Thursday, March 28, 2013

How The Major Conferences Are Doing Versus Expectations In The NCAA Tournament

How is your bracket looking? I filled out two brackets in a work pool along with 564 other brackets. One is in 90th place, the other is somewhere north of 450.

The NCAA Tournament is the best time to compare the majors conferences versus one another as every team from the top 8 conferences is good and every team is in survive and advance mode.

Below is each conference's record and how they are doing versus their seed. A win over a lower seed yields 0 points as this is expected while a win over a higher seed yields 1 points for an upset.8 vs 9 games are awarded a 1/2 point for a win and 1/2 point for a loss since these games are generally toss ups

Ordered by the pre-NCAA Tournament RPI:

Big 10
Teams In: 7
Teams Remaining: 4 (#1 Indiana, #2 Ohio St, #3 Michigan St, #4 Michigan)
10-3, 0

Mountain West
Teams In: 5
Teams Remaining: 0
2-5, -3

Big East
Teams In: 8
Teams Remaining: 3 (#1 L'ville, #3 Marquette, #4 Syracuse)
6-5, -5

Teams In: 4
Teams Remaining: 2 (#2 Duke, #2 Miami)
5-2, 0

Big 12
Teams In: 5
Teams Remaining: 1 (#1 Kansas)
3-4, -2

Pac 12
Teams In: 5
Teams Remaining: 2 (#6 Arizona, #12 Oregon)
5-3, +3

Teams In: 5
Teams Remaining: 1 (#13 LaSalle)
7-4, +2

Teams In: 3
Teams Remaining: 1 (#3 Florida)
3-4, +1/2

Conferences having the best tournament versus seeding expectations:
1. Pac 12
2. A-10
3. MVC/A-Sun due to Wichita State and SWAG U aka Florida Dunk Coast University aka FGCU

Conferences having the worst tournament versus seeding expectations:
1. Big East
2. Mountain West
3. Big 12

The ACC, SEC, and Big 10 are doing as you would expect.

Friday, March 15, 2013

How Joshua Nesbitt Converted So Many Third Downs For Georgia Tech

Joshua Nesbitt ran in the 4.5s at Georgia Tech's Pro Day/

Joshua Nesbitt left Georgia Tech's program following the 2010 season. After spending the 2011 season with the Buffalo Bills Practice Squad as Defensive Back, the Greensboro, Ga. product was released before last season.

Nesbitt was back on Tech's campus this week competing in Georgia Tech's Pro Day in front of NFL scouts in hopes of getting another shot.

Jay Bilas Nails It On What Is Wrong With College Basketball

I don't agree with everything Jay Bilas says, but he is spot on with his comments in this interview with Charlie Rose about why college basketball has sunk to its current level of mediocrity and fan apathy. 

Fast forward to the 8 minute mark to hear Bilas dissect what is wrong with college basketball (the first 8 mins is Bilas talking about his book).

Bilas makes some great points about refs and fouling as well as the apparent dearth of talent due to early departures.

1. The ESPN commentator says that college basketball doesn't have any one person in charge like USA Basketball does. 

When USA Basketball had a committee the product stunk.  With one person in charge, Jerry Colangelo, America has returned to the top of the world. 

Essentially a czar for college basketball.

I nominate David Stern once he retires from the NBA, though I honestly have not thought much about it.  He is the first person who comes to mind and could be perceived as unbiased (i.e. he is not a former college administrator or coach)

2. Next, Bilas dives into the fouling issue; meaning not enough fouls are being called. 

This generates from the cries of "let them play" by fans.

Well, when you let players who 15-20 years ago would not be playing on a college basketball court because their spots would be taken by Juniors and Seniors who would go on to play in the NBA "play" then you get ugly basketball because nobody can make a shot when they are constantly being bumped and pushed.

This is what college basketball is today.  A bunch of missed shots and games in the 50s.  That is not exciting at all.

3. But wouldn't too many fouls slow down the game and bore fans even more?

Ah, Bilas has a great counter.  If the refs call the proper fouls then players won't foul as much because they will be sitting on the bench in foul trouble.  Essentially, if refs call the proper fouls than players will stop fouling so much.

