Charting Offensive rating and Usage

With thanks to the Michigan State blog, The Only Colors (seen here) I wanted to give a visual representation of the Deacon offense this season. While the defense has been equal in contributing to our struggles so far this season (currently 246th in KenPom adjusted efficiency), defensive stats are not as developed as offensive stats.

So today we are going to look at the individual offensive ratings and usage percentages for the 131st ranked team in offensive efficiency to date. I believe many of the results of this exercise will already be known but it will be nice to see in visual form. (All numbers courtesy of

Click through for a look at our offense statistically.

Now for those who may not be familiar with advanced stats, let me break down this chart in a few sentences. The usage rate is how many possessions a player uses when they are in the game (shots taken and turnovers). Offensive rating is how many points per 100 individual possession the player will score.

  • Players in the upper right quadrant are high usage, high efficiency players. This is what you want to see and should continue to be the focal points of the offense. These are the stars of the team and should continue to get minutes.
  • Players in the upper left quadrant are players that use a lot of possession but do not have the offensive rating to justify the usage. They should lower their usage rate, as they are hurting the offensive efficiency of the team.
  • Players in the lower right quadrant are low usage- high efficiency players. It could be useful for them to start using more possession, assuming they stay at a similar offensive rating. It could also mean that they have been benefiting from a limited role and might struggle in a larger role.
  • Players in the lower left quadrant are players that don't use a ton of possessions and have a low offensive rating. They should see limited minutes.

A couple notes before we begin:

- I chose not to include Chennault since he has only played in one game. The sample size was way too low for him to justify inclusion.

- Be aware of a small sample size for Tabb and Mescheriakov. They have only played in 7 and 5 games, respectively, so some of their results may be skewed based on this.

- The midpoints on this plot are semi-arbitrary. I chose 20% usage rate since that is commonly accepted as average for a player. I went with 105 for the offensive rating cutoff, as this is slightly above the rating for the team as a whole this season.



A couple of observations

  • I am not surprised to see McKie as the only player in the upper right quadrant. He has clearly been our best player so far this season.
  • I am torn on what to do with Gary Clark. On one hand, he is the player with the highest offensive rating (by far) and could help the team by using more possessions. He is a senior and has earned his spot on the floor. On the other hand, he is not part of the future of the team and it may be better to let the young guys play.
  • As expected, there are too many players in the upper left quadrant, showing that our high usage players are some of our least efficient players. Several players have a solid efficiency and a little improvement could help the Deacs pull out a few wins the rest of the season.

I think this is a good representation of the struggles the Deacs are going through. Only one high usage, high efficiency players, with plenty of high usage players struggling. There are plenty of underlying reasons for their struggles but the results are pretty clear in the chart.

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