April 16, 2014

While We’re Waiting… Quarterbacks and Center Prospects

“While We’re Waiting” serves as the early morning gathering of WFNY-esque information for your viewing pleasure. Have something you think we should see? Send it to our tips email at tips@waitingfornextyear.com.

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Leading off, Chris Pokorny at Dawgs By Nature gives his take on the Browns quarterback situation heading into training camp, “That’s not to say that being allowed to throw downfield will be a cure-all solution for Weeden in his sophomore season. Our offensive line did a very good job at giving Weeden a lot of time to stand in the pocket last season, and while he took advantage of that sometimes, he also missed or was late in making of his throws. I’m fine if Weeden isn’t some All-Pro quarterback, but when he is given extended time to find somebody in the pocket, he has to make the opposition pay. Weeden’s starting job is not in jeopardy heading into training camp, despite the fact that the Browns added two veteran backups behind him. He took all of the first-team reps during the offseason programs, and a new head coach isn’t going to waste all of those valuable first-team reps only to pull a last-second switcharoo.” [Pokorny/Dawgs By Nature]

Keeping on the subject of quarterbacks, the Buckeyes are still looking for one for their 2014 recruiting class, Jeremy Birmingham examines, “The first option is still Brandon Harris. Alabama received a commitment tonight from top-ranked QB David Cornwell, essentially removing themselves from Harris’ list. The Buckeyes, LSU and Auburn still remain near the top of the dual-threat’s list and while I still think it’s unlikely that Harris leaves the south, he told me tonight that the Buckeyes are a real option for him. He insists that he will not be pressured to stay “South” and that anyone who says he is doesn’t “know what they are talking about.”" [Eleven Warriors]

Over at Stepien Rules, Nick Mancini takes a look at Louisville center Gorgui Dieng, “Dieng raised his stock considerably in the NCAA Tournament. He was probably a fringe first-round pick going in and might have solidified himself in the mid-first round with his performance. And the reason he accomplished as much primarily revolves around his defensive prowess. Dieng is a tremendous shot blocker, probably only behind Nerlens Noel in that department as far as this draft is concerned.” [Stepien Rules]

Clayton Crowe at NBADraft.net breaks down the top ten centers in the NBA draft, with Alex Len and Dieng grabbing the top two spots, “Len is one of the more intriguing prospects in this draft. He has the potential and upside to be a top three pick but an injury has kept him from working out in front of scouts at the combine as well as in some individual workouts. At just 19 years of age (20 this week), Len still has plenty of room to grow and mature physically. At 7’1 he has the prototypical size for the center position in the NBA. He showed flashes of brilliance during his sophomore year at Maryland but was limited by inconsistent guard play on a team that struggled to get the ball into the low post.”  [NBADraft.net]

Finally, there’s this interesting piece at Fangraphs by Steve Staude, trying to develop a formula to capture expected strikeout percentage, “Now, in coming up with formulas, the main goal was of course to use only the batting and pitching historical K% numbers (by relevant handedness) as inputs, and to output a “best fit” of the observed K% for all the matchups.  In doing so, I put more importance on the types of matchups that happened more often (i.e., I PA-weighted).  The other goal was for the results of the formula to stay within the range of 0-100% no matter the K percentages that were input; this meant linear formulas were not a good option.”  [FanGraphs]