Penn State news by
Penn State's student blog



Rose Bowl Predictions: Facebook

We’ve spent the weekend analyzing ways to predict who the victor will be on January 1, when Penn State and USC compete at the Rose Bowl. We’re going to come at you this week with some of the most advanced statistical analysis this side of the Rockies (who knew Stanford had the best statistics program in the country).

Our first method is Facebook’s Lexicon, a little known tool that compares the number of wall post mentions any two words have. For example, one might compare Mac and PC, Obama and McCain, Onward State and Gawker… well, that last one might be a little unfair. The Internets really like us.

The analysis is after the jump.

First, we need a standard sample. Let’s use Rose Bowl 2008 to set the precedent.

Illinois and USC squared off last year in Pasadena. The Trojans came away with a sizable 49-17 victory. It seems like the match up might have been a little unfair (hopefully President Obama can get a college football playoffs system by next fall).

Here’s the data…

As you can see, USC just barely beat out Illinois on January 1 in frequency of wall post mentions. USC also led Illinois for most of the season.

Now let’s compare Penn State and USC.

USC was leading Penn State for the first half of the season, but in October we jumped ahead of those Californian Trojans. (Remember, that was the month we beat Purdue, Wisconsin, Michigan, and Ohio State.) You can see that the frequency of both terms dipped as October wore on.

Hopefully Facebook releases more data before January 1. We weren’t able to draw many conclusions from the current set. The only one we really agreed on is that Mark Zuckerberg totes checks out potential dates and friends on this thing.

Don’t you Penn Staters worry though, we’ll be back with some more indicators later this week.

Your ad blocker is on.

Please choose an option below.

Sign up for our e-mail newsletter:
Support quality journalism:
Purchase a Subscription!

About the Author


Creator of @OnwardState. Big fan of sweaters.

Onward State’s 2023 End-Of-Season Awards For Penn State Football

And the James Franklin Award for Most Hated Coach goes to…

Penn State Football’s Defensive End Chop Robinson Declares For 2024 NFL Draft, Opts Out Of Peach Bowl

Robinson was the first Nittany Lions to declare for the draft.

[Photo Story] Model Railroad Club Hosts First Open House In Five Years

Penn State’s Model Railroad Club shared its new projects with lots of fun miniatures, including a shrunken CATA bus and Thomas the Tank Engine.

Follow on Another Platform
Other posts by Davis

Penn State and the Process of Life

To paraphrase Mark Twain: The reports of higher education’s death have been an exaggeration. American universities produce more research and relevant knowledge for the world at large than any other institutions I know of. Tuition may be too damn high, but over the long-run, undergraduate degrees are definitely worth the cost. But Penn State could be so much more. It used to be, I think.

Bonded in Blue, White, and Worry

43 Simmons