I spoke to the ticket office today and they said that the renewal deadline for everyone was extended until tomorrow... so the 8% number might be coming down a few bps.
Familiar music. Michigan replay promo, 1983.
Via Wolverine Historian, of course. Also: the 1983 Washington State game.
JMFJ. Jack Johnson is a fascinating NHL player, because stats hate him. There's a thing called Corsi that is basically a shot attempt ratio* while you're on the ice that the hockey advanced stats guys like because it takes the randomness of goaltending out of the equation. Jack Johnson has been anomalously poor in this department. He's bad at Corsi. Very, very bad. It's to the point that a Google search for "Jack Johnson corsi" results in various bloggers calling him the worst player in the NHL:
Despite this, Johnson has been a heavy-minutes workhorse for the Blue Jackets since his arrival, leading the team in ice time for two and a half years now. The Jackets made the playoffs with a +15 goal differential with Johnson as their undisputed #1 D, thus spurring the flurry of articles that caused me to muse on Jack Johnson and Corsi. Por ejemplo:
"Jack has been very good down the stretch and these first three games," Richards said. "He plays like a man on the ice. He can log the big minutes. He played close to 40 minutes in the OT game in Game 2. And they're big, tough minutes. It's the opposition. He's playing against Crosby or Malkin most of the night. Penalty kill, he's one of the first guys over the boards and he plays power play."
ESPN also praises him:
"I would just say [he's a] machine. He's a different bird, man. On and off the ice, he's just a thoroughbred and he's always in the gym," Columbus forward Cam Atkinson told ESPN.com Tuesday. "You can tell he's elevated his game tremendously in this playoff series and he's been one of our best players, if not our best player. It's great to see and hopefully he can keep playing the way he's been playing."
This has no doubt set Corsi-fiends on edge, which is a lot like David Berri holding up whatever metric he's regressed into his butt and declaring subject matter experts to be idiots. You'd think something as rough as relative shot attempts would bring with it the humility to look at why a player with a bad Corsi might still be good at hockey.
#CBJ with Jack Johnson on ice Corsi: -11 (2-13) with Johnson off ice Corsi: +7 (20-13) But, he does have a goal.
— Scott Cullen (@tsnscottcullen) April 22, 2014
*[It's shots on goal + missed shots + blocked shots for and against, expressed as a percentage. So a 50% Corsi means you're even and a 45% is pretty terrible.]
They may know what they're doing. Kam Chatman sees a significant ratings bump from another service, as Rivals flings him up the board to #25, one spot away from five-star status. Measuring in at 6'8" at that camo Jordan thing is kind of a big deal to these gents. All around him are coulda-beens, though: #22 James Blackmon, #26 Keita Bates-Diop, #29 Devin Booker.
On the other hand, DJ Wilson cracks the top 100 at #86 and grabs a fourth star, which isn't bad for a guy who seemed like the consolation prize's consolation prize when he committed over offers from Columbia and Gonzaga. They may know what they're doing, these guys.
Also they may acquire this other guy. It seems like Michigan's interest in Nevada transfer Cole Huff is genuine:
Huff met with Michigan assistant coach LaVall Jordan on Tuesday in Reno, Nev., and is now waiting for some scholarship dominoes to fall.
"The meeting was good," Huff told MLive. "It was nice of him to come out here and we had a good conversation. He talked about the opportunities they can offer, but really, when it comes to Michigan, you don't need a coach to talk to you too much because of all that tradition. It was just an added bonus to have coach Jordan come out here and give me the specifics."
Those specifics are: Michigan is waiting on Aubrey Dawkins, who has an offer and is following through on a promised visit to Dayton this weekend. If Dawkins takes the Michigan offer, they are out of room unless Mitch McGary declares for the draft. Yes, even though Austin Hatch etc., etc.
If Michigan does have room it doesn't sound like the "I want to play small forward" thing is going to be much of a barrier:
"It was more about how I was being used (in the system)," Huff said of his decision to transfer. "Nevada did a great job using me as a pick-and-pop player and putting me down low with my back to the basket, but that's not all of who I am. I think I can be used for more than that.”
