Ivy League Efficiency Margins, Week 2

By John Ezekowitz

Last week, I took a look at the Efficiency Margins for Ivy League conference play so far this season. Since then, a momentous upset by the previously-lowly Penn Quakers over Cornell upset the Ivy order. After Princeton took out rival Penn last night to keep pace with the Big Red in the loss column, today seemed like a good time to check back in on the changing Efficiency Margin picture.

Again, the concept behind EM is simple: track how many points per possession teams score and allow, and see which teams have a positive margin. A team that wins a 70-60 game with 60 possessions is said to have an Efficiency Margin of .1 (1.1 Points per Possession – 1.0 points allowed). The losing team would have a -.1 EM. The results after the jump.

Cornell’s ridiculous .33 EM from last week has been dampened by their loss, but make no mistake, they are still dominating this conference on a per possession basis. Princeton’s defense actually somehow got better this week. Harvard’s offensive efficiency has jumped up after solid performances against Yale and Brown. Their defense, however, remains thoroughly pedestrian. We will see if they can play better D against Cornell at home in the latest Ivy League Game of the Year, set for Friday night.

Further down the conference, Penn gets a major bump from their Cornell upset. Are they the best 4-win team in the country? Probably. Columbia continues to preform above what their Efficiency Margin would suggest; they have been winning close games and losing blowouts in Ivy play.  Check back in a couple of weeks for the next installment.

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