4. Bilas' points on referee performance are spot on too. 

Like Bilas, I think the officiating by and large is ok, but no repercussions exist for bad officiating because all refs are simply contractors.

If one league fines them or is suspended by a conference another league will simply pick them up for their games.

Last season Karl Hess was "suspended" by the ACC after his actions at an NC State game, tossing two former Wolfpack greats from the stands. 

No matter to Hess and he simply picked up games in the Big East and SEC to fill his schedule.  Those leagues didn't care how bad Hess' actions were.

The refs have all the power when it comes to relationships with conferences.

And to show how serious the ACC was about suspending Hess, they invited him back to ref the ACC Tournament but Hess declined and the league allowed his fellow refs to display messages of support for him.

Very honorable John Swofford. 

Then Bilas dives into less desirable subjects like NCAA amateurism.  I will let him have his views here without comment only saying I mostly disagree. 

Jay Bilas - Charlie Rose Interview

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Is Georgia Tech Basketball Being Slighted By ACC Referees?

This is not another "we got screwed by the refs" post.  Teams with losing records tend to have a negative foul margin.  This is not a post about Georgia Tech's -3.2 foul margin in ACC games.

This is a detailed look at how referees in ACC games are calling fouls against Georgia Tech and their opponents comparing to the season averages of each.

I looked at all 11 ACC opponents for GT across all 18 games, the ACC season averages for fouls called for and against each ACC opponent, and then compared those season averages to when ACC teams faced Georgia Tech.   Please see the linked spreadsheet here for details.  

I think Brian Gregory has a gripe to the ACC in how the opposition is officiated against his team.

1. Georgia Tech ranked 5th in fouls called on them in ACC games at 17.6 per game.

GT had three games where they were called for 23+ fouls (vWF, @UNC, @UVA) or one standard deviation above their season average (see column D); GT went 1-2 in these games.   The Yellow Jackets had five games where they were called for 14 or less fouls or one standard deviation below their season average (see column E); GT went 1-4 in these games. 

Therefore, in games where the fouls called against Ga. Tech were one standard deviation above or below Tech's season average they went 2-6. 

2.  When ACC teams played the Yellow Jackets they were able to draw 0.8 fouls more per game than their normal season average (column J in spreadsheet). 

For example, when Tech played at home against NC State on March 3rd, the Jackets were whistled for 23 fouls which is 5 fouls per game more than the Wolfpack typically draw against their opponents (column I - 17.9).  Georgia Tech had 3 games where they were whistled for 5+ more fouls than their opponents normally draw (vNCSU, @UNC, vWF)

At this point we can say the number of fouls called against Georgia Tech is about on par, albeit slightly higher, with the Jackets season average and has little effect on winner or loser of the game considering the 2-6 record.

3.  The biggest complaint Gregory should have is how many fouls his opponents are called for. In 18 ACC games, GT opponents were called for 2.1 fouls less per game than their normal season average (column H). 

The numbers got especially bad in the last 5 ACC games - @UVA, vMD, vNCSU, @MIA, @BC.  In those five games, Georgia Tech opponents were whistled for a total of 21 fouls less than their season average or 4.1 less per game.

If you take out the Maryland game, the per game average is 5.5 fouls less than the opponents normally foul. 

Playing on the road was especially tough for Ga. Tech to draw fouls.

In its nine ACC road games, GT opponents were whistled for more than 3.8 fouls less than their season average. Last Saturday at Boston College the Eagles were called for just 8 fouls all game, more than 7 fouls less than their season average. Tech lost the game by 2 points.

When you add the 0.8 fouls per game more than their season average called on Georgia Tech to the 2.1 fouls less per game than the season average GT opponents are called for then you essentially have a 3 foul difference than the season average swing in favor of the the Yellow Jacket's opponents (column L).

Based on this it would certainly appear referees are not giving Georgia Tech the same calls as they do other ACC teams. You can add this foul discrepancy to the 2013 football schedule as B1G fodder now.

Georgia Tech Game by Game Foul Chart with Opponent ACC Averages