Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Odds and ends

I was going to write a bit about the Kiffin situation and how I don't think it's nearly as abysmal move as a lot of the media does. But then Dr. Saturday basically said everything I wanted to say way more succinctly and intelligently than I'm capable of. So I suggest reading this.

I think what Kiffin did to Tennessee is kind of despicable, but I get it, is all. I almost feel bad for Tennessee. Almost.

Otherwise, I don't have too much new to talk about. Read my statistical analysis of the basketball season in comparison to last year's team. Then make sure to go to UMHoops where Dylan put up a depressing chart outlining Michigan's three-point shooting troubles this season. In the comments section, I object to a few of the points he brings up, namely that this shooting is the cause for our losses. Says I,

I think saying, “make more shots and you’ll win more” is simplistic, especially when you have a team that, even last year, didn’t prove to be very good shooters. You can say that about just about any team in any sport: score more points and you’ll win more. But (and I forget how to find this), I’d be interested in knowing the statistical significance of Michigan’s three-point shooting, whether or not this is a random case or this output is pretty reflective of the team’s relative skill level.

So sure, if Michigan hits more shots, they win more. My point is this, though: the 4% decrease in Michigan’s 3-point shooting does not seem like a statistical anomaly to me, and the fact that there is not a linear correlation between the above graph and wins and losses means that we need to look elsewhere.

Is it possible that last year’s record in relation to the shooting percentage was an anomaly? That–and I think we can all agree that Michigan was overrated coming into this year–they are not necessarily struggling, but rather playing exactly to their skill level and happened to get lucky last year? Or is it something else?

And by the way, anyone that's able to or knows how to compute the statistical significance (whether or not there is any) between last year's three-point percentage and this year's and report back to me would be greatly appreciated. In any case, check out Dylan's post and then read the comments.


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