Wisconsin Badgers basketball Win Chart

In the post just before this one, I charted the Marginal Win Scores of the top 20 NBA prospects in college basketball.  Since there is no 82games observations available for the college game, to determine each prospect’s Opponent Win Score I used an estimating system that distributed defensive statistics according to the propensity for each particular position to produce each particular statistic (eg, point guards produce most assists and most turnovers; center/forwards produce most fouls, rebounds, etc.).

I hadn’t tested this method to see if it actually works in practice, so this afternoon while I watched the Wisconsin Badgers basketball team beat Illinois, I calculated and attributed wins and losses to each player on the 2010-11 Wisconsin Badgers team, excluding this afternoon’s game, obviously.  I then tested the resulting wins and losses against Dean Oliver’s estimated winning percentage formula.  I was pleased with the results, as the numbers appeared to work out.  I post the results below.

Before I do that, I reiterate what I wrote in the previous post.  The tricky thing about college basketball is the devolution of the traditional five basketball positions into something closer to 3 positions.  Meaning, most teams no longer use a traditional center nor a traditional “small forward” in the NBA sense of the term.  Both of  those positions require both height and a particular skill set, and each is a hard combination to come by on the collegiate level.

So instead most college teams now employ a point guard, two “perimeter” guard/forwards, and two power forwards up front.  The three point shot, I believe, has really accelerated this devolution by rewarding or bolstering efficient scoring, and somewhat deemphasizing the value of  possession gathering.  (Addendum:  After I drafted this post, I checked KenPom and it seems the Badgers are winning the Wisconsin Way… they are the best team in the country at protecting  possessions, and they’re defense is near the top.  But, un-Wisconsin like, they have one of the best, or most efficient, offenses in the country as well.)

Here is the Badgers chart, using Marginal Win Score per 40 minutes:

MWS W% W__L
Taylor 3.45 1.205 3.0__(-0.2)
Leuer 3.57 1.231 3.3__(-0.7)
Gasser 1.68 0.846 1.7__0.3
Nankovil 3.25 1.165 2.2__(-0.3)
Jarmusz 1.67 0.843 1.5__0.3
Bruesewitz 1.04 0.714 1.2__0.5
Evans -0.02 0.498 0.4__0.6
Wilson 0.55 0.615 0.4__0.3
Berrgren 0.94 0.694 0.4__0.2
Smith -1.06 0.287 0.1__0.3
Valentyn -1.51 0.196 0.0__0.3
Brust -2.71 -0.042 0.0__0.3
14.2__1.8
OliverPyth: 14.4__1.6
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