAL
Bruce Bowen $0.69 MIA OKC MIA
Chris Broussard $0.69 MIA LAL MIA
Henry Abbott $0.69 MIA LAL MIA
J.A. Adande $0.69 MIA LAL MIA
Jack Ramsay $0.69 MIA OKC MIA
Michael Wallace $0.69 MIA LAL MIA
Adry Torres $0.50 MIA LAL LAL
Can you do better than these so-called experts? There are still a few hours left to make your predictions for the Round 1 of the NBA Playoffs. Will the Knicks beat the Celtics and the Clippers defeat the Grizzlies, as Kevin Arnovitz is predicting? Make your predictions by visiting our Sports page and using the “Vote Now” buttons.
Here are our final 2013 March Madness bracket rankings. We scored 32 pundits from ESPN, Yahoo, Sports Illustrated, and CBS Sports, throwing in President Obama for good fun. For a recap of the the first two rounds, see this post.
The following table ranks the pundits based on their average “Yield” of their 63 total picks. As a reminder, the Yield measures the average payout, using Vegas futures odds, had you placed $1 bets on each of the pundit’s selections. This approach fits well with March Madness, since it mimics bracket scoring systems that award extra points for predicting upsets. Hit Rate is simply the % of predictions that were correct. Given the large number of upsets this year, the rankings by Hit Rate and Yield turned out very different (each column is sortable):
Pundit Hit Rate Yield
Gregg Doyel, CBS 56% $1.26
Jerry Palm, CBS 60% $1.12
Seth Greenberg, ESPN 63% $1.09
Dick Vitale, ESPN 60% $1.07
Jeff Goodman, CBS 62% $1.06
Andy Glockner, SI 63% $1.06
John Gasaway, ESPN 65% $1.04
Joe Lunardi, ESPN 60% $1.04
Brad Evans, Yahoo 60% $1.03
Pete Gillen, SI 60% $1.03
Jeff Eisenberg, Yahoo 62% $1.02
Peter Tiernan, CBS 63% $1.01
Alaa Abdelnaby, CBS 59% $1.00
Wally Szczerbiak, CBS 62% $1.00
"Chalk" (higher seed) 62% $1.00
Mateen Cleaves, CBS 60% $0.99
Pete Thamel, CBS 60% $0.98
Gary Parrish, CBS 60% $0.97
Matt Norlander, CBS 54% $0.97
Jay Bilas, ESPN 60% $0.97
Barack Obama 60% $0.97
Dennis Dodd, CBS 48% $0.96
Vegas Favorites 60% $0.95
Greg Anthony, Yahoo 56% $0.92
Luke Winn, SI 56% $0.91
Dan Wetzel, Yahoo 60% $0.91
Stewart Mandel, SI 56% $0.90
Seth Davis, SI 52% $0.87
Pat Forde, Yahoo 54% $0.86
Jeff Borzello, CBS 52% $0.86
Kelli Anderson, SI 54% $0.85
Andy Katz, ESPN 51% $0.77
Michael Wilbon, ESPN 44% $0.75
Doug Gottlieb, CBS 51% $0.74
Colin Cowherd, ESPN 49% $0.68
Gregg Doyel of CBS had the highest yielding bracket, despite not picking Louisville to win it all, mostly because he was the only one of the 32 pundits to have Michigan in the Finals (a strong out-of-consensus pick). When ranked by Hit Rate, John Gasaway of ESPN turned in the best performance, hitting on 41 of his 63 picks.
The worst brackets belonged to Colin Cowherd, Michael Wilbon, Andy Katz, and Doug Gottlieb. Cowherd and Wilbon both got less than half their picks right, while all four of these pundits would have lost you more than 20% of your money had you bet on their picks.
Overall, about half the pundits turned in a positive Yield and outperformed just picking all chalk. Only three had Michigan in Final Four, while only two had Syracuse. 25 of the 32 had Louisville winning it all.
Finally, here are the cumulative rankings for the pundits for whom we tracked brackets in both 2012 and 2013.
