Posts Tagged ‘champions’

Jordan Williamson — our long awaited hero rises from ashes

Friday, November 30th, 2012

November 16, 2012 – Source: Steve Dykes/Getty Images North America

As we get ready for today’s epic game against UCLA, I’m going to take a minute and time-warp a couple of weeks back to the epic game against the University of Oregon. Kevin Hogan played one of the best games of his life and Stepfan Taylor steamrolled through defender after defender. Our defense racked up sac after sac… but Oregon was damn good this year (as they were last year– remember the humiliation after waking up at 5:30am for College GameDay?!) and they gave us a run for our money. All our best efforts ended up with us going into a nail biting overtime, but thankfully we won the coin toss and chose 2nd possession. Basically this means that Oregon goes first, starts on our the 25 yard line, and has to score in one drive.

They get close and it’s 4th down. They send in their kicker. Solid snap and he kicks….. It hits the post and bounces off. No good.

Now’s our chance to make it happen. Surely between Talor and Hogan we can get this done.

4th down comes and we’re still 37 yards away. This can only one play left and everyone knows what’s going to happen. Shaw sends in Jordan Williamson.

Oh no…

Mind you, I’ve never met Jordan before and I’m confident that he’s been a solid kicker since his first day at Stanford, but this guy has gotten massively shafted during his time here. I won’t go into details on his Stanford playing career, but needless to say when he took the field on Saturday night to attempt to seal the deal for us, the sports-bar I was at in NYC (full of newly minted Stanford alumni) came to absolute silence. Jordan lined up, the snap was made, his kick connected and…

this

I know I’m not the only one who’s glad to see Williamson finally get the redemption he deserves.

See you at the game today. Oh! and also:

 

TUSGraph: “Worst to First”

Tuesday, May 11th, 2010

Congratulations to Men’s Volleyball for bringing home Stanford’s first National Championship of the year!  The victory was not only a fantastic athletic display for a full Maples Pavillion, but also a remarkable ‘come-back’ story, as the team went 3-25 only three years ago.

I took the liberty of analyzing their astonishing improvement.  Assuming the win rate was growing at an exponentially decaying rate (so it reaches 1 at year infinity), I used my predictive equation (R^2 = .9442) to estimate that the team will win almost 88% of its games next year.  The kills per set prediction was easier, as the previous four years have seen an extremely linear increase in kills per set (R^2 = .9992).  Using this linear fit, I predict the team will get 17.3 kills per set next season.

I hope the graph shows the wonderful work of John Kosty, head coach since 2007.  I find it impossible to believe the dramatic improvement wasn’t mostly due to his changes.  Congratulations again to the team.  Thanks for making it so easy to root for Stanford athletics.