If Monster Jam were College Basketball: Fictional Monster Jam RPI

Dmcga

Active Member
Top 50 RPI as of Feb 2 for trucks competing in a minimum of three events:

Note the St. Louis event is NOT included in this week?s calculations. Hopefully I can obtain full results from the TV broadcast next week, but unfortunately they were not included on the website. Again if there's anyone who can help with this it'd be much appreciated!

Thus far 119 truck and driver combinations have competed in at least one event this year, 93 of which are under consideration for these rankings.

Ryan Anderson continues to lead from Marc McDonald and Cam McQueen. The top independent is still Jimmy Creten who moves up to 12th. The Fox Sports 1 Championship contenders are again highlighted in light blue just to show the differences different ranking methods create.



In the least surprising news ever, Tom Meents heads the Freestyle RPI from Dennis and Ryan Anderson. Jimmy Creten, now 9th, is the highest independent. Shane England has put in some good runs in Big Kahuna to jump up to 30th.



Gary Porter again leads the Racing category from Ryan Anderson and Marc McDonald. Jimmy Creten leads the independents in 16th. Norm Miller?s win in San Diego moves him into the top 10 in 9th. Kelvin ?I think my monster truck is a sprint car? Ramer moves up to 20th as well. Seriously go find the racing from San Diego on YouTube, I?ve seen drift cars less sideways.

 

monsterjamman24

Well-Known Member

sh1

Well-Known Member
Thanks Dmcga. It's becoming clear that your RPI formula is rewarding consistency highly. Some guys like Pauken who have big wins, but also early crashes are rated lower than one might expect. Not saying that is good or bad, just an observation :)
Really can see how solid Norm Miller and Candace Jolly have been this year, kind of unexpectedly
Keep up the good work
 

Dmcga

Active Member
That's exactly what it does. Really all the formula does is take winning percentage and multiply it by a factor to account for strength of schedule. The results would even look quite a bit different if I only considered trucks that actually run an event and exclude breakage. (For instance a truck that breaks in racing and doesn't compete in freestyle gets penalized greatly in the freestyle standings.)

All motor sports from NASCAR to F1 that I can think of rewards winning higher than RPI does. The formula values the difference between first and second the same as it does 15th to 16th. Meanwhile FS1C treats finishing second the same as finishing last. As you say not good or bad, just different.

Considering that Monster Jam puts the entire season on the line in order to win the final event, adjusting for a winning bonus is probably a better method than straight RPI for this industry. Applying that bonus becomes a bit arbitrary though, especially if you try to account for event type (stadium v arena), number of trucks competing, and number of shows in a weekend. Even if one did create a "fair" system, trying to explain it to the target demographic (kids) would be laughable. RPI is boring enough to talk about as it is.
 

Dmcga

Active Member
RPI as of Feb 19 minimum 4 events can be found via the link below:

Had some free type this week and improved the formatting again, as well as added some more useless information. Headers have a random color just for visual clarity. I added a column for schedule type, which shows if a truck's schedule has been mainly stadiums, arenas, or a close mixture of both. Also I added a fourth list which shows Combined RPI for only the independent trucks. It's the same as the first list, just with the FELD trucks filtered out.

Finally I'm no longer highlighting the FS1C trucks. The field split and did separate arena shows this weekend. As they no longer all have identical schedules, RPI can't be used to fairly compare them amongst themselves anymore.

https://onedrive.live.com/redir?page=view&resid=5B9985D8CC044DAE!111&authkey=!ANglhIRMWXsSSUo

Edit: How do the cell sizes appear to all of you? The file I save has large enough blocks to contain all information, but when I open it up via the link it seems some gets cut out. Readable, but still not as appealing as it could be)
 
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Dmcga

Active Member
Final RPI standings for the 2015 "regular season", minimum five events:

I'll do a bit of a final write-up in a day or so, but I'll just post the final results for now. The "purpose" of RPI in college sports is to pick the best teams for the final tournament. Thus with the "best" trucks all competing head-to-head in Las Vegas, there's no need to add those results here. I hope a number of you found the rankings interesting!

http://1drv.ms/1HWiGFr
 

sh1

Well-Known Member
Thanks for doing this. Was fun to read. And also sad to see how guys at the very top like CVH and Zimmer will likely not be in the WF, while someone like Nicole Johnson will be in. Also quite surprising how bad a season Koehler has had.
 

Dmcga

Active Member
So some random thoughts regarding this seasons project of mine; sorry for the rambling and talk of statistics in advance:

I do want to praise FELD for putting the full results page up from each event. That is the only reason I could do what I did, amassing a database of over 18,000 data points. (No that’s not an exaggeration, and yes that did take forever, I don’t know that I’ll do this again next year) However, if anyone from FELD does happen to read this, you may want to look at the quality of the write-ups. I’ll forgive the grammatical and formatting errors, but I do find it odd how often simple spelling mistakes were made regarding truck and driver names. I could even understand if it was only independent trucks, but I’m referring to company trucks and drivers. Rod Schmidt was Rob Schmidt on more than a few occasions, and I’m not even sure if the scary black truck is “Doomsday”, “Dooms Day” or “Doom’s Day”. I know only about 10 people read the results on a regular basis, but I still found it disappointing.

That rant done, lets talk a little about the formula itself. As previously mentioned, RPI rewards consistency most of all. One thing I still struggle with fundamentally was placing a truck who missed an event competitions for mechanical reasons last. This as many of us know is pretty prevalent in arena shows: more events per show, and less time between times a truck has to run. If I was a promoter looking to book trucks based on who will most likely perform solidly with little variation, RPI would be perfect. But for say, booking (or choosing) the trucks that could provide the absolute best show (say, like the World Finals) RPI probably should be tweaked a bit. If I feel ambitious over the next week or so, I may recode the results so that trucks would receive winning comparisons only if they were in the top three, as opposed to ranking them individually 1-16. That way being consistently good (if not always winning) would be rewarded, but particularly bad results (mechanical issues, or rolling over after going big on the first hit of a freestyle) would not be weighted so heavily. Maybe it’ll change the results significantly, maybe not.

I was also slightly surprised at how even the strength of schedule components were for each truck. For the most part, every truck had an Opponents’ Winning % of between 48% and 52%. That’s really not a ton of variation. This suggests that most events have pretty even lineups.

Finally, and most controversially, the results. I don’t need to go down the list and say who had good and bad seasons, we can all do that. I do want to just point out the complete separation there is from FELD trucks to independents. A lot of people feel (myself included) that independents don’t really get a fair shake in Monster Jam, but if RPI really was used to pick the best 32 trucks for Finals, there would be a grand total of TWO independents in the field, Bounty Hunter and Overkill Evolution. I don’t really have a point or opinion here, but when I started this I definitely expected to see some of the independent trucks higher than 30th. It’s certainly going to make for an interesting situation when (and one day it will be when) FELD finds running 50+ trucks itself is no longer profitable.
 
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