Information is increasingly being used in sport in order for teams to gain an advantage over their competitors,statistics to analyse every aspect of a game including players performances are now available to teams.A famous example of statistics being used in sport is the “moneyball concept” which refers to the Oakland A’s baseball teams use of sabermetrics (analysis of baseball stats) in the 2002 Mlb season.Due to the team having a budget of 41 million which was considerably lower than most teams in the league they had to find other ways in order for them to challenge teams with higher budgets, so they used statistics that were usually ignored by baseball insiders such as on base percentage and slugging percentage to determine how efficient and valuable a player would be to their team,because these stats were usually overlooked the A’s were able to put together an effective team for a fraction of the price of other teams (the New York Yankees spent over 3 times as much yet only had 1 more win in the entire season).This shows the value of information in professional sports and the effect it can have if used correctly.the story of the oakland A’s season was later made into a film starring Brad Pitt and the following clip helps to explain the concept further. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WNlCBy07z08.
Statistics are used in most professional sports now, in the last 15 years they have become increasingly popular in football,Prozone is used by many professional football clubs including 15 of the 20 premier league teams, this statistical tool can analyse up to 2500 player actions during a single game including how many sprints a player makes in a game and for how long these sprints last for each time, it can also determine what a player does in different areas of the pitch and how effective he is in terms of passing and shooting in different areas of the pitch,it can also help in determining a players fitness and give managers insights into when they need to be rested, it has even helped to find when a player was carrying an injury, due to the fact his high intensity ratings were down by about 50% compared with the seasonal average (the story of prozone:2010:26),Prozone is also increasingly used by teams in order to sign players as they can type in what characteristics they are looking for in a player into the system this can help them to find like for like replacements or help them to change their style of play.
Fantasy football is used by fans in many sports now,it is particularly popular in american football where it is estimated to be a billion dollar industry played by 27 million people,the aim of fantasy football is to score more points than your friends or members of the public based on certain statistics such as touchdowns thrown/caught,yards gained and points allowed on defense. Fantasy football is helping to create interest in statistics among fans and is helping to increase the popularity of the sport among the general public which leads to increased revenue for the NFL and television networks,specific programming such as NFL RedZone have benefited enormously from fantasy football and cable networks have struck pricey deals to air programs such as this.
These are some of the ways statistics are being used by professional sports teams in order to gain an advantage and how sporting statistics have become an extremely profitable industry.
Hall,D.(2010),the story of Prozone,Four Four Two,may 2010,p 24- 27.