landing spot. will be interesting to see how he does.
Hello Friends and Foes,
Finally the moment you've all been waiting for. Here are the results and analysis of my super scientific and official survey that was taken by you all some 380 times. However, since I currently have no currency and am also very cheap I decided to not upgrade my SurveyMonkey account to be able to view all 380 responses. However, I can view 100 and believe this will provide a nice little snapshot of the results and enough info to disect and analyze. I'll be honest, if it was called SurveyKoala or even SurveyMarsupial I'd probably upgrade. I hate almost all monkeys except for RGard so therefore I did not upgrade at this time. This is a super scientific survey that I spent much time on so please take the results and my analysis as the absolute fact and truth that can not be argued or discussed. No, not even by DiscussMan or whatever the hell his/her avatar is. Obviously you will discuss anyways, so go ahead and let me know what you think or tell me you hate me and my antics and my schtick. What you should do is take your opinion and SCHTICK it up your tight ass. Also don't complain about my lack of paragraphs, just don't read it and post a funny "cool story bro" gif instead. Feel free to bitch about my spelling and grammar if that helps you feel happy that your better at writing than a Koala. (You're* Got you already!) Okay. Let's begin!
1.) Do you like me?
47% of you said "yes". Thank you. I like you too. Some of the "Other, please specify" responses were very interesting. A few of the responses included "get off my lawn" in Spanish and "eat 7 dicks". Seven just happens to by my favorite number! One person said I could lick their sack, but they didn't specify what it was a sack of. I think maybe apples or sweet potatoes from Trader Joe's. One person asked if they could "finger my can". I dont know what that means, but it sounds dangerous. I've cut myself on can lids before. Others don't like my new Avatar and one person said he didn't kill his wife. That's good! My favorite response was this rap that I'll paste below.
Man I really wanna like you but I really wanna fight you. At first you seemed real cool and I aint tryna fool. But then you full of yourself and started acting like a tool. Yo I love me some koalas like I love me gin and tonic and those yummy burgers at the Sonic. But I know deep down your doing this greater good. And you call yourself out like a hater would. Man you're great for the community. Making the most of opportunity but demanding your impunity like a leader should. Look at me I'm starting to ramble. And my rhymes going to shambles. So I'm out. Peace and love-your boy randle
Thanks Randle. That was very nice. Let's brawl to the death sometime.
2.) Do you like Owen Wilson?
I'm telling you, you have to watch the video of him saying "wow" and you'll hate him and his lack of acting range. Most of you liked him (47%), but admited to being a psychopath. That number of psychopaths running around is worrisome indeed. One time I met him and he scratched my head and said "Oh wow, Is that like a Wombat?" Wombat?!?! I look nothing like a wombat.
3.) How many MGoPoints Should I have?
30% of you said I should have all the points, and the rest of you were wrong. I should get at least half of WD's points. You know my Point Parties are better than anyone else's anyways and you're all invited, except for the Discuss guy.
4.) I would like to see more if these surveys in the future.
This was an even split. 30% said yes, but make it funnier. I'll try, but I'm not very funny so don't get your hopes up. I'm more of a quantity rather than quality joke koala. Another 30% said they were drunk which I thought was a surprisingly low percentage. This blog has a lot of Owen Wilson loving psychopathic drunks. FACT
5.) The muffin Question.
This was my favorite and I was excited to see the results. Here are the favorite muffins for each subject:
Harbaugh: 35% think that Harbaugh would say "Muffins are for fancy boys". 2nd was Meat flavored with 31%.
Dantonio: 51% said he would say "Eh muffin? Just feed me something bitter and stale and hard to swallow." Very telling indeed! TWSS
Astronauts: Most people said they would like Bran muffins. I don't know why, but Okay seems like a good choice. Poppyseed was a distant second. Astronauts like generic muffins. FACT.
6.) Do you want the Marsupial Monday Thread?
11% chose "Get off my lawn". I'm probably gonna pee on your lawn. 40% said some version of YES. Apparently there are 17 Mods and they said "Yes, we won't delete it". 3 said they would delete it. So it looks like 17 out of 20 Mods support Marsupial Monday. IT's HAPPENING! Thank you JustinGoBlue for suggesting it! 7 People just want me to stop it. I won't stop it. You stop it.
