I’m pretty even-handed on most issues, but as a Seattleite, I cannot resist reporting as authoritatively as I can the latest prediction by New York Times oracle Nate Silver – the man who correctly called all 50 states in the last election, and who now predicts that the two Superbowl teams will be New England and Seattle.
Now, Seattle is a city which hasn’t won a national trophy in a professional sport since 1979. And all we have from that is a dusty banner hanging in an empty arena, because the NBA team that won it was sold to Oklahoma City.
So when Nate Silver predicts the Seahawks will again make it to the Super Bowl, the Space Needle stands a little straighter.
He is using a very sophisticated database called Football Outsiders that ranks teams based on how they perform in crucial situations – which is interesting since the Football Outsiders site itself is actually picking San Francisco to win the NFC which would mean Seattle wouldn’t make it to the Super Bowl.
Nate Silver acknowledges that if you just go by the book San Francisco does have an edge.
“With Seattle though, you really saw a team that was blowing people out in the second half of the year,” adds Silver.
So he’s decided to work in a little fudge factor called momentum.
“I do think with the Seattle team that did come on so strongly in the second half, you worry – can other coaches readjust to them potentially? Talent wise I’m not sure it’s a team that has as much talent.”
Stop with the qualifiers. We spend the winter in this remote corner of America, sitting in a perpetual mist, praying for just a little global warming to take the chill off, staring at our 34-year-old NBA championship banner from a team that isn’t even HERE – I don’t see why one Super Bowl trophy is too much to ask.