Alright, boys and girls. You've now had hours and hours to stare at your NCAA Tournament bracket, carefully making selections that are sure to disintegrate into a vast nothingness of pain by mid-afternoon on Saturday. The question now is, who's going to be responsible for crushing your universe?
That isn't an easy question to answer. To do so would take years and cost millions of lives. (Estimated.) Instead, let's highlight the tactical nuclear weapons that are capable of shredding any missile defense system because explosive firepower is always the vogue.
Rather than use simple points per game rankings (which are for the Proletariat and lack a sense of context), players listed in the table below are illustrated through "Total Offensive Value." Total Offensive Value is, basically, a player's points per 100 offensive possessions adjusted for defenses faced. There's some noise in the value (it admittedly isn't perfect) and there are some nifty alternatives to Total Offensive Value (although this is still a tempo-included metric, which lacks the context of possession-based metrics), but for the purpose of this piece -- to make you look like a genius at your first round watching party, you stud -- Total Offensive Value does a pretty bang-up job.
The table below utilizes the NCAA's requirement of a player needing to participate in at least 75 percent of his school's games and hit the baseline production mark. Of the 200 players considered through games played this past weekend, 63 will be featured in the first round of the postseason on a lacrosse field somewhere on the planet. In fact, 11 out of the top-25 players ranked in Total Offensive Value will embarrass netminders at some point on Saturday or Sunday. Some quick thoughts on the player pool follow after the jump:
|Denver||M. Matthews||12.1834||10||Canisius||S. Giourmetakis||10.6005||21|
|Denver||A. Demopoulos||9.3551||44||Canisius||J. Haney||8.1196||71|
|Denver||E. Law||8.7024||57||Canisius||T. Gibbons||7.6685||84|
|Denver||J. Noble||6.9619||113||Canisius||T. Edwards||6.9918||111|
|Massachusetts||W. Manny||15.6431||2||Colgate||R. Walsh||9.1574||50|
|Massachusetts||A. Kell||10.4288||22||Colgate||J. Ledwick||7.4616||90|
|Massachusetts||K. Smith||10.4288||22||Colgate||B. McCann||5.2570||188|
|Massachusetts||A. Biscardi||5.6315||176||Duke||J. Wolf||10.8061||18|
|Princeton||T. Schreiber||11.5131||13||Duke||R. Rotanz||7.0145||110|
|Princeton||J. Froccaro||7.6069||88||Duke||J. Dionne||6.8249||118|
|Princeton||M. MacDonald||6.1677||148||Johns Hopkins||Z. Palmer||9.6433||36|
|Princeton||T. Shanely||5.3454||184||Johns Hopkins||B. Benn||6.2891||143|
|Johns Hopkins||W. Stanwick||4.4024||199|
|Syracuse||D. Maltz||6.5488||132||Lehigh||D. DiMaria||8.8503||54|
|Syracuse||T. Desko||5.6392||174||Lehigh||D. Fantoni||8.2469||67|
|Syracuse||B. Eilers||5.2754||187||Loyola||M. Sawyer||10.0695||29|
|Virginia||S. Stanwick||14.9825||3||Loyola||J. Ward||6.7130||121|
|Virginia||C. Bocklet||8.4408||64||Loyola||D. Butts||5.4077||181|
|Virginia||R. Emery||5.6976||171||Maryland||J. Cummings||9.7398||33|
|Virginia||M. White||5.6976||171||Maryland||O. Blye||7.3642||95|
|Yale||D. Dempster||6.6844||124||North Carolina||M. Holman||11.6297||12|
|Yale||B. Mangan||6.6844||124||North Carolina||J. Sankey||7.2245||98|
|Yale||G. Mahony||5.3475||183||North Carolina||J. Bitter||6.8721||116|
|Stony Brook||M. Rooney||9.2173||49|
|Notre Dame||J. Marlatt||6.2222||146||Stony Brook||J. Tundo||8.6028||59|
|Notre Dame||S. Rogers||6.2222||146||Stony Brook||R. Campbell||7.7835||81|
|Stony Brook||R. Bonanno||6.5545||131|
- Denver, Massachusetts, Princeton, Syracuse, Virginia, and Yale lead the way with at least five players within the eligibility markers. There won't be a game in the first round that will feature as many highly-ranked players in Total Offensive Value as Princeton-Virginia. Godspeed on Sunday, Rob Fortunato and Tyler Fiorito.
- The game with the fewest number of players ranked in the top-200 of Total Offensive Value? Maryland-Lehigh with only five. No other game features fewer than seven. That doesn't mean that the Terrapins and Mountain Hawks are offensively impotent -- far from it, actually -- it's just that they aren't rolling with as many individually destructive improvised explosive devices.
- If you want to average out each team's included players, Massachusetts comes out with the highest averaged Total Offensive Value at 9.7196 with the following teams falling in behind -- Colgate (9.4118); Denver (8.6589); North Carolina (8.5754); Lehigh (8.5486); Canisius (8.3451); Virginia (8.3142); Duke (8.1046); Stony Brook (8.0395); Maryland (7.9977); Loyola (7.8318); Princeton (7.5246); Yale (6.8754); Johns Hopkins (6.7783); Syracuse (6.4760); and Notre Dame (6.2222). Take that for what it's worth. (Likely very little.)
- Again, because it bears repeating until it becomes canonical scripture: Peter Baum and Will Manny on the same field at the same time. My pants are officially crapped.