Which Advanced Metric Should Bettors Use: KenPom or Sagarin?

Let’s get one important part of advice from the way straight from the hop: there is not any magic formula for winning all of your school basketball wagers. If you bet with any regularity, you are going to eliminate some of the moment.
But history suggests you could increase your probability of winning by using the predictions systems available online.
KenPom and Sagarin are both??math-based ranks systems, which offer a hierarchy for all 353 Division I basketball teams and also predict the margin of victory for each and each single game.
The KenPom rankings are highly influential in regards to gambling on college basketball. In the words of creator Ken Pomeroy,”[t]he intention of the system would be to demonstrate how strong a team would be if it performed tonight, independent of injuries or emotional aspects.” Without going too far down the rabbit hole, his ranking system incorporates data like shooting percentage, margin of victory, and strength of schedule, finally calculating defensive, offensive, and total”performance” amounts for all teams at Division I. Higher-ranked teams are predicted to beat lower-ranked teams on a neutral court. Nevertheless, the predictive area of the website — that you can effectively access without a subscription — additionally factors in home-court benefit, therefore KenPom will often predict a lower-ranked team will win, based on where the match is played.
In its days, KenPom created a windfall for basketball bettors. It had been more accurate than the sportsbooks at forecasting the way the game would turn out and specific bettors captured on. Obviously, it was not long before the sportsbooks realized this and began using KenPom, themselves, when setting their chances.
Nowadays, it is unusual to find that a point spread which deviates from the KenPom forecasts by over a point or two,?? unless?? there’s a significant injury or suspension at play. More on that later.
The Sagarin positions aim to do exactly the identical matter as the KenPom ranks, but use a different formulation, one that doesn’t (appear to) factor in stats like shooting percentage (though the algorithm is proprietary and, hence, not completely translucent ).
The bottom of the Sagarin-rankings page (linked to above) lists the Division I baseball matches for this day together with three distinct spreads,??titled??COMBO, ELO, and BLUE, which can be predicated on three slightly different calculations.
UPDATE: The Sagarin Ratings have experienced a few changes. All of the Sagarin predictions used as of this 2018-19 season will be the”Rating” forecasts, that’s the new variant of the”COMBO” forecasts.
Frequently, both the KenPom and Sagarin predictions are tightly aligned, but on active college baseball days, bettors could almost always find a couple of games that have substantially different predicted results. If there’s a significant gap between the KenPom spread and the Sagarin spread, sportsbooks have a tendency to side with KenPom, but frequently shade their lines??somewhat from the other direction.
For instance, if Miami hosted Florida State on Jan. 7, 2018, KenPom needed a predicted spread of Miami -3.5, Sagarin had a COMBO disperse of Miami -0.08, and the lineup at Bovada closed at Miami -2.5. (The game finished in a 80-74 Miami win/cover.)
We saw something similar for the Arizona State in Utah match on precisely exactly the exact identical day. KenPom’d ASU -2; Sagarin had ASU -5.4; along with the spread wound up being ASU -3.0. (The game finished in an 80-77 push.)
In a relatively small (but increasing ) sample size, our experience is the KenPom ranks are somewhat more accurate in such scenarios. We’re tracking (mostly) power-conference games in the 2018 period in which Sagarin and KenPom disagree on the predicted outcome.
The full results/data are provided at the bottom of the page. In Summary, the results were as follows:
On all games tracked,?? KenPom’s predicted result was nearer to the actual results than Sagarin on 71?? of 121?? games. As a percent…
When the true point spread dropped somewhere between the KenPom and Sagarin forecasts, KenPom was more accurate on 35?? of 62?? games.?? As a percentage…
But once the actual point spread was higher or lower than both the??KenPom and also Sagarin forecasts, the actual spread was closer to the last outcome than the two metrics on 35?? of 64?? games. As a percent…
1 limitation of KenPom and Sagarin is they do not, normally, accounts for harms. When a star player goes down, the calculations to get his team aren’t amended. KenPom and Sagarin both assume that the team taking the ground tomorrow is going to be just like the group that took the floor a week and a month.
That is not bad news for bettors. While sportsbooks are very good at staying up-to-date with injury news and devoting it in their chances , they miss things from time to time, and they will not (immediately) have empirical proof that they can use to correct the spread. They, for example bettors, will basically have to guess at how the loss of a celebrity player will impact his team, and they’re not always great at this.
In the first game of the 2017-18 SEC convention program, afterward no. 5 Texas A&M has been traveling to Alabama to face a 9-3 Crimson Tide team. The Aggies had been hit hard by the injury bug and’d recently played closer-than-expected games. Finally starting to get somewhat fitter, they had been little 1.5-point street favorites going into Alabama. That spread matched up with the lineup at KenPom, which predicted that the 72-70 Texas A&M win.
At 16 or so hours before the game, word came that top scorer DJ Hogg wouldn’t match up, along with third-leading scorer Admon Gilder. It’s unclear whether the spread was set before information of the Hogg accident, but it’s clear you may still get Alabama as a 1.5-point home underdog for some time after the information came out.
Eventually, the line was corrected to a select’em game that, to most onlookers, still undervalued Alabama and overvalued the decimated Aggies. (I personally put a $50 bet about the Tide and laughed all the way into a 79-57 Alabama win)
Another notable example comes in the 2017-18 Notre Dame team. As soon as the Irish dropped leading scorer Bonzie Colson overdue at 2017, sportsbooks initially shifted the spreads?? way a lot towards Notre Dame’s competitions, forecasting the apocalypse to the Irish. In their first game with no Colson (against NC State), the KenPom forecast of ND -12 was slashed in half an hour, yet Notre Dame romped into some 30-point win.
When they went to Syracuse next time out, the KenPom lineup of ND -1 turned to some 6.5-point disperse in favor of the Orange. The Irish coated with convenience, winning 51-49 straight-up. Sportsbooks had?? no idea?? what the group was about to look like without its star and wound up overreacting. There was good reason to think the Irish would be considerably worse since Colson wasn’t only their leading scorer (with a wide margin) but also their top rebounder and just real interior presence.
But, there was also reason to think that the Irish would be okay because??Mike Bray teams are basically always?? okay.
Bettors won’t have to capitalize on situations such as these daily. But should you look closely at harm news and apply the metrics accessible, you may be able to reap the benefits. Teams’ Twitter accounts are a fantastic method to keep tabs on harm news, as are match previews on nearby sites. National websites like CBS Sports and ESPN don’t have the funds to pay all 353 teams closely.
For total transparency, here’s the list of results we tracked once comparing the truth of KenPom and also Sagarin versus the true point-spread at Bovada along with the last outcomes.

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