Episode 25

#25 Bayesian Stats in Football Analytics, with Kevin Minkus

Have you watched the series « The English Game », on Netflix? Well, I think you should — it’s a fascinating dive into how football went from an aristocratic to a popular sport in the late 19th century England. Today it is so popular that it became a valuable business to do statistics on the game and its players!

To talk about that, I invited Kevin Minkus on the show — he’s a data scientist and soccer fan living in Philadelphia. Kevin’s currently working at Monetate on ecommerce problems, and prior to Monetate he worked on property and casualty insurance pricing.

He spends a lot of his spare time working on problems in football analytics and is a contributor at American Soccer Analysis, a website and podcast dedicated to… football made or played in the US (or “soccer”, as they say over there). Kevin is responsible for some of their data management and devops, and he recently wrote a guide to football analytics for the Major League Soccer’s website, entitled « Soccer Analytics 101 ».

To be honest, I had a great time talking for one hour about two of my passions — football and stats! Soooo, maybe 2020 isn’t that bad after all… Ow, and beyond football, Kevin is also into the digital humanities, web development, 3D animation, machine learning, and… the bassoon!

Our theme music is « Good Bayesian », by Baba Brinkman (feat MC Lars and Mega Ran). Check out his awesome work at https://bababrinkman.com/ !

Links from the show:

Thank you to my Patrons for making this episode possible!

Yusuke Saito, Avi Bryant, Ero Carrera, Brian Huey, Giuliano Cruz, Tim Gasser, James Wade, Tradd Salvo, Adam Bartonicek, William Benton, Alan O'Donnell, Mark Ormsby, Demetri Pananos, James Ahloy, Jon Berezowski, Robin Taylor, Thomas Wiecki, Chad Scherrer, Vincent Arel-Bundock, Nathaniel Neitzke, Zwelithini Tunyiswa, Elea McDonnell Feit, Bertrand Wilden, James Thompson, Stephen Oates, Gian Luca Di Tanna, Jack Wells, Matthew Maldonado, Ian Costley, Ally Salim, Larry Gill, Joshua Duncan, Ian Moran and Paul Oreto.

About the Podcast

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Learning Bayesian Statistics
A podcast on Bayesian inference - the methods, the projects and the people who make it possible!

About your host

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Alexandre Andorra

Hi! I'm your host, Alex Andorra. By day, I'm a Bayesian modeler at the PyMC Labs consultancy. By night, I don't (yet) fight crime, but I'm an open-source enthusiast and core contributor to the awesome Python packages PyMC and ArviZ.

An always-learning statistician, I love building models and studying elections and human behavior. I also love Nutella a bit too much, but I don't like talking about it – I prefer eating it.

My goal is to make this podcast as interesting and useful to you as possible. So, hit me on Twitter or email with your questions and suggestions!