Inside the Numbers: Why February Georgetown Should Be Better Than January

The six games without Jabril this year could best be summarized as the great test of faith within our fanbase. Friends turned on each other, wars were fought on twitter and remotes were hurled across living rooms. It wasn't our best few weeks.

But then Jabril made his surprising return against Villanova and while I think Georgetown missed a huge opportunity for his return (I would have planned something like this), Georgetown played a good game against a very good opponent in Villanova and fell short at the end. Then Michigan State happened and the Hoyas followed it up with a strong showing at DePaul on Monday.

As I was working on the numbers for the DePaul game (posted below), I wanted to get an idea of how good the team played with and without Jabril. So for that, I looked up ESPN's BPI profile for Georgetown. The BPI index is a fairly recent advanced metric that was created by ESPN in partnership with Dean Oliver, the godfather of tempo-free basketball statistics. BPI takes injuries into account and also publishes a grade (0 - 100) for each game that considers how a team would have performed against an average opponent. Here's more on the BPI Index.

According to the BPI index, Georgetown played at a 73.6 rating with all their top players and a 57.9 rating while missing at least one top player (top player is defined as an individual w/in the top 5 of team minutes played). That's basically the difference between the 54th best team and the 130th best team. If you look at the chart of the BPI for the individual games, its even worse.

After that, I wanted to get a sense of how typical this drop-off is and so I gathered the BPI data for 577 teams over the previous two full seasons. I used a minimum of 4 games without a top player as the cut-off, which resulted in 412 observations. Here's the histogram.

To put Georgetown's drop-off in context, the Hoya's -15.7 performance is 1.55 standard deviations away from the mean, which puts it within the bottom 12% of the change in performance when a team loses a top player.

So this should tell us a few things:

  1. Jabril is an important player to the success of the team whether or not that's apparent in the box scores.
  2. The team does not have a bench capable of replacing the minutes of another injured player.
  3. The losing streak was a bit of an outlier. Going forward, Georgetown fans should expect a performance closer to how the team played against Butler (first game) and Villanova then against Providence or Seton Hall.

And here are the stats for the DePaul game:

Away - Georgetown Home - DePaul
1st Half 2nd Half Total 1st Half 2nd Half Total
Pace 32 31
Points 27 44 71 30 29 59
Efficiency 86.8 146.7 116.2 96.8 94.1 95.5
Dunk % 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Layup% 41.7% 50.0% 43.8% 71.4% 54.5% 61.1%
(Dunk + Layup)% 46.2% 60.0% 50.0% 62.5% 50.0% 55.0%
2-Pt Jumper% 14.3% 37.5% 26.7% 33.3% 20.0% 28.6%
2-Pt% 35.0% 46.2% 39.4% 47.1% 41.2% 44.1%
3-Pt Jumper% 20.0% 42.9% 29.4% 33.3% 18.2% 23.5%
Jumper% 17.6% 40.0% 28.1% 33.3% 18.8% 25.8%
FT% 53.8% 82.1% 73.2% 61.5% 69.2% 65.4%
Dunk Rate 2.5% 2.8% 2.7% 2.7% 2.6% 2.7%
Layup Rate 30.2% 11.3% 21.3% 19.1% 28.4% 23.9%
(Dunk + Layup) Rate 41.0% 16.0% 28.6% 25.2% 34.6% 30.1%
2-Pt Jumper Rate 17.6% 22.7% 20.0% 24.5% 12.9% 18.6%
2-Pt Rate 58.6% 38.6% 48.5% 49.7% 47.5% 48.7%
3-Pt Jumper Rate 25.2% 19.8% 22.7% 16.3% 28.4% 22.5%
Jumper Rate 42.8% 42.5% 42.6% 40.8% 41.3% 41.1%
FT Rate 14.4% 34.9% 24.0% 15.6% 14.8% 15.2%
Effictive Field Goal % 33.3% 52.5% 41.0% 47.8% 35.7% 41.2%
True Shooting % 37.8% 68.1% 52.2% 52.2% 43.0% 47.2%
Assist Rate
Unforced TOV Rate 5.0% 2.8% 4.0% 10.9% 5.2% 8.0%
Forced TOV Rate 5.0% 5.7% 5.3% 10.9% 7.7% 9.3%
TOV Rate 10.1% 8.5% 9.3% 21.8% 12.9% 17.2%
Block Rate 6.7% 25.0% 14.0% 17.4% 7.1% 11.8%
OR% 36.0% 35.7% 35.9% 37.5% 36.4% 36.8%
DR% 62.5% 63.6% 63.2% 64.0% 64.3% 64.1%

Adjusted 3-pt Makes

This doesn't account for shot selection, but can help to calm down everyone's emotional swings by trying to adjust for volatility. A positive number indicates that the expected points were greater than the realized points. For players w/ 25+ attempts, shooting percentages are from this season and if not shooting percentages for each player are from the 2012-2013 season when available. Otherwise, the team's 3-pt percentage for the 2013-2014 season is used in the calculation for each player.

DEPAUL +3.2 / GTOWN +0.3 / DEPAUL + 2.9

Stay Casual, my friends.

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