With Warren Buffet now offering $1 billion if anyone can fill out a perfect bracket, you may want to look at the 11 teams that Value Add calculates were really at least eight points better than they have played so far. Michigan, Kentucky and Virginia are on the list – but after disappointing starts have looked dominant since conference play began. More than 70 percent of all teams are within four points of their projection – but not these 11 – and we list all 51 underachievers below.
For the 11 biggest disappointments, we list the players who have not been anywhere near their projections. In some cases, they have not progressed from the previous seasons. In other cases they have been injured or even left the school. If Marquette solved its point guard issue in Monday’s win over Georgetown they could make a late run as well.
The players who are well below projections are listed with their preseason Projected Value Add followed by their Actual Value Add to date. For example, Duke’s Rasheed Sulaimon was projected as the 17th best player and has only been the 465th out of 4000. A more detailed explanation of the math is included at the bottom for my fellow stat nerds.
Here are the 11 big disappointments (at least 8 points worse Value Add than was projected):
1, Michigan, Zac Irvin 286 Projected Value Add / 1137 Actual Value Add, Mitch McGary 18/356, Glenn Robinson 1/228, Derrick Walton 499, 1539. The Wolverines are 7-0 since losing McGary to injury to move into first place in the toughest conference in the country. Irvin could be picking up after going five of eight on three-pointers to beat Minnesota. The top Projected Value Add player Robinson is 22 of 29 on 2-pointers in Big Ten play except for one off night against Penn State.
2, Kentucky, Andrew Harrison 45/978, Dakari Johnson 91/1563, Alex Poythress 51/744. Freshmen get better as the year goes on and Kentucky has won six of their last seven playing five SEC teams, Belmont and Louisville. Julius Randall just needs a little help. Andrew Harrison showed his potential in Saturday’s big win over Tennessee with 10 of 10 from line, and 7 of 13 from field including two 3-pointers.
3, Marquette, Davante Gardner 50/283, Todd Mayo 504/1670, Steve Taylor 518/2303, Jamil Wilson 165/1219. Gardner and Jamil Wilson have had to fight through double teams all year due to the lack of any jumper from point guard Derrick Wilson, but Marquette may have finally solved the point guard problem with freshman John Dawson stepping into to dominate at Georgetown Monday. He pulled up for a midrange jumper, grabbed a rebound at the other end, drained all 3-pointer, ripped the ball away from Hoyas star guard Markel Starks and then switched his dribble hand on the way up the court to slap hands with teammate Jamil Wilson – ALL THIS IN THE FIRST TWO MINUTES OF OVERTIME for a stretch that could change the entire Marquette season.
4, South Florida, Anthony Collins 460/1244, Zach LeDay 472/NR. South Florida is only 1-4 in conference play after having to do it without point guard Collins who took a knee to the head earlier in the season http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/ncaab-the-dagger/south-florida-point-guard-anthony-collins-injured-win-043049475–ncaab.html – but LeDay is back and getting his minutes.
5, Boston College, Olivier Hanlan 25/190, Joe Rahon 304/1663. After dominating during BC’s 4-1 finish last season, Rabon has really struggled through the 4-15 start this season. Hanlan did go eight of 10 including two 3-pointers in the last game against Georgia Tech.
6, Indiana, Luke Fischer 406/1861, Will Sheehey 175/1582, Luke Fischer’s decision before Big Ten play started to leave for Marquette is going to make it tough to compete to repeat in the toughest conference.
7, Florida Gulf Coast, Chase Fieler 164/734, Jamail Jones 659/NR, Bernard Thompson 106/2191. It does not look like another magical run for Florida Gulf Coast despite having pieces on place.
8, Duke, Rasheed Sulaimon 17/465, Jabari Parker 27/153. Parker started near the top, but has really trailed off.
9, Florida, Damontre Harris 112/NP, Chris Walker 107/NP, Will Yeguete 344/1356. Florida had to adjust to not having a couple of players, but they look like they are now ready for another run.
10, Colorado, Xavier Johnson 311/1328. Johnson’s early season battle through injuries has made it tough to replace Andre Robinson, and he still doesn’t seem to have hit his stride.
11, Virginia, Justin Anderson 92/495, Mike Robey 422/1111, Evan Nolte 140/1698, Akil Mitchell 39/725. Like Michigan, they may have started slow but they are now near the top of the ACC at 5-1.
|7||Florida Gulf Coast||ASun||15.57||13.67||3.81||-9.86|
|39||North Carolina St.||ACC||25.97||20.55||16.02||-4.53|
|49||Cal St. Fullerton||BW||5.14||6.76||2.67||-4.09|
For my fellow stat nerds, here is the math behind the adjusted Projected Value Add based on a much lower Standard Deviation this season.
The average preseason Projected Value Add and the Actual Value Add through last week were both within a point of 9.9 per team. However, the next rules seem to have lessened the gap between “good” and “great” teams and players. Therefore the standard deviation per team is actually 6.41 on the actual ratings compared to 9.67 in the projected. Therefore we took each team’s Projected Value Add’s deviation from 9.93 and divided it by 1.51 to get the adjusted Projected Value Add.