HSAC is a student-run organization at Harvard University dedicated to the quantitative analysis of sports strategy and management. This blog features the original contributions of Harvard undergraduates, graduates, faculty, and affiliates. HSAC does research for several sports-related publications and companies. Please contact us at harvardsportsanalysis@gmail.com if you have any questions or want more information.

NFL Draft: Do BCS Champions Make NFL Busts?

by Henry Johnson With the NFL draft less than one week away, teams are scrambling to determine which characteristics of potential picks matter and which ones don’t. One possible trap to which teams might fall prey is an attraction to BCS champions. Players with national championship rings, after all, earn heightened media exposure and a …Read More

Does NHL Playoff Seeding Matter?

by Kurt Bullard NHL Playoff season is upon us, and with it, the unpredictability of the chase for the Stanley Cup. In 2012, the Los Angeles Kings not only won the Stanley Cup as an eight seed out of the Western Conference, but did so in dominating fashion, dropping only four games en route to …Read More

The Steve Kerr Effect

By Harrison Chase Coming off a fifty win season last year, the Golden State Warriors fired coach Mark Jackson and brought in unproven Steve Kerr. The results have nothing short of amazing. They have been the best team in the league this season, with a 10 game lead over the second place Rockets in the …Read More

The Link Between Tattoos and Technical Fouls

by Henry Johnson “The universality of tattooing is a curious subject for speculation,” observed Captain James Cook in 1779. A lot has changed since then, but the intrigue surrounding body ink remains. It was Jack London who, in 1883, was said to have remarked, “Show me a man with a tattoo and I’ll show you …Read More

NCAA Tournament: Which Rounds See the Biggest Improvement in Seeds?

by Henry Johnson The NCAA Tournament’s round of 16 teams is deemed sweet for good reason: it’s when the matchups heat up. Gone are the pretenders, the double digit seeds biting at the ankles of favorites, the one-round wonders and the beneficiaries of easy paths. The Sweet Sixteen is very often the first chance to see …Read More

“That was a close one!”: Margin of Victory in the NCAA Tournament Round of 64

by Tomo Lazovich The past two days of this year’s NCAA tournament have been filled with upsets, close calls, and nail biting finishes. This round of 64 has been so exciting that I began to wonder how close the games of the 2015 tournament have been relative to prior years. Thanks to the folks over …Read More

What are the Chances Your Team Knocks Off Kentucky?

by Harrison Chase Kentucky is by far the best team in the nation, and the clear favorite to win the NCAA tournament, no matter what metric you look at. Still, even being the biggest favorite in history, KenPom, one of the premier college basketball ranking sites, gives them “just” a 34% chance of winning it …Read More

HSAC’s 65 Facts: March Madness 2015

by Will Ezekowitz It is important to remember that statistically predicting the NCAA tournament, despite what FiveThirtyEight and others may tell you, is largely a fool’s errand. Most of these games are close to coin tosses anyway, and one tiny swing can change everything. For example, last year in the first round Team X was …Read More

How Does One Year’s Tournament Performance Affect the Next?

  by Kurt Bullard After finishing the 2014 season 35-1 and running the table in the conference, Wichita State earned a one-seed to the dismay of mid-major haters around the country. The Shockers drew the No. 8 Kentucky in the Round of 32, losing after a potential Fred VanVleet three-pointer clanked off the iron. Earlier …Read More

Conference Bias in the NCAA Tournament

by Kurt Bullard With the brackets now set and Harvard cementing its status as an Ivy League dynasty with four straight NCAA Tournament bids, over 40 million people will begin to fill out brackets for the chance to win bragging rights and, for those to whom that is not enough, possibly a cash prize. March …Read More