COVID-19 has affected almost all aspects of life in 2020, including the college football season. Here in Big Ten country, we can only sit back and wait for the world and the sport that we love to return to normal.
In the meantime, I have developed the mathematical tools that allow for a realistic simulation of what the 2020 season might have looked like, based on the preseason rankings and the known uncertainty associated with those rankings.
In the specific “parallel universe” that I will “report on,” some teams will be better than expected and some teams will be worse. Some teams will win a few games more than expected due to some “good bounces” (i.e. some luck with the random number generator) while other teams won’t be as lucky.
For Spartans fans, I have selected a slightly optimistic version of what might have been. There will be upsets, blowouts, close games, and various other twists and turns, just like a regular season of college football season.
While we certainly would all rather be playing, watching, or reporting on real football games, I hope that this project brings the reader some level of entertainment and solace in these difficult times. I know that it does for me.