The Indianapolis Colts are offering fans a (half a) Million Dollar Weather Challenge over on Colts.com. For a chance at the cash, all fans have to do is correctly guess the outside temperature at kickoff for all 20 Colts game this season (16 regular season games and 4 exhibition games). In addition, for home games at Lucas Oil Stadium, entrants must correctly predict whether the stadium’s roof will be open or closed.
Sounds easy enough, right?
The smaht kids over at fivethirtyeight.com did the math and calculated your odds of winning said contest. They aren’t good. The odds of just getting temperature right for all 20 games is 1 in 248 septillion, which I can’t even pretend to know what that means. By contrast, you’d have a much better chance of winning Warren Buffet’s perfect NCAA bracket challenge --1 in 9.2 quintillion. You have a better chance of hitting the Powerball jackpot three times in a row, and a better chance of going to Vegas, guessing a single number in roulette, and hitting on 15 straight spins. Did the Colts even bother to take out an insurance policy on this thing?