Huff won't have to worry about playing with his back to the basket in Ann Arbor. Posting up is a foreign concept in a Beilein offense. Michigan has a couple of connections with Huff, one a team manager, the other his AAU coach, and it sounds like there is strong mutual interest. Huff would have to sit out next year and then would have two to play; as a 6'8" guy who hit 40% from three he is filed under DO WANT.
Huff won't have to wait long, as McGary will be in or out of the draft by the end of Sunday and it sounds like Dawkins is not going to extend the process much longer than it takes to visit Dayton. Via Sam Webb($):
"I knew I wasn’t going to commit on the visit. I already have a visit to Dayton (set up), so I knew that was going to happen too. I knew I wasn’t going to commit on the visit. I wanted to come back and talk to (my parents) and see what they thought and things like that.”
The rest of that article makes it sound like he wants to jump on the Michigan offer but has to fulfill a promise made to Dayton; that's just my speculation.
Schofield will be a middle-round selection. [Fuller]
Draft status (DON'T PANIC, NFL). Mel Kiper is bullish on Taylor Lewan, saying he could go as high as #2 overall and projecting him sixth to the Falcons. A couple of other grads are in line to get picked as well:
"Gallon ran better than I thought he would (at the combine), he made a lot of clutch catches, does a lot after the catch as a slot guy, to me he's worth a fifth round-type pick," Kiper said. "Schofield was a little underrated. He was solid pretty much all year at tackle, he could be a third- or fourth-round pick."
I'm happy that Schofield is going to get picked as he had a solid year that may have gotten overlooked what with the chaos around him. It's nice when the UFR process seems accurate about a player who doesn't have stats.
I'm less happy that Michigan had two NFL-worthy tackles last year and still looked like that, and is now trying to not look like that without them.
Ticket details. Take it FWIW, but an MGoUser asked the department how sales were going and got a number in response:
After I renewed my season tickets this year I contacted the Athletic Development Office and specifically asked what the renewal rates were compared to last year. Whether or not you view it as half full or half empty, the 8% difference from a year ago is down about 8,792 seats. Then there was the student renewal discussion which amounted to about another 1,200 - 1,500 seat renewal drop off. I know some of these will be picked up by new buyers but, I doubt they all go to new buyers. I think we will see the return of the ticket packs. Losing roughly 10,000 fans at the Big House is going to be very noticeable unless the AD gets creative. Having said that, I still think we see a sellout for most every game. I am hoping it is not as bad as it sounds.
An eight percent drop in one year is huge. How many will come back next year when the schedule has some actual attractions on it? This realignment went as poorly as possible for 1000 S. State Street.
Union vote tomorrow. Northwestern still telling their kids that a union will get them fired and strangle their grandma.
“Understand that by voting to have a union, you would be transferring your trust from those you know — me, your coaches and the administrators here — to what you don’t know — a third party who may or may not have the team’s best interests in mind,” Fitzgerald wrote to the team in an email.
"If you have a union that is comprised of you, you may not have your best interests in mind." That's some 1984 business up in there. I mean:
Players have heard warnings that the formation of a union would make it harder for them to land jobs after graduation; that Fitzgerald might leave; that alumni donations would dry up; that Northwestern’s planned $225 million athletic center could be scrapped.
All because the players want to negotiate about medical benefits and likeness rights. Andy Staples lays out a case that even if Northwestern's current players vote a union down, it doesn't really matter:
Also, if athletes are employees, some team at a private school somewhere will eventually vote to unionize. Not all coaches are as beloved as Fitzgerald. Not all schools treat their athletes as well as Northwestern does. Because of numbers, the chances are much greater that it will be a men's basketball team instead of a football team. On a basketball team, only seven of 13 scholarship players would have to agree to form a union. A galvanizing event such as the firing of a popular coach or the hiring of an unpopular one could easily tip the scales in favor of a union.
