Nerdly Nebraska.

2018-2019 HuskerGeek Ratings Leaders

Sport School Rating
ViPR D1 Volleyball Stanford 1,750.6919
BPR D1 NCAAWBB Oregon 0.7987

Football alabama 12.7060
Men's Basketball duke 13.5781
Women's Basketball uconn 13.6085
Ice Hockey st cloud st 9.6944
Men's Soccer palm beach atl 11.0787
Women's Soccer usc 12.7838
Women's Volleyball stanford 13.0484
Field Hockey north carolina 12.5324

BPR NCAA Women's Basketball Ratings

Division 1

Rnk. Team Conference
1st Oregon Pac-12
2nd Mississippi St. SEC
3rd Baylor Big 12
4th UConn AAC
5th Notre Dame ACC
6th Louisville ACC
7th Marquette Big East
8th Iowa St. Big 12
9th Oregon St. Pac-12
10th Stanford Pac-12
-- Expand Division 1 --

Division 2

Rnk. Team Conference
1st Ashland GLIAC
2nd Drury GLVC
3rd Fort Hays St. MIAA
4th Lewis GLVC
5th Grand Valley St. GLIAC
6th Fla. Southern Sunshine State
7th Lubbock Christian Heartland
8th Minn. Duluth NSIC
9th Indiana (PA) PSAC
10th Northwest Nazarene Great Northwest
-- Expand Division 2 --

Division 3

Rnk. Team Conference
1st Thomas More ACAA
2nd Bowdoin NESCAC
3rd Tufts NESCAC
4th St. Thomas (MN) MIAC
5th Amherst NESCAC
6th Trine MIAA
7th Wis.-Oshkosh WIAC
8th DeSales MAC Freedom
9th DePauw NCAC
10th Wartburg American Rivers
-- Expand Division 3 --

ViPR NCAA Volleyball Ratings

Division 1

Rnk. Team Conference
1st Stanford Pac-12
2nd Nebraska Big Ten
3rd Minnesota Big Ten
5th Illinois Big Ten
6th Wisconsin Big Ten
7th Penn St. Big Ten
8th Kentucky SEC
9th Texas Big 12
10th Pittsburgh ACC

Division 1 Standouts

Award Name Team
-- Expand Division 1 --

Division 2

Rnk. Team Conference
1st Cal St. San B'dino CCAA
2nd Western Wash. Great Northwest
3rd Minn. Duluth NSIC
4th Southwest Minn. St. NSIC
5th Concordia-St. Paul NSIC
6th Northern St. NSIC
7th Washburn MIAA
8th Neb.-Kearney MIAA
9th Lewis GLVC
10th Rockhurst GLVC

Division 2 Standouts

Award Name Team
-- Expand Division 2 --

Division 3

Rnk. Team Conference
1st Wittenberg NCAC
2nd Emory UAA
3rd Thomas More ACAA
4th Calvin MIAA
5th Wis.-Eau Claire WIAC
6th Gust. Adolphus MIAC
7th Texas-Dallas ASC
8th Juniata Landmark
9th Colorado Col. SCAC
10th Trinity (TX) SCAC

Division 3 Standouts

Award Name Team
-- Expand Division 3 --

Advanced Rate Statistics for NCAA Women’s Volleyball

Or Why Per Set Statistics are Bullsh*t

Pop quiz.

Question 1: How many points is a set in NCAA Division 1 Volleyball?

If you said twenty-five, you are wrong. If you said twenty-five except in a fifth set when it is only fifteen, you are wrong.  If you said it depends, then congratulations you have won the game.

Question 2: Name each team that corresponds to the primary or secondary color referenced in the following table.

Hint: These figures are the average points per set for each Big Ten team last season.

Team Points Per Set
Red 41.12
Blue 42.49
Red 42.50
Red 42.87
Red 42.94
Orange 43.06
Purple 43.19
Yellow 43.23
Red 43.43
Red 43.51
Yellow 43.88
Green 43.96
Red 43.97
Blue 44.29

Answers are at the bottom.

This presents a significant issue when it comes to doing rate statistics.   A four kill per set player at 41.12 points per set would average more than 4.3 kps if they had the same kill rate and played for the last team in the table averaging 44.29 points per set.  A quick look at the current KPS table on NCAA Stats says that’s the difference between being 57th and 34th.  A significant difference.  Additionally, because the gap will widen linearly as the initial numbers grow, the result is that the players at the very top of the chart can be misrepresented to the highest degree.  That’s simply unacceptable when trying to use a statistic to formulate any significant statistical argument.

And that’s not even the worst example I could come up with.

Per Set statistics are meaningless without additional context.  The context that a person would need to supply to make those statistics worthwhile is tedious and time consuming to track and calculate.   This results in volleyball fans and the media continually relying on and relaying statistics that in reality mean very little.

It needs to change, and that’s the purpose of this article and a couple of pages that I’ve now added to the site.  While per set statistics are exceptionally flawed, points are not.  In fact, points applied in the right way can be exceptionally accurate when calculating a rate statistic.

Here are the top ten players on the current(9/15/2018) KPS leaders table.

NCAA Volleyball D1 KPS Leaders 9-15-2018

Here is the same list, but instead of per set, the rates are per point in each team’s games.

Kills Per 100 Points

Rk. Name Team KPP
1 13.8140
2 12.8452
3 11.5678
4 11.4781
5 10.9756
6 10.9277
7 10.8782
8 10.8467
9 10.7735
10 10.6240

There are differences and there can be extreme differences. In fact, with many of the common statistics volleyball fans and the media use, using points is inherently flawed.  When measuring kill rates for players, total points in a match has an inherent flaw.  Specifically, during any match there will inevitably be points wher a player who plays for all rotations will still have no chance to get a kill, namely aces and service errors.

