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Speculation Thread: What do you think happened at Deflategate? (Merge)

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This was buried in the megathread

 

Key takeaways...

 

2010-2014 Pats are 31 plays better than 2nd place which is 09-13 Pats and 06-10 Colts. The fact that a one year difference removing 2009 and adding 2014 spiked the average up 31 plays. The gap between 2nd and 6th place is 8 plays and the gap between 1st and 2nd is 31. By far best of all time.

 

2014 Patriots were the 3rd team to never lose a fumble at home. The other two teams who completed this feat ran 150 and 2000 plays LESS than the 2014 Patriots.

 

In the last five years when playing for the Patriots - Welker, Woodhead, Lafell, Blount, Amendola, and BJGE fumbled once per 77 touches. When not playing for the Patriots, this group's fumble rate jumps to one fumble per 185 touches (source:WSJ)

 

But yea only BB preaches ball security and benches fumblers....

 

This is obviously why the investigation is taking so long as Ted Wells is trying to dig back how far the cheating actually goes.

 

Edit: I accidentally switched the statistic about the players when on the Patriots and not on the Patriots. It is 1 per 185 touches as Pats, and 1 per 77 touches as members of other teams.

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This was buried in the megathread

 

Key takeaways...

 

2010-2014 Pats are 31 plays better than 2nd place which is 09-13 Pats and 06-10 Colts. The fact that a one year difference removing 2009 and adding 2014 spiked the average up 31 plays. The gap between 2nd and 6th place is 8 plays and the gap between 1st and 2nd is 31. By far best of all time.

 

2014 Patriots were the 3rd team to never lose a fumble at home. The other two teams who completed this feat ran 150 and 2000 plays LESS than the 2014 Patriots.

 

In the last five years when playing for the Patriots - Welker, Woodhead, Lafell, Blount, Amendola, and BJGE fumbled once per 77 touches. When not playing for the Patriots, this group's fumble rate jumps to one fumble per 185 touches (source:WSJ)

 

But yea only BB preaches ball security and benches fumblers....

 

This is obviously why the investigation is taking so long as Ted Wells is trying to dig back how far the cheating actually goes.

 

I just want to clarify, because at first I thought you were trying to make a case AGAINST the Patriots....but then this line seems to suggest that those players fumbled MORE when with the Patriots, and LESS when not playing with the Patriots...which would not accomplish your goal of proving them scumbags...

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its stats, and stats can be manipulated to show what you want to show. 

 

http://drewfustin.com/2015/01/27/patriots-fumble-comments/

 

refutes the "analysis" quite well. 

 

 

 

You can throw out games played indoors, I am fine with that. It makes a ton of sense (although something interesting I found: fumble rates were actually higher indoors than outdoors -- go figure!). But please, the extra work must be done to preserve the games played by dome teams outdoors. I cannot stress this enough: there is no reason to remove dome teams from this analysis, there is only reason to remove games played indoors. There are a few reasons

 

 

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I just want to clarify, because at first I thought you were trying to make a case AGAINST the Patriots....but then this line seems to suggest that those players fumbled MORE when with the Patriots, and LESS when not playing with the Patriots...which would not accomplish your goal of proving them scumbags...

Apologies - I mixed those two statistics up. They fumbled 1 per 77 touches when not on the Patriots, and 1 per 185 touches as Patriots. Thank you for catching that.

 

http://www.wsj.com/articles/patriots-always-keep-a-tight-grip-on-the-ball-1422054846

 

Also - Beginning in the 2010 season, Patriots players have fumbled (whether lost or recovered) once every 73 touches from scrimmage, which is 52% better than the league average. The next best team is the Ravens, who have fumbled once every 55 touches.

 

Also also - you are the ones calling them scumbags, not me.

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I read them stats too.  Also, Benjarvus Green Ellis fumbled 0 times in 4 or 5 years with the Pats and 5 in less than 2 years with the Bengals.  Somethings fishy about all of this.  Would the Pats still have beat the Colts? Yes probably but why bend the rules?  Rules are rules regardless you should be punished if you break them. It doesn't matter if you break a major rule or a minor rule, you should be punished.  I hope the NFL punishes them.  If they don't I am going to begin to believe that the NFL really is corrupt and I hate to say that.

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Apologies - I mixed those two statistics up. They fumbled 1 per 77 touches when not on the Patriots, and 1 per 185 touches as Patriots. Thank you for catching that.

