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Link: Coach Cal dominates 'Data-Based Coaching Awards'

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When it comes to college basketball analysis, it doesn't get much better than SI.com's Luke Winn, and I say that in large part because of how heavily he relies on Ken Pomeroy's tempo-free statistical analysis.

Well, on Thursday, Winn doled out his first annual "Data-Based Coaching Awards" in which he measures the success of coaches based on the efficiency of their teams in a few different categories. Of the eight different full-season awards Winn gave out, John Calipari won three. He was the only coach to win more than one:

1. Efficiency King: John Calipari, Kentucky

His Wildcats ranked No. 1 overall in kenpom.com's Pythagorean formula, which is based on efficiency margin. There is a running joke among the Flat Earth Society that Wisconsin's Bo Ryan has a trophy case full of Efficiency National Titles somewhere in the Kohl Center, but, as I said earlier, the title-winning team has, over the past eight seasons, also been the nation's most efficient team on six occasions. This is Calipari's first Efficiency Title, as his 2008 Memphis team came in second behind Kansas, just as it did in real life.

6. Dominating One's League: John Calipari, Kentucky

Basketball Prospectus' John Gasaway tracks in-conference efficiency numbers all season in his Tuesday Truths, and the Wildcats' efficiency margin in SEC games was an absurd +0.26 points per possession -- better than any other leader of any other conference. They steamrolled, rather than tightrope-walked, their way to a 16-0 record in the SEC. For comparison, Syracuse (long the nation's No. 2 team) had an efficiency margin of +0.16 in the Big East, and Kansas (UK's title-game opponent) had a margin of +0.18 in the Big 12.

8. Most Success With The Least Experience: John Calipari, Kentucky

Only five teams had less experience, according to kenpom.com's index, than the Wildcats: Nicholls State, which ranked 332nd in efficiency, Niagara (238th), Rutgers (119th), Boston College (259th) and St. John's (152nd). None had a winning record. Kentucky went 38-2, won the national title and finished first in efficiency with an average experience level of 0.77 years.

Calipari was obviously aided by the fact that he had the nation's No. 1 recruiting class, including a superhuman, 6-foot-11 defensive menace, but making elite freshmen play well together is not easy. This UK team had less experience, top-to-bottom, than last year's (1.16 years) or the Wall-Cousins squad of 2009-10 (0.83 years), which means that Calipari's best team was also his youngest. And seeing that he grabbed three of our eight full-season awards, it might be wise to revise the COY list, with his name at the top.
If Coach Cal were asked about this, I'm sure he would deflect praise to his talented roster, but the coaching job he did this season cannot be overlooked.

Link: Coach Cal dominates 'Data-Based Coaching Awards'

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