Showing posts from September, 2013

Why Coaches are Evil

I'm a coach.  I don't think anyone would ever call me a genius, or even an evil genius, but perhaps the latter is more of a compliment than an insult. Ross Lyons, amongst others , was called exactly this in an article in the lead up to the AFL Grand Final last week. The basis for Lyon's 'evil-ness' is that his teams play a game style that is different to that played 20 years ago. Perhaps that's a bit unfair, its more that they play in a different way to teams from 20 years ago, and that that way is not open and free flowing. Let's be ver clear here, it is NOT the responsibility of the coach to play a style style that is popular with media or fans. The coach's responsibility is to win. The coach gets paid to win. The rules of the game are the framework within which the game-style must exist. Whatever the tools he has, along with the rules of the game, define the style of play he uses. Great coaches assess the demands of the game, the rules of th

The Secret of Sports Analysis

I've spent my entire adult life working in jobs which involve high level analysis of high performance sport (whatever that means).  Throughout this time the most consistent thing I've noticed is that there are people who don't like statistics in general (or don't like a particular type of statistic) and also people who think data is the only way to properly assess athletes and performance. In my experience: people who don't like statistics either don't understand them or don't like the way others use them to discount the human component of sport. people who believe data will provide all the answers don't understand the way human elements impact sport, or don't like the way some people believe that is the only important part of sport and that it is some sort of 'secret'. That secret is actually context.  But its a secret.  So don't tell anyone. Context 1 - Data v Knowledge The Knowledge Hierarchy is a simple way of look