2018 FanLax D1 Men's Rankings

2018 DI/D1 Men's Lacrosse

Re: 2018 FanLax D1 Men's Rankings

Postby admin » Sun Feb 25, 2018 8:59 pm

02.25.2018
It's strange to see how Notre Dame's opponents are barely better than Siena's. Undeniably, the Brands of the D1 Teams influence your ranking.
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Re: 2018 FanLax D1 Men's Rankings

Postby admin » Sun Feb 25, 2018 9:15 pm

So I'm looking at these teams (below) and thinking, I don't know which are which but I know there are some good teams within this pile. e.g. Duke, Penn, and whoever else may very well be Top Ten teams. But, objectively, as long as there are 12 undefeated teams, Duke and Penn and whoever else are not Top Ten teams. They could be. But based on performance, they are not.

Team Record
40 4-1
24 3-1
30 3-1
33 3-1
54 3-1
72 3-1
76 3-1
77 3-1
31 2-1
37 2-1
46 2-1
55 2-1
69 2-1
80 2-1
82 2-1
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Re: 2018 FanLax D1 Men's Rankings

Postby admin » Wed Feb 28, 2018 10:47 am

USILA Coaches Poll 2/26
1. Albany
2. Maryland
3. Duke
4. Ohio State
5. Virginia
6. Denver
7. Villanova
8. Notre Dame
9. Loyola
10. North Carolina
11. Yale
12. Syracuse
13. Penn...


Hard to argue with Albany and Maryland in the top two spots, but Duke that much better than Penn seems rather dubious given Saturday's head-to-head result and the fact that both teams now have one loss. I could definitely imagine Villanova ranked better given its undefeated record and quality of opponents. Then again, it's only February...


I most certainly could argue with UMD and Albany and... Most every poll and ranking is insane. How is it possible that Penn beats Duke, their only loss is to #2 Maryland,and they’re ranked #14 while Duke is ranked #3? And this is just one example of many. Denver is 2-1 with a loss to Duke and their wins are against two of the worst teams in D1 Lacrosse: Air Force and Cleveland State. Cleveland State’s only win is against Air Force and Air Force’s only win is against a weak Marist team. None the less, Denver is ranked #5 in the nation? UNC is 4-0 with wins over Lafayette, Furman, a 3-1 Lehigh, and Hopkins and they’re ranked #10? This is insane. The only thing more insane is that people give any credence to these rankings.
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Re: 2018 FanLax D1 Men's Rankings

Postby admin » Wed Feb 28, 2018 10:47 am

Matnum PI wrote:I most certainly could argue with UMD and Albany and... Most every poll and ranking is insane. How is it possible that Penn beats Duke, their only loss is to #2 Maryland,and they’re ranked #14 while Duke is ranked #3? And this is just one example of many. Denver is 2-1 with a loss to Duke and their wins are against two of the worst teams in D1 Lacrosse: Air Force and Cleveland State. Cleveland State’s only win is against Air Force and Air Force’s only win is against a weak Marist team. None the less, Denver is ranked #5 in the nation? UNC is 4-0 with wins over Lafayette, Furman, a 3-1 Lehigh, and Hopkins and they’re ranked #10? This is insane. The only thing more insane is that people give any credence to these rankings.


I think you have trouble understanding what ranking is about.


Nope. Have a philosophical disagreement about what a Ranking is. Some believe it's a predictor of the the future. e.g. Yes, Penn beat Duke but... This was an anomaly. Duke is still better. I believe Rankings are an evaluation of past occurrences in order to create a document that best describes the present. e.g. Penn beat Duke thus... Penn is better. They earned the right to say this.
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Re: 2018 FanLax D1 Men's Rankings

Postby admin » Wed Feb 28, 2018 10:49 am


You keep talking about a team's strength. What is that? How is it quantified? Or isn't it? Is it how many Top 100 recruits they have on the roster? There are examples year after year of teams with many, outplayed and beaten by teams with few. Team strength, let me see.....I've never heard anyone use that term before!

Its seems like its your completely subjective term used to explain away anything you can't justify with hard data. Very convenient.

You just told Magnum that you think he has trouble understanding what ranking is all about. In a previous post you said something like it is how teams are playing now. Thats not a quote, but it was something along those lines.

I don't think anyone here is smart enough to tell the difference between #8 and #9, or #15 and #16 for instance, particularly at this point in the season. And no one would fault anyone for a position or two out of place. Nobody's perfect.