AN: There are caveats beyond this as well. Not every player plays six rotations and there are points beyond aces and service errors during which a player would also by definition not have a chance to get a kill. Rotational errors are the specific issue in this case because I did not have the foresight to track them efficiently in my database and will need to do some significant redesign before I can efficiently account for those points.

Beyond using total points for a rate, simple subtraction can be used measure the rate at which a player gets a kill for every point in play.

This is the table for the statistic named Kills per Point-In-Play.  Original name, I know.

Kills Per 100 Points In Play

Rk. Name Team KPIP
1 16.6556
2 14.8148
3 13.5862
4 13.3621
5 13.2583
6 13.1679
7 12.9555
8 12.6316
9 12.6050
10 12.5421

It’s not even the same list as the original per point list.  While this approach is not currently perfect, it’s still much better than using per set because the denominator of the statistic being calculated means the same thing across all players.  The context per point statistics provide is important because without it volleyball statistics are very nearly meaningless.  An instance of “Don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good.” if you will.  Making even incremental progress toward better understanding and knowledge is important.

Measuring virtually every statistic by points played improves it drastically, but Aces and Service Errors per set make the least sense as a statistic.  It is entirely possible to play a set in which a primary server will not serve during the set.  In fact, in fifth sets, it actually isn”t all that rare.  Luckily, NCAA Play-By-Play pages happen to track exactly who serves each point, a fortunate thing in this instance because those pages can be used to get per serve rates for aces, service errors, and service points.

AN: This(A primary server not getting the opportunity to serve.) actually happened to Lauren Stivrins in Set 3 of the Nebraska vs Missouri State less than three hours after I saved my latest draft of this article. Yeah, that happened.

These statistics and more have been made available on each team page as well as Division and Conference leaders.  The leaders are available using the “View Complete Advanced Statistics Leaders” link on each division or conference page.

And that friends, is why per set statistics are bullsh*t.

Answer Key

Top to Bottom: Rutgers, Penn State, Nebraska, Wisconsin, Indiana, Illinois, Northwestern, Iowa, Maryland, Minnesota, Purdue, Michigan State, Ohio State, Michigan

The Best This Year

These are the current all sport rankings for the school year of 2019-2020.
1st uconn Women's Basketball 6-0-0 13.5842 13.4520 13.1857 13.5938 13.6085 12.1635 12.2332
2nd duke Men's Basketball 8-1-0 13.8649 13.6067 12.2720 13.8113 13.5781 14.9721 8.3583
3rd stanford Women's Volleyball 31-1-0 13.0966 13.0789 13.0791 13.0968 13.0484 11.2456 13.7971
4th usc Women's Soccer 5-1-2 9.9639 12.9863 14.2735 7.9790 12.7838 5.6213 -2.1232
5th gonzaga Men's Basketball 8-0-0 12.6238 12.3384 12.8009 12.5607 12.7803 14.3477 6.9830
6th alabama Football 13-0-0 12.5433 12.7031 12.9210 12.5476 12.7060 12.6612 11.6363
7th north carolina Field Hockey 23-0-0 12.4539 12.5061 12.5151 12.4539 12.5324 13.8630 9.6644
8th florida state Women's Soccer 9-1-1 9.4070 12.5564 14.1022 7.4542 12.3976 5.3882 -2.1191
9th marquette Women's Basketball 5-1-0 12.6155 12.2418 10.9986 12.5951 12.2844 13.2495 9.2296
10th stanford Women's Soccer 22-1-2 9.3646 12.3583 13.7190 7.1362 12.1784 3.5027 -0.3904
11th clemson Football 13-0-0 11.8837 12.0109 12.7400 11.8892 12.1403 11.4765 11.5604
12th auburn Men's Basketball 6-1-0 12.3617 12.2082 10.7909 12.3552 12.0990 11.3016 9.2457
13th mississippi st Women's Basketball 7-0-0 12.8072 12.1946 9.4726 12.7918 12.0253 13.2172 9.6248
14th oregon Women's Basketball 5-0-0 11.7537 11.5326 12.5468 11.7278 12.0156 12.7344 8.1736
15th ucla Women's Soccer 17-3-2 9.4739 12.1835 13.3041 7.1107 12.0016 3.8747 -0.7696
16th tennessee Men's Basketball 5-1-0 11.4138 11.7159 12.8074 11.3970 11.9965 8.0466 10.6291
17th notre dame Women's Basketball 7-1-0 11.9042 11.4922 11.9050 11.8703 11.9405 13.1107 8.0455
18th virginia tech Men's Basketball 6-1-0 11.9276 12.2774 10.8839 11.9057 11.8798 8.3429 11.1654
19th michigan Men's Basketball 8-0-0 11.4195 12.0324 12.2741 11.3174 11.8794 5.3289 13.0190
20th southern california Women's Soccer 15-2-2 9.1891 11.9367 13.1727 6.9038 11.7789 3.4972 -0.4852
21st kansas Men's Basketball 6-0-0 10.6855 10.9125 14.0986 10.6204 11.7574 12.9163 5.2348
22nd georgia Football 11-2-0 11.3124 11.5898 11.9576 11.3179 11.5601 10.9503 10.9783
23rd texas tech Men's Basketball 7-0-0 11.0189 11.5809 11.7070 10.9597 11.4382 6.0159 11.7965
24th nebraska Men's Basketball 6-1-0 11.4824 11.9334 10.3745 11.4616 11.4299 7.9069 10.8578
25th ohio st Football 4-0-0 10.9680 10.9622 12.3163 10.9191 11.2794 14.9830 6.1360