Use and Abuse of Information in Sports

Hal Stern
UC Irvine

May 16, 2008
Elements of Information Theory Workshop
Stanford University

As in other aspects of society, appropriate use of information can improve the way sports are played and sports participants are evaluated. Unfortunately the field of sports seems especially prone to occasional abuse of statistical information -- for example, sports professionals and sports analysts tend to draw inappropriate conclusions from small samples. This talk presents a few examples and also tries to provide some insight via more sophisticated statistical analyses.