"My rule was I wouldn't recruit a kid if he had grass in front of his house.
That's not my world. My world was a cracked sidewalk." —Al McGuire

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

MU projects to win 26 games in 2011 & at least 27 in 2012 based on current roster

In an October 22, 2009 post, I projected how many games MU should win in the next couple of years based on the average progression of players from the levels each had achieved in 2009, and the typical impact of 3-star, 4-star and 5-star players.

I will let you go to the above link if you want a recap of how the projections are calculated, but you can see a spreadsheet of the projections for each Marquette player through 2014, as well as the stats for all Marquette players from 1917 to 2010.

Basically, a Win Credit is how many wins a player is worth to a team based on his stats, and projected Win Credits are based on how well a player did in previous seasons or how many Stars he has if he hasn’t played yet, based on the following averages from all seasons since the Big East expanded to 16 teams:

How many wins to expect based on a player's year and stars

0-2 Stars0.

Last year the projections were within a half a game for 8 of 13 players. The three players that exceeded projections were Mo Acker, who was worth 2.7 wins (0.8 projected), Jimmy Butler 5.3 wins (2.0 projected) and Darius Johnson-Odom 3.5 wins (2.1 projected). Overall, that gave Marquette three more wins than projected.

MU one of only 11 to make NCAA 5 straight years, but can they make Sweet 16?

With their efforts, Marquette was one of only 11 teams to make the NCAA tournament for the fifth straight season (Duke, Gonzaga, Kansas, Michigan State, Pitt, Tennessee, Texas A&M, Villanova, Wisconsin and Xavier are the only other 10).

As sweet as it has been to be in that elite company, and reach one in five TVs in America since joining the Big East, the question is now whether or not MU has the talent not only to make it to the tourney, but to break the “25-win/first weekend NCAA exit” ceiling of 2008 and 2009. Given that the roster could change on the April 14 Spring signing day, the good news is that the 2011 roster currently projects 26 wins, possibly enough to get to the Sweet 16, and a substantially better season in 2012.

As excited as we all are about Vander Blue, Marquette’s first 5-star, taking the court next year, I do want to hold expectations down a little by referring to the table above. Last year I noted that the projections indicated that sophomore Darius Johnson-Odom and junior Dwight Buycks could be better players than 4-star freshmen Jeronne Maymon and Erik Williams in 2010. Likewise, a 5-star freshman like Vander Blue (projected 2.4 wins) is usually about as good as a 3-star junior like Jae Crowder (2.1 wins) or senior like Dwight Buycks (2.5 based on average progression from last year).

Jimmy Butler (5.8 wins) and DJO (4.8) project to be the biggest producers by far, and combined with Blue, Buycks and Crowder produce a projected 17.6 wins. When you add the rest of the projections (Junior Cadougan 1.7, Jamail Jones 1.7, Williams 1.3, Joe Fulce 1.1, Youssoupha Mbao 0.9, Reggie Smith 0.8, Chris Otule 0.6, DJ Newbill 0.2), the team looks to be at 25.9 wins for the season, perhaps enough to be just one game better than the 2 and out teams of 2008 and 2009.

The one slight adjustment I made to last year’s table is that I did distinguish between where players ranked among the other 3-stars and 4-stars, so Reggie Smith is expected to do a little better as the 5th best 3-star in the country than DJ Newbill who was lower among the 3-star players.

Certainly some players will produce more, others less. Junior could return to pre-injury form and dominate, or it could be a nagging injury that holds him down. Blue could do a Carmello Anthony and dominate right from the start, etc. However, overall, this method gives an overall assessment of how many wins a roster could produce, and it looks like MU is a little ahead of where the team was even in the 2008 and 2009 seasons due to the much better depth.

What may be even more exciting is where the team projects from there. If all 10 players on the current roster are here for the 2012 season, they project to produce 27.0 wins PLUS whatever additional wins can be produced by three new recruits to fill the roster. Basically, 5-star players typically dominate by their sophomore year, so Vander Blue could explode by then, and at DJOs projection he could be even better with Cadougan, Crowder and Jones all projecting to big seasons and Smith not far behind.

The eight current rising freshman and sophomores would be expected to produce 26.1 wins in 2013 PLUS five additional players by then, so that could be the 30+ win team that really makes a run. The one word of caution there is that 5-stars like Blue are sometimes gone to the NBA by then.

The following is the complete table of projections through 2013:

Projected Wins from each player from 2010 to 2013 seasons

Player2010 actual2010 proj201120122013
Maurice Acker, Grad G, 0 Stars2.70.8GGG
Vander Blue, Fr G, 5 StarsHSHS2.44.76.3
Jimmy Butler, Sr. G-F, 0 Stars5.32.05.8GG
Dwight Buycks, Sr. G, 3 Stars1.72.12.5GG
Junior Cadougan, So. G, 4 Stars0.0RS1.73.14.3
Jae Crowder, Jr. F, 4 StarsJCJC2.13.2G
David Cubillan, Grad G, 0 Stars1.71.3GGG
Robert Frozena, Sr. G, 0 Stars0.00.00.0GG
Joseph Fulce, Sr. F, 3 Stars0.50.91.1GG
Lazar Hayward, Grad F, 4 Stars6.66.4GGG
Darius Johnson-Odom, Jr. G, 3 Stars3.
Jamail Jones, Fr. F, 4 StarsHSHS1.73.14.3
Jeronne Maymon, So. G-F, 4 Stars0.01.7TTT
Youssaupha Mbao, So. C, 3 Stars0.
DJ Newbill, Fr. G, 3 StarsHSHS0.20.91.6
Chris Otule, Jr. C, 2 Stars0.
Reggie Smith, Fr. G, 3 StarsHSHS0.82.03.0
Erik Williams, So. F, 4 Stars0.
Projected Wins on known roster22.019.025.927.0+++26.1+++++

Key = a number indicates how many wins the player is projected to give MU that season, HS is a player in high school that year, G indicates graduated by that year, T indicates transferred out of MU, RS indicates red shirt season, JC indicates in Junior College that season. Each + sign by the season projection indicates additional wins for that many open scholarships to be signed.


JohnPudner said...

I do just want to thank my publisher College Prowler, which published the "Ultimate Hoops Guide: Marquette Basketball" two years ago, for giving us permission to post the spreadsheet of all the player seasons. There were actually a number of players who did not fit in the book, so I'm glad to have all the player seasons included but also encourage anyone who comes across an error to email it to me at jpudner@concentricgrasstops.com so it can be corrected.

Championships Matter said...

Damn, if this is anywhere close to right, my God they'll be doing a Buzz Williams somethingorother on campus.

If this is even close to right, then the challenge we have is to keep Buzz.

Here's hoping!

JohnPudner said...

I haven't always agred with you in the past ChampionshipsMatter, but I agree with everything you just wrote on this one. Let's just not have any more unexpected departures or any major injuries, because it sure looks like we may finally be past having to make 4 guys play 39 minutes a game until they can barely stand up, much less hit two free throws, in the closing minutes.

Championships Matter said...

Hey Bama -- we're having a lovefest or something. We agree too well!

Look, who knows which recruits pan out. Some like Tony Reeder and Lloyd "Chocolate Moose" Moore didn't and others, like the Amigos, did. If we get even close to what we think we have and if we stay healthy and if Buzz stays, it's show time.

Before I meet the Big Warrior in the sky, I want one more day like we had in 1975 when we played an exhibition game against the defending Olympic Champion, the Soviet Union. Our Top 2 team played the Soviet National Team and they'll still looking for some of the pieces in the Old Arena. We walked home that night and we knew we had something really, really special.

18 months later -- we knew we were right!