June 24, 2006

An Original Idea

I told Janet the other day that I don't have any original ideas, or at least none of consequence. Even the one good idea I had, the one about going back to college with all my experience and pretending to be a 19 year old freshman for a year has been done, though not as well as I could have, since the author of that one made no effort to hide her real identity, as she was a middle-aged woman living in the dorm. That's harder to explain away than a receding hairline.

So, now I go back and think about what I know. Wrestling, Engineering, Baseball, College. There's not a lot there for me to start with. Part of my problem is that I would love to do some sort of analytical research on wrestling similar to what's been done with baseball, but wrestling is so varied and features such small sample sizes that it's nearly, if not totally, impossible. Especially in Division III, if I wanted to do some sort of study correlating high school accomplishments with college success, the records required are non-existent or impossible to access, at least in the numbers necessary to draw meaningful conclusions. I think if I could get the data and analyze it, there might be some conclusions to draw about what to look for in high school wrestlers that indicates future success. If this data was available in scholarship-granting divisions, it would be even more valuable, as there's actual money involved there. At Wheaton, we have some minor control over who gets in, but all that gets a kid is the right to spend a whole lot of his or his parents' money.

No comments: