College basketball data analytics dynamos have concocted new, nebulous, and mentally torturous ways to size up teams and whether they deserve to be selected as one of the best 68 in the country invited to the March Madness Tournament.
The three key metrics you need to be dialed up on are NET rankings, team value indexes, and efficiency ratings. It’s a complex mix of algorithmic formulas, trigonometry sines and cosines, and a splash of Avogadro’s Number.
Why stop there? Let’s really make this hard to understand and as tedious as traffic jams. Throw return on invested capital, sub-prime mortgage loans, and capital gains taxes.
Complicate that gumbo with a few high-tech concepts such as solutioning, the seven-layer stack, and Moore’s Law which holds that the performance of technology doubles every 18 months unless it’s generative AI which doubles every 18 seconds.
You have to wonder why the March Madness mathematicians made up these new metrics on net rankings and efficiency. The answer is, as it always is in every situation in life no matter the context, country, or continent, to make more money.
Math mavens who came up with these new metrics figured they could generate more ad, click-through, and time-on-page revenues by luring people to recklessly gamble on these percentages kind of like during the Super Bowl when gamble-aholics will be betting on how many times Taylor Swift blows a kiss to Travis Swift on the field and how many Super Bowl Commercials will arouse Sportface to go to the junk food store for more Tostitos Family Packs.
These new metrics feel like a money mooch by somebody specific and I think I know who’s behind it. You know him, Joey Brackets, who for the past 20 years has been predicting the March Madness brackets all season long and makes royalty kickbacks every time someone clicks on a bracketology article no matter if it’s published during the basketball season or the middle of the summer when everyone’s at the beach hanging out eating boardwalk fries and funnel cakes scrolling on their smartphones for something to waste time on.
Can’t we just not have to think about Quad 1, 2, 3, and 4 wins and how they get calculated with net rankings? Why in our free time do we have to think about math and percentages and numbers and adding and, worse of all, division? It hurts our heads.