<h1>Estimating NCAA Football Coaches’ Abilities An Application of Item Response Theory</h1> <h2>Brandon LeBeau, Andrew Zieffler, and Kyle Nickodem</h2> <h3>University of Iowa & University of Minnesota</h3> # Background - Began after Tim Brewster was fired at the University of Minnesota. + Now they have a new coach again! - Wanted to try to predict next great coach. - Proceeded to explore data available to answer this question. # Data - Data came from a few sources: + <http://www.cfbdatawarehouse.com/> + Wikipedia # Goals - Predict the 'ability' of the coaches. - Find other variables that explain variation in the 'ability' of the coaches. - Predict the next 'great' coach. # Model ![](/figs/cfbmodel.png) # Model 2 - Not a traditional IRT model as the game ID is not included. + The model does allow for a coaches ability to vary with years. + The team effect is constant. - This model was fitted using R: `lme4` and `rstan`. - Results shown throughout are from `lme4`. - 'Modern' era data, 1998 onward and coaches with at least 6 games per year. # Team Effect ![](/figs/teameffect.png) # Ability Estimates <img src="/figs/ISU.svg" alt="" height="525px" width="1000px"> # Iowa State made good hire? <img src="/figs/ISU_good_hire.svg" alt="" height="525px" width="1000px"> # Fire Tim Brewster? <img src="/figs/UMN.svg" alt="" height="525px" width="1000px"> # Does a coach overperform compared to average team ability? - Value-added like logic. - If coaches over/under perform compared to a team average + are they more likely to be retained? + if fired, are they a good fit for another team? - How quickly does team expectation change? # 6 Coaches on the Hot Seat <img src="/figs/Hot_seat_coach_plot.svg" alt="" height="525px" width="1000px"> # Which of these 6 should be fired? <img src="/figs/Hot_seat_relative_plot.svg" alt="" height="525px" width="1000px"> # Back to Minnesota <img src="/figs/Minnesota-Coaches-2.png" alt="" height="525px" width="1000px"> # Next Steps - Add covariates to model shown above + or use the ability estimates obtained above as an outcome. - Explore moving average for team expectation. - Explore good vs bad coaching hires. # Connect - e-mail: brandon-lebeau (at) uiowa.edu - Twitter: @blebeau11; <https://twitter.com/blebeau11> - Website: <http://brandonlebeau.org> - <http://brandonlebeau.org/2016/07/31/jsm2016.html>