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Data and Discussion - using law school prestige as a predictor for mock trial success

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  • Data and Discussion - using law school prestige as a predictor for mock trial success

    Researching a legal education, I was struck at how closely the "T14" or top 14 law schools mirrored the best mock trial teams. I decided to tabulate the data for AMTA power rankings and US News & World Report law school rankings and compare them.

    The following link leads to two graphs I created. The first compares the AMTA ranking and law school ranking of the top 100 mock trial teams (with B teams, or repeats, and teams whose universities do not have a law school removed). A power regression with equation and R-squared overlays the data points. The second graph has the top 25 x top 25 expanded to show more information that did not fit on the first graph.

    https://imgur.com/a/4u4Fyae

    -----------------------------------------------------

    While most schools follow the general, expected correlation of better rank in mock trial to better rank in law school, there are some outliers.

    The first type of outliers are positive ones. That is, these schools have better mock trial programs than would be expected if one solely used law school prestige as a predictor for mock trial success.

    Slight Positive Outliers (marginally higher-ranked teams than expected):
    Arizona
    Penn State
    Kansas

    Moderate Positive Outliers (higher-ranked teams than expected):
    Ohio State
    Rutgers
    American

    Extreme Positive Outliers (much higher-ranked teams than expected):
    Howard
    Northern Illinois

    Additionally, although we cannot accurately assume the hypothetical prestige their law schools would have if they existed, those schools that have Top 100 mock trial teams but no corresponding law school can also be perceived as positive outliers (depending on your interpretation of the data):
    Miami (Ohio)
    Rhodes
    Georgia Tech
    Patrick Henry
    Tufts
    Rochester
    Furman
    Brown
    Wheaton
    Wesleyan
    Lafayette
    Northwood
    Haverford
    Princeton
    Xavier
    Hillsdale
    UC Santa Barbara
    Cornell (College)
    Eastern Kentucky
    Hamilton
    UC San Diego
    Millsaps
    Johns Hopkins
    Pomona
    St. Thomas (Texas)
    Central Missouri

    ----------------------------------------------------

    The second type of outliers are negative ones. That is, these schools have worse mock trial programs than would be expected if one solely used law school prestige as a predictor for mock trial success.

    Slight Negative Outliers (marginally lower-ranked teams than expected):
    Columbia
    UC Berkeley
    George Washington
    Duke
    Southern California
    Notr Dame

    Moderate Negative Outliers (lower-ranked teams than expected):
    Georgetown
    Texas
    Arizona State

    Additionally, the following top 100 law schools have (or recently had) corresponding undergraduate mock trial teams but failed to enter the top 100 in AMTA power ranking. These can be perceived as more severe negative outliers:
    Pennsylvania
    University of Wisconsin
    Wake Forest
    Brigham Young
    Colorado
    Temple
    Connecticut
    Southern Methodist
    Tulane
    Houston
    Seton Hall
    Nevada - Las Vegas
    Oklahoma
    Case Western
    Kentucky
    Miami (Florida)
    Missouri
    Villanova
    Northeastern
    Nebraska
    Texas A&M
    St. Johns
    New Hampshire
    Oregon
    Arkensas
    Michigan State
    New Mexico
    St. Louis
    South Carolina
    Syracuse
    Lewis & Clark
    Marquette
    San Diego
    Indiana (Indianapolis)
    Drexel
    Last edited by sauseech; November 16th, 2018, 01:05 PM.

  • #2
    It might be worth redoing this using the raw TPR number in the spreadsheet (which would open you up to including teams that aren't in the top 100) and then the similar number US news talks about in their methodology section. That would allow you to have a more nuanced picture of the relative differences between teams that number rankings don't (it would also orient your graph in a way that would be easier to read). Otherwise interesting material. I wonder what the basis for the relationship between these two things are (perhaps coaching resources?).

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