With the National Football League’s first game of the season now behind us and the usual slew of games coming Sunday, psychologists have a helpful reminder for all the fans out there: Your team probably won’t be as good as you think. That’s because, as a new study reports, football fans collectively believe their favorite teams will win more than 300 games—something that’s arithmetically impossible.
Important an observation as that is, psychologists Bradley Love, Łukasz Kopeć, and Olivia Guest weren’t primarily interested in football. Instead, they were interested in optimism bias, the tendency most of us have toward overly rosy expectations regarding workplace hazards, social mobility, and even cancer.
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