Sincerely your's in Harbaugh,
P.S. Rhonda Rhonda Jones
EDIT: Here is the SURVEY if you want to take a look, but remember I can't see the results anymore unless I fork over some cash to the corrupt survey people.
I wanted to break down my 2015 Big Ten Football Preview in a little bit more detail than what I was able to provide last week when I originally posted it.
To begin, I want explain the reasoning behind my KPI system. Every year we read several different takes from Guru’s around the country explain different stats and how they have an effect on perceived outcomes. What I did here was not any different. I did not do anything groundbreaking or revolutionary. My goal as a former player, current fan and “want to be guru” was to break down the Big Ten conference.
I will start this post by getting to the point. The below spreadsheet details the final results of my exercise as well as the categories I analyzed. I utilized a point system of 1, 3, 7 points for a category where a team ranked above Avg. in the Big Ten. Ohio State ranks the highest overall with a KPI Score of 363, followed by Michigan State at 319 and not really to my surprise is Michigan, who ranks third in the conference at 280 points. The West is led by Nebraska at 244, Minnesota at 229 and Iowa who scored a “fraudulent” 222. The big Surprise is Wisconsin at 204. They scored lower than Northwestern and Illinois.
So as an example of how to analyze why Wisconsin scored lower than Illinois, or Northwestern take a look at the numbers. Wisconsin scored a 7 in returning production defense while Northwestern scored a 21. Illinois Scored a 21 as well. If you also look at coaching, I have Northwestern scored as a 14 and Wisconsin at 0.
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As we dive into each category, I am going to write about the good, the bad and the ugly. When I began this exercise, I thought one of the key components to winning a championship of any kind relied heavily on experience. So I chose to analyze the returning starters.
The good: Purdue returns 16 starters in 2015. 2015 will be extremely important for Boilers head man Darrell Hazel, who knows that now is the time in West Lafayette to prove he deserves to stay. Purdue also returns a high % of returning JR, SR players on their projected two-deep roster. Michigan State leads this category overall with 13 returning starters who are all either a JR or Sr.
The bad: Iowa returns ten starters, and only 60% of those returning are JR or SR.
Third Down Offense
The Big Ten has some serious returning QB’s that could rival any in the country. The problem is that three of the Big Ten Best quarterbacks all play for Ohio State. Ohio State also returns all world running back and pre-season hype monster Ezekiel Elliot. Ok enough about the Buckeyes at least in this paragraph.
The good: Ohio State stands out big time. They Dominated 3rd down QBR in 2014 and return three quarterbacks that could start anywhere in the country. JT Barrett was the most efficient QB in the Big Ten in 2014 and may be a second stringer to start 2015.
The Bad: Northwestern and Rutgers need to replace last year’s starters. Rutgers has the benefit of a solid receiving core coming back including consensus all big WR Leonte Care. The bad would be Michigan if I did not add Jake Ruddock to the equation as well as Maryland with incoming transfer Dax Garmon.
Next up is third down defense. The crowd is roaring in the background, and you have to make a stop in third and a yard, oh know, it's play action over the top for a touchdown.
The Good: Michigan State dominated the Big Ten in 2014 with a defensive pass rating of 81. It will be interesting to see if they can hold firm after losing Trey Wayne's to the NFL. Michigan State returns 63% of their defensive production in 2015.
The Bad: Minnesota allowed a horrendous 147 pass defense rating in 2014, but they return 66% of their defensive production in 2015.
Special Teams, Returning Starters and Production
The conference returns 33 starters from 2014, and the conference will also return 12 kickers who started last year, or contributed to overall FG percentage.
The Good: Maryland returns projected all big Ten kicker Ben Craddock and the speedy Will Likely, who returns both kicks and punts.
The Ugly: Michigan has to answer questions at all of the key special team’s positions. But I see this stat as an illusion and believe that Michigan will improve because they now have a dedicated special team’s coach John Baxter. The one element I expect to see improvement immediately in will be blocking on kick returns. Michigan will need to win field position battles, and I believe this will be an area we see an instant impact and some explosive returns.
The Trenches Offense
Big Ten equals big Ugly lineman, who will tear the face off of a lion over a steak lying in the middle of a safari.
The Good: Michigan State and Ohio State are the obvious leaders, but Michigan shows up surprisingly at the top as well.
