by Ken Pomeroy on Wednesday, January 12, 2005
Two Big East teams with different margins for error...
First, there's West Virginia. WVU is a team that wins with quality three point shooting and great defense. The dependence on the jumper makes them a quality team prone to intermittent bouts of incompetence. That's how they can validate a win over George Washington with a win at NC State, then follow that up with a 38 point loss to Villanova. Last night, the Mountaineers lost 59-55 to a 2-10 Marshall squad thanks to a 13 to 3 deficit in made three pointers. Marshall was the best two-loss team in America entering the game, and it is a rivalry game that means more to the Herd than the Mountaineers, but you have to find a way to win that game. When the committee is splitting hairs over the final at-large bids, this will be an easy to put WVU on the…
by Ken Pomeroy on Monday, January 10, 2005
There is one individual statistic that is being dominated like no other this season.
Free Throws Made Diogu, Arizona State........136 Mendez, Niagara..............95 McGowan, Pepperdine..........94 Roberts, Mississippi State...90 Green, Oral Roberts..........88
No one goes to San Francisco Giants games to see Barry Bonds walk. And no one goes to a basketball game to see a player's ability to get to the line. But much like Bonds ability to draw walks, Ike Diogu's free throws are a big reason he is so effective. Diogu has played in 74 games in his two-plus seasons in Tempe, and has been to the line in every one of them. The guy goes to the line a lot, and shoots 85% when he gets there. This season he's made nine free throws per game. (By contrast, Kansas starter J.R. Giddens has played in 11 games this season and attempted a total of nine free…
by Ken Pomeroy on Sunday, January 9, 2005
What a crystallizing weekend of hoops. It's pretty obvious that the five best teams in the nation are Illinois, UNC, Wake Forest, Kansas, and Oklahoma State in some order. I can't believe someone from outside that group will get a #1 seed. Other random thoughts...
Those of us who thought that the Pac 10 race was between Arizona and Washington need to recalibrate our predict-o-meters. Arizona State belongs in the discussion as well after going to the Bay Area and sweeping Stanford/Cal with ease on Thursday/Saturday. Ike Diogu is simply the best player in the nation. More on that tomorrow. Nobody likes an "I told you so," but I'll say it in nine weeks when the Sun Devils are the Cinderella pick du jour to go to the Final Four.
Thanks to Paul Marigney's 30 points, Saint Mary's upset Gonzaga on Saturday. The Gaels have won eight in…
by Ken Pomeroy on Friday, January 7, 2005
Thanks for your great work. I love the efficiency stats.
A stat I would like to see kept somewhere is offensive rebounding percentage (plus defensive rebounding percentage = rebounding efficiency). As I'm sure you know, OR% = OR/missed FGA. DR% = DR/opponents' missed FGA.
I'm going to use Michael's idea with a few changes, defining offensive rebounding percentage as,
OR% = your offensive rebounds / (your offensive rebounds + their defensive rebounds)
and defensive rebounding percentage as,
DR% = your defensive rebounds / (your defensive rebounds + their offensive rebounds)
Then the two percentages can be summed to get Total Rebounding (TR). When TR is greater than 100, a team is better at getting rebounds than its opponents. TR is a much better way to measure rebounding ability than the NCAA's stat of choice, average rebounding margin, because TR eliminates the effect of shooting percentage.
by Ken Pomeroy on Thursday, January 6, 2005
But he's close.
Williams '05 Okafor '04 FG% 57.3 59.9 PPG 14.5 17.6 RPG 12.3 11.5 BPG 3.5 4.1
Williams has averaged one less minute per game than Okafor did, but fortunately Duke plays at a faster pace than UConn did, making this an apples-to-apples comparison in terms of possessions played per game.
Okafor was more skilled offensively, but Williams is not far behind. The difference in field goal percentage is offset by the fact that Williams gets to the line more, and is a better free throw shooter.