But you readily admitted in a previous post that the reason why you have Yale where you have them is because of where you had them in your preseason poll. And preseason polls, although supposedly forward-looking, are mostly based on last year's finish and lax mafia's biases. When I suggested to you that Penn's win against Duke is not the "upset" you called it, as they've split the last 6 recent meetings they've had, you said the past didn't matter, but then also asked how many FF or semis, or something, that Penn has been to and how many has Duke been to. Interestingly, the past matters to you when it serves your narrative.

This is all supposed to be fun stuff, and I hope we all take it that way! You have as much right to your rankings as the next guy. But I must say, and others have as well, that you have some glaring holes in your rankings, and knowledgeable lax fans on this board are not going to let you just explain it away as your opinion of "team strength."

Denver may be the best team in the country on Memorial Day, or #6 (as I think you have them), but they are not there right now. And thats what a ranking is supposed to be; the order of teams right now. Denver has not done the work other teams have done, and simply doesn't have the resume of a #6 team---right now. Two wins against two of the weakest teams in D1, and a loss to Duke. Duke is tough. Nevertheless, they could have beaten them, and they didn't. They lost. But you have to be counting that as a "quality loss." And that #42 RPI that Denver has...do you just discard that??? Its not like its 15 or 20. Its 42! Meanwhile, Penn beats Duke, and you don't give them any credit for an actual quality win. And don't forget the #1 RPI in the country right now.

Penn is just one example in your ranking. Others have pointed out other teams where your analysis and "team strength" observations are questionable beyond just a spot or two. Penn, like any team, could fade every week with that #1 RPI schedule, but right now, they've produced. But they don't meet your "team strength" criteria I guess. And I am not saying they should be #1, or higher than Duke, etc. What I, and others, have said, is how can you have Duke so far above a team that just beat them? And how can you have Denver anywhere near #6 with what they'e done? You could have 10, 15, 20 teams ahead of them right now. Denver could easily be ranked 25. They haven't done anything to justify your ranking of them there. And thats no disrespect for Denver. They'll be there after more contests. Their schedule doesn't give them opportunities to shine at this point in the season (well, they could have beaten Duke). I wonder where you would have Denver ranked if they were 3-0 with a Duke win. Probably 1 or 2. Penn with a Duke win gets them.....15?

Finally, you said RPI is not a good way to rank teams. Unfortunately, that is a primary input used by the NCAA selection committee. What do you know that they don't know?

Again, lets keep it fun, and everyone will be civil, but this board simply won't let you post those opinions without questioning how you arrived at them.


to be fair, this is the norm, not the exception. For whatever reason, and I can guess why, this is how the NCAA and the media that covers them chooses to create their rankings. re: What does Cooter that the NCAA does not? One thing is that (besides the terps), he has no vested interest in some teams being in the tournament while not so much with others. And that is not small.

Someone just private messaged me and this was my answer. Maybe this will help to clarify why these rankings, again, not just Cooter but the vast majority of rankings, are ridiculous. I can barely deal with preseason rankings because it's so obviously based on nothing. But when the season starts and all of a sudden #1 Albany is playing # whatever whomever, then I have to throw a flag.

"too soon to tell for JHU and this is basically the case for 50 (out of 71) other teams. Princeton has played two games. In one they beat Monmouth (in theory) the #68 (out of 71) team in the country and they lost to UVA (in theory) the #1 team in the country. so, currently, Princeton is somewhere between #2 and #67 yet they're ranked #20. Which, obviously is ridiculous. These rankings are based on nothing."
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Re: 2018 FanLax D1 Men's Rankings

Postby admin » Wed Feb 28, 2018 10:50 am

I think we get it that the current rankings are not objective by any stretch of the imagination. None the less, a piece that explains this further.
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Re: 2018 FanLax D1 Men's Rankings

Postby Matnum PI » Thu Mar 01, 2018 9:44 pm

I like your system. I am all for merit. Just playing devils advocate...... If a team is 5-0 but and they have played all teams that are winless or have won 1 game thus far, when does SOS kick in?


If they're 18-0 and played XYZs, Are they an A or a W? They could be either or anything in between. The answer is, They're a W. If your schedule is comprised of XYZs, you've doomed yourself to being, at best, a W.
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Re: 2018 FanLax D1 Men's Rankings

Postby Matnum PI » Thu Mar 01, 2018 9:44 pm

Rankings are irrelevant, week to week.Not worth the high-dudgeon IMHO.


I beg to differ. One, recruiting is a big piece of the puzzle for building a program and though you may scoff at the difference between Penn beating Duke and being ranked Top 5 vs. beating Duke and being ranked Top 15, there's a big difference. Brand building matters. And two, come pre-tourney time, the powers that be don't ignore this stuff. We all claim to be uninfluenced by this intangible nonsense and then we spend $40 for a $5 t-shirt because it has a swoosh on it. Brands matter. Which, I believe, is why the elite teams of the D1 world are not so quick to share the stage.
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Re: 2018 FanLax D1 Men's Rankings

Postby Matnum PI » Thu Mar 01, 2018 9:45 pm

Sort of like BCS football and Boise State.....