Pundit Hit Rate
(2012 & 13)
(2012 & 13)
Jeff Goodman, CBS 65% $1.13
Peter Tiernan, CBS 66% $1.12
Jay Bilas, ESPN 67% $1.10
Barack Obama 66% $1.10
Gregg Doyel, CBS 55% $1.09
Jerry Palm, CBS 61% $1.08
Joe Lunardi, ESPN 60% $1.00
Matt Norlander, CBS 56% $0.99
Dick Vitale, ESPN 59% $0.97
Jeff Borzello, CBS 57% $0.97
Andy Glockner, SI 60% $0.96
Gary Parrish, CBS 60% $0.95
Luke Winn, SI 58% $0.95
Brad Evans, Yahoo 57% $0.95
Dennis Dodd, CBS 51% $0.92
Dan Wetzel, Yahoo 61% $0.91
Stewart Mandel, SI 56% $0.88
Pat Forde, Yahoo 54% $0.88
Seth Davis, SI 53% $0.86
Colin Cowherd, ESPN 57% $0.85
Andy Katz, ESPN 54% $0.82
We will be officially adding all these brackets to PunditTracker.com in the coming weeks. In the meantime, there are still a few days left to get your predictions in for the 2013 MLB Season as well as make some NFL Draft related picks. Visit our Sports Page now to do so — just click on the Vote Now buttons.
With the baseball season underway, here is an overview of what the MLB pundits are predicting this year. As we have discussed, despite the concerns about payroll disparity, baseball has proved the toughest sport to predict in recent years. If you had bet $1 on each of the baseball pundit picks over the past three seasons, you would have lost 44% of your money. This compares to an 8% loss for NFL pundits and an 18% gain for NBA pundits.
Will 2013 be be the year in which the MLB pundits turn it around? We will be tracking 63 so-called experts from ESPN, Sports Illustrated, CBS, Yahoo, and Fox. Here are their aggregate picks across nine categories: six Division Winners, two Pennants, and World Series (the weird formatting is for sorting purposes).
AL(E) AL(C) AL(W) NL(E) NL(C) NL(W) AL
NL W. Series
30: TOR 62: DET 37: LAA 59: WAS 52: CIN 32: SF 39: DET 44: WAS 28: WAS
29: TB 01: KC 16: TEX 04: ATL 11: STL 23: LAD 12: TB 10: CIN 23: DET
03: BAL 00: CHW 10: OAK 00: MIA 00: CHC 07: ARI 06: TOR 05: LAD 04: CIN
01: NYY 00: CLE 00: SEA 00: NYM 00: HOU 01: SD 06: LAA 04: ATL 03: LAA
00: BOS 00: MIN 00: PHI 00: PIT 00: COL 03: TB
There is still time for you to make your own picks for all these categories — and compete with the experts to win prizes — on PunditTracker’s Sports page (simply use the VOTE NOW buttons).
As the table shows, Nationals vs. Tigers is the en vogue choice for the World Series. The tightest races, according to the pundits, will be the AL East and NL West, with the group roughly split on whether the Blue Jays or Rays will take the former and the Giants or Dodgers the latter. Interestingly, the Rays and Dodgers are the more popular choices for the AL and NL Pennant, respectively. Some of the more contrarian picks we are tracking include: Dodgers to win the World Series (Andrew Marchand, ESPN), Padres to win the NL West (Joe Sheehan, SI), Royals to win the AL Central (Jon Morosi, Fox), and Yankees to win the AL East (Mark Simon, ESPN).
Here are the predictions for the individual player awards (ESPN did not predict these):
AL MVP NL MVP AL Cy Young NL Cy Young AL ROY NL ROY
08: Trout 11: Votto 10: Verlander 09: Strasburg 07: Myers 06: Gyorko
04: Longoria 06: Harper 04: Darvish 07: Kershaw 06: Hicks 04: Teheran
03: Cabrera 01: Upton 02: Price 01: Wainwright 03: Bundy 02: Taveras
02: Bautista 01: Posey 02: Hernandez 01: Hamels 02: Profar 01: Miller
01: Pujols 01: Braun 01: Weaver 01: Cain 01: Maurer 01: Eaton
01: Fielder 01: Johnson 01: Greinke 01: Rondo 01: Cole
01: Cano 01: Ryu
Finally, let’s break out the individual predictions of the pundits we have tracked since 2009 (four seasons of predictions). They are ranked by our Yield metric, which measures the average payout (using Vegas odds) had you placed $1 bets on each of the pundit’s selections.