Williams '05 Okafor '04 FTA/FGA .56 .50 FT% 64.8 51.8 PPWS 1.21 1.19
PPWS is points per weighted shot, an idea created by John Hollinger and pushed further by Big Ten Wonk. If you do a google search for PPWS, you'll find Wonk's page describing PPWS sitting behing the Virginia Tech Department of Plant, Physiology, and…
by Ken Pomeroy on Wednesday, January 5, 2005
Texas A&M at College Station is getting ready to tip it off against Kansas in Lawrence. TAMUCS has made a name for itself on this site and elsewhere with a schedule that has been hideously pathetic. Because of this, I have been derisively adding the campus location any time I referenced the Aggies. But what you should also know about these guys is that they are not the pushover they were last year. Six conference wins is not a stretch for them this year, which is six more than they had last year. Especially when you consider Billy Gillispie's miracle revival of UTEP last season.
So why do I bring this up on an evening when the Aggies figure to get smoked? Because if they are going places - namely the NIT - they won't get smoked. I'm not one for "emotional factors" being all that significant in a…
by Ken Pomeroy on Thursday, December 30, 2004
received some good e-mails in response to the stats page. Most of the votes for an additional statistic were in favor of something I'll call "combined efficiency." It's simple:
Combined Efficiency = Offensive Efficiency - Defensive Efficiency
It's just the amount of points a team would gain or lose in 100 possessions with an average opponent. Honestly, I am not all that comfortable with this stat. The idea of calculating OE and DE was to assess the effectiveness of parts of the team. With CE, you have one number that applies to an entire team. It's really just a glorified average margin of victory. A couple of printable e-mails from the past week...
Great work. I'm still reading through your explanation, but that's my slow comprehension, not necessarily your explanation.
I have a couple of suggestions that could be considered for…
West Virginia knocked off George Washington last night in an Atlantic-10 throwback game to remain in the unbeaten club, whose numbers dropped to ten with Hawaii's heartbreaking loss at Fresno State. The 9-0 start is the best for the Mountaineers since the Jerry West era. While the game at WVU Coliseum was sold out, one can conclude basketball has not quite arrived in Morgantown because no couches were burned in celebration.
WVU graduated to the Big East in the 1995 but they've never had much success there, with their only tourney bid coming in 1998 as a 10 seed. Things are changing under third-year head coach John Beilein though, and the Big East is more wide open than people expected this season. UConn has struggled with, or in one case been beaten by, some questionable competition. Syracuse and Pitt figure to finish 1-2 in some order, but then you…
by Ken Pomeroy on Tuesday, December 28, 2004
Gonzaga and Oklahoma State square off in the second game of the "All College Classic."
14:41 - Gonzaga 17, OSU 10. Gonzaga has scored on every possession so far and is on pace to score about 130 points. So much for my theory that they couldn't win the game by scoring at will as they did against Washington. The Cowboys have been settling for threes having already attempted four. Their game is predicated on slashing to hole, getting layups and supplementing that with some John Lucas and Daniel Bobik jumpers.
10:35 - Gonzaga 26, OSU 15. Ronny Turiaf heads to the bench at the 14 minute mark bothered by an ankle sprain. His replacement, JP Batista scores on the Zags next two possessions. It's not until the 12:40 mark that OSU makes its first stop on Gonzaga. The Cowboys are still settling for the outside shot too often.…
I'd like to start today by giving credit to the Longwood Lancers. Coach Mike Gillian (friend of this blog) certainly got some mileage out of the game against the nation's #1 with a pregame feature on espn.com and an appearance on Cold Pizza. Then the 1-12 Lancers did something that neither Wake Forest nor Gonzaga could do - play a reasonably competitive game against Illinois for 30 minutes, eventually losing 105-79. Priceless trivia tidbit: Longwood and Delaware State are the only teams to shoot better than 50% against Illinois so far. That's the same Delaware State squad that missed its first 16 shots against Northwestern last night, in a 50-43 loss.
I promised some comments on the national efficiency stats I posted yesterday. One thing that jumped out at me involves the participants in the big game tonight, the aforementioned Gonzaga at Oklahoma State (correction: game is…