What matters is the NLRB's decision on appeal.
Etc.: Private Joe Paterno statue planned for downtown State College. Anyone want to see Spencer Hall vomit? AAAAAAAARGH. MLB cam is fascinating, vertigo-inducing. Talking with MAAR. How MAAR got to Michigan.
I spoke to the ticket office today and they said that the renewal deadline for everyone was extended until tomorrow... so the 8% number might be coming down a few bps.
Even if it is 5-6% it is stunning... and telling. And it's not a schedule thing - if ABC fan is excited about the program but sees it is 1 year of junk schedule they have to wait out until 2015 they are not giving up season tickets.
I love Sabermetrics in baseball. Not in hockey.
Corsi is almost exclusively used by people trying to prove a player's worth without watching the games, or bloggers trying to justify why a bad player is good despite watching for 5 minutes and knowing said player is really bad.
I don't put myself forward as any kind of hockey expert, but aren't some defensive schemes set up to yield more shots, but less high quality chances?
As a Rangers fan, I don't give a damn if they fling 40 shots at the goaltender, if none of these are quality chances (this is a sort of a Rangers tradition).
I know that certain power play defensive schemes are set up to allow crappy shots, but to cut down on these quality chances.
I would imagine the blocked shots component is an attempt to incorporate the concept that some defenses allow for these low quality SOG (these are more likely to be blocked), but that seems like a weak attempt at a salve, not a solution.
Quality chances are probably too subjective to work seamlessly into a metric (although they certainly track them), but they seem to be a closer approximation of what a defense is really doing out there.
In transition you can allow shots from the halfboards as long as the goalie isn't redirecting the puck at a forward driving the net. Those shots aren't going in.
In the defensive zone, you never want to allow shots on net. It doesn't matter where the shot comes from, if there's traffic in front a puck can go in from anywhere.
Mason's MSU teams are one of the few examples of a team who allowed 50 shots on goal as part of their gameplan. The Spartans were comfortable going into a 1-4 forecheck and keeping everything routine for Ryan Miller. In today's game, that won't work.
Things in front of the net look markedly more messy to me in college than they do in the NHL.
Part of that, I would think is the strength difference between the two leagues - it seems much harder for a forward to dominate in front of the other team's net in the NHL.
Obviously, I've seen exceptions to this in the NHL, but teams seem to keep it pretty clean in front of their net, for the most part.
The major thing that gets lost in something like this is, as you pointed out, the system they play in. Its entirely possible that Jack Johnson has a very specific role that he plays in front of Sergei Bob and the combination of that role and Bob lead to a situation which makes it extremely unlikely for another team to score. So who is preventing goals in that situation? Bob or JJ?
Even my, terrible, roller hockey team employs this strategy. We have a pretty good goalie who stops everything he can see from the outside. If guys get in close and cut to the net its a goal a goal. If we force the opposing forwards to the boards and push them in deep to shoot our goalie stops it and freezes the puck.
As a result of the above our defensemen never try to play the puck. Its always force the man outside and clear the rebound to our forward or try to win a faceoff. This means we are always outshot in games but I will trade 10 of those chances to get one that turns in a lead pass for a breakaway.
I can't read anything from Pat Fitzgerald without seeing this in my mind:
It does take a certain level of delusion to tell people they shouldn't trust one third party but to trust another simply because one of those units USED to make money off you while this new unit MAY make money off of you.
As for Corsi, I thought it was an offshoot of Cosi cafes, so that's about as much stock as I have ever put in it.
As for the tackle situation, yeah it's going to suck. One silver lining, though, is that while Lewan and Schofield are pretty good, the interior of that line was so terrible that it didn't matter. The variance was so great, maybe a more mediocre overall talent level, but at least one with less deviation, will give this team a chance to run the ball semi-effectively. Consider how average lines like OSU's and MSU's (in terms of expectations/rankings coming in) were last year but how they were at least consistent and that made all of them effective.
