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Penn State Hoops: Lucky And Fresh

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Via the discussion forum, exclusive footage of Talor Battle's second half performance last night in Charlottesville:


Meanwhile, noted Big Ten and college basketball expert John Gasaway revisits a favorite topic of his (and ours):

DeChellis is virtually unrivalled in the field of achieving wins in spite of a silly and extraneous factor like how well your team scores points and prevents scoring. Behold:

Exceeding expectations to an extreme degree 
Largest differences between per-possession performance and W-L
Conference games only: ACC, Big 12, Big East, Big Ten, Pac-10, SEC, 2006-09

                      Mean   Actual
Penn St., 2008      3-15    7-11
Oregon St., 2009      3-15    7-11
Kentucky, 2008        8-8    12-4
Texas Tech, 2008      4-12     7-9
Villanova, 2006       11-5    14-2
Georgia, 2009         0-16    3-13
Missouri, 2006        2-14    5-11
Alabama, 2007         4-12    7-9
St. John’s, 2007      4-12    7-9  
Penn St., 2009      7-11   10-8
Penn St., 2006      4-12   6-10

Clearly you don’t want to get in a close game if you’re playing against DeChellis. Only thing: Don’t call it luck. I now prefer the more precise term "degree of DeChellis," which, I suppose, comprises my own modest stab at coming up with something as succinct and accurate as UHB.


What's behind this PSU phenomenon?  As Gasaway wrote late in the 08-09 season, "Penn State (Actual: 8-7; Predicted: 6-9) . The Nittany Lions popping up here is actually quite interesting. Last year Ed DeChellis' team posted the single most fortunate conference season out of the 219 complete league records in this particular vault. (PSU went 7-11 in the Big Ten in 2008, with a scoring margin that would more customarily give you a 3-15 record.) Meaning Penn State has been lucky now two years in a row. How can this be? Take it away Ken Pomeroy: 'When you have 340-some D-I teams, you would expect about a fourth of them to be lucky two years running.' The Nittany Lions are very much in the vanguard of that fourth. Either that or Talor Battle really is Robert Horry. You make the call."

Robert Horry?  Maybe that explains the haircut.