Nerdly Nebraska.

2019-2020 HuskerGeek Ratings Leaders

Sport School Rating
ViPR D1 Volleyball Stanford 1,839.6298

Football ohio st 12.7316
Men's Basketball kansas 12.7368
Women's Basketball south carolina 13.4324
Baseball ucla 12.9478
Softball ucla 10.9838
Ice Hockey north dakota 10.7002
Men's Lacrosse syracuse 7.8562
Women's Lacrosse north carolina 10.7252
Men's Soccer georgetown 10.7279
Women's Soccer stanford 13.0262
Men's Volleyball byu 11.1006
Women's Volleyball stanford 11.3000
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 Utah Pac-12
9th Baylor Big 12
10th Washington Pac-12

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 Rockhurst GLVC
5th Washburn Mid-America Intercollegiate
6th Wayne St. (NE) NSIC
7th Minn. Duluth NSIC
8th Concordia-St. Paul NSIC
9th Western Wash. Great Northwest
10th St. Cloud St. NSIC

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
-- Expand Division 1 --

Division 2

Rnk. Team Conference
-- Expand Division 2 --

Division 3

Rnk. Team Conference
-- 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 2020-2021.
1st loras Women's Lacrosse 1-0-0 17.1766 16.0628 13.0479 17.1711 15.5011 11.7668 21.1360
2nd south carolina Women's Basketball 33-1-0 13.2517 13.1135 13.7844 13.2562 13.4324 12.7217 11.7891
3rd baylor Women's Basketball 27-4-0 13.2948 13.1475 12.6957 13.3035 13.2019 12.0395 12.6030
4th maryland Women's Basketball 28-4-0 13.1211 12.8854 13.0195 13.1194 13.1268 13.1251 11.1059
5th stanford Women's Soccer 23-1-1 12.2747 13.0852 13.3325 10.6576 13.0262 6.3494 -0.1968
6th oregon Women's Basketball 30-4-0 12.9265 12.7360 13.0358 12.9065 12.9840 13.9145 9.8862
7th st marys tx Men's Soccer 1-0-1 10.6622 13.2603 14.3988 11.3128 12.9738 9.5255 -3.4134
8th uconn Women's Basketball 29-3-0 12.8612 12.8502 12.9880 12.8706 12.9684 11.3358 12.5255
9th ucla Baseball 12-2-0 11.9994 13.2155 13.1016 11.9985 12.9478 11.9724 8.9038
10th kansas Men's Basketball 28-3-0 11.9996 12.4005 14.0488 11.9934 12.7368 10.0153 10.7904
11th ohio st Football 10-0-0 12.6908 12.7554 12.6000 12.6920 12.7316 13.4198 11.3183
12th ohio st Football 13-1-0 12.5559 12.6884 12.8463 12.5576 12.6969 13.2149 11.2614
13th ohio st Men's Basketball 4-0-0 11.9727 12.5684 13.7122 11.9234 12.6467 7.7599 12.5578
14th north carolina Women's Soccer 24-1-2 10.5751 12.5270 13.6672 8.4580 12.4541 5.0123 -0.1298
15th north carolina Field Hockey 22-0-0 12.0960 12.2140 12.4314 12.0959 12.2787 14.3839 8.4725
16th charleston wv Men's Soccer 5-0-0 9.7356 12.5868 13.9168 11.2324 12.2787 0.8252 5.7405
17th southern california Women's Soccer 2-1-0 9.8936 12.1648 13.4874 7.5316 12.0643 6.7103 -2.3733
18th mich st Men's Basketball 3-1-0 12.2528 12.3446 10.8196 12.2499 11.9965 10.6913 10.6452
19th gonzaga Men's Basketball 31-2-0 11.5724 11.6459 12.5288 11.5517 11.9454 13.5284 7.3014
20th cal st fullerton Women's Soccer 1-0-0 10.9247 12.1331 12.1790 8.8197 11.8935 8.3555 -3.2783
21st utah state Men's Basketball 5-0-0 12.1211 12.3140 10.2225 12.1120 11.7544 9.9193 11.0580
22nd duke Men's Basketball 25-6-0 11.3556 11.6170 12.0847 11.3524 11.7070 12.1480 8.0689
23rd virginia Women's Soccer 17-2-3 10.3935 11.6476 12.1514 8.3228 11.5482 5.1978 -0.3948
24th lsu Football 17-0-0 11.3129 11.3701 12.0465 11.3106 11.5254 12.5669 9.4754
25th clemson Football 15-1-0 11.2705 11.5084 11.8566 11.2755 11.4996 10.8742 11.1141