Sunday, April 7, 2013

"Fred is good for one extra win in the NCAA's"

While not "technically" true, I still stand by the spirit of this statement.  The idea is, some coaches always seem to be winning more games than they should in the tournament, and some coaches always seem to be bowing out early.  A couple years back, I found a table that highlighted this using a metric called PASE - performance against seed expectations.  You can find an explanation of it here.

Each seed has a historical average number of wins.  ISU has been a nine seed and a ten seed the last two years.  This means they should have won .56+.65 = 1.21 games between the two years.  Iowa State, of course, won one game each of the past two tournaments.  This is a total PASE of 2-1.21 = .79 or .395 extra wins per year.  Not a whole game more like I had stated.  But read this quote from the above article:
Generally speaking, a PASE above +.250 shows solid overachievement. A PASE of +.500 represents major over-performance. 
So Fred is easily in the overachievement category.  He certainly isn't the best coach out there.  This chart comes from

The coaches you think are good are backed up by this metric.  I referenced Tom Izzo in my previous post and he's second behind Brad Stevens, who has made two improbable runs to the Final Four with Butler.  So Fred might not be in the top five, but this metric isn't always positive.  If one team is overachieving, another is under achieving.  From the cbssports article:
 DePaul coach Oliver Purnell owns the worst PASE (-.818), followed by Colorado State coach Larry Eustachy (-.665), Pitt coach Jamie Dixon (-.567), Creighton's Dana Altman (-.515) and Clemson's Brad Brownell (-.446).
My feelings on Jamie Dixon are justified!  It's tough seeing Larry on that list.  His PACE was obviously hurt in 2001.

And finally, another chart in the above article was very interesting.

These are the top 10 attributes that contribute to a positive PASE.
- ISU isn't outscoring people by 15 (2013 margin of 8.4).  BUT, I've said recently, you need to score points to win, and winning games 50-45 doesn't leave you a lot of margin for error in the tournament.
- Fred hasn't been to the elite eight, but I believe when he gets ISU to the second weekend, they'll win to make the Elite Eight.
- Turnovers they were basically +/-0.0 / game.  I'd like to explain this away with pace but the opponents have just as many possessions a game as the Cyclones.
- ISU shot 73.1%, fitting this criteria.
- Iowa State's starters scored 72.4% of the points this year, in large part thanks to Tyrus scoring 13 a game. And it's another reason why I think Fred will keep someone in this role again next year, either SDW or Bluford.  Keeping the scoring going when the second units are in really keeps the pressure on.
- Royce was an All-American last year, but I don't envision that being an every year occurrence.
- Even if you include Will's scoring as a forward, ISU doesn't meet this criteria.  And I don't know that they ever will, but look at next year's squad, with the only scoring returning being Niang and Ejim in the frontcourt.
- ISU *only* outrebounded its opponents by 4.6 a game, but like most of the stats, got better during the conference part of the schedule.
- ISU was senior heavy this year, but Fred hadn't been through a full recruiting cycle yet.  Even if SDW didn't redshirt, he wouldn't have started over any of these guys.  Next year, I think we'll see two freshman, one sophomore, one junior and one senior start next year.  Now, I don't think Fred looks at these types of numbers, but I believe we'll see at least one freshman start every year from here on out.
- ISU has a looooong way to get to a defensive efficiency less than 90.  At first glance, it would seem difficult to get guys to play in Fred's system, at a high offensive efficiency rate, that would also play defense.  But then I looked at the numbers, and the two teams surrounding ISU in the offensive efficiency rankings are Louisville and Florida.  Good company!  Those two teams are first and third in defensive efficiency.  Fred is one step ahead of us again.  It's my belief, his plan all along has been to establish the offense first - done - and then work on the defense.  Fun offense brings the fans and the talent.  Better athletes brings better defense.

To summarize, Fred Hoiberg is building this team for the tournament, and he's already shown results.  I think the Cyclones will continue to exceed expectations in the regular season to make the big tournament, and will continue to have success when they get there.

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