With the 2005 season in the books, posting in this space will return to the usual sporadic off-season frequency. Before I sink into the background, I need to dole out some appreciation to the folks that publicized this site like nobody else could.
First and foremost, the statistical experiment on this site would not have generated the discussion it did without Luke Winn of si.com and Andy Glockner of espn.com referencing the efficiency numbers in their work. In addition, prominent mentions from ESPN’s Pat Forde and SI’s Grant Wahl brought in untold traffic.
The following radio people bravely put me live on their air without any safety nets: Jud Easterday and Brian Hanni of KLWN in Lawrence, KS; Willy Daunic of 104.5 The Zone (WGFX) in Nashville; Dave Weekley of WCHS in Charleston, WV; and Tony Caridi of the Mountaineer Sports Network.
Additionally, there are the newspaper scribes that referenced my stuff, most notably Janet Paskin in her piece on bloggers in the Philly Inquirer.
Then there’s the blogging community. This blog got off to an incredible start this season thanks to a link from Yoni, and additional debts are owed to his consistent plugging as the czar of foxsports.com’s March hoops coverage.
The exciting thing is what happens next year. More than what teams and players emerge as interesting stories, I am anxious to discover new sources of information you can’t get anywhere else. And for the most part, those sources will be blogs.
For instance, there’s the Big Ten Wonk, who recently cited as one of his dumbest posts a post that provided some great insight. So what that Wonk’s November assertion that Michigan State’s offense would take a dip this season was wrong. The story is that their field goal percentage suffered this season and yet their offense was better. There’s much to be learned from that.
That’s the thing about blogs. They have much more potential to push boundaries and throw out ideas that may or may not be total crap. There’s a fair amount of crap out there and there was plenty of crap on this site. But it’s reassuring to know there was some useful stuff here and elsewhere in blog-land that folks found interesting enough to share with a wider audience.
I have to think there are more people like Ryan at Hawkeye Hoops and Matt at Patriot League Hoops lurking out there. Those guys are doing the kind of analysis on their team/league that the MSM is not going to get around to for a while.
I don’t think there are more people like Kyle out there, the only five-tool blogger in the college basketball realm. If you have to feed that college basketball jones over the summer, his site has enough material to keep you occupied until next November. Who knows what he’s going to do for an encore. I’m betting on a vaudeville act.
No doubt there will more people joining in the revolution next season, and that’s what I am really looking forward to in ’06.
So that’s it folks. Thanks for all of the e-mails this season, whether they were encouraging or critical. Have a nice summer. See you next season.