Or UCF. For heaven's sake, they beat one good team and had a National Championship Parade.

Image

But you're bringing up an important issue in this and your previous post. When building the rankings, if you're going to base the stacking of teams on Ws and Ls and not on Yeah Buts (e.g. Yeah, but Duke is still better than them), then you need to decide if you're stacking from the top-down or the bottom-up. For example, top-down, Siena is undefeated at 2-0 thus the #1 team in the country. Bottom-up, Siena beat Hobart (0-3, arguably the worst team in the country) and UMass Lowell (1-2). Bottom-up, it's too early in the season to say a hard-and-fast number but I'd guess it's somewhere in the #50-60 range. Top-down, #1. Bottom-up, #50 whatever. The choice of direction makes a huge difference. And, though I could be wrong, I think some prognosticators, consciously or subconsciously, without any real thought about it, rank some teams top-down and rank others bottom-up. Which, for obvious reasons, is a problem for creating an accurate ranking.
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Re: 2018 FanLax D1 Men's Rankings

Postby admin » Mon Mar 12, 2018 7:27 am

JHU just beat Syracuse 18-7 in Syracuse. How can they both be ranked #7?


There are scenarios where A beat B, B beat C, and C beat A. In a vacuum, A, B, and C are on the same level. We currently have this scenario with the three win-less teams* (Furman, High Point, and NJIT), #64 (Lafayette, Wagner, and Manhattan), #46 (UMBC, Richmond, and St. Marys), #40 (Hobart, Colgate, and Cornell), and... UVA, SU, JHU, and Loyola. UVA beat Loyola. Loyola beat JHU. JHU beat SU. SU beat UVA. And when you look at their other wins over, Towson, P'ton, Army, they're all very similar. This tie due to a circularity of wins can be broken. But, currently, it hasn't been broken yet.

*- Hampton is also winless but their current schedule puts them in a different category. They're a D1 team playing a non-D1 schedule. But this will change.
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Re: 2018 FanLax D1 Men's Rankings

Postby admin » Mon Mar 12, 2018 7:46 am

Cuse was throttled by Albany and JHU. Good teams don’t crumble like that - they just don’t. Having them ranked in the top 15 is a stretch. The same goes for UNC. You can only get by on your name/history for so long.


I can't speak for the other rankings but for the FanLax Ranking, as you're speaking to, one shouldn't rank based on name and history, and, when we feel like we are, we remove the names and replace them with random letters. e.g. Marist = A, Fairfield = B, etc. It's an enlightening exercise. And, similarly, one shouldn't rank based on predetermined conceptions of what a good team looks like. If a team loses 20-3 to #1 Albany, loses 20-3 to #2 Maryland, and then beats #3, #4, #5, #6, and all the way down the line, should they not get the #3 spot because we've determined that a top team doesn't lose by so much to other teams? I hear you if you say, Yes. But I don't think that this should be the case.
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Re: 2018 FanLax D1 Men's Rankings

Postby admin » Mon Mar 12, 2018 8:02 am

a coin flip is a meaningful comparison in that it's extremely objective yet it's also extremely inaccurate in determining where D1 lacrosse teams should be ranked. Heads Albany is #1, tails UMD is #1. 100% objective but also a ridiculous way of determining the #1 team. Objectivity unto itself is not enough to create an accurate D1 Ranking.

Vermont loses to Albany in a close one, just like Maryland. In your "ranking" system, is that a good thing or a bad thing?.


With the FanLax system, UVM's loss would also, so to speak, mean nothing. It does mean something in that we've confirmed that Albany should be ranked ahead of UVM but... Neither team is effected in any way within the rankings. The loss merely confirms that the placement of Albany ahead of UVM in the rankings is accurate.

AQ's aside, won't my top 16 teams be a good NCAA Tournament?


