By Kathir Ilango • 14 Feb 2019 • 10 min read
After finishing the 2010 NFL season with a losing record yet again, the San Francisco 49ers finally decided it was time for a new head coach. They needed to win games to become relevant again and, more importantly, they needed to bring life back to a fan base that had not had a winning team since 2002. So they went with a man whom they thought could bring all of that to the table: Jim Harbaugh.
By Chad Shimozaki • 09 Feb 2019 • 8 min read
Despite having one of the top-five players in the NBA, the New Orleans Pelicans struggled for seven years to surround Anthony Davis with enough talent to consistently make the playoffs. In 2015, the Pelicans - without Jrue Holiday - were swept by the first iteration of the current Warriors Dynasty. Davis's only other postseason appearance came in 2018, when the Pelicans upset the 3-seed Portland Trailblazers in a stunning sweep. Although the Pelicans lost to the Warriors again in the next round, their second round exit was viewed as a success after the enormous loss of DeMarcus Cousins in late January due to a ruptured Achilles.
By Salil Akundi • 27 Jan 2019 • 8 min read
It is true that a goalkeeper's main job is to keep the ball out of the net. However, in the modern game, where margins are much tighter and errors are easily punished, it is a valuable advantage for a goalkeeper to be an adept passer of the ball. This is particularly useful when a team plays a style with the intent of creating spaces to attack by drawing the opposition to press high, such as the style employed (with success, in the past with Napoli) by Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri. It is no coincidence, either, to see big clubs spending record sums of money on goalkeepers these days, goalkeepers that are not just shot-stoppers, but also excellent footballers.
By Max Blane and Borna Nazari • 24 Jan 2019 • 6 min read
Due to the effects of a major knee surgery suffered during a September 2016 matchup vs. the Toronto Blue Jays, and a reinjury that was followed by a second surgery in April of 2017, the 2018 season came and went with Boston Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia compiling thirteen total plate appearances; he accumulated just a single hit.
By Nikhil Sharma • 15 Jan 2019 • 6 min read
A few months ago, I wrote an article where I used k-means clustering to help choose five NBA players from 1980 to the present to constitute an all-time starting lineup.
By Alex Veroulis • 05 Dec 2018 • 6 min read
In Major League Baseball (MLB), a reliever is defined as any pitcher who is substituted for a starting pitcher to help finish a game. Ideally, even as of a few years ago, relievers were meant to be brought in after the starter had pitched at least 6 or more innings. However, as the game has evolved, relievers have expanded their respective roles. For instance, teams like the Tampa Bay Rays have implemented relievers in a starting role, where the relievers are known as "openers." Starters, who used to go much deeper in the game, are being pulled in the 5th inning--sometimes earlier--more often than ever. After all, starters are limited to a certain number of pitches, meaning that you'll rarely see pitchers venture into triple-digit pitch counts to prevent injuries that may require Tommy John surgery. Consequently, relievers are being used more often and for longer periods of time. But, the volatility amongst MLB relievers hasn't gone away, which means consistency might be hard to find in a reliever. This variability brings about an important question for MLB front offices: is it worth paying extra for free agent relievers in today's game? Through an examination of past and present player salaries and performance, I will try to see whether inflated salaries for relievers are really worth it.
By Jack Ma and Nikhil Sharma • 05 Dec 2018 • 11 min read
Russell Westbrook has become one of the NBA's top players in the past decade. He has been a marvel to watch, as his thrilling athleticism has allowed him to churn out highlight after highlight. On top of his exhilarating play-style, he has become a fan favorite due to his curt interviews and his redemptive MVP season after Kevin Durant so infamously snaked Russ and the Thunder.
By Faraz Murshed • 05 Dec 2018 • 6 min read
In soccer, there is no club competition that rivals the prestige and history of the UEFA Champions League (UCL). Each year, the highest ranked teams from all European leagues automatically qualify or enter the preliminary stages of this tournament. In the end, 32 teams participate in a grueling group stage, where every team plays each other twice. The top two teams from all 8 groups make the first knockout stage. Each knockout matchup has two games, other than the final which has one. As a result, the UCL format generally ensures that the team who wins must consistently play well.
By Arman Abrishamchian • 04 Dec 2018 • 5 min read
The Ray Lewis Ravens, '85 Bears, and Belichick Giants are some of the greatest defenses the National Football League has ever seen. They were stone walls, high-powered, and champions. Scoring more than ten points against any of these teams was an accomplishment- a win in and of itself. However, scoring less than twenty against any team nowadays is almost always another notch in the loss column.
By Haley Rao • 04 Dec 2018 • 4 min read
Every summer, hundreds of college baseball players participate in summer leagues around the country. One of the most acclaimed of these leagues is the Cape Cod Baseball League, which consists of 10 teams across the Cape Cod peninsula. Collegiate summer leagues have support from both Major League Baseball and the NCAA, and are intended to help advance players from the collegiate to professional level.