AL NL World
Jim Caple, ESPN $1.60 TOR DET LAA ATL CIN SF DET CIN DET
Peter Pascarelli, ESPN $1.10 TB DET LAA ATL CIN SF DET CIN DET
Jayson Stark, ESPN $1.07 TOR DET LAA WAS CIN LAD DET WAS WAS
Pedro Gomez, ESPN $0.86 TB DET OAK ATL CIN SF TB CIN CIN
Tom Verducci, SI $0.84 TB DET LAA WAS CIN SF TB WAS WAS
Vegas Favorites $0.82 TOR DET LAA WAS CIN LAD TOR WAS WAS
Albert Chen, SI $0.81 TB DET TEX WAS CIN ARI DET CIN DET
Joe Lemire, SI $0.78 TB DET TEX WAS STL SF TB WAS WAS
Buster Olney, ESPN $0.72 BAL DET OAK WAS CIN ARI DET WAS WAS
Ben Reiter, SI $0.68 TB DET OAK WAS CIN LAD TB LAD TB
Eric Karabell, ESPN $0.57 TB DET LAA WAS STL SF TB WAS TB
Jerry Crasnick, ESPN $0.37 TOR DET LAA WAS CIN LAD DET CIN CIN
To see how all the pundits we track fared last year, see our 2012 MLB recap post.
We have previously analyzed how the NFL Draft Pundits (e.g. Kiper, McShay, Mayock) have done with their mock drafts (see here). We would now like to turn our attention to what we view to be a more interesting draft endeavor: figuring out how the pundits’ player rankings actually turn out. In other words, when Mel Kiper ranks his Top 5 QBs for this year’s draft, how accurate will those rankings be five years down the road?
We are actively discussing many different approaches to evaluate and compare players but we’d like to tap into the knowledge of our user base. If you are interested in this subject, please send us a note (just use the “Who should we track” button at the bottom of the page) and we will follow up with you. Thanks!
With the exciting first two rounds of March Madness 2013 in the books, let’s see how the pundits are faring with their brackets so far. We scored 31 experts from ESPN, Yahoo, Sports Illustrated, and CBS Sports, throwing in President Obama for good fun. For a recap of our 2012 rankings, see this post.
The following table ranks the pundits based on their average “Yield” (rightmost column) of their 48 total picks. As a reminder, the Yield measures the average payout, using Vegas odds (futures for Sweet 16), had you placed $1 bets on each of the pundit’s selections. This approach fits well with March Madness, since it mimics bracket scoring systems that award extra points for predicting upsets. We also break out the results for each round, including by Hit Rate (% correct); each column is sortable.
Pundit Hit Rate
(Rd of 64)
(Rd of 64)
(Rd of 32)
(Rd of 32)
Seth Greenberg, ESPN 69% $0.97 75% $1.42 71% $1.12
Brad Evans, Yahoo 75% $1.17 56% $0.87 69% $1.07
Andy Glockner, SI 72% $1.07 69% $1.06 71% $1.07
Dennis Dodd, CBS 53% $0.76 56% $1.55 54% $1.02
Jeff Eisenberg, Yahoo 69% $1.00 69% $1.06 69% $1.02
Mateen Cleaves, CBS 69% $0.95 69% $1.12 69% $1.01
John Gasaway, ESPN 72% $0.98 69% $1.06 71% $1.01
Pete Gillen, SI 72% $1.02 56% $0.97 67% $1.00
Wally Szczerbiak, CBS 69% $0.96 69% $1.06 69% $0.99
Jeff Goodman, CBS 72% $1.05 56% $0.87 67% $0.99
Jay Bilas, ESPN 72% $1.00 63% $0.96 69% $0.99
"Chalk" (higher seed) 69% $0.94 69% $1.06 69% $0.98
Pete Thamel, CBS 72% $1.04 56% $0.85 67% $0.97
Peter Tiernan, CBS 72% $1.00 63% $0.90 69% $0.96
Dan Wetzel, Yahoo 69% $0.91 69% $1.06 69% $0.96
Barack Obama 63% $0.87 69% $1.06 65% $0.93
Jerry Palm, CBS 69% $0.99 56% $0.79 65% $0.93
Gary Parrish, CBS 72% $1.02 50% $0.69 65% $0.91
Dick Vitale, ESPN 66% $0.91 63% $0.90 65% $0.90
Seth Davis, SI 59% $0.87 63% $0.95 60% $0.90
Greg Anthony, Yahoo 66% $0.91 56% $0.88 63% $0.90
Alaa Abdelnaby, CBS 66% $0.90 56% $0.89 63% $0.90
Kelli Anderson, SI 69% $0.97 50% $0.69 63% $0.88
Colin Cowherd, ESPN 69% $0.94 50% $0.71 63% $0.86
Doug Gottlieb, CBS 66% $0.89 56% $0.80 63% $0.86
Stewart Mandel, SI 69% $0.99 44% $0.60 60% $0.86
Joe Lunardi, ESPN 63% $0.83 63% $0.90 63% $0.86
Gregg Doyel, CBS 63% $0.92 50% $0.69 58% $0.85
Matt Norlander, CBS 59% $0.84 56% $0.80 58% $0.83
Pat Forde, Yahoo 59% $0.81 56% $0.79 58% $0.80
Jeff Borzello, CBS 56% $0.79 56% $0.79 56% $0.79
Andy Katz, ESPN 63% $0.82 50% $0.69 58% $0.78
Luke Winn, SI 56% $0.73 56% $0.79 56% $0.75
Overall, the pundits performed quite poorly, with only 8 of the 31 returning a positive yield and 11 of 31 outperforming “Chalk” (always picking the higher seed). Seth Greenberg of ESPN had the best opening weekend bracket, thanks largely to his pick of Oregon to make the Sweet Sixteen. Brad Evans (Yahoo) and Andy Glockner (SI) tied for the second spot ($1.07), with Evans posting the best Round 1 hit rate (24/32) and Yield ($1.17) of the group.
