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Villanova Basketball: Wisdom of Crowds Recap

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The votes are tallied and it's time to announce the results of our sixth annual "Wisdom of Crowds" poll.

Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

A record total 5,482 votes were cast in this year's Wisdom of Crowds voting. The primary question on my mind as I tallied the results was whether the Crowd thought 'Nova would be able to replace the offense lost through the graduations of JayVaughn Pinkston and Darrun Hilliard and the transfer of Dylan Ennis to Oregon.  The news is good for 'Nova fans - the Crowd predicts that the Cats should have just enough new production to make up the deficit. The charts below show where the Crowd predicts the points will come from:

Predicted Player PPGs

The chart below shows how the lost offense of Messrs. Hilliard, Pinkston and Ennis will be made up by the scoring of the freshmen plus the year-over-year increases in production from the sophomores, juniors and seniors.

Season-Over-Season Changes in Players' PPGs

Other Observations from the Data

  1. The Whole Was Worth the Same as the Sum of the Parts: In past years, the Crowd was more optimistic predicting the PPG of individual players than the team as a whole. Not this year. The predicted scoring of the team as a whole almost exactly matched the summation of the predicted scoring of the individual players.

  2. The Quicker Shot Clock Will Not Impact Team Scoring vs. Last Season. This year, the NCAA rules call for a 30 second shot clock vs. 35 seconds last season. Yet, the Crowd predicted team scoring of 77 PPG, the same as last season.

  3. Freshman Will Have an Impact: Although Tim Delaney will likely redshirt after hip surgery, freshmen Brunson, Divincenzo and Bridges will combine for almost 20 PPG.

  4. Guard U:  With only three scholarship players listed at the forward position -- Ochefu, Jenkins and Reynolds, the Cats will get 70% of their offense from the guard position.  Hang in there one more year, Jim Dribbleless. Reinforcements are on the way!

Computational Methodology: To calculate the PPG for each player, we computed the weighted average PPG for based on the number of votes cast for each PPG voting option.  In our polling in prior seasons, we normalized the PPG predictions for each player based on the readers' predicted team scoring. However, that was unnecessary this year because the summation of the predicted scores of the individual players matched the predicted PPG of the team as a whole.