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Have Stats Gone Too Far?


I’m really enjoying this Florida-Georgia game. Is it just me or does it seem like the only shots Erving Walker takes are high emotion three-pointers? Fun to watch.

Anyway, that’s not the point of my post. Rather, I’d like to direct your attention to the ridiculous detail in stat keeping these days. I used to think that the old man who came to the game and kept stats during in his notebook was as dedicated as it got, but that’s no longer the case.

Look at the NBA, I don’t know what mastermind developed the plus/minus stat but it’s an interesting concoction. Currently the best five players on one team in terms of +/- are five players on the 21-25 Houston Rockets. The Rockets obviously aren’t the best team in the NBA but somehow when that combination is on the court, they outscore their opponents by 18 points. That’s silly.

I took this picture off of I don’t know why they went to the UK media guide for Chuck’s picture, but I like it.


On the college basketball front there’s a great little site to turn to if you’re looking to waste some time. It’s becoming a very popular, but if you’ve never visited it before, I’d recommend you check out Ken Pomeroy’s site for the most insanely in-depth college basketball stats out there.

Currently in his adjusted ratings, Ken has the Wildcats ranked as the sixth best team in the nation, followed immediately by the Washington Huskies.

I ask you this: Are we the sixth best team in the nation or have the numbers simply made us out to look better than we are?

Let’s hear what you think, BBN

Article written by Matthew Hays

20 Comments for Have Stats Gone Too Far?

  1. Stickman
    9:49 pm January 25, 2011 Permalink


  2. Hammer
    9:50 pm January 25, 2011 Permalink

    Why did I not know Kige Ramsey was on Tosh.0?

  3. Stickman
    10:03 pm January 25, 2011 Permalink

    I know who Kige is, but what’s Tosh.0?

  4. GoCats2
    10:06 pm January 25, 2011 Permalink

    I am not a big fan of this stat anyway because if you watch a lot of NBA you notice that some players are always plus because they are in there at garbage time. They are jacking up shots when the game has already been decided.
    Either way Chuck should be made an example by every High School and College coach in the country. If you work hard you can make it. He may be the least talented NBA player in the league but it makes it on heart and determination.

  5. Sutton'sLiver
    10:06 pm January 25, 2011 Permalink

    Antonio Poole just committed to Michigan (football recruit). Way to go Joker. There will be a major meltdown tomorrow after Jon Davis flips to the Cards.

  6. jim
    10:07 pm January 25, 2011 Permalink

    heres a stat for you. eloy vargas on the floor +.7…vargas on the bench +15.5

  7. Sutton'sLiver
    10:09 pm January 25, 2011 Permalink

    How bout this stat. Billy Clyde and Cal have the same SEC record through 21 games, 17-4.

  8. Well...
    10:20 pm January 25, 2011 Permalink

    Obviously it totally depends what team comes out to play. If the ‘first half of Alabama team’ is on the floor, we aren’t even in the top 25. But if the UK team that was on the floor against Louisville is on the floor, we are a top 5 team.

  9. Wes Henderson
    10:37 pm January 25, 2011 Permalink

    def not the 6th best team in the nation, top 15 team certainly, but no where near a ohio st. kansas team on the floor right now.

  10. Reality
    10:39 pm January 25, 2011 Permalink

    Let’s get this straight gents. UK is good considering who and how many we lost last year, but we are no where near a top 10 team. In fact, we might finish tied for 3rd in the SEC.

  11. shadowboxer
    10:48 pm January 25, 2011 Permalink

    6th best team? No chance. A team that loses to Alabama is not in the top 10. Is there a chance that this team will become a top 5 team? Sure. Currently, however, UK is ranked about where it should be.

  12. Christopher Walken
    11:12 pm January 25, 2011 Permalink

    Need more Stats!

  13. adam
    11:30 pm January 25, 2011 Permalink


  14. Sean
    11:52 pm January 25, 2011 Permalink

    Auburn at #264

  15. sangaman
    11:53 pm January 25, 2011 Permalink

    Kenpom is brilliant and the best resource for college basketball there is. Read his recent blog post about +/- if you are interested in that.

    Kenpom’s ratings are a better predictor than the AP/Coaches poll and far better than the RPI.

  16. bigbill992001
    2:53 am January 26, 2011 Permalink

    We are NOT the 6th best, 16th maybe

  17. UncleSam
    3:13 am January 26, 2011 Permalink

    The origins of +/- shouldn’t be a mystery to a sports writer. The NHL has been keeping that stat officially for as long as I can remember.

  18. RealTalk
    5:20 am January 26, 2011 Permalink

    6th? Yeah, I wish.

  19. Ben
    8:25 am January 26, 2011 Permalink

    Stats definitely require a context, as someone pointed out some people have great stats because they’re in during garbage time. You have to know the players to distinguish that. As far as being the 6th best team, the benefit of stats is that they objectively measure things that we don’t necessarily observe, so in that regard I trust the ranking. On the other hand, what’s the difference between 6th best and 12th best at this point? It’s pretty arbitrary, especially with basketball having a tournament to sort all that out.

  20. AuntKim
    9:53 am January 26, 2011 Permalink

    Spouting obscure stats offsets all the utterly predictable and cliche things sports commentators say before, during, and after a game. They break the monotony…even though often ridiculous!