In Three Shots, students will compute the probabilities of a Memphis basketball team win, loss, or tie when fouled at the buzzer and explore this even further in two project tasks, To Foul or Not to Foul and That Is The Question.
Current Version: April 22, 2014
In the 2005 Conference-USA Tournament game, Memphis player Darius Washington Jr. was fouled at the buzzer during a three-point shot. With his team down by two to Louisville, he stepped up to the foul line for three shots.
In the launch activity of Three Shots, students will compute the probabilities of a win, loss, or tie for Memphis. They will also determine whether or not it was smart for Louisville to foul at the buzzer, and will investigate the conditions when fouling at the buzzer in a close game makes sense.
Students explore this even further in the project tasks, and can choose between two topics. In one task, they create a comprehensive picture that would allow someone to make the same “foul or not to foul” decision for any player, given his three-point percentage and foul-shot percentage. In another, students will create decision charts for different end-of-game scenarios; for example, if the defensive team is only up by one point, or if the offensive team is attempting a field goal.