 

http://www.wsj.com/articles/patriots-always-keep-a-tight-grip-on-the-ball-1422054846

 

Also - Beginning in the 2010 season, Patriots players have fumbled (whether lost or recovered) once every 73 touches from scrimmage, which is 52% better than the league average. The next best team is the Ravens, who have fumbled once every 55 touches.

 

Also also - you are the ones calling them scumbags, not me.

 

I had a feeling! I knew you wouldn't include a stat that counters the point you were trying to make hahaha ;)

 

And no...check your posting history. You've called them that.

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I had a feeling! I knew you wouldn't include a stat that counters the point you were trying to make hahaha ;)

 

And no...check your posting history. You've called them that.

Why are you here?

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I read them stats too.  Also, Benjarvus Green Ellis fumbled 0 times in 4 or 5 years with the Pats and 5 in less than 2 years with the Bengals.  Somethings fishy about all of this.  Would the Pats still have beat the Colts? Yes probably but why bend the rules?  Rules are rules regardless you should be punished if you break them. It doesn't matter if you break a major rule or a minor rule, you should be punished.  I hope the NFL punishes them.  If they don't I am going to begin to believe that the NFL really is corrupt and I hate to say that.

 

He had 959 touches in college...0 fumbles. His first fumble with the Bengals was his first fumble in his college and pro career.

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that goes for every team though

Yes and no.  Richardson had some fumble problems (I believe he had 2 against Philly), but we kept starting him.  Herron has fumble problems, but we kept starting him because he was our best option.

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He had 959 touches in college...0 fumbles. His first fumble with the Bengals was his first fumble in his college and pro career.

College is a lot different than the NFL. He still fumbled 5 times in 2 years afterwards. Either way he is one of six players who as a group hold the ball better twice as much as members of the Patriots.

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Yes and no.  Richardson had some fumble problems (I believe he had 2 against Philly), but we kept starting him.  Herron has fumble problems, but we kept starting him because he was our best option.

We were playing Tipton though when Herron started fumbling. And Brown last year when Richardson fumbled. These are for series though not necessarily games.

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College is a lot different than the NFL. He still fumbled 5 times in 2 years afterwards. Either way he is one of six players who as a group hold the ball better twice as much as members of the Patriots.

 

The over all stats are flawed. See my earlier post and let us know what you think.

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The over all stats are flawed. See my earlier post and let us know what you think.

Ok so you are saying he fumbled when he left the Patriots because he was due for some fumbles then? His non fumbling career added up to him accumulating a lot of fumbles he somehow owed?

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Let's see if anyone can watch this video without ripping me or saying, "OMG the Pats fan is defending his team!!"

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VZ_S8F3mKFE

 

This is the only place I could still find the video, because ESPN took it down last week. That's right, they took down a Sports Science video on deflated balls during Deflategate/Ballghazi/whatever you want to call it. Seems crazy huh? 

 

Why? 

 

If you watch the video, you'll know why. 

 

Now this is NOT to say the Patriots didn't break a rule. That's a separate topic. But it does go a long way toward debunking the Warren Sharp article. 

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Ok so you are saying he fumbled when he left the Patriots because he was due for some fumbles then? His non fumbling career added up to him accumulating a lot of fumbles he somehow owed?

 

I was talking about the overall subject of this post. Sorry I didnt make that clearer. The Sharpfootball numbers threw out all dome teams numbers before doing the numbers. They should of thrown out all dome games, not teams. 

 

The only fact is numbers can be made to say what you want to say. 

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I was talking about the overall subject of this post. Sorry I didnt make that clearer. The Sharpfootball numbers threw out all dome teams numbers before doing the numbers. They should of thrown out all dome games, not teams. 

 

The only fact is numbers can be made to say what you want to say. 

The Colts play in a dome and were tied in 2nd with the 09-13 Pats. It's just peculiar they are 31 better now when 2 to 6 is an 8 play difference.

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Why are you here?

 

Why am I here? In the NFL General section of a football forum? Responding to a topic centered around my team?

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The Colts play in a dome and were tied in 2nd with the 09-13 Pats. It's just peculiar they are 31 better now when 2 to 6 is an 8 play difference.

 

If you look @ games played outdoors, the 2013 colts had the second best plays per fumble between 2010 and 2014. Only the 2014 Vikings had a better number.

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Let's see if anyone can watch this video without ripping me or saying, "OMG the Pats fan is defending his team!!"

