Wisconsin vs. Western Illinois: Player Grades and Advanced Statistics Breakdown

The Badgers were stunned by Western Illinois 69-67 on Friday night. From the eye test and basic statistics, there’s no doubt that the Badgers missed too many shots and played lousy defense. Here’s a look at the box score, which tells you a lot about their performance to begin with. Screen Shot 2015-11-13 at 11.13.34 PM


Now, let’s take a deeper look at the team’s advanced statistics, which can tell us even more about the team’s poor shooting and who was most efficient. Here are the formulas for the eight metrics I will be using all season:

  1. Game Score= Points Scored + (0.4 x Field Goals) – (0.7 x Field Goal Attempts) – (0.4 x (Free Throw Attempts – Free Throws)) + (0.7 x Offensive Rebounds) + (0.3 x Defensive Rebounds) + Steals + (0.7 x Assists) + (0.7 x Blocks) – (0.4 x Personal Fouls) – Turnovers
  2. (+/-) = Difference in score with player on court
  3. Effective Field Goal % = (FGM + 0.5 * 3PM) / FGA
  4. True Shooting % = Points / [2 (FGA + 0.44 * FTA)]
  5. Offensive Rebound % = 100 * [Player’s Offensive Rebounds * (Total Team Minutes Played / 5)] / [Player’s Minutes Played * (Team Offensive Rebounds + Opponent’s Defensive Rebounds)]
  6. Total Rebound % = 100 * [Player’s Total Rebounds * (Total Team Minutes Played / 5)] / [Player’s Minutes Played * (Team Total Rebounds + Opponent’s Total Rebounds)]
  7. Assist/Turnover Ratio = Assists/Turnovers
  8. Usage Rate = 100*[(Team Minutes)/(5*(Player Minutes))]*[(Field Goal Attempts)+0.44*(Free Throw Attempts)+(Turnovers)/[(Team Field Goal Attempts)+0.44*(Team Free Throw Attempts)+Team Turnovers)]
Wisconsin Badgers Game Scores (+/-) Effective FG % True Shooting % Offensive Rebound % Total Rebound % Assist/Turnover Rate Usage Rate
#10 Nigel Hayes 13.1 -2 34.60% 47.60% 6.81% 5.71% (4-0) 23.17%
#22 Ethan Happ 4.2 -7 66.70% 66.70% 9.57% 18.05% (0-1) 10.94%
#24 Bronson Koenig 11.9 3 56.70% 56.70% 2.46% 6.18% (2-0) 21.06%
#3 Zak Showalter 4.5 -2 40% 38.30% 0% 8.57% (1-0) 13.56%
#30 Vitto Brown 11.2 -4 43.80% 56.30% 10.90% 11.43% (1-1) 26.51%
#15 Charlie Thomas 1.7 4 28.60% 24% 32.47% 20.41% (0-1) 34.58%
#21 Khalil Iverson 9.4 1 16.70% 34.70% 18.94% 16.67% (0-0) 20.87%
#11 Jordan Hill 0 -3 0% 0% 0% 0% (0-0) 0.00%
Team 41.10% 45.89% (8/4) = 2

Looking at the numbers, game scores are usually a good indication of a player’s efficiency. This statistic is related to Player Efficiency Rating (PER), which many basketball fans are well aware of. Hayes, despite his quiet second half, got to the line and scored 17, as did Bronson Koenig.

It’s also worth noting that there were such few assists and turnovers that only Ethan Happ actually had both an assist and a turnover. That’s very rare. The team’s effective field goal percentage at 41% and true shooting at about 45% can basically be said as the reason the team lost. To put into perspective, the Badgers effective field goal percentage last season was 54.8% and true shooting was 59.1%. Based on everything else, by only losing by two points with such low offensive efficiency, the Badgers would have won this game by literally making one or two more shots.

Player Grades

Based on the advanced stats and from watching the team play, here’s how I would grade the players tonight.

Nigel Hayes

Hayes’ effective field goal percentage, low rebounding, and low usage rate compared to other guys shows that he was not only quiet in the second half on offense, but did not really impact the game at all in the last 20 minutes. Hayes did, however, play great defense for most of the game. Grade: B- due to great first half and awful second half.

Bronson Koenig

Koenig, on the other hand, had high shooting metrics due to his three-point shooting and better field goal percentage. His usage rate was a bit lower than Hayes due his unusually low assist and steal numbers. Koenig also struggled on defense, notably getting beat by WIU’s guards. Even with his clutch shooting and offensive management, his poor defense knocks down his grade. Grade: C+

Charlie Thomas

Charlie Thomas’s poor shooting from the field and free throw line hurt his game score, but he had the highest usage rate by far since he stuffed the stat sheet in only 14 minutes of action. His offensive rebounding percentage is absolutely stunning, and I thought he played well despite his shooting percentages. Grade: B

Khalil Iverson

Khalil Iverson had a tremendous game, but it won’t exactly show up in these metrics. That’s why you can’t always rely on these to evaluate players. This will happen to Iverson a lot, since his defensive numbers such as blocks and steals will not show up as weighted here. His defense was stunning in comparison to Koenig and Showalter. Without missing a key layup down the stretch, he played as well as anyone on the floor and had a ton of offensive rebounds for a guard. Grade: B+

Vitto Brown

Vitto Brown had surprisingly good metric numbers, but that was likely due to his many of his poor plays before the last four minutes of the game not even showing up on the stat sheet. Again, numbers don’t tell the whole story, considering Brown played terrible defense most of the game. But, Brown did basically keep the Badgers in the game at the end, which is the only reason he’s getting a grade over a C. Grade: C+

Ethan Happ

Ethan Happ and Zak Showalter had very low usage rates. Happ’s usage rate stemmed from not playing much, but he did rebound the ball well. As Bo Ryan pointed out after the game, the kid didn’t move his feet correctly on defense. His defense was embarrassing at times, but he’s still a top player on this team. Grade: D

Zak Showalter

While Showalter played twice as much as Happ, he took 10 shots and did not have many numbers in the box score, which gave him a low usage rate. Showalter could not stop WIU guard J.C. Fuller, and unfortunately did not rise to the occasion. Grade: D+

Jordan Hill

Jordan Hill played one minute of basketball and did not even register a stat during his time on the floor. Grade: N/A





Photo via University of Wisconsin-Madison Athletic Department.

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