It's not a value judgment as to whether the top 16 teams are good or bad. The question is whether the top 16 teams are truly the top 16 teams. Based on the 6 or so games that each D1 team has played, are UVM and G'town the #2 and #3 teams in the country? I adamantly believe this not to be the case. UVM and G'town may be the #2 and #3 teams in the country. But based on their games played, they are not. and the rankings need to be based on the games played.
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Re: 2018 FanLax D1 Men's Rankings

Postby Matnum PI » Tue Apr 10, 2018 10:03 am

X wrote:Why does body of work come into it? These are weekly polls, not at-large resumes. I think Rutgers is a better team than Syracuse right now, so I'd put them a spot or two ahead. If we're talking tournament selection, sure, Syracuse has the edge given their RPI and quality wins. But since when are weekly polls the same as the tournament criteria? Why even have weekly polls if people are just going to use them the same way as at-large selection? This is why I vehemently disagreed with people who wanted to keep Albany #1 after losing to UMBC. Are they still the #1 tourney seed? Probably. But should they still be #1 in the polls after getting clobbered by, wait for, it, UMBC? Doesn't make sense to me. Any other team would drop in the polls at least one spot, if not more, after a bad loss like that—with or without their best offensive player on the field. If the weekly polls aren't going to reflect how teams are actually playing week-to-week, then I don't get the point in having them at all.


Though not a perfect metaphor...

I like businesses and their financial statements: P&L, Balance Sheet, Cash Flows. It's like being a doctor looking at a patients x-rays and vitals to understand their physical health. I don't like the stock market, people's opinions of businesses based on financial statements but a lot on "Well, I think..." and "Did you hear what happened yesterday...". I get that the stock market is more volatile, fun, popular, and profitable. But, for me, the stock market discussions are more about the stock market than they are about the businesses. And I feel the same is true with relation to lacrosse. Denver is #3 because, um, Tierney! UMD is #1 because, um, Albany has to drop! This stuff doesn't interest me. The metaphoric financial statements of the teams interests me. I don't care about the day trading and the, See, I was right! I care about trying to honestly assess the teams. And looking at one game is not an honest assessment.
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Re: 2018 FanLax D1 Men's Rankings

Postby Matnum PI » Tue Apr 10, 2018 11:17 am

X wrote:I agree with this, I don't like the stock market (or in this case, weekly polls) and don't find much, if any, value in discussing them. But they are what they are. The weekly polls are, effectively, a stock market. If you want them to be something different, sure, but then that something different winds up looking A LOT like tournament selection/at-large criteria, and then it becomes redundant to have both.

The weekly poll's only reason to exist, in my mind, is if it in some way reflects the ebbs and flows of a season and gives fans an easy way to see how teams are currently performing that week. It's not just looking at one game, and you know that. If it was looking at only one game, then Albany would be ranked last. Rather, it's weighing that one game in the context of the rest of the season. Obviously, even with the loss, Albany is inarguably one of the top 3 teams in the country. But you can't just ignore the loss. I'm pretty confident that if any other #1 team lost to UMBC in that fashion, they'd drop in people's polls. People seem to be very protective of Albany this year though.


Hop, I'm with you. And, I agree. It's not just one game. With this said, the most current game is weighed heavily and then, depending on the team and the pundit, I'm not even sure if the most recent game has any weight. Politics in sports doesn't interest me and I find these polls reek of politics. (My personal opinion is that the pundits have a deep love for the word parity and, as a consequence, they need to do what they need to do to make that parity a reality. But that's a separate discussion. Aah, whatever, then separate discussion it is. If Nike/USL removed Albany, the Top Ten would be: Maryland, Duke, Denver, Johns Hopkins, Syracuse, Rutgers, Loyola, Yale, and Virginia. Besides Rutgers and Yale, these are the perennial powers. And Yale won't help the pundits case for arguing that lacrosse isn't an elitist sport. Put Albany at #1 and... It looks substantially less elite and substantially more parity-ful.) Bottomline, the weekly polls are literally individuals opinions. No rationale, no explanation. Just, "I think...". That doesn't interest me. I'll admit that there are people who see more games and know more about HS lacrosse than I do. Heck, I lost 29-17 to FCA in Fantasy Lacrosse this past weekend. 17 is good but 29 is impressive. But I'm not so quick to hand over the reigns with relation to D1 lacrosse.

I see the weekly polls, which should be more than weekly, as a photo of a running race. Pre-Season is a wide photo with 71 teams on the starting line. Then there's 35 leaders (who are 1-0) and 35 trailers who are (0-1). Then 10 leaders (2-0), 35 in a middle pack (1-1), and 25 in the back of the pack (0-2). But those 10 leaders aren't really leading everybody. They're actually just leading the two teams that they beat. And the photo needs to capture that. As well as how this pack of three relates to the other packs of three. Eventually, the packs of three become a pack of 71. And, because of the Browns and UNCs of the world, even this tightly knit pack of 71 becomes complicated. And... The photos of this progression interests me. To me , it's just a series of photos. And, when the photos come at regular intervals (e.g. SU-Cornell and G'town-Loyola are today), it's like watching a film of a running race. And, if this film is more documentary than fiction, I enjoy it.
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