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VZ_S8F3mKFE

 

This is the only place I could still find the video, because ESPN took it down last week. That's right, they took down a Sports Science video on deflated balls during Deflategate/Ballghazi/whatever you want to call it. Seems crazy huh? 

 

Why? 

 

If you watch the video, you'll know why. 

 

Now this is NOT to say the Patriots didn't break a rule. That's a separate topic. But it does go a long way toward debunking the Warren Sharp article. 

 

I am not here to say what is right or wrong, but as a rule I wouldn't use Sport Science as your go-to source of evidence for an argument. They present their information with little context and scant explanation just using "data" to support the opinion they want to convey. It makes a mockery of my field of study.

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We were playing Tipton though when Herron started fumbling. And Brown last year when Richardson fumbled. These are for series though not necessarily games.

But Richardson continued to start for us in many games after Philly, despite his 2 fumble performance.  When Ridley was having fumbling issues, Belichick benched him fairly quickly

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But Richardson continued to start for us in many games after Philly, despite his 2 fumble performance.  When Ridley was having fumbling issues, Belichick benched him fairly quickly

Meh, ridley's fumbling problem wasn't just this yr

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Call the Patriots cheaters when they cheat, not when they play good football.

We are fast becoming a forum full of reachers and straw clutchers.

There are plenty things 'New England' to hate upon if that is your want, no need to stretch. It feels kind of tacky.

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I think the premise is that the Pats do everything better than everyone else.  Better coaching, higher football IQ, better prepared, more clutch, less fumbles, better decision making, better game planning, etc....it sounds nice for Pats fans, but it doesn't really add up.  BB may be good, but is he THAT good?  The talent level for the Pats is not even elite save for Gronk and some would say Brady. So, naturally, if the team has been using every means available (illegal or borderline legal)to get that edge, it makes a lot of sense.  I just don't think that team is good enough to sustain that level w/o having superior players at most every position.    

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Gee that funny, Aaron Rodgers has not thrown a pick at home in like 2 years or something and openly admits to handing in overinflated balls to the refs pregame and claims that overinflated balls are easily for him to throw.  Should we conclude that the packers have been overinflating balls for the past two years because his stats are off the charts?

 

Hey and aint that Aaron Rodgers the guy the one everyone says has like the highest QB rating in history or the best for his first five years are something, am I supposed to put 2 and 2 together?

 

Not sure where the OP is going or the person who wrote the article, but sometimes folks play well.

 

And lets not forget that the Colts teams are up there with the pats, not sure if we all think the colts has their balls deflated.

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If this is true, then why didn't it work for Ridley? 

 

I just don't buy this the more I think on it. 

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Why are you here?

If you have a problem with her being here it is simple. Ignore her. It pretty simple to do. This forum is open to all and that includes you, me and anyone who abides by the rules. I know that line can be pushed at times but it is an open forum no matter if you like it or not. I also see that she has made more comments in this forum than you have. Something to think about.

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Gee that funny, Aaron Rodgers has not thrown a pick at home in like 2 years or something and openly admits to handing in overinflated balls to the refs pregame and claims that overinflated balls are easily for him to throw. Should we conclude that the packers have been overinflating balls for the past two years because his stats are off the charts?

Hey and aint that Aaron Rodgers the guy the one everyone says has like the highest QB rating in history or the best for his first five years are something, am I supposed to put 2 and 2 together?

Not sure where the OP is going or the person who wrote the article, but sometimes folks play well.

And lets not forget that the Colts teams are up there with the pats, not sure if we all think the colts has their balls deflated.

The colts are up there tied with the 09-13 pats, the 10-14 pats are 31 better considering the gap between 2nd and 6th is 8 plays but yea keep telling yourself the colts cheated too.

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The colts are up there tied with the 09-13 pats, the 10-14 pats are 31 better considering the gap between 2nd and 6th is 8 plays but yea keep telling yourself the colts cheated too.

 

I did not say that the colts cheated, just saying that the numbers are not off from other teams.  I think the pats in this case are just as clean as the colts are which is clean.   That's my point.  Some teams are just good and have discipline, like the colts and the pats, that was my point.   Meaning if you think one team is clean based on the numbers, don't claim is neighbor is not clean based on the same numbers.

 

And the same thing goes for my Aaron Rodgers comment, his numbers are great and that has a lot more do with his talent as opposed to anything to do with inflation of balls.

