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Thread: Pointless Chrono-stats

  1. #1
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    Pointless Chrono-stats

    Here's a complaint I think of any time I watch any sporting event on tv, but it applies to other things too. I used the term "chrono-stats" because, well, that describes it.

    The quarterback drops back and hands the ball off to the half-back. He bursts through for a thirty yard gain! That makes him the first player in the NFL to hit the [whatever arbitrary number] mark since [so-and-so] in 2006!!!

    ...so, the first player to do so in two seasons? Am I the only one not impressed by statements like that? Every game, regardless of sport, I hear "first this-or-that in [< 5 years ]."

    How many people did it before the last one? How common is that? In a sport which has been around for decades (or over a century like baseball), first to do something in two seasons doesn't strike me as particularly impressive.

    Just now I was reading an article about how Texas is the first team to be unanimously voted #1 since Ohio state in the closing weeks of 2006. Granted, the fact that the #1 spot has been in so much turmoil over the last season and a half is noteworthy, but how common is a unanimous #1 vote compared to a split vote? Does "first since 2006" really mean anything?

    Sorry, just a pet peeve of mine. [/rant]

  2. #2
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    I've heard some really arbitrary stats as well. I'm making this one up but the level of stupidity is similar: "He's the first east-coast running back to come off an ankle injury during the pre-season to run two consecutive 3rd quarter first downs on a fall day in Florida while I'm drinking Pepsi".

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fazor View Post
    Sorry, just a pet peeve of mine. [/rant]
    You should be sorry.

    I read the sports section of the paper everyday, and now this little tidbit will be stuck in my head, and everytime I see "First time since/in", I will think of you and this rant.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by megrfl View Post
    You should be sorry.

    I read the sports section of the paper everyday, and now this little tidbit will be stuck in my head, and everytime I see "First time since/in", I will think of you and this rant.
    Good; always happy to spread my discontent to the general populus! MWAHAHAHA

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fazor View Post
    Good; always happy to spread my discontent to the general populus! MWAHAHAHA
    Oh, I'm gonna get you for this!! Isn't that line from The Three Stooges?

  6. #6
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    Your line or mine? Either way, I dunno ... never really was a fan of the Three Stooges.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fazor View Post
    Your line or mine? Either way, I dunno ... never really was a fan of the Three Stooges.
    Mine, but if you aren't a fan, well than, I guess you can't answer that question.


  8. #8
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    These stats are just another way computers have made all our lives better.

    They have turned all sports into what was once only baseball -- the perfect game for statisticians.

    Thank you, computers. Please don't hurt me.
    0 1 1 0 1 0 0 1 1 0 0 1 0 1 1 0 1 0 0 1 0 1 1 0 0 1 1 0 1 0 0 1 1 0 0 1 0 1 1 0 0 1 1 0 1 0 0 1 0 1 1 0 1 0 0 1 1 0 0 1 0 1 1 0 ...
    Skepticism enables us to distinguish fancy from fact, to test our speculations. --Carl Sagan

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by 01101001 View Post
    These stats are just another way computers have made all our lives better.

    They have turned all sports into what was once only baseball -- the perfect game for statisticians.

    Thank you, computers. Please don't hurt me.
    Speaking of statistics and computers, did you realize that with 15 more postís you will have all but the last two digits of your name? That hasnít been done since tusenfem got to 1005 two and a half years ago.

    Jim

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fazor View Post
    but how common is a unanimous #1 vote compared to a split vote? Does "first since 2006" really mean anything?
    If it's the first since the closing weeks of 2006, and there's, what?, well over a dozen votes per year, maybe there hasn't been a unanimous vote in 20-25 votes. And we might expect the vote to be unanimous. So, maybe significant.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by hhEb09'1 View Post
    If it's the first since the closing weeks of 2006, and there's, what?, well over a dozen votes per year, maybe there hasn't been a unanimous vote in 20-25 votes. And we might expect the vote to be unanimous. So, maybe significant.
    Might be ... point is, the statement in and of itself is useless. Admittedly, that was just the example that reminded me to rant, but really isn't a good example because that stat was meant to stress how unusual it is for a condition not to happen for the (relatively short) duration.

    When it comes to, say, a running back reaching a career mark of [X] yards, saying "He's the first to do so since the 2005 season!!" is meaningless. Is it expected that you'll always have a running back that will hit the particular mark, yet no one has for 3 years? No. Then what makes the "wow we haven't seen this for three years!" significant? Nothing really. Three years is nothing in sports-history.

    Now, when someone surpasses a mark that has been held for decades, that's different. And I'm not saying a particular feat isn't noteworthy. I just don't see what's wrong with saying "He just reached 10,000 career rushing yards!" as opposed to "He just hit 10,000 career rushing yards! No other player has done that since Fred did two years ago!!!". The last part is superfluous.

  12. #12
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    One thing I can't stand is the overly insistent use of big phrases by commentators. For instance, Ron Jaworski was a great quarterback in his day and he's a great analyst, but on Monday Night Football, he NEVER just says "the NFL". He always says "National Football League". That wouldn't be so bad if he weren't always comparing one player to another and constantly spouting hyperbole about how great one guy or another is.

