OKC Dave looks at the Big 12′s best programs over the last four years.Continue Reading...
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OKC Dave is back to look at how much OSU is struggling academically in basketball.Continue Reading...
Oklahoma State is struggling academically.Continue Reading...
When the football season ended, we ranked every football program in the country using a four-year formula. Let’s do the same thing for hoops to see where our program stands.
Once again, I’m using the what-have-you-done-for-me-lately formula:
2013 season: 40% weighting
I figure recruits tend to look at programs this way…everything beyond four years ago is a distant memory to an 18-year old.
I’ll use Pomeroy’s ratings.
First, let’s look at the top 20:
Let’s take a look at each region, starting with our own Midwest Region. I realize some of the team names run together, but I think you can make them out.
Louisville leads the nation in defensive efficiency by a pretty solid margin, so it’s not surprising to see them all alone out there on the east side of the chart. Given that defense tends to win in the NCAA tournament, OSU would normally be well-positioned to make a run. But here’s the problem: while OSU is a very good defensive team, but so is Oregon. And Saint Louis. And Louisville. Seven teams in this region have a top 20 Pomeroy defense.
In the South region, it’s Florida that stands out the most. Pomeroy has been high on them all year long (they are currently ranked 1st in his system). OU has a tough matchup against a solid defense in San Diego State. If you don’t like KU or Florida to get to Atlanta, pick Georgetown if you like defense or Michigan if you like offense.
When I completed the bracketology project here a few weeks ago, I promised I would come back with some analysis after the brackets were announced.
Here I am.
I’m bringing back the scatter plots that I used last time. You want to be in the far northeast corner of these charts…teams with good offense and defense reside in that corner. Defense is on the horizontal axis, offense is on the vertical axis. All of these stats are from kenpom.com.
In order to help you compare teams, every chart in this post aside from the last one uses the same scale: 80 to 112 on defense, 88 to 124 on offense.
First, let’s take a look at how Oregon stacks up against 12 seeds from previous years. I plotted every 12 seed from 2009 to 2013:
Oregon is the green dot. Despite all the fuss about how Oregon was seeded incorrectly, they don’t look completely out of place on this chart. Notably, they have the best defense by a 12 seed in the last five years. But they are also 20 out of 22 teams in offensive efficiency among 12 seeds in this time period. They rank 10 out of 22 in Pomeroy rating in this group.
Kyle asked me to take a look at how Nash & Smart played in big games compared to games against weaker opponents. I decided to throw in Markel as well since he’s playing at an all-conference level this year.
I took a different approach this time around. I used Dean Oliver’s offensive rating, as calculated by Ken Pomeroy. Here’s how Pomeroy describes it on his site:
Offensive rating (ORtg): A measure of personal offensive efficiency developed by Dean Oliver. The formula is very complicated, but accurate. For a detailed explanation, buy Basketball on Paper.
Let’s just take his word for it. The only thing I don’t like about this stat is that it’s kind of hard to quickly determine what a good figure is without comparing it to other players (Smart has an offensive rating of 103.3. Out of context, it doesn’t mean a thing).
I didn’t want to simply find games where players were efficient, though…I wanted to find games where the players really showed up and played well. Here was my approach: I multiplied each players offensive rating times the % of possessions the player used in each game. The higher the result, the more positive an impact the player had in that game.
In Part 1, I looked at NCAA seeding.
In Part 2, I looked at what it takes to advance in the tournament.
In Part 3, I’ll try to predict how far OSU will advance in the tournament.
I had fun with this part. There are lots of ways to approach this, and I’ll just be upfront with you — none of them really matter.
Trying to predict how far a team will advance in the NCAA tournament is a fool’s errand. The beauty of single elimination March Madness is that you never know what crazy things can happen. In 2003, a solid-but-not-great OSU team had Syracuse down by 17 at one point in a 2nd-round game. It wasn’t Carmelo that led the Orangemen roaring back to a win, but everyone remembers his performances in the rest of Cuse’s games as he played his way to a national championship and a #3 overall draft pick.
Here’s how I attacked this question. Out of the group of 266 NCAA tournament teams over the last four seasons, I found the 25 teams most similar to OSU in offensive efficiency, defensive efficiency, and Pomeroy rating #. These teams have a very similar makeup to OSU’s team: good-to-great defense, average-to-good offense, and a relatively high overall Pomeroy rating.
In Part 1, I answered the question “What seed does OSU deserve?”
In Part 2, I’ll tackle this question: What kind of teams advance in the NCAA tournament?
We know that OSU has is great defensively and average offensively. So what does that mean for us in the Dance? Does defense really win championships or does scoring really matter in March?
Let’s take a look at what kinds of teams have success in the NCAA tournament.
You saw this chart in Part 1:
We used it to look at NCAA tournament seedings. This time, we’ll use it to look at how teams advance in the Dance.
This is the first offering in a three-part series that will examine how OSU’s current team compares to NCAA tournament teams from 2009 to 2012, a universe of 266 teams. I will attempt to answer three main questions (with a few detours along the way):
Part 1: What NCAA seed does OSU deserve?
Part 2: What kind of teams advance in the tournament?
Part 3: How far will OSU advance in the tournament?
In all three parts, teams will be evaluated using Ken Pomeroy’s system (yes, I refer to him all the time — because he’s the best). I will evaluate these 266 teams based on three Pomeroy factors:
- Adjusted Offensive Efficiency (points scored per 100 possessions, adjusted for SOS)
- Adjusted Defensive Efficiency (points allowed per 100 possessions, adjusted for SOS)
- Pomeroy Rating (Pomeroy’s rating, which is based on a combination of the two factors listed above)
You want a high offensive number and a low defensive number.