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I was going to try to find an accuweather temp tracking for Foxboro that night for halftime temp, and see i I could find the atmospheric pressure in millibars and convert to psi for absolute pressure correction. Then I realized I'd never ever get the exact temp from the officials locker room, so just plugged and played numbers in the ball park.  LOL

 

I ho[e the Wells reports details every aspect.  The league needs beefy measures for beefy rules.

I posted a link to the hourly temperatures but I've copy/pasted again http://www.wunderground.com/history/airport/KOWD/2015/1/18/DailyHistory.html?req_city=NA&req_state=NA&req_statename=NA

 

Kickoff temperature was about 51 degrees, and depending on when exactly halftime was, the temperature was about 50-51.  It also included the hourly barometric pressure.  The degree and pressure should be enough for the calculations, but it was far over my head and "expertise" in the subject - I only took 2 semesters in college.   

 

One of hte other disputes that da_pats_troll and I had were on whether we should be using psi absolute (psia) or psi gauge (psig).  By using psia, you add the atmospheric pressure, the constant being 14.7 to whatever the psi measurement of the football is.  That will create non-proportional conversions.  There's value to it (it's supposed to measure the psi zero referenced against the pressure at sea level), but I was under the impression that it is better suited to measure in psig, since it accounts for the atmospheric pressure at the time of measurement and since both footballs are practically being measured next to eachother under identical atmospheric conditions, there's no need for a psig conversion.  Of course, neither of us could really find what is preferential since the measurement just depends on what you are trying to do with your measurements.  So naturally, we disagreed.  For me, I look at it like tires.  Tires need to be within a certain psi amount to get the max performance of those tires regardless of whether conditions.  So you measure them to the psi amount when you air them in whatever the local atmospheric pressure is.  You do that with a pressure gauge.

 

Anyway, there are so many nuances and specific pieces of information missing in the NFL's investigation at this point to come to a conclusion either way.  But dpt's and my conversation, my calcuations assumed the pre-game measurements of Colts football 13.5 psi at 72 degress and Patritos at 12.5 at 72 degrees (that seems to be the room temperature what many are using, though I have no idea why or where it comes from.  It's a bit high for my liking, but it isn't uncommon for people to set room temperatures between 68-72.  Besides, it's the Patriots that used temperature as a basis to explain the pressure drop, so I made any "reasonable" assumptions in the patriots favor just to see if it's possible).  I then, for the sake of argument, took the lowest temperature after kickoff, 45 degrees, for my measurements at half time (although I noted as I did above that the hourly temperature in foxboro according to the above link was closer to 50 degrees).  The end result was an 11.9 psi rating for the Patriots (which, if true, would have required further deflation to get to the reported 1-2 psi below the acceptable range per NFL rules and that Colts footballs would have been measured at 12.8 at halftime, within the acceptable range.  If the half time temperatures were only 1 or 2 degrees below kick off temperature it would obviously be a little bit higher for both than the 11.9 and 12.8 measurements. 

 

At any rate, the point is, using psig supports the reports that the Patriots footballs were deflated under the limit, but cannot explain how it could be 1-2 psi below the required limits without further depressurization, leading one to believe the patriots further deflated the footballs, while also supporting the claim that the colts footballs were within the acceptable psi range for the entire game.  Using psia does support hte Patriots position that it could deflate the footballs 1-2 psi below the acceptable range, but contradicts the reports that Colts footballs were measured within the limits at all times.  To me, referees (and the NFL for that matter) aren't scientists, they don't do calculations.  The rules are written such that it has to be between "12.5-13.5 psi."  For people who aren't measuring psi against a vacuum and working with atmospheric calculations, the vast majority of people just stick a standard pressure gauge to make measurements.  So to me, the better assumption - especially since it supports what has thus far been reported - is that we are measuring in psig.

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I posted a link to the hourly temperatures but I've copy/pasted again http://www.wunderground.com/history/airport/KOWD/2015/1/18/DailyHistory.html?req_city=NA&req_state=NA&req_statename=NA

 

<snipped >

 

Here is something  you may be interested in reading. 

 

http://www.hawkridgesys.com/blog/simulationdeflate-gate-2015-tom-bradys-case-solidworks-flow-simulation/

 

They are obviously blowing their own horn and using deflategate to try and drum up some business, but interesting none the less.

