Using Statistics to Help Make Better Decisions (football)

Kevin Kelley is a high school football coach in Little Rock, Arkansas.  I read about him before but I saw this headline, “Down 29-0 before touching the ball”,  and was reintroduced to this amazing thinker.

Innovation is so special that when you see it, you can’t help but be amazed.  Kelley is using statistics to guide his football decisions.  He is designing strategies around the data he collects.

As new data becomes available, will he change?  I suspect he will.  Data is just data without a person to interpret and guide.  We are humans, after all.

The funny thing about Kelley: He’s not a mad scientist or an iconoclast…  Rather, he’s a relentlessly rational sort whose methods have backing in data.“1

According to Kelley’s figures, after a kickoff the receiving team, on average, takes over at its own 33-yard line. After a failed onside kick the team assumes possession at its 48. Through the years Pulaski has recovered about a quarter of its onside kicks. “So you’re giving up 15 yards for a one-in-four chance to get the ball back,” says Kelley. “I’ll take that every time!”“2

May I suggest the articles linked below the video?  Before, check out the video for last week’s game.

 1. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2011/writers/scorecasting/09/15/kelley.pulaski/index.html   2. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1160256/index.htm?eref=sisf

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About Christopher Hessenflow

Christopher Hessenflow is a financial planner in the Chicago area. He works with all sorts of people who are much more interesting than he is. He enjoys his career which lends him time to think and, sometimes, be creative. Chip was born bald.
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