March Madness: Will Texas Tech Beat Stephen F. Austin? A.I. Predicts

Texas Tech Athletics

Texas Tech has won more games this season than any Red Raiders team since Bill Clinton’s first term. Can they build on their 24-win season and near upset of the might Kansas Jayhawks in the Big 12 tournament final with a deep March Madness run?

First things first: The third-ranked Red Raiders have to beat fellow Texan squad Stephen F. Austin, who have pulled off opening round upsets twice in the past five years. A hive mind of fans has its pick for the winner.

To predict the result of this and other games, Unanimous A.I. used what’s known as swarm intelligence to forecast the week’s slate. About 50 college basketball fans worked together as a hive mind to make picks. As you can see in the animation below, each participant controlled a little golden magnet and used it to drag the puck toward the answer they thought was the most likely outcome. As the users saw the puck move toward a particular outcome, it triggers a psychological response. They readjust their decision-making, building toward a consensus.

Unanimous A.I.

The swarm likes Texas Tech to win here with high confidence, though the brainpower is a little lower at 85 percent. This is a solid pick, but not an absolute lock.

Read more from Inverse: The Perfect NCAA Bracket Is A.I.’s Biggest Sports Challenge Yet

Unanimous A.I. has made some scarily accurate predictions in the past using swarm intelligence, as our previous article explains. For instance, the swarm picked this year’s Oscar winners with 94 percent accuracy. Here’s Unanimous A.I. founder Louis Rosenberg explaining swarm intelligence at a recent TEDx Talk.

The game tips off Thursday at 7:27 p.m. Eastern in Dallas on truTV.

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