October 11, 2011
In May, we rubbed salt in the wounds of Minnesota sports fans by posting a chart that showed this is the worst period in our state’s sports history.
Today, we’re busting out the salt shaker again. We’ve updated our chart tracking the average annual winning percentage of Minnesota’s top sports teams. But this time, we added results for Wisconsin’s teams. Read it and weep:
Why would we do this to ourselves? We should be talking smack on the eve of this Sunday’s Vikings-Packers game and the Nov. 12 game between the Gophers and the Badgers at TCF Bank Stadium. Instead, we’re marveling at a yawning chasm between Wisconsin’s success and Minnesota’s failure.
Blame Fast Horse’s own Andrew Miller for the sadistic idea of comparing the states’ sports records. He had a hunch that Cheeseheads are enjoying one of the best sports runs in their history. The numbers proved him right: Wisconsin’s current .749 average winning percentage is its best showing since 1961.
When Miller sent me the results of his Wisconsin sports research via email, his subject line was, “That was hell.” Did he mean it was hard finding 50 years of records from the Pack, Brewers and the old Milwaukee Braves? No, that part was easy. Delving into Cheesedom’s winning ways … that was awful.
As for Minnesota, our winning percentage has plummeted to .282 so far this year, even worse than the pathetic .294 mark we sported in May. The Twins, who were 12-23 (.343) when we posted our first chart, actually managed to “improve” to .389 by the end of the season. But horrible starts by the Vikings (1-5, .166) and the Gophers football team (0-2, .000 in the Big Ten) are dragging us down into uncharted depths of misery.
What’s so startling is the huge gap between the rival states. Most years, there has been some parity. Wisconsinites would boast about the Badgers while we’d counter with the Vikes or the Twins. But in the most reason recent season for five top sports, all the Wisconsin teams posted better records than their Minnesota counterparts.
The results of head-to-head competition reveal similar woes for Minnesota in recent years. Since 2007, Minnesota teams are 26-35 against Wisconsin teams.
At least we have the champion Minnesota Lynx!
Some notes about the chart: