Sunday, November 18, 2007

Wonking the Big East

For the past month I usually stop what I am doing Monday through Friday to take a quick trip to the Basketball Prospectus site. They normally don't post before 2:00pm (eastern time). I have come away disappointed more than a few times, but only because no one from their roster of writers has posted that day. It has become the site for indepth statistical analysis for all of D1 basketball. NBA fans will not be disappointed either as Kevin Pelton, Bradford Doolittle, Maury Brown, Will Carroll and Brad Wochomurka have contributed/collaborated on articles about the league.

Pomeroy, Gasaway and occasional contributors Caleb Peiffer and John Perrotto have been working through the conferences. John Gasaway finished his 3 part preview of the Big East on Friday. I was not disappointed. The 3 parts included:

  • An Overview which takes a look at the won-lost records from last year, each teams Pythagorean Winning percentage and percentage of returning playing time to (roughly) predict a record for each team. I posted a brief note about the Overview last week.
  • Part 1 looks at the first eight (by alphabet) schools Cincinnati through Pittsburgh.
  • Part 2 looks at the last eight schools, Providence through West Virginia. Maybe it is my biases showing through, but I thought Gasaway's preview of Villanova was especially thorough. Using Connecticut as a foil he explored how the Wildcat's and Husky's seasons turned out so differently, even though they had similar weaknesses on offense. He mentioned each of the incoming players, both true freshmen and the red shirts from last season. While his projection from the overview suggests the 'Cats will finish in a three way tie (with Notre Dame & Pittsburgh) for fourth place, I thought the preview was largely positive.

If you like your basketball with a helping of stats you should stop by their site. Pomeroy & Gasaway (and Joe Sheehan, founder of baseball prospectus and underwriter for the basketball prospectus) indicated the site would initially be free (and they kept their word...), but I suspect that will not be true much beyond the current season.


Jamie said...

I love Basketball Prospectus, but am dissapointed with the lack of updates compared to baseball prospectus. However I can't complain about the quality of work.

greyCat said...

I agree jamie, but this is the first year for the basketball prospectus, the start up is always a bit slow. I am sure that once Pomeroy and Gasaway are finished with conference previews they will write a good deal more.