The Ugly: Penn State, who if they reached the red zone could not move the rock if their lives depended on it. With Hackenberg back and some experience out of the backfield from a year ago. The Nittany Lions have nowhere to go but up.
The Trenches Defense
Hail to the Victors!
The Good: Michigan, and there have been some rumblings from the inside that the defensive line will be the strength of this team. I completed this projected more than two weeks ago and have been working to get it posted correctly. When I finished this project, I had known for a fact before fall camp started that this was the key position. My question is how good can the linebackers be? Michigan will have great success against power running teams who go north and south, but we will need strong, disciplined linebacker play in 2015 to beat a team Like Ohio State who goes east, west, north, and south with speed. Michigan will dominate a Minnesota, and have a great shot at beating Michigan State at home this year because of their pro-style attack.
The Bad: Illinois needs to find a way to stop the big play. The Illini gave up over a 150 plays of 10-20 yards and allowed 22 red zone TD’s. If this does not change, Beckman will be out at Illinois.
Returning Offensive Production
One of the key elements I loved to analyze and could have taken so much further if it were not for having a family is returning production.
The Good: Ohio State and Penn State who return 88% of their 2014 offensive production.
The Bad: Iowa, Indiana, and Maryland all return just over 40% of their 2014 production.
Returning Defensive Production
The Big Ten as a whole returns 65% of its defensive production from 2014.
The Good: Indiana and Illinois, who desperately need to improve their pass defense both lead the conference in returning production. I believe this will not be enough for either team because of talent and depth. I do feel that Indiana and Kevin Wilson will make it through 2015. I don’t feel the same way for Beckman at Illinois.
The Bad: No one jumps out, which bodes well for the conference. I do see Wisconsin taking a few steps back this year, as in they will not be in the title game.
I did not do any earth shattering analysis for this category, but what I did find out is just how badly Darrell Hazell needs to win, and that Beckman may not make it the entire season.
The good: Urban, Dantonio, Kill, And Harbaugh.
The Bad: I ragged on Beckman enough.
Just like the coaches, I could have done more here. Did I mention I have a full-time job, and a family that I cook for after I work my full-time job and then find time to blog?
The Good: Michigan will be sold out every week at home.
The Bad: No way 41,000 people watch Illinois at home every week.
How my KPI's predict the big ten schedule to play itself out.
The Good: The East will be competitive amongst its top three teams. I performed this exercise so that I could find out what the gap is between Ohio State and everyone else. I found out that the gap is wide, but if a team like Michigan can answer its special teams questions, and Ruddock can prove to be as efficient as his numbers show, or Michigan can be more than just a run stopping defense and prove to be consistent at the second and third level of its defense, they could beat the Buckeyes, and the gap between Michigan State and Ohio state is not that wide at all. I think the top of the conference will be between these three teams at the end of it all.
The Bad: The West is in trouble when playing any team from the east other than Maryland. My KPI's say Maryland will go winless in Big Ten Play. I Believe that they win a few and finish 2-6 in conference and miss a bowl all together.
The final standings based on the exercise.
Greetings again, my fellow Wolverines! Last week, I was able to drop the first official wallpaper of the season in my vintage schedule wallpaper based on a schedule card from 1969. This week, I’m happy to bring you the wallpaper for our first opponent of the season, the Utah Utes.
In preparing to do this wallpaper, I did a good amount of research on the Ute people, for whom the team is named. The Ute people are also the namesake of the state of Utah, itself. The word “Ute,” in the native tongue of the Ute people, Shoshonean, means “land of the sun” or “ the high place.” The Ute people were a highly-artistic people, making all sorts of beaded jewelry for use in battle and for trade. The Ute were also some of the earliest adopters of the horse in America (reports state as early as 1580). They were fierce warriors and with the addition of horses, became excellent big game hunters, as well. They were also highly spiritual, and are credited as being the first documented (by approx. 200 years) peoples to make use of a process called “mechanoluminescence” in their ceremonies. It’s said that they would use clear quartz crystals inside of translucent buffalo hide rattles. When rattled, the friction and mechanical stress of the crystals impacting each other would create a light that would be visible through the hide rattles. They believed this was evidence that the spirits were being called to their ceremonies.
I had a lot of fun researching the Ute people and it reminded me of the excellent time I had when doing research for the CMU wallpaper. I loved learning about the Chippewa and the Ute were the same experience. That being said, I hope that we stomp them on the football field. Respect gained for their history or not, I want them crying in defeat.
