Now that my boiling rage over the Tech loss has cooled to a simmer, I thought I would post a level-headedish assessment of our inability to score beyond a 1 ft range. In all fairness, the Hoos have shot well at times this season, and will have plenty of opportunities to forget their horrific night. The fact that this was even a close game is a testament to the effort and steadfast defense of a team depleted by injuries and egos. Nevertheless, the Hoos shooting woes were the primary contributing factor in Sunday’s loss to Tech. This post examines shooting trends over the past few seasons in an attempt to determine whether the recent downturn approximates previous shooting slumps or is a more concerning dip in overall performance.
We’ll use True Shooting Percentage to account for performance among 3 pointers, 2 pointers, and free throws. This season has seen a notable decrease over the last 9 games:
The 4 worst shooting performances of the season have come over the last 6 games. So that’s not good. The real question, though, is whether this is simply part of the normal ups and downs of a college basketball season. The past four seasons (including this one) graph a little something like this:
To make it a little easier to examine, I also graphed power regressions of these points:
This season’s shooting started off well against poor competition. As the data points and power graphs show, the recent poor shooting performances are not unprecedented; there are worse single games in other seasons and the current season regression line ends very close to two other seasons. In fact, this season overall has been remarkably consistent when compared to the past few years.
A close examination, though, suggests that there have been few long stretches of games with a slump as identifiable as the Hoos current woes. The only comparable stretch would seem to be 2008-09 (green) between games 13 and 20. But we can think of things this way: if we had done this analysis after 2008-09 game 20, we would have thought the world was ending.
The current slump is a concern to keep in mind, but it’s most likely a blip on the trend of an otherwise strong season.
-  although, layups were also a problem ↩
-  This has seemed to be a problem basically since the start of ACC play. We didn’t exactly shoot the lights out against Miami or Duke. Georgia Tech was a massacre though. ↩
-  The formula is: TS%=PTS/(2*(FGA+.44*FTA)). ↩
-  not power as in “strong” or “super awesome,” but power as in x^3 ↩
-  of Hoos basketball ↩