Analysis Was Port's Analytics sending an indirect message?

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OneGreatClub

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Robert Younger, from Figuring Footy and Chief of Port's Analytics Department retweeted this:


Would he be trying to tell us something with it?
I am glad you have started a dedicated thread on this. Good for at least some discussion.


I think you are absolutely on to something Gremio, and to be fair, even though my opinion on here isn’t usually really valued like yours or some others are, I have thought and commented a year or so ago this exact same thing.

Also, I don’t know if you have listened to it but I posted the podcast below on a another thread a few weeks back also.
It is about the value of stats men in clubs and coaches box and how coaches use the data to their advantage.
But also about the coach’s feel for a game as it is unfolding.
Perhaps our coach doesn’t have the nous to use the correct bits of data to our advantage.
Our coaches constantly say to us that the data points to us heading in the right direction, or being almost there, and that they are waiting for it all to click yet it never does. It is worth a listen anyway.

https://podcasts.apple.com/au/podcast/trends-with-marc-mcgowan-an-afl-podcast/id1456681987?i=1000433999535

Also, when we got a stats fella, I think it was this Robert Younger, in, a couple of years ago who had done research into goal kicking, data and where goals are kicked from our ‘points for’ turned to rubbish, as we were constantly passing around to get into better positions but eventually turning it over.
I thought at the time that we didn’t know how to apply his research, had lost our way in how to football.
 
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ozph1870

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Too much wanky data and not enough simple football analysis.. The greatest coaches of all time weren't relying on s**tty data, they had a general feel for the game and worked it out for themselves... Way to many pointless frauds hanging around footy clubs these days.
 

EskimoPAFC

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Yeah I'm absolutely sure that analytics is the reason why we went in to that 'always kick in to the pocket and get it out of play then set up for the throw in' strategy a couple of years back.

It was bad then and I'd say we are making equally bad yet less obvious data-based decisions now
 

TeeKray

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So apparently the assistant coaches each have a data guy to themselves. Nathan Bassett's data guy was convinced that North had the worst defence in the comp last year, laughably bad even, and that they would finish last. Half way through the season they had the best defence in the comp and ended up 12-10.

Frauds.
 

Port85

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Data is a tool to help coaches make informed decisions. It’s supposed to support or refute what experienced, knowledgeable people are seeing on the field.

It can also be used effectively as an educational and goal-setting tool for players. If the coaches are telling you to work harderer for longerer you can track improvements using GPS data. The same data tells us stuff like Duursma is the hardest running player on the field during games, which I doubt many people would know solely from the eye test.

Why wouldn’t you use every tool at your disposal?

Also, I’m pretty sure Robert Younger’s analysis would have told the club the kick to the pockets approach involved us having a high volume of low quality shots... but the same approach actually worked for GWS (kind of) so it’s up to the coaches to decide what to do with that data, not the analyst.
 

OneGreatClub

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Data is a tool to help coaches make informed decisions. It’s supposed to support or refute what experienced, knowledgeable people are seeing on the field.

It can also be used effectively as an educational and goal-setting tool for players. If the coaches are telling you to work harderer for longerer you can track improvements using GPS data. The same data tells us stuff like Duursma is the hardest running player on the field during games, which I doubt many people would know solely from the eye test.

Why wouldn’t you use every tool at your disposal?

Also, I’m pretty sure Robert Younger’s analysis would have told the club the kick to the pockets approach involved us having a high volume of low quality shots... but the same approach actually worked for GWS (kind of) so it’s up to the coaches to decide what to do with that data, not the analyst.
Yes connecting the dots and finding the path through is the skill
 

Port85

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Funnily enough the basic stats from last night show some similarities with our AFL side (a few differences too).

Neither of our two sides have an efficient forward line but from the data alone we can’t really tell why. Is it personnel? Delivery? Set ups? Match Ups? Instructions?

Everything?
 

OneGreatClub

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Funnily enough the basic stats from last night show some similarities with our AFL side (a few differences too).

Neither of our two sides have an efficient forward line but from the data alone we can’t really tell why. Is it personnel? Delivery? Set ups? Match Ups? Instructions?

Everything?
It-hasn’t-clicked-yet-we-are-a-work-in-progress-we one-day-will-be-like -Richmond-we-are-looking-for-synergy-work-hardery-for-longery
 

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RussellEbertHandball

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In 2017 we played the territory game plan going long to the pockets and trying to score from the throw ins. It was Lade's first year as forwards coach. Remember Lade was a master at rucking to those throw ins and setting up players to kick goals in our dominate years last decade. Ryder had a great year won our B&F and did many Lade type plays in the pockets and flanks. I'm sure people remember Ryder2Gray at AO vs the Saints.

We were also taking marks wide in the pockets and having difficult shots. I talked about it in 2017 as did others, that our conversion rate on goal was poor and we lost games as a result of bad goal kicking.

