By A.J. Coltrane
For purposes of Vegas/March Madness this year I thought it might be helpful to consider how 3-point dependent individual teams were during the regular season. Some of that screwing around was discussed in this post.
Below are the top 10 teams in what I called “Vol” (for volatility) in that post. Below it’s called 3DEP (3 point dependency), which is what I’ll stick with going forward. 3DEP is simply 3 point percentage (x) % of 3 pointers attempted. At least in theory these ten teams rely upon the 3-pointer for a large percentage of their offense, so I’d kind of expect their performances to be very “up and down”. (To have a wider than usual deviation in their level of performance.) If the 3-pointer abandoned them, they were screwed. The flipside is that maybe they can get hot and beat a better team.
Look what happened in the game that knocked them out of the tournament:
|Team (Seed)||3DEP||3P%||2P%||3PA%||3P% in Loss||2P% in Loss|
|Iowa St. 10||1624||37||52.1||43.9||48.0||40.7|
|SD St 13||1434||39.4||50.3||36.4||34.8||50.0|
|St. Mary’s 11||1421||37.3||53.2||38.1||20.0||37.2|
|Boise St. 13||1362||38.7||48.2||35.2||38.9||54.3|
Well, duh. They didn’t shoot well and they lost the game. They didn’t shoot well from 2 either. I’m sure that happened to a lot of the losers, regardless of how many 3’s they attempted. If something hadn’t gone wrong they’d still be playing. We don’t really learn anything from that.
Continuing to mess with data though — as a group those are some low seeds — 7 of the 10 teams are double digit seeds. They’d all be underdogs starting with their first game. Look at when they got knocked out of the tournament:
|Team (Seed)||Lost To||Round?|
|Creighton 7||Duke||Round of 32|
|Iowa St. 10||Ohio St||Round of 32|
|Florida 3||Michigan||Elite 8|
|Valparaiso 14||Michigan St||Round of 64|
|Belmont 11||Arizona||Round of 64|
|SD St 13||FGCU||Round of 32|
|St. Mary’s 11||Memphis||Round of 64|
|Davidson 14||Marquette||Round of 64|
|Arizona 6||Ohio St||Sweet 16|
|Boise St. 13||La Salle||Play In|
In aggregate the underdogs went 2-4 in their first “real” game (St Mary’s won their play-in game.) Given a fat enough money line of between +150 and +200, maybe they’d be worth betting on. Hmm…
|Florida 7||38.0||44.6||1695||Elite 8|
|Vanderbilt 5||38.8||41.2||1599||Round 32|
|Iowa St. 8||37.3||41.6||1552||Round 32|
|Belmont 14||38.1||40.1||1528||Round 64|
|Wisconsin 4||36.8||41.3||1520||Sweet 16|
|Missouri 2||39.8||37.9||1508||Round 64|
|Creighton 8||42.4||35.0||1484||Round 32|
|South Dakota St. 14||39.0||37.8||1474||Round 64|
|Duke 2||37.1||38.6||1432||Round 64|
|Nevada Las Vegas 6||36.7||38.9||1428||Round 64|
Note the two upsets — both the #2 seeds lost. Is that useful? Maybe. But I am taking a note on it for later.
As far as the underdogs: This year there were only two. And they both lost their first game. Our underdogs are now 2-6.
One more year. Here’s 2011:
|Belmont 13||37.8||42.3||1599||Round 64|
|Wisconsin 4||37.4||41.2||1541||Sweet 16|
|Virginia Commonwealth 11||37.0||41.2||1524||Final Four|
|Michigan 8||35.3||43.0||1518||Round 32|
|Northern Colorado 15||38.3||39.4||1509||Round 64|
|Notre Dame 2||38.6||38.6||1490||Round 32|
|Louisville 4||36.2||40.8||1477||Round 64|
|Arizona 5||39.7||36.1||1433||Elite 8|
|Richmond 12||39.0||36.6||1427||Sweet 16|
|Boston University 16||35.5||40.1||1424||Round 64|
I wouldn’t bet a 16 seed to beat a one seed regardless, so we’re tossing that one out. That leaves four teams who combined to go 2-2 in their first game. All three years combined for 4-6 (not counting St. Mary’s play-in game).
If we restrict it to only the #10, #11, and #12 seeds the record is 3-2. Maybe there’s something there. I may have to do more digging. Coincidentally, my only money-line bet this year was on #12 seed Oregon at +160, and that one worked out. But Oregon didn’t rely on 3’s — they were 138th out of 150 during the regular season…
The never-ending quest for an angle continues.