Are you a sports fan that’s bored with traditional coverage of the world of sports? You have come to the right place. This page will highlight “analytic oriented” information on the sports we all love to watch that you can’t find elsewhere on the web. And you don’t need to have a Ph.D. in statistics to comprehend what you will find here. From the hallowed grass of Wimbledon to the gridiron of the Iron Bowl, the research you find here will present you with a completely different view of the game, whatever your favorite sport might be.

Most articles are written by Samford University faculty, sports industry professionals that partner with Samford or students in one of the four sports oriented academic programs on campus (sports media in the Journalism and Mass Communications department, sports administration in the department of Kinesiology, sports marketing in the Brock School of Business, and sports medicine in the School of Health Professions).

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How Possession and Opening Goals can Predict Relegated Teams in the Premier League
The Premier League provides quite the spectacle season in and season out. Aside from the memorable on-field moments, the battle on the table heightens the drama in each and every matchweek.
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Professional Soccer Technical Reports
Technical reports are published by students in the Center for Sports Analytics at the end of the season for various professional soccer leagues in order to analyze how the game is progressing. The reports contain league level analysis as well as an appraisal of each team's performance.
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Sponsorship Slam Dunk or Absolute Air Ball? : A Breakdown of NBA Sponsorship by Social Media Affinity
This article explores which NBA naming rights sponsors are receiving the best/worst return on their investment by analyzing social media affinity through the Zoomph database.
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Statistical Insights: When Should I Cross the Ball in Soccer?
Crossing is one of the most common ways to score a goal in the game of soccer. When a team is attacking and trying to score, when is the right time to put the cross into the box? It may not be as simple as you think.
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Determining Rivals Based on Social Media Activity
Rivalries are a critical aspect of any sport. There is always that one team that you want to beat more than anyone else. Do a team’s fans follow the team they want to beat most on social media so that they can be kept up-to-date on what it is they are doing?
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How Did Ronaldo’s Return to the Premier League Affect Manchester United’s Performance?
In the 2021-22 Premiere League season, Cristiano Ronaldo decided to leave Juventus and come back to Manchester United after leaving them for Real Madrid back in 2009. How did this affect the team? Positively, negatively or did nothing change at all?
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Can Harry Kane become the second All-time scorer of the EPL and surpass Wayne Rooney?
Harry Kane, Tottenham Hotspurs's forward, is, currently, the fifth player with the most goals scored in the Premier League with 181 goals to be exact.
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xG For The Win: Analyzing Expected Goals in the USL
Data and analytics have continued to permeate sports everywhere, and the biggest sport in the world is no exception.
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MLB Winning Percentage Breakdown: Which Statistics Help Teams Win More Games?
Bill James is a world-famous American baseball writer and statistician who is known for his analytical contributions to the game of baseball. One of his largest contributions was the Pythagorean Theorem of Baseball.
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Freddie Freeman and Matt Olson Comparison
In the Major League Baseball offseason, the Braves lost Freddie Freeman and acquired Matt Olson to replace him. If we compare these 2 players from the 2021 season looking at stats like batting average, obp, ops and even stats like wOBA, it is obvious that Freeman is more of a high-average hitter while Olson is more of a power hitter. So, what is more valuable in today’s game, high average or high power?
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NFL Naming Rights Sponsorship: Who’s Getting the Best Return on Investment?
This article breaks down naming rights sponsorship in the NFL and shows how well they are performing based on social media affinity.
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Analytics Predicts These Five Golfers Will Crush It in 2023
Wondering what lies ahead for golf? Analytics predicts these five golfers will crush it in 2023, but things can change in the blink of an eye!
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A Breakdown of NHL Naming Rights Sponsorship by Social Media Affinity
This article explores which NHL naming rights sponsors are receiving the best return on their investment by analyzing Twitter affinity data from the Zoomph database.
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A Breakdown of MLB Naming Rights Sponsorship by Social Media Affinity: Which Brands Need to Become Free-Agents and Which Brands Need a Max Contract?
This article dives into how MLB naming rights sponsors stack up against each other in terms of value gained. This is done by using Zoomph Twitter data and analyzing a team’s affinity for their specific naming rights sponsor as well as the affinity for their naming rights sponsors’ competitors.
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Samford University Center for Sports Analytics and WARC Partner to Develop Effective Fundraising Strategies for the LA Dodgers and 76
Samford University Center for Sports Analytics, the international thought leader in the emerging field of sports analytics, has partnered with WARC, the global authority on marketing effectiveness, to develop effective fundraising strategies between professional sports properties and major brands.
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Social Media Big Data and NIL Value for College Football Players
The college football landscape has forever been changed with the new Name, Image and Likeness rules, or NIL. We took a deep dive into how college football athletes have performed on social media and where the value for corporations is in these athletes with high affinity.
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Using Decision Tree Algorithms to Test the Accuracy of NBA Playoff Predictions
In this project, I explore how data mining and decision tree algorithms can be used to model the predictive power of team performance metrics and to predict NBA playoff teams. I construct a decision tree model using three different basketball team statistics and calculate the Gini Coefficient for each variable to measure information gain and determine the split order.
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Hank Aaron Award Winner Analysis
This article breaks down the nominees and winners of the Hank Aaron Award using statistical analysis. The analysis provided support for why players were nominated, why certain players won, and offers arguments for why other players could have received nominations. It is summarized by qualitative takeaways from the quantitative analysis.

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