The image I used for the wallpaper below is of an actual Ute Tipi (or Teepee) on file at the Library of Congress. I hope I did a job that is both respectful and artistically-sound. Let me know! As always, I appreciate constructive criticism and/or suggestions for future works. Have a wonderful day and GO BLUE!
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Smart and efficient QB play vs. the Utah defense will be the key to a Michigan victory at Utah on September 3rd. With Michigan in submarine mode, and the limited amount of info coming from camp we can only still assume who the starter at QB will be at Utah on September 3rd. My guess is that Rudock will be the Starter to open the season. Harbaugh needs his experience to help lead an offense that we extremely inefficient under the old regime and with Devin Gardner under center.
Below I performed another exercise. This time I compared the Utah Defense to Jake Rudock while he was at Iowa in 2014. I can do this with confidence because I know Harbaugh is light years far, and away better of a coach than what Rudock had at Iowa and Michigan has similar or more talented players at the skilled positions. If Michigan continues where they left off improving on the Offensive line in 2014, I will bet an arm he will improve, or put up exactly the same type of numbers as Michigan’s 20015 starters.
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Scroll Lower for the breakdown.
|QB 2014 entire year||TEAM||Pos||G||Att||Comp||Pct.||Yards||Yards/Att||TD||Int||Rating||Att/G||Yards/G|
|Utah Pass D 2014||Utah||13||450||267||59.3||3206||7.1||23||12||130.71||34.6||246.6|
|Ruddock vs. power 5 2014||Iowa||JR||10||252||149||59.1||1864||7.4||12||5||133||25.2||186.4|
|Utah Pass D VS power 5 2014||Utah||10||335||201||60||2499||7.5||17||11||132.84||33.5||249.9|
When comparing Rudock to last years Utah defense it is easy to see the difference a more efficient QB would have made in critical situations. Too often last season and against Utah, Michigan must avoid third and long. The run game will have to be effective on first and second down, and a mix of run and pass on first down will help keep Utah unbalanced on defense.
I analyzed the overall stats first and then compared the Utah pass D vs. what Rudock was able to do in 2014 at Iowa. Utah Gave up a lot of yards overall, but the key stat overall is their pass D rating. Efficiency and good decision making on the road will be the deciding factor as to whether Michigan will score points and not turnover the ball.
As I skip down to the next tab, I compared 3rd down and 7-9 yds to go. Rudock was efficient and careful. In fact, Rudock was number 6 in the Big Ten in this category, while Utah's D ranked 7th in the Pac 12. Utah ranked 98th nationally on 3rd a 7-9 yds to go on defense in 2014. Rudock was ranked 36th nationally on 3rd and 7-9 too. Rudock also takes care of the ball in this situation and Utah did not record a single Int during the 2014 season.
Rudock was solid in the 4th qtr last season. He led the Big Ten in this category as the most efficient QB. Rudock posted a 6-1 TD/int ratio in 2014. Devin Gardner, on the other hand, was severely inefficient and finished 10th in the Big Ten in this category. Michigan was in the game last year, but could not get anything going in the 4th qtr.
|4th qtr entire year 2014||Team||Yr||Pos||G||Att||Comp||Pct.||Yards||
The next element that will make a huge difference will be comparing the returning production of Utah, vs. that of Michigan's. Utah returns 76% of their defense in terms of who recorded at least one tackle. Utah returns five starters on defense, and each contributed significantly. The Utes return Jared Norris, who led the team in tackles in 2014. The Utes lost 18.5 sacks from last year from the graduating Nate Orchard, but Hunter Dimick returns this year after being second on the team with ten sacks. Utah is an aggressive defense that likes to blitz, but they give up the big play often. As you can see above they gave up 23 plays of 15 yards or more during the fourth qtr of all game in 2014. Utah was the second best defense in the Pac 12, but they gave up 393 yards per game. Utah would rank as the number 10 defense overall in the Big Ten in 2014. The more alarming stat for Utah will be that they gave up 3200 yards passing in 2014, that would be good for dead last in the Big Ten.
|Utah Defense||Solo Tackles 2014||solo tackles ret 2015||Sacks 2014||Sacks ret 2015||Int 2014||Int ret 2015||% ret tac 2015||% ret int 2015||% Sack Ret 2015||Projected starters returning 2015||2015 total returning production|
|Returning starters||Solo Tac||Sacks 2014||Int 2014||2014 starts|
Advanced Football Analytics puts together an interesting game summary, titled Game Scripts, for the NFL. Early last season I decided that I would put together these stats for the Big Ten, and here they are! (If this seems like an odd time to put together a summary of anything that happened in an actual football game last season, you’re not wrong. But it’s basically the last opportunity before there’s actual new football so… enjoy.)