IIRC the 2017 Richmond and West Coast games at AO we had terrible conversion rates on goal when all the stats said we should have won the game. The WCE final wasn't much better. Robert Younger in his blog talked about our poor conversion. It stood out because Adelaide kicked a s**t load of goals and had a good conversion rate and had all those Joe The Goose out the back kicks on goal on the run from the goal square, so people naturally said why can't Port have conversion rates like the crows when they just looked at the raw stats without thinking about how the goals were kicked?

We employed Robert Younger in October 2017. In 2018 we employed the 45 degree kick Barcelona triangles all across the ground but concentrated on trying to pass the ball back into the centre of the ground, when we had the ball out wide in our forward line, to improve where we had set shots on goal to improve our conversion rate.

Lade talked about it at the 2018 Members Convention, as did the other coaches as did Michael Regan our chief data analyst based in Melbourne and we recruited him from Catapult - the Australian GPS data guys who have cornered the world market - at the end of 2014. Regan said that analytics should be used to make up to 49% of the decisions. He said the human element should always have the majority say.

I don't know if Younger made that retweet as a generic approval or was being specific to Ports.

We have missed easy goals this year, but not from the 2017 problems of playing wide. Duursma last week against Richmond was very small angle, but generally we kicked well on goal - 14.8. Gray and Westhoff missed easy set shots against Brisbane and our Xpected Score (I believe Younger invented this) was 107 and we scored 90 pts. Carlton we kicked Ok but Melbourne our last 5 scoring shots were points.
 
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RussellEbertHandball

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Us against the rest

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You have to have players with an adequate skill set for these systems to work, if not it can look worse than the basic play book stuff.
Let's face it if our skills were up to standard we would have won many more games.
 

Macca19

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You have to have players with an adequate skill set for these systems to work, if not it can look worse than the basic play book stuff.
Let's face it if our skills were up to standard we would have won many more games.
Well this is why we played to the pockets for a few years
 

Enviable Tradition

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Funnily enough the basic stats from last night show some similarities with our AFL side (a few differences too).

Neither of our two sides have an efficient forward line but from the data alone we can’t really tell why. Is it personnel? Delivery? Set ups? Match Ups? Instructions?

Everything?
Both forward lines are efficient when we have tall forward.

Take out Frampton and Marshall and the Maggies are inefficient.



On SM-G960F using
BigFooty.com mobile app
 

Andre

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Analytics has its place, but I think we’ve had a few flaws with our use of it.
1. Cherry picking data to support pre-existing views (*cough* HBF’ers r us, go small to the pockets *cough*)
2. Cause and effect. I think our coaches (past assistants plus current head coach), can tell whether A causes B or vice versa.
3. Following on from 2 they don’t understand correlation does not equal causation.
4. AFL has a wider spread of players of various sizes and speeds that can all be involved in the play at anytime. Some sports may have more specialised positions, but this is often tied to they only play at certain times (/plays) in games. 36 players in a playing field that is not a neat square or rectangle, where the ball is able to be moved in any direction by both hand or foot leads to so many confounding variables. I think the AFL in general is just at the very starting point of trying to tease them apart. For the number of potential ones there needs to be a lot more data collected yet, before in depth analysis can be trusted.

tl;dr - Ken can’t be trusted to use the new toy properly.
 

ozph1870

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Remember when our goal scoring efficiency was poor so to overcorrect the next year anyone who was 45 out on a slight angle was always looking to pass it off to someone in a better position...
How frustrating was that...
But hey our goal scoring effeciency may have slightly improved... While scoring dropped away...
Go and get fked over analysis of every tiny aspect of the game..
 

PA88

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Ah yes statistics. You look at a raw data and make inferences and then you apply suitable statistical tests that always confirm your initial inferences. Oh ok sometimes the stat test does help but I don't need a stat to tell me that Wines is likely in a close game going to bomb the ball in rather than settle and aim for a 50/50 contest at the very least.

A statistical datum is a summary of the past but only a dictator of the future if you let it be.
 

ozph1870

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.. Or turn every game into a low scoring slopfest to artificially think the defense was good...


Pat the data expert on the back.. The campaigner.
 

AdamMarrett

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I'm of the opinion this analytics goes to far in regards to our style of play. To much is taken from it as the trends of the game, and we play to suit that, instead of playing to suit the strengths of our team. It infuriates me, I'm not a big fan of analytics in general. I found it telling what Wingard said about it last week, and how we use it. I feel we are to far down the path with analytics. There is room for it in the game, but it can't dictate how we play, which I feel it does.

You don't need analytics to tell you as a footballer, kicking to players 45 metres out, or deep in the pockets results in harder shots on goal, you know that as a footballer. You don't need it telling you where to kick the ball into the forward 50 for better % shots on goal, you know that, or should at any level of football let alone AFL footy.

We should be playing what's in front of us as Schofield says, rather then confusing players at times which I feel analytics does during play.
 

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