Jack Daly Is No Statistician

January 29, 2008 at 9:58 am | Posted in Jackie Manuel, Lates Links | Leave a comment
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Here we are right in the middle of a long break and Jack Daly practically begs me to go FJM on him. I’m not going to do it, though. It is too easy and all of the Posse readers already understand tempo’s role in evaluating statistics.

Heh. Too easy is right up my ally! For those who are not registered with the Durham Herald Sun, Daly makes the case that bad defensive teams often win:

The 2005 UNC team was 217th in the country in scoring defense. If memory serves, everything worked out fine for that band of Tar Heels.

So the fact this current UNC squad ranks 250th in the country in scoring defense might not mean the end is near. Especially since the No. 4 Tar Heels (19-1, 4-1) share something else in common with those Williams teams.

The fact that Jack Daly gets paid to write an article where Scoring Defense is used for the primary analysis is absurd. You wanted to know what we had in common, though right?


Both the ’02 and ’05 squads had the highest scoring offenses in the country. This year’s team? Well, it’s second. But it’s on the right track, trailing only VMI in points per game.

That is absolutely crazy. You mean….we scored a ton of points and allowed a ton of points. What could be responsible here? There seems to be some variable that might help us understand?

Scoring defense is probably an imperfect measure of a team’s defensive ability, mind you.

Historically speaking, Williams’ squads have pushed the pace to the point it would be unrealistic to expect them to yield the same amount of points as a grind-it-out team like Wisconsin or Michigan State, who might have 20 less possessions per game.

Wait a minute. Jack Daly gets it. Those first eight paragraphs were a set up! We have more possessions and so scoring offense and defense are meaningless! I take it back, Jack.

When one gets down to it, field-goal shooting is the best predictor of Final Four potential, at least in the last decade.

Just about every team who has made it the national semifinals has been adept at hitting shots and preventing opponents from doing the same. On average, the 24 most-recent Final Four teams have been 30th in the country in field-goal shooting and 38th in field-goal percentage defense.

So the key: score more than the opposition! This is my key, Jack! Where is the JMP hat tip! You know that thing you were missing when citing scoring defense, there might be something missing with FG % here. If I take 100 shots and they take 80…. you can actually win with a lesser FG %. There is one other problem here. Right now we are ranked 25th in FG%. However we don’t take many threes (only 304). Three is more than Two. You can actually have a worse FG % and score more points by taking and making threes. Remember the key is more points, Jack!

Carolina March has some actual analysis. Luke Winn talks with the Wear twins. I did not know they played with Taylor King. Adam Lucas has a new mailbag and in it he breaks down our close games. Luck or Grit? Joe Lunardi gives Dook the #1 seed in Charlotte. This is the most interesting story-line for me right now. Dook is good again and we’ve got to beat them to that #1 seed.

Football Outsiders looks back at the Super Bowl. Sanford’s Soccer Net has midweek Premiership previews. Cashley Cole is classy. State won’t have that problem for long.

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