(Written & Created By AllSaints)
AllSaints is a busy Coach in the SCT Forum and has taken it upon himself to write a few articles for us over the Pre-Season. This SC-Planning write-up was written a few weeks ago, so (unfortunately) ignore any mentions of Docherty in there.
As we always say, our greatest strength at SCT is that literally any of our Coaches can have a dip at writing articles (that means YOU!). As long as your numbers & stats are accurate, send through any write-ups to schwarzwalder ‘at’ supercoachtalk ‘dot’ com.
Now………take it away, AllSaints………..
SUPERCOACH 2019 – planning starts yesterday!
Having learnt SO MUCH from the SuperCoachTalk contributors and community more generally over the course of the last nine months or so, I thought I would try and take everything I have learned and write a series of pieces for relative newcomers like me to make our lives easier, when it comes to all things SuperCoach. The first one is on pre-season planning (below) and will be followed by a piece on Rookies 2019: planning and implications. Finally a piece on season’s strategy: picking your team, planning for byes, to trade and/or not to trade. This has only been possible thanks to everyone at SCT and while it may be a little boring for all SCT long-termers, I hope it proves useful in some small part for newbies like me, as we start to think ahead to 2019. Just writing it all has given me much greater clarity and should prove beneficial. It will give me a more considered starting line-up and will save me at least 5 unnecessary trades.
As 2018 draws to a close, it is time to start thinking about 2019. So what should we be doing now that will best prepare us for the undoubted carnage when team selections are dropped before that first bounce of Rd1 2019?
Well, we need to think about our potential premiums for 2019, how we are going to approach team structure, consider 2019 prices in advance and finally put your “skeleton side” together, so that only minimum work will be required in those last few hours, essentially selecting and organising the best rookies and our final premium LOCK-INs before the season gets under way.
Potential Premiums 2019
Over the last few weeks a lot of SuperCoaches will have started putting their potential premium “lists’ together for 2019. It is useful to think of this as a “living list”. What does that mean? Well, it means that nothing is set in stone. Your opinions and the circumstances of certain players may change over time. Make notes. It is also worth categorising them under differing headers (eg. locked and loaded, probable targets, potential breakouts, considerables etc.) Doing this now is very useful for a number of reasons. The latest data is also available, pertinent and abundant. You can watch, analyse, make notes and move them around from category to category. You are also less likely to be ‘swayed’ during the 2019 pre-season to make ill-informed choices/changes based on relatively meaningless data. Elite players’ potential for SC should always be based on their output in actual AFL games and NOT pre-season matches. Finally, you can always ADD players to your “living list” but should NEVER strike them off entirely. You chose them originally for a reason, perhaps drop them to a lesser category and make a note about them. The best way to do this is in a spreadsheet format, simply adding more and more columns and ideally using filters.
Building your list
Given that the KEY aim of SC is to maximise your team points every week, it makes sense to prioritise player positions starting with the one that tends to yield the most points. Looking historically and at 2018 in particular, you would think it wise to start with RUCs (110-130), then MIDs (105-130), then DEFs (95-110) and finally FWDs (90-105). At this stage don’t worry about DPP, rather, assume that they WILL have the status that you desire. It will make more sense later, but for now include them twice if you feel they are relevant in more than one position, or just the once if in your mind they are only relevant if given a certain positional status.
Your list may look something like this right now:
* indicates that we wish that player to have this positional status (if it turns out they don’t, you can move them to where you think appropriate, eg Dangerfield might go to MID TARGET if he isn’t afforded FWD status)
§ the above list is just an example and is NOT a recommendation of any kind
*Again, this write-up was completed before Docherty’s unfortunate training mishap. Up until that point, I’m sure you’ll agree, he was a lock.