What is a Game Script?
A Game Script (GS) is an average of the point differential for every second of a game. For example, if a team scores a field goal at the very end of the 1st quarter and that is the only score in the game (God save us from Big Ten football), the point differential was 0 for 900 seconds and +3 for the remaining 2700 seconds. The final point differential (Margin of Victory, or MoV) is +3 and the Game Script is +2.25.
Basically, gaining a lead early and maintaining it gives you a higher Game Script than keeping a game close and blowing it wide open at the end of the game.
Why is it useful?
Useful is perhaps too high a bar to clear, as Game Scripts have little predictive value for future games, but it's certainly interesting and descriptive. A comparison of the final point differentials and Game Scripts can, at a glance, show which teams pulled off big comeback victories (a positive margin of victory, but a negative game script, indicating the other team held the lead for much of the game), which teams dominated the whole game (high game script and high margin of victory), and which teams played tight games but pulled away at the end (a low game script, but a high margin of victory). If you’ve watched a particular game from beginning to end, it doesn’t help much, but it does provide a good summary for games you weren’t able to watch in full.
I should be more clear when I say Game Scripts have little predictive value. Game Scripts correlate very strongly (~.94) with the final Margin of Victory for the same game - this should not be surprising, as both rely directly on points scored, i.e. you establish a lead, you maintain a lead, you tend to finish the game with a similar lead.
Average Game Scripts for the season correlate weakly with your results for the next game (~.28), and only slightly stronger than the correlation for average Margin of Victory for the season to your results for your next game (~.26). Sample size issues abound here, as we're looking at a single season and a stat that is only recorded once per game.
How’d Michigan do in this stat?
Rather dismally, I’m afraid, which is why instead of a mid-season project with weekly updates, this turned into an offseason summary project. As you are no doubt aware, last season Michigan lost regularly and emphatically. The good news is that Game Scripts offer plenty of schadenfreude to go around!
Game Scripts for all 2014 Big Ten Teams (In- and Out-of-Conference Games)
Which teams won in the most dominant fashion in the Big Ten this year (defined as biggest average Game Scripts in wins)?
MSU and OSU are the clear leaders in this category, with MSU averaging a 16.5 point lead in all of their wins (which includes a big late comeback against Baylor dragging their average down) and OSU averaging a 13.8 point lead in all of their wins. As we knew, they both had impressive seasons (certainly their last or close to last, right guys? Because Harbaugh?).
Some surprising teams are featured in the next echelon of this category, with Indiana, Minnesota, Michigan, Nebraska, Northwestern, Wisconsin, Purdue, Maryland, and Rutgers all averaging between one and two touchdowns in their victories. This is where strength of schedule (i.e. wins over cupcakes) and sample size (Indiana has a big game script in their wins… of which they had three) make a big difference. Michigan, for example, averaged a lead of 10.1 points in our wins, but that is anchored mainly by big wins over App State, Miami of Ohio, and Indiana. Similarly, Indiana won big over Indiana State and UNT, and squeaked by Mizzou with a 4-point victory. On the other hand, Wisconsin was just plain dominant in most of their victories this year, with the lone exceptions being their 2-point win over Iowa and their 3-point win over Auburn.
The last category has some of the teams you’d expect, with Rutgers, Illinois, Iowa, and Penn State all averaging a less-than-one-touchdown lead in their wins. Illinois deserves its own what’s-the-room-below-the-basement category, as its average lead in its five wins was a rather terrible 2.7 points.
