A long, long time ago (this past March) in a land far, far away (Indiana), there lived a college basketball analyst called the Big Ten Wonk. And Big Ten basketball fans everywhere could look forward each and every day of the basketball season to reading witty and statistically-sound commentary on the greatest college conference in the land.
But then the Wonk left us for bigger and better things (well, “better” is arguable, but definitely bigger), leaving us adrift in a sea of uninterpreted box scores. This blog is an attempt to navigate that sea–or at least the one-eleventh of that sea that surrounds East Lansing, Michigan.
So here’s a rundown of what you can and cannot expect from this blog:
What you should definitely expect: Statistical analysis of the Michigan State men’s basketball team, mixing both conventional stats (e.g., points per game) and more progressive stats with weird acronyms like PPWS (points per weighted shot). The idea is that if I’m going to calculate these things for myself now that the Big Ten Wonk is no more, I might as well post them for the benefit of other statistically-minded Spartans.
What you might be able to expect: News updates and relevant links pertaining to the Spartan basketball team. In the grandiose vision that exists in my head, this blog could become a one-stop shopping site for all things MSU basketball-related. But whether my time, energy, and abilities will allow this vision to come to fruition remains to be seen.
What you definitely should NOT expect: Analysis of the MSU football team. I follow MSU football, but (1) I’m just not a huge college football fan, (2) football stats aren’t as elegant as basketball stats, and (3) it’s better to stay focused, I think, on the sport the complexities of which I have some minimal ability to understand.
What you’ll more than likely have to put up with: An occasional angst-filled rant about Dick Vitale and/or various sports columnists employed by the two major Detroit newspapers.
Major caveats: (1) I’m new at this; who knows how good I’ll be. (2) At this point, I expect I’ll only actually see about half of this season’s regular season MSU basketball games. For reasons of backyard aesthetics, I have not switched from Comcast to satellite TV and am, therefore, without access to the Big Ten Network. So I’ll have to rely on box scores, newspaper writers, radio broadcasters, and (perhaps) the occasional trip to my neighborhood sports bar for games not broadcast on CBS or the ESPN family of networks.
So off we go. Feel free to leave a comment of send me an e-mail at email@example.com. I’m pretty handy with Microsoft Excel and I’ve watched my fair share of college basketball games, but I’m by no means an expert on any of this. I hope this blog will be, as much as anything, a learning experience for me.