I think you may be misreading what Fitzgerald said.
He is telling them that they are fundimentally deciding between a known (him as well as the current administration) and an unknown. And I think it is not too unreasonable to think that not all members of unions are always thrilled with the decisions made by their unions.
That seems a pretty reasonable argument to me- at least, I can see rational people coming down on one side or another without being delusional.
>> He is telling them that they are fundimentally deciding between a known (him as well as the current administration) and an unknown.
I agree ... I think that's his argument. It's reasonable, but not necessarily compelling.
There's an unspoken time element present on both side of that equation. The known (him) may or may not be there in the future; the unknown (the union leadership) may or may not develop into good stewards of the players' interests.
Time always enters into these things, which is why I scratch my head at those who say this is only about medical benefits and not about getting paid. That may be true ... for now.
I realize slippery-slope arguments are not always good. But that's not to say they are always bad. There are plenty of cases where the initial stated goal of some organization creeps over time to include many other things. In fact, nearly all institutional bureaucracies (a loose term meant to encompass any bureaucracy, public or private, that becomes large enough to dictate the terms of its existence) change over time to become more about self preservation and expansion of power than about original mission or representing constituency.
We'll see what happens with this Northwestern union vote. It will be interesting.
As I have said before, unionising might benefit future Northwestern players but it will be bad for those currently on the roster. Either way, if I was Fitz I would get out of there. You don't want to be around the epicentre of this change.
Jack Johnson: Mechanical bird-horse.
As a hockey player, I agree that Corsi is dumb. While fielding-independent-pitching makes some sense, trying to remove goaltenders does not. Goalies aren't pitchers, they play every minute and it's one of two guys all year. Defensemen will play differently depending on their goalie. Unlike some other sports, I think hockey's "normal" stats do a pretty good job and even those are already situational. Plus/Minus is the example that comes to mind. PK-ers aren't punished for being on the ice during a goal if they're shorthanded.
Best quick way to see if a hockey player is good? Check his minutes played. Hockey coaches have less control than coaches in any other sport. They can give team philosophy, develop some large-scale schemes and that's it. They don't call plays, tons of time outs, or anything that football and basketball coaches do. They trust their players to play well. And (besides goalies) their best only play at most about 1/2 the game.
tl;dr - JMFJ is good at hockey.
+/- is a pretty awful stat unless the number is really dramatic. But yeah, Corsi doesn't really impress me all that much, as it treats an attempt from an 80 degree angle along the boards the same as a shot from the slot six feet out.
a bounce here-or-there could wreck short term +/-, but I think season long it's a decent stat - especially when viewed in combination with minutes played, team record, etc.
The "Jack Johnson is overrated because, look at his Corsi score" argument reminds me of the old pseudoscientific argument about bumblebees being "technically" unable to fly. Johnson's bad Corsi? Yeah, I see it. Did you see THIS? Have you seen him play much at all?
Sometimes when watching boxing with my sons, I tell them the easiest way to tell who won a round is by asking yourself "which fighter would I rather be based solely on that round?". Similarly, one way to analyze whether JMFJ is a good defenseman is to ask "would I want to have him on my team or the opposition's in a hard-fought game?". For my money, I'd like to have JMFJ on my team.
You guys are out of your collective minds. Corsi, like other more modern forms of metric measuring, should be reviewed closely when determining the relative merits of a players worth. In my sport, for example, certain members of the media and other so-called "experts" cling to the antiquated notion that things like hits, batting average, runs batted in and home runs still somehow matter when any progressive thinker knows those are just silly relics of the past.
Don't believe your lying eyes folts. Jack Johnson sucks - just like Miguel Cabrerra did last year when he somehow stole the MVP trophy from me. And I have the stats to prove it.
If you're make a fake stupid argument against a strawman that just highlights how you don't know what you're talking about, you could at least get the year right when there was the big debate
Jesus man you related to Corsi or something?
