UConn/Butler: This Game Was Downright Offensive (Or Defensive I Guess)

We’ll hear about Butler’s historically poor shooting in this game, but UConn shot historically bad also.  UConn had the worst field goal percentage for a winner of the national title game since the tournament expanded to 64 teams in 1985.  There have been three other under .400 FG% games since 1985: Arkansas ’94, a poor shooting, but faced paced physical team; Kentucky ’96, Antoine Walker was a leader on that team, need I say more; and Arizona ’97,  a very perimeter oriented team.

I’d like to acknowledge where I found the hard-to-find pre-2002 box scores: 

http://www.hickoksports.com/

Other Posts:

UConn Back In The Final Four: Is Parity For Women’s Basketball Out Of Reach?

When I saw the score of the UConn-Duke game it made me wonder when women’s college basketball will achieve some sense of parity and competitive balance.  75-40 is a ridiculous score for an elite eight game, especially one that includes a 1st and 2nd seed.  So I did this short study to determine if this score is indicative of lack of parity or just an exception.  There were some mixed results that were also somewhat surprising.
As seen in the table below, Regional Final (Elite Eight) games show about a 5 point difference in scoring margin difference between the men and the women over the last ten years. 

That difference is significant and shows that there is still a measurable talent gap between the top 10 or 15 teams and the rest of women’s college basketball.  However, that is not the end of the story.  When you look at another measure, average scoring margin in games where both teams are at least a 2 seed, the parity gap between men and women narrows.  I use that measure because a 1 or 2 seed can’t play another 1 or 2 seed until the Elite Eight or Final Four, where presumably the pretenders and cinderellas are weeded out.  Since 2002 there have 24 of these games in the men’s tournament and 38 in the women’s tournament.  These numbers confirmed my suspicions; the men’s tournament doesn’t have as many 1 vs 2, 1vs 1, or 2 vs 2 games because there are more upsets.  However, the average scoring margin for men was 10.6 and the women’s was only slightly, if insignificantly higher at 11.3.

At the completion of this study I came to the conclusion that the men’s game has a minimal edge of over the women’s game when comes to parity amongst the top 15 teams. As for the rest of teams, a tremendous gap still exists and may never be closed. Additionally, part of the 5 point gap between women and men in Elite Eight scoring margins is that any cinderella or upstart team in the women’s game is usually overmatched and blown out in the Elite Eight.

Other Posts:

http://theresastatforthat.blogspot.com/2011/04/can-nba-team-peak-too-soon-and-still.html
http://theresastatforthat.blogspot.com/2011/03/vcu-butler-final-four-matchup-would-be.html

http://theresastatforthat.blogspot.com/2011/03/were-yankees-best-offense-in-baseball.html

http://theresastatforthat.blogspot.com/2011/03/nfls-new-kickoff-rules-are-they.html

http://theresastatforthat.blogspot.com/2011/03/carmelo-what-has-he-done-to-knicks.html

Kemba Walker’s NBA Future: I Don’t See Him on The Level of Ray Allen, Ben Gordon, Rip, or Caron, but He Should Be Better Than the Rest of Those Guys.



UCONN has produced some really good NBA guards, and this list doesn’t include F/G Rudy Gay.



Check out this post:
There’s A Stat For That: What Were The Best Conferences in Mens College Hoops in 2011?