Here is how the pundits did collectively with their Sweet Sixteen predictions, with only Greenberg picking Oregon and Dennis Dodd (CBS) picking Wichita State. No one pegged La Salle or Florida Gulf Coast to make it.
Team # Pundits
Michigan St. 30
Ohio St. 30
Miami (FL) 28
Wichita St. 1
La Salle 0
Florida Gulf Coast 0
We will update the rankings following the Championship game, using Final Four and Championship futures odds.
Is your bracket already busted? Well, here’s your chance at prediction redemption. PunditTracker allows you to predict each game of the tournament, starting with all the Sweet Sixteen games this week. Click here to make your picks now. The Top 3 Users will become Featured Pundits on our site, meaning that your name could be part of the above rankings next year!
Following last year’s March Madness, we published a post recapping how the pundits from ESPN, Yahoo, SI, and CBS Sports fared with their brackets.
Here is what those same experts are predicting this year for the Final Four and National Championship. We have ranked the experts by how they scored last year based on our $1 Yield metric, which measures the average payout — using Vegas odds — had you placed $1 bets on each of the pundit’s selections (we used futures odds for each round).
Pundit Yield Midwest West South East Champion
Peter Tiernan, CBS $1.23 Louisville Ohio State Florida Indiana Louisville
Barack Obama $1.22 Louisville Ohio State Florida Indiana Indiana
Jay Bilas, ESPN $1.22 Louisville Ohio State VCU Indiana Louisville
Jeff Goodman, CBS $1.20 Louisville Gonzaga Florida Indiana Louisville
Jeff Borzello, CBS $1.08 Louisville Gonzaga Georgetown Indiana Louisville
Jerry Palm, CBS $1.03 Louisville Ohio State Kansas Syracuse Louisville
Colin Cowherd, ESPN $1.02 St. Louis Gonzaga Florida Miami Miami
Matt Norlander, CBS $1.01 Louisville Gonzaga Michigan Miami Louisville
Luke Winn, SI $0.99 Louisville Ohio State Florida Indiana Louisville
Joe Lunardi, ESPN $0.95 Louisville Gonzaga Florida Miami Louisville
Chalk (higher seed) $0.93 Louisville Gonzaga Kansas Indiana Louisville
Gary Parrish, CBS $0.93 Louisville Wisconsin VCU Indiana Louisville
Gregg Doyel, CBS $0.92 Louisville Ohio State Michigan Indiana Ohio State
Dan Wetzel, Yahoo $0.91 Louisville Gonzaga Kansas Indiana Indiana
Pat Forde, Yahoo $0.90 Louisville Ohio State Georgetown Indiana Louisville
Andy Katz, ESPN $0.87 Louisville Gonzaga VCU Miami Lousiville
Brad Evans, Yahoo $0.87 Louisville Ohio State Georgetown Miami Louisville
Dennis Dodd, CBS $0.87 Louisville New Mexico Georgetown Miami Louisville
Andy Glockner, SI $0.86 Louisville Ohio State Florida Miami Louisville
Dick Vitale, ESPN $0.86 Louisville Ohio State Michigan Indiana Louisville
Stewart Mandel, SI $0.86 Louisville Ohio State Florida Miami Louisville
Seth Davis, SI $0.85 Louisville New Mexico Kansas Miami Louisville
Vegas Favorites $0.83 Louisville Gonzaga Florida Indiana Louisville
We will provide rankings for this year’s brackets for these pundits and others, following both the first weekend as well as the championship game.
Visit PunditTracker.com now to make your March Madness picks. We currently have 60 predictions available for voting, including picks for every game of the tournament as well as all the expert predictions above. The three top-ranked users will become Featured Pundits on our website.