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Parity?

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vtcwbuff

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Out of curiosity or maybe boredom, I looked at the upset statistics for the top 25 teams (ESPN) this year. Nothing surprising, but a good indication of the separation between the elite teams (top 25?) and the rest of the 300 +/- cupcakes that make up D1.

Of the 297 games played by the ranked teams there have been but 25 upsets (8%) where a lower ranked or unranked team won the game against a higher ranked opponent. The scoring margin for top 25 teams is 21 points (25 points for the top 10 teams). Most of that margin is racked up against far inferior teams.

There have been but 34 games between ranked teams so far this season. Of those games 8 (24%) were upsets.
 
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I would like to see parity in women's basketball within my lifetime without drastic parity enducing legislation.
 

alexrgct

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I've posted something like this before, but there are three major impediments to parity in WCBB as I see it:

1. There is simply a cavernous divide between the cream of the crop high school prospects and everyone else. In MBB, Jeremy Lamb was ranked in the 70s, but came in and was an impact player. It wasn't that surprising- just another good evaluation by Jim Calhoun. It is rare, very rare, that a female high school player ranked in the 70s will be an impact player in WCBB. Hell, Kemba was a top 15-20 player- how many women's players have that kind of impact on a college team at the top 15 to 20 level? Some, but it's not as common. Look at who the first team AAs would be this year if the season ended today: Nneka, EDD, Skylar, Sims, and Griner. That's two former high school #1s and three other kids ranked in the top five or so. Sure, there will be the occasional Courtney Vandersloot or Angel McCaughtry, but there just aren't enough of those kinds of kids on the women's side.

2. The kids stay four years. In MCBB, the equivalents of Maya Moore and Brittney Griner are gone after a year. So while the top prospects still gravitate to a few programs, the don't stay long enough to forge a dynasty.

3. Not enough good coaches to go around. It is very recent that any number of WCBB coaches started making serious coin, and there's a question as to how financially reasonable those salaries are. Even without great players, programs like Marist and Green Bay have been able to make some noise. But there aren't enough Brian Giorgises or Matt Bollants out there.

In MCBB well-coached, experienced teams filled with talented kids if not elite NBA prospects can beat well-coached, inexperienced teams with elite kids. In WCBB, well-coached, experienced teams filled with elite WNBA prospcts beat up on poorly-coached, relatively inexperienced (in terms of playing meaningful games), and not especially talented teams.

Better coaching, more depth (and coaching, for that matter) in the high school ranks, and you'll see more parity. But unless there's a surge in professional salaries in the women's game, the super-elite players will still stay four years.
 

EricLA

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interesting points all. i think that there is "more" parity once you leave the top 3-5 teams in the country. in other words, i do think that Baylor, UCONN, ND, and maybe Stanford are quite a bit above everyone else in WCBB. i certainly don't see it as surprising if Georgetown, for example, beats Miami. or if LSU beats Vandy. i guess my point is that once you leave the top 3-5 teams, i think there is a bit more parity.

but i do agree that the divide between the top teams with better facilities, support, etc. and the "have-nots" is pretty large.
 

KnightBridgeAZ

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My one quibble with the above post is that I'm not going to accept that there are not enough good coaches. Not so much that there are a plethora of them, but at the college level that is not what is driving non-parity.

As I commented the other day, even a great coach has to have talent; also involved in all of this are facilities, budgets and the like that a coach can work with to attract talent. And the talent gap is greater, going to Alex's point about impact players.

So what you get, borrowing Alex's terminology a bit, is well coached, highly talented and experienced teams beating up on teams that are significantly less talented. If the less talented team happens to be especially well coached, it becomes a bit more challenging.

Incidently, Robin Selvig and former coach Mike Grannelli (sp?) are probably two good examples of coaches that are talented but have / had little "talent" to work with.
 

Ruffian75

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Great post alex....

When it becomes commonplace for a seed other than a 1, 2, or 3 making the FF. then we will be headed in the right direction regarding parity. Once in a while a 4 to 6 seed will slip into the FF but have any of them other than Rutgers ever played for an NC? The luck has always run out in that semi-final game
 

KnightBridgeAZ

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Great post alex....

