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Basketball Study Hall: Karvel Anderson's historic 2014 season

Written by Craig Meyer on .

This season, I'm going to try what I hope will be a weekly feature on the blog in which I examine some of the advanced statistical trends behind Robert Morris' team and players, the kind that may provide some explanation as to why they are performing a certain way (and what it means). I figured I'd give it a preseason run to work out some kinks and see how it plays with you all.


Originally, this post was supposed to be about something else entirely. For those who didn't see it, The Washington Post did an interesting statistical piece yesterday in which they came up with a formula estimating how much each college basketball player was worth to his team, monetarily speaking.

Branching off that idea, I was hoping to do a post in which I used that formula to examine how much each Robert Morris player was worth. Unfortunately, as a private school, RMU can be a little dubious with its revenue/expenses numbers, so there was no real way for me to figure out how much the program made last season, something which made figuring out the individual worth of players impossible without any kind of speculation.

One nugget in that formula, though, did lead to some interesting research. Part of figuring out a player's worth revolved around win shares. In short, win shares take a team's overall number of wins and figure out what percentage of those wins could be attributed to each player based on their statistical contributions. You can think of it like a pie, with the more important players being given a larger slice based on how they performed (though if you've divvying up a pie among a 12-member basketball team, everyone's still going to be pretty hungry).

What I found from looking at win shares was something that I believed to be a fact and routinely mentioned near the end of last season -- that Karvel Anderson may have had the most statistically impressive season of any player in Robert Morris' modern history.

Anderson's win share number was 6, meaning he was effectively responsible for more than one-quarter of the Colonials' victories last season. On the surface, that number may not mean much, but according to Basketball Reference, that win share mark was the highest in program history, which on that site goes back to 1997, as far as advanced stats like win shares are concerned.

Player Season Win Shares
Karvel Anderson 2013-14 6
Jeremy Chappell 2008-09 5.7
Velton Jones 2011-12 5.3
Gene Nabors 1999-2000 5.1
Jeremy Chapell 2007-08 4.8
Tony Lee 2007-08 4.8

Of course, those numbers don't exist in a vacuum. A player's win share is dependent on how many games his team wins, so a player can be incredibly valuable, but if his team wins only, say, 10 games, his number can only be so high. It's also possible that last season was a statistical aberration since Robert Morris played about half of its games with only eight players. When you're sharing the proverbial pie with fewer people, your slice is inevitably going to be bigger than it would be otherwise.

But there's more to back up this idea that Anderson's season was something special. And it lies with offensive rating.

A product of a complicated formula developed by analyst Dean Oliver, offensive rating is something of a catch-all number that measures an individual player's efficiency on the offensive end. Unlike his win share number, Anderson's offensive rating of 129 was not only the highest in Robert Morris history, but also Northeast Conference history. History, in this case, goes back to 2004, when KenPom.com began keeping track of the number for all Division I teams.

Player Team Season % of minutes played Offensive rating
Karvel Anderson Robert Morris 2013-14 76.1 129
Nolan Long Wagner 2013-14 11.6 126.8
Tyler Murray Wagner 2011-12 76.9 121.5
Coron Williams Robert Morris 2010-11 48.7 120.8
Jimmy Langhurst Robert Morris 2008-09 65.6 120.5
Jalen Cannon St. Francis (NY) 2011-12 61.1 119.9
Lenny Jefferson CCSU 2005-06 66 119.5
Coron Williams Robert Morris 2011-12 67.6 119.5
Karvel Anderson Robert Morris 2012-13 58.7 119.3
Jason Brickman LIU Brooklyn 2010-11 56.7 119.2

I wanted to make sure to include percentage of total minutes played because, as you can see with the second name listed, there are players who are hyper-efficient in very limited minutes and thus their number is inflated compared to what may be their actual value.

What the chart shows is that Anderson, even while playing a good deal of minutes, managed to remain an incredibly efficient and productive offensive player. Theoretically, the more a player is on the court, a more things have a tendency to even out, especially if that player is a team's star player and has to do a larger share of the team's work. In those situations, those stars are often forced into contested (and sometimes outright bad) shots and they are a much more focal part of an opposing team's defensive game plan.

Given that reality, it makes Anderson's performance that much more impressive than even traditional stats like points per game and 3-point field goal percentage indicate. And when you combine it with something like win shares, you get something truly special.

 

Craig Meyer: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  and Twitter @CraigMeyerPG

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Relief in sight for bus riders; 2 more tunnel closures on horizon

Written by Jon Schmitz on .

Breathing room on the bus?

Relief may be on the way for riders on several overcrowded Port Authority bus routes. As we reported in print today, schedule changes will take effect Aug. 31 on 22 routes, including added trips on 51 Carrick and the 61ABCD routes and extensions to the 75 Ellsworth and 93 Lawrenceville-Oakland routes. The story is here and more details can be found at www.portauthority.org.

 

Tunnel vision

The Mount Washington Transit Tunnel is scheduled to close from about 11 p.m. Friday until 11 a.m. Saturday for ventilation work, causing detours of bus and rail service. Rail service will use the old Allentown line and a shuttle will operate between Station Square and First Avenue. Inbound buses will go through Allentown and outbound service will use the Wabash Tunnel.