The point I was making was simply the concept that the metrics sports have used for eons are somehow less valid than these new, improved metrics is silly IMO. As stated above - look at ice time if you want to know how good the players coach thinks he is.
No I think it's a good debate to have, and there's merits to both sides. What's not useful though is using strawmen
Literally no one thinks Miguel Cabrera sucks at baseball. He's easily one of the three best human beings on the planet at the sport right now, and there are guys in the Hall of Fame who would kill to have offensive seasons on their resume as good as Cabrera's 2012-13 numbers.
Those facts don't preclude Mike Trout from being better than him.
Batting average actually doesn't mean that much, OBP is much more revealing stat on what you really need to measure (what is the percent chance that a guy gets on base/HR during any given at bat). RBIs also are more a funciton of opportunity than a particular measure of hitter skills. If you put Miggy on the Astros, he'd probably have less RBIs, even perfroming the same amount.
I'm not arguing that hockey stat is valid because baseball is really the only mainly individual sport on offense, whereas hockey is very much a team game. However, you have to fairly represent your opponents arguments (Also Mike Trout is a better baseball player than Miguel Carbrera and if Cabrera played for the Twins or A's, everyone here would recognize that fact).
Am I the only one who sees the irony in people on MGoBlog (famous for charting anything and everything), shitting on Corsi and advanced stats just because a Michigan player has not so good numbers.
Don't get me wrong, hockey's advanced stats aren't perfect, but they're not this god-awful thing either.
There's no nuance in Corsi, that's the problem with it. Baseball is easy to advance stat, because it's all about individual matchups. Brian charts everything and justifies it. If UFR was Corsi, a two yard run would get the same +s as an 80 yard TD.
Alternately, any of the times the Wings were upset in the first round, their Corsi numbers would have indicated they utterly dominated the series. Despite being swept. And the reason is that they had a billion shot attemps, but few quality scoring chances.
We love our stats around here, except for when we don't.
But the problem with people saying that "Johnson's Corsi score proves that Jack Johnson sucks" is that there is plenty of tangible evidence that Jack Johnson doesn't suck and is in fact good at hockey. Johnson's performance underscores the imperfection of hockey's advanced stats, that's all. (Just as relying solely on ERA or Batting Average is a wonky way to value a baseball player's true value.)
I think hockey's advanced stats are still developing, and all Brian is doing is pointing out that Corsi is not the dispositive measure some are making it out to be. That doesn't mean that Corsi has no value.
Exactly. Mine was more or less for the first few comments, which are basically "Advanced stats in hockey are worthless and if you use them you're a nerd who can't skate".
are you saying that because people like to take a statistical approach to understanding sports that this translates into a monolithic approval for all attempts at statistically representing reality???
If a new stat is a piece of garbage, it's a piece of garbage. Some metrics are useful, other metrics are just some guy's bad idea.
And as I lay out in my post above, which discusses the difference between SOG and quality chances (which others seem to also be driving at), this Corsi stat seems deeply flawed.
The person who likes statistics should be first in line when it comes to casting a critical eye on their use.
A- Corsi isn't new. It's been around for quite for quite a few years now.
B- You can talk about quality chances vs flinging the puck on net 40 times a game and say Corsi is useless, but the numbers don't back you up. Majority of the time, the more shots you have, ie the more you ppssess the puck, the more likely you are too win. There's always outliers, but more often than not, they're a useful metric (see the 2013 and 2014 Maple Leafs).
Also, you should take a look at the graphs here:http://www.habseyesontheprize.com/2013/4/4/4178716/why-possession-matters-a-visual-guide-to-fenwick
I agree that possession is a good indicator of who will win a hockey game, though obviously it is still possible to have a huge margin of possession and still lose on the fluke goal. But even so I think JMFJ having a negative corsi rating while on the ice isnt just about him, since its a team stat from my understanding. If hes playing as the 1st Dman, he would match up more against the opponents top lines. Since the forwards he plays with, on the blue jackets at least, arent really anything special it makes sense that while he is on the ice more shots would be surrendered. Maybe once he is off the ice the difference between the 2nd/3rd/4th lines are more in CBJs favor and so they have the edge in shots. Maybe his teammates are more likely to turnover the puck against top lines and give up those shot chances. I havent watched any CBJ games this season besides the ones against the wings and pens in the playoffs so I have no idea about how they have performed through the season.