    I counted him to say "National Football League" 16 times during the Titans-Colts game on Monday and that was only up until about halftime. That's the most that phrase has been said in such a short time since the last Monday Night Football game.

  13. #13
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    "He's the first kicker this season, not only to score, but to loose his shoe while doing it."

  14. #14
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    I don't know if anyone remembers, but...

    Several years ago one of the networks did a football game with no play-by-play announcers as an experiment.

    I-LOVED-IT....

    None of the babble that spews forth... constantly...

    But, alas... apparently no one else liked it... Else they just felt it was too "weird"... (which is probably the real reason it didn't take)...

  15. #15
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    Worthless statistics are even worse on Monday Night Football when they limit them to games played on Monday Nights. That makes them even more boring. If they invent enough categories then every play will break a record.

  16. #16
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    Well Well Well! Sounds like Fazor does want
    an extra mute button after all I suggested
    this a few threads back...just the ambient
    sounds of the game if that is what you desire.
    That experiment sounds very interesting, some
    clever clogs anticipating and stopping up
    demand for such a thing. After all it is no
    use selling television rights if it means
    gate drop offs. No, the television experience
    must be degraded with commentary.

    Not against stats myself. English cricket
    scores have been looked for games played
    over 100 years ago to note bad Summers.
    (Less runs scored). And my latest small digital
    camera has something not in the instructions,
    little histograms of the pixel brightness
    spread (I think) for each picture. Just
    showing off the technology!

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by spacecraftfilms View Post
    Several years ago one of the networks did a football game with no play-by-play announcers as an experiment.
    In the first broadcast specifications I saw when 5.1 audio was going to be included, there was some discussion as to how things like crowd noise and announcers would be mixed. With constantly changing perspectives, it was going to be impossible to do too much on the fly with the crowd ambience, but one plan was to place the announcers exclusively in the center channel. Usually, center channel elements (like dialog in a film) are in the center channels with nothing else, but they are also included in the L/R channels for coverage. It wouldn't have been a mandate, mind you, but it was being highly suggested that all "talking head" and "disembodied voices" on live broadcasts would be center channel exclusive. That would include news and such.

    It became widely known that a lot of people would probably decide to just disconnect or attenuate their center channel to get rid of the announcers. One of the first sports events I heard in true 5.1, the announcers were center channel only. We cut that baby off and had a MST3K style game with our own calls. The only guy we couldn't get rid of was the venue's PA announcer, but I guess that's life.

    There may have been some pressure from networks or even AFTRA (American Federation of Television and Radio Actors) to avoid this potential situation and that "mandate" sort of disappeared, presumably into the hands of the broadcast mix engineer. I suppose it would cloud the ratings system if they had to build in a percentage of market based on who did or didn't listen to the actual announcers. And since those guys are often payed bonuses based on the viewership, I can see where it might cause a problem. I recently noticed that the announcers have made their way out into the L/R channels again.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Studioguy View Post
    In the first broadcast specifications I saw when 5.1 audio was going to be included, there was some discussion as to how things like crowd noise and announcers would be mixed. With constantly changing perspectives, it was going to be impossible to do too much on the fly with the crowd ambience, but one plan was to place the announcers exclusively in the center channel. Usually, center channel elements (like dialog in a film) are in the center channels with nothing else, but they are also included in the L/R channels for coverage. It wouldn't have been a mandate, mind you, but it was being highly suggested that all "talking head" and "disembodied voices" on live broadcasts would be center channel exclusive. That would include news and such.

    It became widely known that a lot of people would probably decide to just disconnect or attenuate their center channel to get rid of the announcers. One of the first sports events I heard in true 5.1, the announcers were center channel only. We cut that baby off and had a MST3K style game with our own calls. The only guy we couldn't get rid of was the venue's PA announcer, but I guess that's life.

    There may have been some pressure from networks or even AFTRA (American Federation of Television and Radio Actors) to avoid this potential situation and that "mandate" sort of disappeared, presumably into the hands of the broadcast mix engineer. I suppose it would cloud the ratings system if they had to build in a percentage of market based on who did or didn't listen to the actual announcers. And since those guys are often payed bonuses based on the viewership, I can see where it might cause a problem. I recently noticed that the announcers have made their way out into the L/R channels again.
    way back in the late 70's and early 80's when my dad was still alive, he used to watch the various MN sports teams (Twins baseball, Gophers basketball and football, Vikings football, Northstars hockey) on tv with the sound turned down. for commentary, he'd turn on the radio to the most powerful AM station in the country (WCCO) and listen to the play by play. that used to be a good idea- but radio coverage has gotten as bad as tv coverage over the years, which is probably one reason i quit watching sports at all.
    i hate the stats they have for EVERY aspect of the games these days- but not because of the tv coverage. i hate them because every joe blow idiot sports fan at work likes to quote those stats when talking about the games at work.

  19. #19
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    Does this mean you did have television sets
    that allowed you to choose or exclude sound
    channels? Jeepers why has it slipped away?

    And my e-petition on this subject on the
    UK gov website seems to have bombed! I keep
    wanting to imagine a government agent stopping
    any sign ups!

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