Date of Award


Document Type

Honors Thesis (Open Access)


Colby College. Economics Dept.


Randy A. Nelson

Second Advisor

James Meehan


Many studies have looked at competitive balance in sports. A majority of the competitive balance studies have looked at panel data sets covering multiple years, however. Many of these studies have looked at the distribution of winning percentages within a league over multiple seasons, looking to see if different teams have an ability to rise to the top of the league, or if the same teams always win (Balfour and Porter 1991; Butler 1995; Quirk and Fall 1997). Schmidt and Bern (2001) use the Gini coefficient to measure competitive balance for baseball seasons since 1900. This measure of competitive balance, the Gini coefficient, measures the amount of inequality existent within a league. It is normally used to measure the amount of income inequality in a population. Other studies have also looked at competitive balance, but they have all looked at competitive balance on a season-by season analysis. No study to date has looked at how competitive balance affects any part of a single game analysis. So, the question before beginning this study was how does one measure competitive balance for a single game. Since no study had specifically looked at how competitive balance affects single game attendance, a new measure had to be constructed. Competitive balance is rooted in how easy it is to predict the outcome of a contest before it is played. For a single game this can be called the uncertainty of outcome of the game.


Baseball attendance -- Mathematical models, Baseball fans -- Statistics, Sports spectators -- Statistics

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Economics Commons