Welcome back NCAA Lacrosse!!!
We’ve waited for months. I’m sure you know someone who can tell you how many days it has been since Maryland hoisted the trophy in Foxborough. But it’s here. Lacrosse season is here.
There is something about the spring sports coming back, when winter is on its last legs and sunnier days are ahead. Hope springs eternal as they say. It’s weird, but for me, winter is up there as one of my favorite seasons, precisely because spring is next. Call it a consequence of living in the Midwest for the better part of a dozen years.
I’m guessing you wouldn’t be reading a lacrosse analytics site if you weren’t excited as well. And I hope that our little old site will add something to your experience of the 2018 season.
Last year, we built a lot of foundational components for the site. Expected Goals Added, Lax-ELO, In-game Win Odds, Play-Specific Efficiency Rates, among others. It was all about creating building blocks. And through it all, we built up a great audience reading our stuff, giving us great feedback, and generally making last year an amazing experience. Thanks to everyone who discovered the site last year.
And I hope we are able to reach even more lacrosse fans this year. To that end, we’ve got a lot of great ideas for new stuff this season. But I would absolutely love to hear what you want to see from LacrosseReference this season.
What sort of questions do you want us to answer? Are there areas of the game that you think deserve more research? If you have ideas send them my way. If you want to get more connected to LacrosseReference, use the Subscribe button above to add yourself to our email list.
And happy lacrosse season 2018!
February 3, 2018 @ 2:11 pm
I would like to see an analysis of the “value” of each position. My hypothesis is that the 2 most “valuable” positions are FOGO and goalie. But I don’t have any data to support this.
February 4, 2018 @ 8:40 pm
Thanks for the suggestion James. I’m curious how you are defining value though? In an analysis like this, hardest part is probably to narrow in on defining the problem.
February 5, 2018 @ 11:43 am
Zack – thanks for the reply. I am not a stats guy, so I am out of my depth on this, but my hypothesis is that the 2 players that have the most (i.e., have a disproportionate) influence on the outcome of a game are: 1) FOGO, 2) Goalie. Wrt the FOGO – if you have a great FOGO, you will have more possessions -> more goals -> higher probability of winning. Likewise, wrt the Goalie – if you have a great goalie, you will give up fewer goals (and have more possessions) -> higher probability of winning. Put another way, if you were building a roster from scratch, I would think you would start with FOGO and Goalie, because if you are weak at either position, that will potentially negate your strengths at other positions (Attack, Middie, Defense). Another way to express this idea is that if you had to choose between adding an above-average FOGO or Goalie and an above-average player at any other position, I would always pick the FOGO or Goalie. So these 2 players are extremely “valuable”. Having said all of this, I don’t know how you would go about testing my hypothesis. Happy to discuss more if you like.