Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Is Vanderbilt A Better Team on the Road?

I eluded to this in the VSL Gets You Ready post about tonight's game in Gainesville. Now I've got the numbers to back it up.

Vanderbilt is a better shooting team on the road than at home. In 7 home games this season, Vanderbilt is shooting 45.7% from the field, while on the road, the team is hitting 47.4%. Vanderbilt's road field goal percentage is better than every other team in the league's overall percentage except Georgia. The Commodores are also a better shooting team from downtown away from Memorial than they are within the those hallowed confines. Vanderbilt is shooting 37.3% from behind the arc on the road, while only connecting on 33.3% of shots from long range at home. Just as with their field goal percentage, Vanderbilt's road 3 point field goal percentage is better than every other team in the league's overall percentage except Georgia.

On the rebounding front, Vanderbilt, at first glance, appears to a better team at home than on the road. In aggregate, that's true. However, these numbers are skewed by the fact that Vanderbilt got dominated on the boards at Kentucky and at Georgia. In those two games, Vanderbilt was out-rebounded by a whopping 34 boards. Those are also, the only two road games where the team has been out-rebounded (they had as many boards as Arkansas last Saturday in Fayetteville). Even with those two games, Vanderbilt is only -11 in rebounding on the road. Compare that to their home games, where, while owning a +4 advantage, the Commodores have actually been out-rebounded in 3 of 7 contests, and even in another.

CORRECTION: Free throw shooting is the only statistic where the Commodores are clearly better at home than on the road. Vanderbilt has attempted 37 more free throws at home than on the road, and is hitting 78.7% of their attempts in Memorial, while on 70.2% on the road. Still, Vanderbilt's free throw percentage on the road is better than all but 3 other teams in the SEC's overall percentage (Kentucky, Georgia, Arkansas).

This is just another example of how this year's squad is different.

Shameless plug: VSL got some love in today's Nashville City Paper from Vincent Troia noting the absurdity of Vanderbilt being ranked 6 spots behind a Tennessee team they beat twice this season in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll.

Be sure and check out the live-blog later.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'd be curious to know Vanderbilt's shooting percentage from beyond the arc at home NOT counting that terrible Kentucky game; I bet that outlier at home significantly affects that statistic.

Anonymous said...

"Free throw shooting is the only statistic where the Commodores are clearly better on the road than at home. Vanderbilt has attempted 37 more free throws at home than on the road, and it hitting 78.7% of their attempts in Memorial, while on 70.2% on the road."

- Grammatical errors aside, this statement doesn't make much sense...

Bobby O'Shea said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Bobby O'Shea said...

Anonymous 2:25, you are correct. Vanderbilt is shooting 38.3% from downtown at home when you take out the 2-20 performance against Kentucky.

DorePosts said...

Congrats on the mention. Good stuff.

laxman2001 said...

The ranking behind Tennessee (at least by ESPN/USA Today is not all that surprising.

For one, teams like Tennessee, Kentucky, Duke, UNC etc. are always going to get a bit of a bump, just on name alone. Furthermore, even though we crushed them, they have beaten both Kansas and Kentucky, no small feat. And, unlike us they don't have any terrible losses. Their worst loss is what, USC? Other losses include barely losing to Purdue in the title game of a tournament, us twice, @UK, @UGA, @FLA. None of those are particularly bad. (Maybe you could argue UGA, but we did the same thing).
Meanwhile our losses include Western Kentucky, Illinois (who may just miss the tourney), and Cincinnati (who is a longshot at best). Tennessee has a harder strength of schedule, and only one more loss to show for it. So its not that surprising that they are ahead, at least in the ESPN poll. Besides, bracketology has them as a 4 seed, and us as a 3. And That's all that really matters, isn't it?

Seamus O'Toole said...

All good points, especially the last one. I would still argue that sweeping the head-to-head should count for more, particularly when our RPI is equal to or better than theirs depending on where you're looking. But then again, we never claimed not to be homers.