The leafs example to me is of a team that has some quality snipers like kessel and so they are able to "luck out" and still win some game despite not controllingthe puck and the game. This also leads to the spectacular collapses the leafs have undergone in the playoffs last year and at the end of the season this year.
I think you're spot on, and that's one of the problems with trying to use Corsi as an end all be all stat for players. It's more useful as a team stat
B) you just mashed together puck possession and shots on goal.
Because they're essentially the same. You can't shoot the puck unless you possess the puck
I'm sure they have a relationship, but are they similar enough that they can be used interchangeably as you seem to want to? Do you have stats on this?
If Corsi is questionable already, due to the team nature of SOG - I mean, at minimum, it doesn't seem to take into any account the other defender you're paired with - and there is a tangible difference between those two metrics, "essentially" the same isn't really good enough.
Yes, apparently. If Corsi told me that Listrom was a terrible defenseman (I have no idea of his Corsi), it would not suddenly shift my opinion of Lidstrom, it would make me believe that Corsi (not Lids) sucks because (i) my eyes do not lie that well, and (ii) there is a ton of evidence to the contrary.
This is just a watered down version.
i can't be the only one hoping that abdur-rahkman turns out to be a badass just so we can refer to him as MAMFAR
Be careful what you ask for, for you may surely get it.
And if you do get it, well, welcome to the real world, gentlemen.
Hockey players see JMFJ coming at them and think, "#$%^, I'd better shoot now before he kills me".
I agree (sort of) that different systems can try to allow more shots but actually go and read some of those articles. Johnson has played on multiple teams with multiple coaches (who presumably all don't have the same style), has worse relative corsi (his teammates have better corsi, and presumably the same system), generally faces easier competition than his teammates (which makes the above more damning) and has often had the favorable zone starts (harder to have a shot against if you are in the other teams zone).
All of the people saying poor Jack is misjudged tend to say he is good because my opinion is that he is good.
So, why is a defenseman who gives up a ton of shots (relatively speaking) still so good at hockey? Anyone?
I like the idea of Corsi, but the flaw is that right now it's too broad.
The way it's measured is by what happens when you're on the ice, not by what specifically happens to you. It's the same reason +/- is in most cases a pointless stat.
For example: I'm on the wing on an offensive zone draw. My center loses the faceoff, they breakout, get a puck on net and my goalie freezes. My Corsi line for that shift is terrible and I didn't do anything.
Is Kyle Quincey better than DeKeyser? Torey Krug better than Chara? To anyone who has watched a game the answer is no. Corsi says yes.
But what you're talking about is one shift. Over the course of a whole game or whole season, those things even out. And your argument only holds if the same set of five players are out at exactly the same time every time. This is simply not the case. It's not a perfect measure by any means but when combined with other stats like competition quality and zone starts, starts to paint a broader picture.
Check out this article. Notice anything about JJ's column?
I'm wondering whether Brian bothered to read that top listed article on google about Jack Johnson.
That coppernblue article is pretty whithering and encompassing in its critique of his style of play and the shortcomings in his game. It talks less about Corsi than Brian does.
And then Brian fires back with some positively Tebow quotes. Brian doesn't take Corsi as evidence that he isn't very good, but he takes quotes from his coach saying he "plays like a man" and his teammate calling him a "thoroughbred" as evidence that he is good?
Gotta say, Brian, I think you would be mocking yourself if your argument was fed back to you in any other context.
Yep it is certainly a thorough critique.
He works hard <> he is good at hockey. I think everyone is being blinded here by their collective love of Johnson.
In fact I'd throw Brians question back at him. Is it possible that someone a coach or casual fan thinks is good at hockey is actually not?