Published April 18, 2019
An article in USA Today features the work of Mark Karwan, Praxair Professor of Operations Research and SUNY Distinguished Teaching Professor in the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, and how mathematics plays an essential role in creating the NFL schedule each year.
"This is, by far, the hardest mathematical thing I've ever done," said Karwan. The NFL has up to 10,000 constraints to consider when creating the 17-week schedule for 32 teams — including logistical considerations like stadium availability and broadcasting rules, as well as individual team requests. Three researchers from the University at Buffalo are the only people, outside of four NFL employees who work on the schedule.
Stories on his work also appeared on television stations around the county, including WXYZ-TV in Detroit, KNXV-TV in Phoenix, WFTS-TV in Tampa Bay, KGTV-TV in San Diego, WTVF-TV in Nashville and KMGH-TV in Denver.