Again, this is one of those things that is probably appearing a little too early on the site due to the relatively small numbers of games played thus far. Whatever. I have college basketball to compete against and pageviews aren't going to magically appear through my magically pageview machine. Or they will. I forget sometimes.
Not too long ago, I was kind of messing around with putting together blueprints for a spaceship that I wanted to build in my garage and I accidentally came up with a super-scientific formula to rank the most-fun and least-fun Division I lacrosse teams. This was a happy finding as a blogger for a college lacrosse site; as a galactic space traveler, not so much. Regardless, I went with it and started pumping out some rankings under what I'm calling the "Fun Factor."
- COMPETITIVENESS. I use a form of the Pythagorean expectation to make a determination as to whether teams are evenly or unevenly matched (or, at the individual level, whether a team is expected to win a bunch of games or not). I don't want to watch a garbage blowout or teams that will take it on the chin unless I absolutely have to. I'm selfish like that.
- PACE. I'd rather not watch Notre Dame or Princeton play a 50-possession game. Sorry, homeboys; my grass growin' needs watchin' and I'd rather do that than sit around waiting for something to happen on the field.
- SHOOTING. I want to watch guys can the bean, mostly because I'm selfish (duh) and like scoring. So, I give some value to each team's offensive effective shooting percentage. If your team want to embarrass a goalie each and every game, we're going to get along just fine.
So, that's what we're working with. I make no claim that this is an unbiased approach to "fun." It's completely biased, and I don't really care that it is. If you want to watch defensive struggles then you and I shouldn't even consider being friends on something as detached as Facebook. For realies.
Again, the Fun Factor isn't attempting to rank the best teams; rather, I'm just trying to rank teams that I'd prefer to watch. There's an important difference there, so before you pop off with an email screaming, "WHY YOU NO WANNA WATCH HARVARD, JERKFACE!" just breathe for a second and soak in that last sentence.
Here's the top-ten and bottom-ten in the nation in the Fun Factor rankings. The data utilized in this super-scientific formula is through games played yesterday. Some comments follow after the jump.
More after the jump.
- Denver is drop-dead sexy. The Pioneers' don't exactly light the world on fire with their pace -- only about 40th nationally -- but the offense is a thing of beauty: First in adjusted offensive efficiency and tops in the country in canning the bean. I want Denver to make me a pair of footy pajamas and I want to stay in them all day.
- Hartford is only 1-4 on the year, but at least they're going down with very few bullets left in the chamber: Against the nation's second-hardest schedule, the Hawks are seeing about 67 possessions per 60 minutes of play, are second-nationally in adjusted offensive efficiency, and are in the top-20 in shooting percentage. When you also throw in the fact that Hartford throws over a shot at the cage in each offensive possession, you start to see why the Hawks are a decent watch (even if they aren't winning).
- Mercer-Wagner-VMI: Where's the fourth horseman to signal the apocalypse?
- How about Loyola, huh? 18th in the country in pace at over 70 per 60 minutes of play; top-15 in adjusted offensive efficiency; in the top-five in putting the ball in the net; and one of the stronger defenses in the land. Thanks for the fun, Lusby, Sawyer, & Company!