Study: Football coaches are conservative

Feb 27, 2006

A University of California-Berkeley researcher says he's discovered professional football coaches tend toward conservative decision-making behavior.

David Romer, also a National Bureau for Economic Research scientist, argues professional football coaches tend to weigh the consequences of failure more heavily than the impact of success.

Specifically, Romer shows trying for a touchdown rather than a field goal would increase a team's chances of winning a game by about 3 percentage points, which is very large for a single play. However, when faced with the decision, every NFL team in Romer's sample chose to attempt a field goal.

"Much of the previous evidence of systematically conservative behavior involves highly stylized laboratory settings with small stakes and inexperienced decision-makers devoting relatively little effort to their choices," Romer writes. "Thus, previous work provides little evidence about the strength of force pushing decision-makers toward conservatism. The results of this paper suggest that the forces may be shockingly strong."

The study appears in the April issue of the Journal of Political Economy.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: Bloody souvenir not from decapitated French king: DNA

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Study: Football coaches are conservative

Feb 27, 2006

A University of California-Berkeley researcher says he's discovered professional football coaches tend toward conservative decision-making behavior.

Recommended for you

Bloody souvenir not from decapitated French king: DNA

1 hour ago

Two centuries after the French people beheaded King Louis XVI and dipped their handkerchiefs in his blood, DNA analysis has thrown new doubt on the authenticity of one such rag kept as a morbid souvenir.

Residents of 'boom time' suburbs face unsustainable commutes

2 hours ago

People living in the 'boom time' suburbs of Dublin are more likely to endure unsustainable commutes to work than those living in older accommodation. Research shows that people living in newly constructed housing in the Greater ...

Not just the poor live hand-to-mouth

17 hours ago

When the economy hits the skids, government stimulus checks to the poor sometimes follow. Stimulus programs—such as those in 2001, 2008 and 2009—are designed to boost the economy quickly by getting cash ...

User comments : 0

More news stories

Male-biased tweeting

Today women take an active part in public life. Without a doubt, they also converse with other women. In fact, they even talk to each other about other things besides men. As banal as it sounds, this is far ...