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I posted a link to the hourly temperatures but I've copy/pasted again http://www.wunderground.com/history/airport/KOWD/2015/1/18/DailyHistory.html?req_city=NA&req_state=NA&req_statename=NA

 

Kickoff temperature was about 51 degrees, and depending on when exactly halftime was, the temperature was about 50-51.  It also included the hourly barometric pressure.  The degree and pressure should be enough for the calculations, but it was far over my head and "expertise" in the subject - I only took 2 semesters in college.   

 

One of hte other disputes that da_pats_troll and I had were on whether we should be using psi absolute (psia) or psi gauge (psig).  By using psia, you add the atmospheric pressure, the constant being 14.7 to whatever the psi measurement of the football is.  That will create non-proportional conversions.  There's value to it (it's supposed to measure the psi zero referenced against the pressure at sea level), but I was under the impression that it is better suited to measure in psig, since it accounts for the atmospheric pressure at the time of measurement and since both footballs are practically being measured next to eachother under identical atmospheric conditions, there's no need for a psig conversion.  Of course, neither of us could really find what is preferential since the measurement just depends on what you are trying to do with your measurements.  So naturally, we disagreed.  For me, I look at it like tires.  Tires need to be within a certain psi amount to get the max performance of those tires regardless of whether conditions.  So you measure them to the psi amount when you air them in whatever the local atmospheric pressure is.  You do that with a pressure gauge.

 

Anyway, there are so many nuances and specific pieces of information missing in the NFL's investigation at this point to come to a conclusion either way.  But dpt's and my conversation, my calcuations assumed the pre-game measurements of Colts football 13.5 psi at 72 degress and Patritos at 12.5 at 72 degrees (that seems to be the room temperature what many are using, though I have no idea why or where it comes from.  It's a bit high for my liking, but it isn't uncommon for people to set room temperatures between 68-72.  Besides, it's the Patriots that used temperature as a basis to explain the pressure drop, so I made any "reasonable" assumptions in the patriots favor just to see if it's possible).  I then, for the sake of argument, took the lowest temperature after kickoff, 45 degrees, for my measurements at half time (although I noted as I did above that the hourly temperature in foxboro according to the above link was closer to 50 degrees).  The end result was an 11.9 psi rating for the Patriots (which, if true, would have required further deflation to get to the reported 1-2 psi below the acceptable range per NFL rules and that Colts footballs would have been measured at 12.8 at halftime, within the acceptable range.  If the half time temperatures were only 1 or 2 degrees below kick off temperature it would obviously be a little bit higher for both than the 11.9 and 12.8 measurements. 

 

At any rate, the point is, using psig supports the reports that the Patriots footballs were deflated under the limit, but cannot explain how it could be 1-2 psi below the required limits without further depressurization, leading one to believe the patriots further deflated the footballs, while also supporting the claim that the colts footballs were within the acceptable psi range for the entire game.  Using psia does support hte Patriots position that it could deflate the footballs 1-2 psi below the acceptable range, but contradicts the reports that Colts footballs were measured within the limits at all times.  To me, referees (and the NFL for that matter) aren't scientists, they don't do calculations.  The rules are written such that it has to be between "12.5-13.5 psi."  For people who aren't measuring psi against a vacuum and working with atmospheric calculations, the vast majority of people just stick a standard pressure gauge to make measurements.  So to me, the better assumption - especially since it supports what has thus far been reported - is that we are measuring in psig.

 

It's been so long since I was in college (and I had difficulty grasping it at that time too!) I cannot even verify whether measuring this is an isobaric or isochoric process and which formula best fits for calculation. (well I think I do, LOL!!)  Since I would never really get the true Officials locker room temp located deep in the bowels of Gillette, I just took Amonton's relationship, plugged and prayed with 70 room and 48 field temps.  Got some numbers that looked realistic enough, but that doesn't make me smart.  Skilled - possibly because I did have to make another post to completely show my work to get an answer.  Besides I don't know why Amonton's name stuck with me when most would  know it as Charles' (Jacques Charles) or (Joseph) Gay-Lussac's law., but I digress.

 

 

I guess some 'experts out there feel the bladder volume is not constant due to variations in size of the outer leather covering difference when wet versus dry... all kinds of stuff.  Others that might maintain volume is constant, etc...  So I just wanted to know an approximate value to believe is somewhere in the ballpark such that I can eliminate the outlier numbers out there being tossed around.  But I defer to 'real' experts that have no skin in the game (allegiance one way or the other) to do the true calcs. They will also know how long the balls were back inside at half time before re-measuring thus regaining some psi, and the accuracy and error range of the gauges used, etc...  things I could never predict.