Let’s get started with Part 1: What NCAA seed does OSU deserve?
Each of the grey dots represents an team that made the NCAA tournament from 2009 to 2012 (these are the 266 teams I mentioned). I’ll wait here while you count them.
I situated the axes so that you want to be at the top right of the chart – high offensive number (“north” on the chart), low defensive number (“east”). Let’s look at a couple examples:
See the dot closest to the top right corner? That belongs to the 1-seed 2010 Duke team that beat Butler for the title.
To piggyback on the CRFF piece on Markel, here are the 10 most statistically similar seasons in the Sutton/Ford era for Markel. The list is sorted by my similarity ranking. These are all per-game statistics.
He’s playing at an all-conference level right now.
I’ve done a lot of comparing Marcus Smart to former OSU player (here, here, and here). But the season Smart is putting together has started to transcend anything we’ve seen at OSU, particularly from a freshman. The scale we have in Stillwater isn’t big enough to handle the kind of season Smart is putting together.
I’m not sure if some of the OSU fans out there understand what kind of player we have on our hands this year (the ones that read this blog do, of course). Let’s take a look at just how special this Marcus Smart season is.
Exhibit A – All-Around Excellence as a Freshman
Using the incredibly awesome Play Index over at College Basketball Reference, I ran a report to find out how many freshmen have achieved this stat line or better since 1999, the earliest season available in the Play Index:
- 14 points/game (Smart averages 15.0)
- 5 rebounds/game (Smart averages 5.8)
- 3 assists/game (Smart averages 4.5)
- 2 steals/game (Smart averages 2.9)
You have to achieve all of those things in your freshman year to be on this list. Guess how many guys have done that in the last 15 seasons of college basketball? Five. You may have heard of these guys:
Where’s John Wall and Derrick Rose? They didn’t qualify in rebounds or steals. T.J. Ford? He didn’t qualify in points or rebounds.
We’re not breaking news here, but Marcus Smart is a special player. It’s almost embarrassing how much Fran Fraschilla and Dave Armstrong fawn over him…if he was on any other team, we would be disgusted by it. Let’s thank our lucky stars that he’s a Cowboy.
Kyle sent me a text after the bedlam game that read: “Smart is making a run at the pantheon of OSU players…in one season.” Yes, he certainly is. Those who know me well know that my mind went immediately to the numbers. How can we evaluate just how well Smart is doing compared to his fellow Cowboys?
Here’s the group I compared him to: every player in the Sutton/Ford era who averaged at least 28 minutes/game (70% of playing time). This is a group of 78 player-seasons over the last 23 seasons.
All stats listed per 40 minutes played. Here’s where Marcus Smart ranks in each major statistical category and the six other players closest to him in each category. The number listed to the left of each player is the ranking out of the group of 78 players.
I can’t think of two things college football fans argue more about than recruiting rankings and end-of-season team rankings. Sounds like a good starting point for a post.
This one is right up the @osustats alley. Here’s the data we started with:
Team Rankings: we used F/+ for this because it goes far beyond the top 20…the joint system of Brian Fremeau and Bill Connelly ranks programs 1-120. We’ve covered this system before.
Recruiting Rankings: we used the Rivals recruiting rankings. Yes, others are available but these are probably as good or better than any recruiting rankings out there.
We compared the average of the four recruiting classes leading up to a season against the end-of-season F/+ ranking for each team. Let’s look at OSU’s 2012 season as an example. For the season that just ended, here are the four recruiting classes we looked at:
So, the four recruiting classes that contributed to the talent on the field for OSU’s 2012 season had an average ranking of 32. If recruiting rankings were all that mattered, OSU should have a final F/+ ranking of somewhere around 32, right? Well, we finished the season ranked at #12 in the F/+ system. In other words, we overachieved by 20 spots.
Now, is this perfect? No. Is there a perfect way to do this? No, but please feel free to write in the comments how you would have done it differently.
This is a good time to look at the remaining conference schedule. There are six teams still in the hunt for the conference title, and everyone has 10 games left. All six teams have five at home and five on the road.
Pomeroy publishes a percentage chance of winning each game. It changes every day when his system updates, but these are the current figures for each of the six teams (click on photo to enlarge):
If a team is expected to win, the game is highlighted in green. A predicted loss is highlighted in red. The only 50/50 game on this schedule is Kansas at OSU…I gave it to the Pokes since it’s at home.
Aside from Kansas, OSU has the highest percentage among the six teams at 74.3%.
I asked OKC Dave to do some quick-hitting stats he finds for specific game, here’s what he found during OSU’s upset in Lawrence yesterday.
OSU scored 1.175 points per possession against Kansas, the highest mark by any KU opponent this year.
OSU grabbed 45% of the offensive rebounds available to them in the game. Since the 2003 season, OSU has played 194 conference games. 45% is the 15th-best offensive rebounding game in this time period. Our season average is 33%.
The game pace of 72 possessions is the highest for any OSU conference game this year so far. Since 2003, only 29 conference games have had a faster pace.
Marcus Smart gets a steal on 5.3% of defensive possessions he’s on the court for (8th in the country).
Here’s a look at where our current players stacks up against former players in a few key categories. I listed the best seasons OSU players in the Sutton/Ford era have had in each category by classification. Players on the current team are listed in blue and the best overall season in the category is highlighted in orange.
Nash narrowly edged out JA for the freshman scoring record at 13.3 points/game, but Smart is right on his heels at the moment. Eddie just plain did not play freshmen, so I’m not stunned to see Forte in the top 10. That said, seeing him at #4 is an eye-opener.
Nash’s scoring average is identical to last year’s number. Markel cracking the top 10 scoring list by juniors is really a very nice accomplishment when you look at the top 10.