When it becomes commonplace for a seed other than a 1, 2, or 3 making the FF. then we will be headed in the right direction regarding parity. Once in a while a 4 to 6 seed will slip into the FF but have any of them other than Rutgers ever played for an NC? The luck has always run out in that semi-final game
Although - technically - regardless of parity - the seedings should hold more or less true. A lot of the cinderella's on the men's side run out of gas, also; they are just often lower seeded to begin with.

And then there is the question of how well seeded teams are in the first place . . .:rolleyes:
 

MilfordHusky

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These players have surprised no one:

Nneka 1 or 2
EDD 1 or 2
Skylar between 2 and 4
Sims between 1 and 4 (roughly)
Griner 1
 
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I would like to see parity in women's basketball within my lifetime without drastic parity enducing legislation.
The thought of legislation would really blow my mind.
interesting points all. i think that there is "more" parity once you leave the top 3-5 teams in the country. in other words, i do think that Baylor, UCONN, ND, and maybe Stanford are quite a bit above everyone else in WCBB. i certainly don't see it as surprising if Georgetown, for example, beats Miami. or if LSU beats Vandy. i guess my point is that once you leave the top 3-5 teams, i think there is a bit more parity.

but i do agree that the divide between the top teams with better facilities, support, etc. and the "have-nots" is pretty large.
It is a slow process,but things are changing in young women seriousely playing basketball.The kind of Tournaments,summer programs and teams,the National teams and international play,SLOWLY ESPN and others are covering games! It is all on a path similar in a # of ways to boys basketball,but still well behind. I have watched girls/womens basketball before it was part of the NCAA and the quality,talent,athleticism, has changed dramatically. What has changed is all of the garbage in boys/mens basketball while womens college ball remains a 4 year student/athlete,team oriented/more fundametally taught and played sport! John Wooden<the Wizard> would talk about this for so many years. Geno has talked about the future of womens basketball and parity! It is definitely not there,but he sees it eventually happening. Is it there now,NO! Is it different than it was years ago yes!
Many things have to happen/evolve for it to continue to move in that direction! The Level of Interest of fans,public, etal have to cont to grow!
As we slowly move in that direction beyond a small # of elite teams< I want CT to continue to be where we are:)
 

Ruffian75

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Although - technically - regardless of parity - the seedings should hold more or less true. A lot of the cinderella's on the men's side run out of gas, also; they are just often lower seeded to begin with.

And then there is the question of how well seeded teams are in the first place . . .:rolleyes:

How well seeded were Rollie's #8Wildcats in '85? They beat #1 Michigan, #5 MD, #2 UNC, #2 Memphis, and #1 Georgetown

And of course there is last year's Huskie men that were #9 in the Bloated East tourney
 
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The men's game is as team oriented and fundamentally played(whatever the heck that means) played as it ever was. What has happned is that there are better athletes playing the game and playing it at an athletically high level. Unfortunately many of us old fogies cannot relate to today's game. It is no longer the nice game played in CYO gyms on weekends. The number of assists has not gone down, field goal and free throw percentages have not gone down. The game, itself, is as popular as it has ever been. John Wooden's days are long gone, as are other icons of sport like Vince Lombardi, Tom Landry, Casey Stengel, et al. Coach Wooden coached his last game in 1975. A lot has changed. Unfortunately, he did not. Nor did he have to. He retired on top. If he was still coaching in the 80's and 90's, he would have adapted. If the women's game was so funadmentally taught, the women's game would be fundamentally better. If it was funadmentally better, then why are we always discussing things like missed layups and the like? The women's game will grow as it's stars are promoted.

There is no more garbage in the game than there ever was. If anything, the hypocrisy is more out in the open for all to see. And Coach Wooden's hands were never, ever clean of the hypocrisy.
 
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I would like to see parity in women's basketball within my lifetime without drastic parity enducing legislation.
Why would parity be good in WCBB?
Is there parity in academics across the same population of schools? Is that somehow not fair?
Don't some schools specialize in Business, Science, etc.
Why do they all have to specialize in basketball, a relatively trivial pursuit?
 