In an ideal world, those Premiums you select at season’s start will be on the field EVERY week (barring their respective byes) until season’s end. Having pored over data from the last ten years to analyse uber premiums by position, there are a few other things that might also be worth considering when picking your potential LOCKED players for 2019. Remember, it is critical to the outcome of your SC season that you get these initial choices right. So do not compromise. Let’s consider the following:
– The majority of uber premiums tend to yield optimum SC output from 24-28 yrs old
– MIDs profile tends to be slightly younger than the average (23-27), while DEFs and FWDs tend to be slightly older (25-28), and even more so for RUCs (26-30). Of course this is only a guide but,
Bear these ages in mind when selecting your LOCKED premiums and if they’re younger and already producing premium SC averages, all the better. Their best years are likely still to come. Counter to that, proceed with caution on players who are at the upper age limit or even past it. At best they will likely maintain output, meaning that they are comparatively over-priced at season’s start1
– Past and recent injuries in particular can negatively impact scoring
If you’re unsure put them on your ‘target’ list. You can always pick them up later on
– Changes in circumstances: club, player arrivals, new coaches, positional changes etc. Any single or combination of the above is a risk that needs to be considered (eg Lever’s arrival at MEL and the negative impact it had on Hibberd) – while changes can have positive as well as negative effects on output, it is better to proceed with caution.
It is always safer to pay for what you know you’re gonna get, but if you like risk …
– Other points that need some consideration
o How is their club likely to go compared to last year? If you think the answer is ‘better’, then that is likely better for SC points (especially for MIDs, RUCs and FWDs)
o What draft pick were they? There is a greater propensity for ubers to have originally been a high draft pick (round 1), while also bear in mind that some players mature slower than others.
o How many games have they played? 30-35+ is a good guide for potential breakouts (and 2 pre-seasons minimum2 under their belts)
– Finally, when it comes to your final Premium selections, byes should be considered. Don’t worry about your rookies at season’s start, but for your Premium selections their respective byes need due care and attention
o A good guide appears to be:
§ No more than 1 per bye in the RUC
Unless there is an R3 pick available who offers decent JS3 and has a different bye AND you are selecting them
§ Definitely no more than 2 per bye in DEF and FWD lines
Ideally, only one (if you’re starting with three premos on these lines, this is achievable)
§ No more than 2 per bye in the MIDs
o Overall, aiming for less than 6 in any given bye is essential
§ 5 maximum at season’s start. This will give you a little more flexibility at the upgrade trade table, given that you are likely to have 16-19 Premiums come the start of the main byes
While talking about the implications of the byes, we need to refer to team structure for this to make complete sense.
There are a number of ways that people tend to approach team structure, but there are some ‘rules’ that it is wise to follow:
– Sort out your “living list” of Premiums in the off-season to the point that you know who you would be starting with for a minimum, LOCKED set-up of 4-6-2-4 at season’s start4
o It is useful to rank each player, by BOTH position and overall, PRIOR to the fixture release
o Once the fixture list is out you will be able to make the necessary adjustments for byes, through your predicated priority list
§ Whilst we will never get it 100% right, it affords you to try and eventually pick just 3 of the top 7 DEFs and FWDs, 5 of the top 9 MIDs and depending on your RUC strategy, either set and forget Grundy and Gawn, or take one and a potential cash-growing other with a view to upgrading when optimally-best to do so
– Bear in mind that wherever you get to with the above process: YOU MUST remember to PICK YOUR ROOKIES FIRST
o This should dictate how many Premiums you start with on each line and not vice-versa.
– After identifying your rookies, decide if you are going to use a Loophole5 player for the season
if you are, then it is probably best to pick him in a position where your decent rookie options (“cash-cows”) appear weakest / are most limited
it is also worth considering that a MID loophole will offer you more flexibility (3 on the bench, which is 50% more than DEF and FWD lines and three times more than in the RUC): while not essential, increasing flexibility where possible is good, but not to the extent that you compromise your team
– select your premiums last
again, it is prudent to start with the position that will likely yield most points per player and work down from there (as mentioned earlier, it is about points maximisation)
1 EVERY player’s price/point value (MVP) diminishes as the season progresses, ie you are paying top dollar at season’s start.
2 Consider state-level (ie VFL, SANFL etc.) to be worth two-thirds that of AFL, think Tom Doedee or Tim Kelly
3 JS – job security
4 Whilst this is never achievable in its entirety, it should be planned for to cover your maximum premium selection numbers for each and every line and will help you allow for byes
5 the Loophole: a player who you do not expect to play for the ENTIRE season and plays for a club who play more (late) Sunday games than any other side (historically tends to be FRE and WCE). This player allows you to have two bites at the double-points Captain every week, and is proven to afford more points than the alternative (the cheapest and worst-performing playing rookie you select in their place) will deliver in cash-equivalent.
** Part TWO will be out on New Years Day……thanks again, AllSaints!! **
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