Nerdly Nebraska.

2019-2020 HuskerGeek Ratings Leaders

Sport School Rating
ViPR D1 Volleyball Stanford 2,018.7625
BPR D1 NCAAWBB Baylor 0.8446

Football ohio st 12.3626
Men's Basketball ohio st 13.4320
Women's Basketball uconn 13.4678
Ice Hockey minnesota st 10.2720
Men's Soccer virginia 10.4612
Women's Soccer stanford 13.1583
Women's Volleyball stanford 10.6300
Field Hockey north carolina 12.2787

ViPR NCAA Volleyball Ratings

Division 1

Rnk. Team Conference
1st Stanford Pac-12
2nd Wisconsin Big Ten
3rd Nebraska Big Ten
4th Penn St. Big Ten
5th Kentucky SEC
6th Texas Big 12
7th Minnesota Big Ten
8th Washington Pac-12
9th Utah Pac-12
10th Pittsburgh ACC

Division 1 Standouts

Award Name Team
-- Expand Division 1 --

Division 2

Rnk. Team Conference
1st Neb.-Kearney Mid-America Intercollegiate
2nd Cal St. San B'dino CCAA
3rd Northern St. NSIC
4th Washburn Mid-America Intercollegiate
5th Wayne St. (NE) NSIC
6th Rockhurst GLVC
7th Minn. Duluth NSIC
8th Concordia-St. Paul NSIC
9th St. Cloud St. NSIC
10th Western Wash. Great Northwest

Division 2 Standouts

Award Name Team
-- Expand Division 2 --

Division 3

Rnk. Team Conference
1st Johns Hopkins Centennial
2nd Calvin Michigan Intercol. Ath. Assn.
3rd Carthage CCIW
4th Colorado Col. SCAC
5th Chicago UAA
6th Trinity (TX) SCAC
7th Muskingum OAC
8th Claremont-M-S SCIAC
9th Emory UAA
10th Transylvania HCAC

Division 3 Standouts

Award Name Team
-- Expand Division 3 --

BPR NCAA Women's Basketball Ratings

Division 1

Rnk. Team Conference
1st Baylor Big 12
2nd UConn AAC
3rd South Carolina SEC
4th Oregon Pac-12
5th Mississippi St. SEC
6th Georgia Tech ACC
7th Indiana Big Ten
8th Maryland Big Ten
9th Oregon St. Pac-12
10th Louisville ACC
-- Expand Division 1 --

Division 2

Rnk. Team Conference
1st Grand Valley St. GLIAC
2nd Ashland GLIAC
3rd Drury GLVC
4th Alas. Anchorage Great Northwest
5th Union (TN) Gulf South
6th Walsh G-MAC
7th Ky. Wesleyan G-MAC
8th Adelphi NE10
9th Virginia Union CIAA
10th MSU Moorhead NSIC
-- Expand Division 2 --

Division 3

Rnk. Team Conference
1st Hope Michigan Intercol. Ath. Assn.
2nd Tufts NESCAC
3rd Bowdoin NESCAC
4th Trinity (TX) SCAC
5th Amherst NESCAC
6th Williams NESCAC
7th George Fox NWC
8th Bethel (MN) MIAC
9th St. Thomas (MN) MIAC
10th Whitman NWC
-- 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 7-0-0 12.9360 13.1368 14.5292 12.9488 13.4678 11.6629 11.8949
2nd ohio st Men's Basketball 4-0-0 13.1890 13.7317 13.1635 13.1544 13.4320 9.0863 12.6753
3rd oklahoma st Women's Basketball 4-1-0 12.7829 13.1661 14.0856 12.7888 13.2764 10.1055 13.2523
4th indiana Women's Basketball 9-0-0 13.1846 13.0854 13.1042 13.1939 13.2698 10.8206 13.2491
5th stanford Women's Soccer 23-1-0 12.3438 13.2006 13.5309 10.7544 13.1583 6.3260 -0.2869
6th kansas Men's Basketball 6-1-0 12.8369 12.9178 13.0271 12.8424 13.0692 11.9662 9.8028
7th south carolina Women's Basketball 8-1-0 13.0644 12.8406 11.8925 13.0772 12.8713 11.7620 12.0306
8th ohio st Football 2-0-0 12.3752 12.5592 14.0863 12.3731 12.8390 13.4081 10.6032
9th st marys tx Men's Soccer 1-0-1 10.4802 13.1184 14.3165 11.0432 12.8379 10.1192 -4.1078
10th mississippi st Women's Basketball 8-1-0 12.8792 12.5452 12.4658 12.8693 12.8330 13.4968 9.8528
11th san diego st Men's Basketball 5-0-0 11.7928 12.2034 13.8901 11.7265 12.5438 6.6125 12.5604
12th baylor Women's Basketball 7-3-0 13.0564 12.8658 10.3878 13.0644 12.5159 12.5199 11.2156
13th ohio st Football 10-0-0 12.3763 12.3507 12.1577 12.3769 12.3626 13.0299 10.9886
14th north carolina Women's Soccer 24-1-1 10.4996 12.3686 13.3941 8.3654 12.2806 4.9791 -0.2824
15th north carolina Field Hockey 22-0-0 12.0960 12.2140 12.4314 12.0959 12.2787 14.3839 8.4725
16th ut arlington Women's Basketball 4-2-0 12.1246 12.0426 12.1721 12.1286 12.2330 9.3363 12.8325
17th ohio st Men's Basketball 4-0-0 11.5228 12.0610 12.4971 11.4676 12.0015 6.6678 12.1051
18th southern california Women's Soccer 2-1-0 9.8692 12.0990 13.3711 7.5011 11.9942 6.6120 -2.4123
19th duke Men's Basketball 9-1-0 11.7102 11.8624 11.9261 11.7187 11.9502 10.4373 9.3309
20th cal st fullerton Women's Soccer 1-0-0 10.9231 12.1148 12.1489 8.8224 11.8766 8.1783 -3.2400
21st maryland Women's Basketball 7-2-0 12.2452 11.9538 10.3524 12.2549 11.8633 11.7016 10.5615
22nd arizona Men's Basketball 9-0-0 11.3614 11.5327 12.4248 11.3712 11.8247 10.7371 8.5574
23rd oregon Men's Basketball 6-2-0 11.5670 11.6162 11.6831 11.5723 11.7599 9.6628 9.7417
24th stanford Women's Basketball 8-0-0 11.2904 11.2803 12.3939 11.2984 11.6547 11.0849 9.4259
25th mich st Men's Basketball 3-1-0 12.0600 12.0284 9.7864 12.0624 11.6119 9.9540 10.2549