This year’s biggest comeback wins (defined as largest negative Game Script in a victory)
MSU had the biggest comeback of the year against Baylor, with an average point differential of -7.8 for the game, and a 1-point final margin of victory. The next five closest were
- Rutgers over Maryland (GS: -6.7, MoV: 3)
- Minnesota over Nebraska (GS: -5.2, MoV: 4)
- The thoroughly embarrassing Iowa over Ball St (GS: -5, MoV: 4)
- PSU over Rutgers (GS: -4.6, MoV: 4)
- The absolutely glorious Northwestern over Notre Dame (G: -4.3, MoV: 3).
Michigan’s lack of any significant games in this category fits the narrative of the 2014 season – a lack of hope that this team could win a game once it fell behind. The lone comeback for Michigan on the season was against PSU, with a Game Script of -0.6 and a final margin of 5.
This year’s biggest comeback losses (defined as largest positive Game Script in a loss)
Wisconsin choking away its lead over LSU takes the cake in this category, with a Game Script of 5.9 and a final margin of -4. Not surprisingly, this category also features a few teams that were on the opposite end of the games mentioned in the section above – Nebraska, Rutgers, and Maryland were on the less glamorous end of those big comebacks. A miserable loss we wouldn’t want to overlook, however, is Iowa’s three point loss to ISU, with a Game Script of 4.1. Michigan’s only comeback loss was to Maryland, with a final margin of -7 and a Game Script of 1.2.
The depressing loss you knew you should have turned off in the 1st half but probably didn’t (defined as largest negative Game Script in a loss)
While Michigan’s embarrassing loss at Notre Dame was certainly its worst loss in this category, the good news is that that game doesn’t even make the top ten most depressing loss by a Big Ten team! Wisconsin leads off this category with its 59-0 loss to OSU in the BTCG, featuring a Game Script of -31.8. Other OSU wins (over Illinois and Rutgers) round out the top three. Wisconsin is the only team to both deliver and sustain a top-ten loss in this category (Maryland’s 45 point loss to Wiscy, with a game script of -25.3, comes in fourth on this list).
The dominant victory that made you feel all warm and fuzzy about the future of your team (defined as largest positive Game Script in a win)
Cupcakes fill out the majority of this category, with OSU’s win over Kent St (GS: 40.2, MoV: 66), MSU’s win over EMU (GS: 38.4, MoV: 59), and Wisconsin’s win over BGSU (GS: 29, MoV: 51) all placing in the top five. Michigan’s win over App State qualifies with a Game Script of 24.9, but falls outside the top ten.
Which games were closer than they seemed? (Game Script between -3 and 3, with a two-score win or loss)
Only seven games fell into this category:
- Illinois vs Purdue (GS: 2.5, MoV: 11)
- Northwestern vs Nebraska (GS: 2.1, MoV: 21)
- OSU @ Navy (GS: 2, MoV: 17)
- Illinois vs YSU (GS: 1.6, MoV: 11)
- Minnesota vs Mizzou (GS: -0.8, MoV: -16)
- Wisconsin vs Minnesota (GS: -2.7, MoV: 10)
- Purdue vs Iowa (GS: 0.6, MoV: 14)
I think OSU @ Navy and Minn vs Mizzou are the most interesting games from this category – the first because it shows OSU as a bit more fallible than they looked in the final score, and the second because the eventual SEC East Champion almost lost to two Big Ten teams that weren’t particularly close to the top of their divisions.
What does it all mean?
In perhaps the most obvious conclusion ever made in the history of sports analysis, scoring more points early (and throughout the game) is better and leads to more winning. Allowing your oppononent to score more points than you do in the later parts of games occasionally leads to unexpected losses. Quote me as frequently as you wish, and send all royalties to me by check via USPS.
Beyond that, I think you can argue that MSU had the more dominant season than OSU, given how close the GS was for their game, and the number of OSU games that featured low GS but high MoV (Navy, MSU, Indiana, Michigan, Alabama). Whether that's good news or bad news is up to you.
Happy to hear your comments and feedback on this analysis! In particular, I’d love to hear:
- How awesome you think this is;
- Suggestions on how to incorporate pass/run ratios into some of the above analysis;
- Suggestions on visual representations of the analysis;
- New categories to include in future versions;
- How to figure out those lightboxes for my image links...
I’m planning on continuing this in the 2015 season, and perhaps even providing weekly updates. If you’re interested, you can view the full Game Scripts data for the 2014 Big Ten season here. And of course, I urge you to check out the Advanced Football Analytics site (recently acquired by ESPN), which does all sorts of awesome analysis of NFL games.