The Name of the Game

Judging from a quick scan of the morning headlines and my Facebook, Twitter and Google+ news feeds, it’s a pretty universal fact that last night’s Super Bowl was a wee bit disappointing. While it’s true the Denver Broncos’ high-octane, option-loaded offense didn’t quite measure up to Seattle’s stifling Legion of Boom nor the pregame billing of an epic battle between league-leading No. 1s on opposite sides of the ball, I was confident from the kickoff, given that we had Aggies on both squads and therefore would emerge victorious. (Yay, 12th Man — the real one!)

But leave it to self-described math geeks to liven up an otherwise lame game with a little game within the game, described here in excerpts from Texas A&M Mathematics’ Amy Austin’s related post last night on Facebook:

* ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ *

AUSTIN: So me and my geeky friend just calculated how fast that Seahawk player was running when he just scored that most recent touchdown.

14.3 mph.

AUSTIN (admitting a little further into the comments that she was the instigator, if not the geek🙂 Well, it was me that wondered aloud how fast he was running. So the friend I was talking on the phone with is the one that took out her calculator. She’s the geek. Not me. 😉

ANOTHER FRIEND (drawn in:) What was your formula…, forget I asked!

AUSTIN: Good old distance equals rate times time. And of course we had to convert from yards to miles and seconds to hours.

* ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ *

Just goes to show that math and science not only are fun but also all around us, if we so choose to recognize and embrace what clearly can be a challenge just as exciting as sports. Possibly even more so on otherwise disappointing nights such as these.


Yep, there are the obvious plus, minus and equals signs right there in the laces. (Credit: Torsten Bolten, Wikimedia Commons)

Yep, now that I actually look, there are the obvious plus, minus and equals signs right there in the laces. What else do you see? (Credit: Torsten Bolten, Wikimedia Commons)

P.S. For those interested in a little 12th Man history, check out this extensive treatise on the subject by the outstandingly enterprising and clever folks at Good Bull Hunting.

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