There are long-standing traditions among Super Bowl parties across the country, and most include box pools, better known as Super Bowl squares.
For the uninitiated, Super Bowl Squares require participants to place their name in one or more of the 100 available squares of their choice (if you’re playing for money, a square would cost a predetermined amount). After all boxes are accounted for, numbers 0-9 are randomly assigned along the the vertical and horizontal gray squares. A winner is then determined for each quarter, or only for the overall score of the game. To determine a winner, take the last digit of each team’s score and find the corresponding square on the grid. For example, if the NFC team has 21 points and the AFC team has 17 points, the square that intersects 1 on the NFC side and 7 on the AFC side wins.
As of 2015, the year the league adopted a rule change that moved the line of scrimmage for extra point kick attempts after touchdowns from the defensive team’s 2-yard line to the 15-yard line, the best square to have is 0,0, a score combination that was found at the end of 8.5 percent of quarters over the past three seasons, including the playoffs.
That 0,0 box was also the most coveted square to have at the end of the first quarter, occurring 18 percent of the time after the game’s first 15 minutes, followed closely by 7,0 and 0,7, which occur 12 and 11 percent of the time, respectively. The worst boxes to have at the end of the first include 3,9; 9,9 and 0,8 — boxes that have occurred less than one percent of the time over the past three seasons.
Despite teams having the option of the two-point conversion, zero, three and seven can continue to be thought of as lucky numbers through the first half, with the 0,0 box remaining as the best to own alongside the 0,3 box, which also occurs 7 percent of the time. That same trend holds true at the end of the third quarter as well, with no order change among the five best boxes to have in the pool.
The sixth box on the list, 4,0, has been successful 4.1 percent of the time at the half while the inverse, 0,4, has been successful 3.1 percent of the time after the end of the third.
On the whole, a box containing 0,0 gives you a high probability of snaring the grand prize at the end of the game.
|Box (Home team first)||Probability of occurring||Odds|
|0,0||4%||23 to 1|
|7,0||4%||28 to 1|
|0,7||3%||31 to 1|
|3,7||3%||33 to 1|
|4,7||3%||38 to 1|
|3,0||3%||38 to 1|
|1,4||3%||38 to 1|
|0,3||3%||40 to 1|
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