UPDATE: The transit tunnel will close again from the start of service on Sunday until 1 p.m., with the same detours in effect. The outbound Red Line will be detoured from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday during work south of South Hills Junction. Red Line vehicles will follow the Blue Line route from the junction to Willow, with bus shuttles operating along the closed portion of the Red Line. Delays are likely.

The final closure of the outbound Squirrel Hill Tunnel is likely to occur on the weekend of Aug. 22-25.

 

Road work updates

menatworkNight owls will find single-lane restrictions of the entire length of Interstate 376 in Allegheny County tonight through Aug. 22 as crews install pavement reflectors. The work will occur from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. starting on the Parkway East and moving to the Parkway West.

Continuing reconstruction will cause a closure of the intersection of Swallow Hill Road and Lindsay Road in Scott this weekend. It is scheduled to begin at about 6 p.m. Friday and continue until 6 a.m. Monday. Port Authority buses will not travel on Swallow Hill from Greentree Road to Lindsay during the closure.

Lane closures are possible from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday on the approaches to the lower deck of the Fort Duquesne Bridge. Inspectors will be looking things over.

The inbound Liberty Tunnel is scheduled to reopen at 6 a.m. Friday, Aug. 22. Having viewed the freshly painted white walls in the outbound tunnel, we’re thinking gray might have been a better choice.

Water line work will restrict traffic on Smithfield Street from First Avenue to Fort Pitt Boulevard in Downtown Pittsburgh from 7 tonight to about 3 a.m. Wednesday.

Removal of rocks and debris from a hillside will close the right lane on inbound Route 28 near the Route 910 interchange from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily through Friday.

Inspection of the outbound Fort Pitt Tunnel is scheduled to restrict traffic to a single lane from 10 p.m. today to 5 a.m. Wednesday, but PennDOT typically delays the start until PNC Park traffic subsides.

Milling and resurfacing has begun on East 10th Avenue in Tarentum and Brackenridge, causing alternating one-way traffic from 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. on weeknights through mid-November. Some Saturday nights also will see work. The project extends from Lock Street in Tarentum to Horner Street in Brackenridge and is one of those that wouldn’t have happened without Act 89, the transportation funding measure that the Legislature and Gov. Tom Corbett approved last fall.

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Style Week Pittsburgh kicks off in grand style at The Priory Grand Hall

Written by Sara Bauknecht on .

StyleWeekWadria

One day down, six more to go.

The second annual Style Week Pittsburgh kicked off Monday night at The Priory Grand Hall on the North Side with a vendor presentation and fashion show, which morphed into a dance party by the end of the event.

This year is all about quality, said founder and director Wadria Taylor. Everything -- from picking the participants to setting up photos around the venue -- was done with intention.

And it showed. Upon arrival, guests were invited to browse tables of Pittsburgh-based brands and designers, including Nicolette Jewelry Sculptures and Sandra Cadavid handbags and jewelry.

The main event was a runway show spotlighting the pattern-rich pieces by Toya Taylor of Kingston, Jamaica and the vintage-inspired, black-and-white dominant dress collection by recent Pittsburgh transplant Portia Brady, formerly of Dublin, Ireland. They complemented each other well: Ms. Taylor's designs played more with color, texture/fabric mixing and blocking and various silhouettes while Ms. Brady kept it classic (some slender dresses, neutrals, a douse of sparkle).

The models looked poised and polished, thanks to training by Jaylee Lemon of ReFined Culture. Models who knew how to walk well kept the emphasis on the clothes -- not on their walking flaws. (That's not always the case.)

There was a bit of a lull between the first and second runway shows, but the crowd of about 60 or so didn't seem to mind. Many got up from their seats and danced to the tunes DJ Selecta had on tap.

In all, the event was grand, like its venue. It showed tremendous growth and refinement from its inaugural kick-off a year ago at Perle in Market Square. The pacing of the evening, the vendors featured and the runway show direction all showed improvement and thoughtfulness. 

Photos: Above, Style Week Pittsburgh founder and director Wadria Taylor, left, with Pittsburgh-based designer Lana Neumeyer show off their dresses, which were both made by Ms. Neumeyer. Below, fashions by Toya Taylor of Kingston, Jamaica (first two images) and Portia Brady, who recently relocated to Pittsburgh from Dublin, Ireland. Sara Bauknecht/Post-Gazette

Check back later this afternoon for a photo recap from runway kick-off event, plus accessory sightings.

StyleWeek Toya

StyleWeek Toya2

StyleWeek PortiaDress

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Vacation post - 08-12-14

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .

 

-Happy 61st birthday to former Penguins defenseman Greg Fox. Acquired midway through the 1983-84 season in a deal which sent Randy Boyd to the Blackhawks, Fox spent parts of two seasons in Pittsburgh. He finished 1983-84 by appearing in 49 games and scoring seven points for the Penguins. The 1984-85 campaign saw him play in 26 games and score seven points. He retired following the season. In 75 games with the Penguins, he scored 14 points.

 

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Nixon Resignation

Written by Rob Rogers on .

It has been forty years since the Watergate scandal forced Richard M. Nixon to resign from office. Jimmy Carter, elected as a backlash to Nixon, only lasted one term. Since that time, only two Democratic Presidents have been elected, and both have been under siege by republicans in Congress. Clinton was impeached and Obama might be. This is a sad state of affairs. 

081214 Nixon Resignation

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