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May 6, 2014

Daily analysis, Tuesday, May 6 – Battle of the Decades, QF #2

Battle of the Decades – knockout rounds
Quarterfinals Semifinals Finals
1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 1 2
preliminary round

It’s night two, featuring a fellow College Champ and the winner of my TOC. Will one of them claim the automatic semifinal berth, or will it go to the tournament’s oldest player?

Be sure to check out my preview of this day’s proceedings.The Final Wager - May 6, 2014

Tom got off to a stellar start, but Pam and Russ caught up. All three players are in five-digit territory heading into Final, and as you’ll see in the video, the math here is not easy!

Tom Nosek: 11,200
Pam Mueller: 17,400
Russ Schumacher: 15,400

The Final Jeopardy! category: U.S. STATES

These are just my thoughts; certainly, there are other ways to approach the wild card. This is why I never judge players for “bad” wagers in quarterfinals.

Pam could wager 13,401 to lock out Russ, but that won’t leave her with very much if she’s wrong. On the big side, I’d go for a 5,001 wager (to pass Tom) or a 1,001 wager to beat a logical Russ wager (more on that in a sec).

Russ could wager 3,000 and stay above that “large” Pam wager on a double-miss. If he’s right, he’ll be 1,000 ahead of Pam, which is why I suggest she wager that 1,001 amount. Alternatively, Russ could wager 1,000 to beat Pam if he gets it right and she gets it wrong with a 1,001 wager.

Tom could go for broke, or something smaller if he really hates the category. He’s in a tough spot – I’m sure there’s a term for being in this pickle between going balls-out and just hoping the wild-card cut-off will be lower than you thought.

Russ nailed Final; had Tom and Pam both gotten it right, Pam would have won by $2. Savvy!

Congrats, Russ! Way to make the Class of 2004 proud.

Each day I’ll update the standings with my estimated chances of advancing for the wild-card candidates. These are based on past data compiled for my tutorial.

Quarterfinal winners:

Roger Craig
Russ Schumacher

Wild-card standings, with estimated probability of advancing in parentheses:

Leszek Pawlowicz:  15,000 (88%)
Pam Mueller:  14,798 (60%)
Tom Nosek: 2,400 (~0%)
Robin Carroll:  0 (~0%)

The Final Jeopardy! clue for May 6, 2014 (U.S. STATES):


Correct response: What is North Dakota?

P.S. Here’s the New York Times article to which I refer in the video.

  1. Pat Russell permalink

    The video is broken.

    • Thanks! That’s what happens when I leave my computer with the upload in the background … it should be working now.

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