Weekend Preview 09/02/2019

With just over a week to go until the Best Day of the Year the squads have been selected and excitement is building. The first (and most important?) battle is already underway on social media, and thanks painstaking compilation and analysis by Owain Houghton I can bring you the results of 2019’s Profile Picture Reacts Contest (PPRC2019). All numbers in the following are corrects as of this afternoon.

Team by team

At first glance the Nomads are on top yet again, with a mean reacts per player breaking the double century. But of course the raw numbers only tell half the story. Once numbers of friends are taken into account, the Squanderers take home the prize, drawing reacts from nearly a quarter of their respective friendships (an improvement on last year’s totals by over 1.5 times). Perhaps in the end the Nomads have suffered from the cynical practice of requesting the online friendship of as many CUHC members as possible in the lead up to PPRC2019. At the other end of the table, the Wanderers have had a bad year. They are way behind the other teams on raw reacts, have received just 3/4s the number of reacts per friend as the triumphant Squandies, and are barely up on their 2018 result. Oh dear oh dear.

An interesting by-product of this analysis is that the Squandies have, by some distance, the fewest friends.

Team Mean reacts* Mean no. friends Mean % of friends who reacted 2018 mean reacts % yearly change
Squanderers 175 ± 50 743 24.7 % 111 + 58 %
Bedouin 194 ± 87 936 23.7 % 144 + 35 %
Nomads 199 ± 47 1087 21.47 % 177 + 13 %
Wanderers 152 ± 91 905 17.7 % 148 + 3 %

* arithmetic mean ± 1σ.

The react-by-react breakdown for the PPRC2019 Champions, the Squanderers, is shown in the box-and-whisker diagram below.

Box-and-whisker diagram for Squanderers reacts.


Congratulations to the Bedouin’s Anna Calder whose total of 346 reacts was the highest across the four teams. But of course the purists among us are only interested in reacts normalised by number of friends. In this category the Nomads’ Lizzie Jack was victorious, with her 135 reacts reflecting a huge 48.7% of her total friend base. Lizzie was pipped to the “Most loved” prize by the Beds’ Lydia Michaelides, who was loved by 18.4% of her friends (Lydia came second in the overall contest). The take home message appears to be that, in the PPRC, one is rewarded for placing tight constraints on one’s social media contacts. Indeed, it has not gone unnoticed that certain contestants have been “friend culling” during the course of PPRC2019 (we stress that none of the contestants near the top of PPRC2019 have been caught engaging in such an enterprise). In other news the Squanderers’ Guy Holden has the angriest friends. PPRC2019’s big losers were both Wanderers: Alex Harper, with 80 reacts, was the only contestant not to break the hundy and David Gibson, with 8.8%, had the lowest proportion of reacting friends.

Individual breakdowns for the Squanderers are shown graphically below (note that Guy Holden’s friends are not only very angry about his selection but also sad).

Squandies individual reacts breakdown.

The Big Picture

The PPRC nerds are only just beginning to digest the vast quantity of data available. Some convincing relationships have already been identified but in the interest of avoiding cum hoc ergo propter hoc reasoning we will not be commenting on causal mechanisms at the stage.

Reacts vs. CUHC year (Squanderers). The young have it.
Shirt size vs. reacts (Squanderers). Proof that chest day is the key?
Angry reacts vs. distance of school from Wilby (Squanderers).

Thanks again to Owain Houghton for putting all this together.


Don’t forget there is still league hockey to be played! Lots of important matches on tomorrow after a complete freeze out last week. At home, the Bedouin are on first vs. CoP (10:30), after which the Men’s Blues face Harleston Magpies in a top four six pointer at the same time as the Women’s Blues take on Wisbech Town (13:30). On the road, the Nomads can gain ground on a Sudbury side just three points above them, there’s also a six pointer for the Wanderers at the Olympic Park vs. Crostyx, and the Squanderers will look to put a few past mid-table St Ives.

Team Position Form Guide Opposition Time H/A
Women's Blues 2 WWWDW Wisbech Town 1 13:30 H
Men's Blues 4 LWWDL Harleston Magpies 1 13:30 H
Nomads 11 WLLLL Sudbury 1 12:00 A
Wanderers 7 WDLWL Crostyx 1 14:30 A
Bedouin 4 WWLWW City of Peterborough 3 10:30 H
Squanderers 5 WLWWW St Ives 2 15:30 A

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