The Olympic Games: a time when the entire world comes together to see who will take home the coveted medals. The winner of the games is typically the country who wins the most medals, no matter gold, silver or bronze. But what if we assigned a point value to each medal - awarding five points to gold, three to silver and two to bronze? As you can see below, that would have changed the outcome of the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi.
Russia won with 33 medals, the USA came in second with 28 and Norway rounded out the top three with 26. But if we assign the points to each medal the results would have changed. Russia stays in the lead with 116 points but the USA and Norway would have tied with 90 points.
This new way of determining a winner is proposed in an article written by Dr. Charlie Tuggle and Dr. Roxane Coche. They call it the Medal Premium Calculations (MPC) system. WFMY News 2 invited Dr. Tuggle on The Good Morning Show to talk about why he thinks the change is important.
"If you win a gold don't you feel a little better about yourself than if you win a bronze?" Tuggle said. "If you win a bronze it's something but it's not the gold. So you can't say that a bronze equals a silver and a silver equals a gold because they don't. If they did the medal stands would be even, right? But they're not, they're graduated."
So that means taking each medal, assigning the points to it and adding it up. And if you worry about having to do the math to get to those new totals, don't worry. The two say they would be able to calculate the points per medal in real time for media outlets to use.
That's not all, Tuggle says using MPC also allows them to look at a bigger picture using other factors like the size of an Olympic team and the nation's economy to determine how well each country did.
"If you have a really poor country going up against the United States, well the US has a big advantage because we can pour more money into our athletics programs so that's something we're considering," he said.
As for if we will see a point-based system used in future Olympic Games, Tuggle says, "he sure hopes so."