Author Archives: Matt Scharboneau

Madness Explained: A Comprehensive Overview of Why Teams Make the Division I Men’s Basketball Final Four (2018 Update)

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Bryan Fuller / MGoBlog

HOW’D WE DO LAST YEAR?

Not bad, actually. Two of our criteria picks (Gonzaga, North Carolina) made the Final Four, and a third, Oregon, had only 0.5 criteria DQs. South Carolina, the token sleeper, only had 2 criteria DQs. Following the criteria to a tee also got us 28 out of 32 first round games correct and the biggest upset, seed-wise, of the 2nd round, 8-seed Wisconsin over 1-seed Villanova.

It was not perfect – it was also not meant to be. Onward and upward.

WHAT DOES ALL THIS MEAN?

NOTE: This study was originally published in March of 2017. The bulk of its contents have been left mostly intact, with one new addition to the criteria and all of the pertinent team information updated. This is all a long way of saying: if you feel like you’ve read this before, you probably have.

First and foremost, the only teams listed in this study are teams that made the Final Four (the champions are in bolded text in the spreadsheet). The figures of “Efficiency Margin” (EM), “Adjusted Offensive Efficiency (AdjOE)”, “Adjusted Defensive Efficiency” (AdjDE), “Luck”, “Adjusted Tempo (AdjTempo)” and “3PA/FGA” are all pulled from the database of Ken Pomeroy. Here are links both to his website and to an explanation of what the aforementioned statistics measure:

Ken is a preeminent mind in the field of basketball analytics and has created tempo-free and opponent quality-adjusted formulas that measure team quality in Division I Men’s Basketball. Unless otherwise stated, the teams in this particular study range from 2002-2016 exclusively because those are the only years in his database. All of the data used (except for Luck and 3PA/FGA, which were unavailable) was recorded pre-NCAA tournament and thus provides a valid analog to the numbers we will use in March to fill out our brackets.

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Madness Explained: A Comprehensive Overview of Why Teams Make the Division I Men’s Basketball Final Four

8583897140_dfe6223e09_z

Bryan Fuller / MGoBlog

WHAT DOES ALL THIS MEAN?

NOTE: THIS STUDY IS ACCOMPANIED BY AN EXCEL SPREADSHEET LISTING ALL FINAL FOUR TEAMS FROM 2002-2016.

First and foremost, the only teams listed in this study and its accompanying spreadsheet are teams that made the Final Four (the champions are in bolded text in the spreadsheet). The figures of “Efficiency Margin” (EM), “Adjusted Offensive Efficiency (AdjOE)”, “Adjusted Defensive Efficiency” (AdjDE), “Luck”, “Adjusted Tempo (AdjTempo)” and “3PA/FGA” are all pulled from the database of Ken Pomeroy. Here are links both to his website and to an explanation of what the aforementioned statistics measure:

Ken is a preeminent mind in the field of basketball analytics and has created tempo-free and opponent quality-adjusted formulas that measure team quality in Division I Men’s Basketball. Unless otherwise stated, the teams in this particular study range from 2002-2016 exclusively because those are the only years in his database. All of the data used (except for Luck and 3PA/FGA, which were unavailable) was recorded pre-NCAA tournament and thus provides a valid analog to the numbers we will use in March to fill out our brackets.

Continue reading