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Why would parity be good in WCBB?
Is there parity in academics across the same population of schools? Is that somehow not fair?
Don't some schools specialize in Business, Science, etc.
Why do they all have to specialize in basketball, a relatively trivial pursuit?

Parity is but one factor in the continued growth of the game. The game needs more compelling matchups thoughout any season fo basketball. It needs a level of uncertainty in the outcomes of a higher percentage of contests.

While parity does not exist across the same population of schools, that population of schools has to maintain a certain standard to maintain accredidation. A school might specialize in business or science because of reputation, need, endowments, faculty, etc.

It is one thing for a college to field a basketball team, quite another to field a perennially competitive team. A compettitive team requires a commitment to excellence from the top down. Basketball may be a relatively trivial pursuit, but it has value. If nothing else, it increases exposusre to the point where more students and better students might apply to the school because of its athletic reputation. Coach Auriemma may have commented on this in one or both of the books I have read. The average SAT scores at UConn have risen steadily; Attributable, in large part, to the popularity of the men's and women's basketball programs.
 

ThisJustIn

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Just a thought on layups being a "fundamental."

1) Men v. women: upper body strength is different as is their vertical leap
2) Geometry lesson (with inspiration from Geno): what's the average height of men v. women bball players, what's average vertical leap, what kind of triangle do they make? If the basket were raised so the triangles were "equivalent," what kind of impact would that have on the men's game?
 
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Parity is but one factor in the continued growth of the game. The game needs more compelling matchups thoughout any season fo basketball. It needs a level of uncertainty in the outcomes of a higher percentage of contests.

While parity does not exist across the same population of schools, that population of schools has to maintain a certain standard to maintain accredidation. A school might specialize in business or science because of reputation, need, endowments, faculty, etc.

It is one thing for a college to field a basketball team, quite another to field a perennially competitive team. A compettitive team requires a commitment to excellence from the top down. Basketball may be a relatively trivial pursuit, but it has value. If nothing else, it increases exposusre to the point where more students and better students might apply to the school because of its athletic reputation. Coach Auriemma may have commented on this in one or both of the books I have read. The average SAT scores at UConn have risen steadily; Attributable, in large part, to the popularity of the men's and women's basketball programs.
Good points.
 
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Just a thought on layups being a "fundamental."

1) Men v. women: upper body strength is different as is their vertical leap
2) Geometry lesson (with inspiration from Geno): what's the average height of men v. women bball players, what's average vertical leap, what kind of triangle do they make? If the basket were raised so the triangles were "equivalent," what kind of impact would that have on the men's game?

I think I understand what you are saying. The baskets set at 10 feet allows for more offensive diversity. Raising the basket gives an even greater advantage to the tall and to the vertically gifted. Not to mention lower shooting percentages. The baskets were also not lowered to account for gender differences in physical strength; Which might account for lower participation among younger girls.

Layups, in my mind, are fundamantal because it is the very first shot one learns; the very first shot one perfects, it is practiced repetively while warming up, it is the shot for which teams scheme to get as many as possible.
 

Icebear

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Just a thought on layups being a "fundamental."

1) Men v. women: upper body strength is different as is their vertical leap
2) Geometry lesson (with inspiration from Geno): what's the average height of men v. women bball players, what's average vertical leap, what kind of triangle do they make? If the basket were raised so the triangles were "equivalent," what kind of impact would that have on the men's game?

I have long said that this is the effective issue regarding missed bunnies. That and no one wants to touch them after the bears are done with them.
 

UcMiami

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Alex - I think you do not give your second point enough credit - it is not only that the Maya's and Griner's in the men's game leave after one year, it is that the lesser talents do not leave - so you have some men's teams with all upper classmen that have played together for three and four years playing against teams that are dominated by freshman phenoms - that is 18 year olds playing against 21 year olds who have learned how to play defense and play as a team. That adds more parity to the men's game and more ups and downs for the best teams as they have to be constantly starting over.
In the women's game, all the players stay for four years so the lesser talents are playing against the 'freshman phenom' after they become sophmores, juniors and seniors. Look at the progressions made by Maya, and Tina, and .... over their four years, and each year you are adding new highly talented freshman to their teams.
 
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