 

So I believe our tests/numbers are believable, but possibly not truly accurate.  Too many missing details, I feel we all agree.  But I appreciate people debating what fits and why because I could stand to become 'smarter', even if it is only about deflating balls  (dad gum inner 12 year old fighting to get out again!  LOL)

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I am not here to say what is right or wrong, but as a rule I wouldn't use Sport Science as your go-to source of evidence for an argument. They present their information with little context and scant explanation just using "data" to support the opinion they want to convey. It makes a mockery of my field of study.

 

Not my field at all so I gotcha. I just thought it was a little skeezy that ESPN pulled this down in the middle of this mess. Probably because it doesn't support the scandal that they were among the first to report on. 

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Not my field at all so I gotcha. I just thought it was a little skeezy that ESPN pulled this down in the middle of this mess. Probably because it doesn't support the scandal that they were among the first to report on. 

It's not even that it is 100% misinformation, I haven't seen their data so I don't know. It's just that the information is presented in such a dishonest way. And some of the tests they perform under the name "sport science" is utterly ridiculous.

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Here is something  you may be interested in reading. 

 

http://www.hawkridgesys.com/blog/simulationdeflate-gate-2015-tom-bradys-case-solidworks-flow-simulation/

 

They are obviously blowing their own horn and using deflategate to try and drum up some business, but interesting none the less.

They had me until they added teh 10 watts of heat by friction.  I get why, but that's about the point they started assuming energy from friction.  I suppose that's all you can really do when all you have to go off of is Bill saying the footballs went through their "normal conditioning process," but it's tough to say.  Plus the makeup of the football would also be at issue.  There is a layer of polyurethane, which is heat/cold resistant, not to mention that is covered by leather, which also has some heat/colt resistant properties (though not to the same degree).  Long story short, I agree with you - they are sorta tooting their own horn.  That said, I'm sure that the science is good and they could well be right, but we have no way of knowing whether the data is any good (not a knock on them, it just affects the outcome is all).  So I wouldn't go adding 10 watts of energy to a football to increase pressure from a scientific perspective if I didn't also explain the process for how the friction is applied, the calcs showing the friction added in watts, and how that wattage converted into an increase in the internal temperature while accounting for any heat #ant materials on the surface/within the football.   

 

Nevertheless, it was still an itneresting read. 

 

It's been so long since I was in college (and I had difficulty grasping it at that time too!) I cannot even verify whether measuring this is an isobaric or isochoric process and which formula best fits for calculation. (well I think I do, LOL!!)  Since I would never really get the true Officials locker room temp located deep in the bowels of Gillette, I just took Amonton's relationship, plugged and prayed with 70 room and 48 field temps.  Got some numbers that looked realistic enough, but that doesn't make me smart.  Skilled - possibly because I did have to make another post to completely show my work to get an answer.  Besides I don't know why Amonton's name stuck with me when most would  know it as Charles' (Jacques Charles) or (Joseph) Gay-Lussac's law., but I digress.

 

[cut out rest to save space]

Yeah, doing this has really reminded me how much I loved physics in college.  I stopped doing it eventually because I just didn't want a career out of anything math/science related and wanted to major in something else (don't know why I chose criminal justice in retrospect, but hey, I at least got into law school). 

 

But you're right.  There are just way too many variables that could, depending on how the swayed, go either way.  I fully acknowledge that the Patriots could very well be right and didn't do anything.  I think that it's still shady for a ball boy to go into a bathroom with no cameras for 90 seconds - which many have claimed is entirely possible to deflate 11-12 footballs in that amount of time and still have time to wash your hands if they were good enough and the bag was big enough that the footballs didn't have to be removed to deflate; if you've ever seen the ones they use in college, they are pretty big and the zipper goes completely from one end to the other.  So assuming the Patriots didn't go cheap on football bags, the ball boys bag was big enough to deflate the footballs.  But then again, it's hard to say the ball boy deflated (or at least intentionally tampered with) anything when, after all the data is available, the footballs were deflated to a point that science could explain.  And that's irrespective of the couple reports out there that all teams deflate footballs.  You can't prove intent when there are two rational possibilities and you have no way to prove one or the other, and typically, the accused does (and should) get the benefit of the doubt when it's basically 50/50.

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