The Matchup Zone

Glossary of Terms

PAPER Ratings


Contribution to a Lineup Of Unremarkable Teammates estimates the player's value relative to an average Power Six player at the same position. An average player would have a value of 100, so, for example, a lineup of one player with a CLOUT rating of 200 and four other average (or unremarkable) players would have a TAPE rating of 600 for the time they shared the floor together.


Individual Measurable Production As a Contribution to TAPE is a holistic measure of a player's value. IMPACT is a hybrid metric, which combines a player's lineup value with playing time and other factors to put his value into context with his utilization.


Player Adjusted Probablistic Effectiveness Ratings is the catch-all term for all of the adjusted individual statistics and ratings appearing on Like the team TAPE ratings, PAPER is pegged to an index of the six power conferences (ACC, Big 12, Big East, Big Ten, Pac-12, and SEC). In addition to being normalized for the level of competiion each player faced, there are also built-in adjustments to correct for the players' quality of teammates, as well as for the pace of play.

PAPER Components

A more detailed breakdown of each player's PAPER rating, showing how the player rates in ten facets of his game. Like the PAPER ratings, the component ratings are scaled to an average Power Six conference player, and have built-in adjustments for pace of play, quality of opponents, and quality of teammates.

  • Offensive Value-Add (positive values are better):
    • Shooting: The number of points a player's field goal attempts earn his team, relative to what those attempts would have been worth had they been takent by others on the floor.
    • Free Throw: The number of points a player earns for (or costs) his team by getting to the free throw line (or not) and making (or missing) hsi free throws.
    • Rebounding: The number of points that a player's offensive rebounds are worth.
    • Ball Control: If negative, the number of points a player's turnovers cost his team; if positive, the number of points a player's turnover avoidance allowed his team to score.
    • Passing: The number of marginal points a player's teammates were able to score thanks to a player's passing skills.
  • Defensive Value-Add (negative values are better):
    • Shooting: The number of points a player's floor defense is worth (note: as PAPER is derived completely from box score and PBP data and not more advanced player tracking, this facet is highly team-dependent).
    • Shot-Blocking: The number of points a player saves by blocking shots.
    • Rebounding: The number of points a player's defensive rebounds are worth.
    • Turnover: The worth of a player's turnover generation.
    • Foul Control: The points a player saves or gives away via personal fouls.

Player Rating Encompassing Season-long Team and Individual General Excellence (yep, I'll backronym anything) is a player of the year ranking which takes into account both the player's IMPACT rating and his team's TAPE rating. Scale is meaningless on this one, but a higher number is better.


An estimate of the number of points per 100 possessions a player contributes to his team's offensive or defensive output. Higher numbers are better for offense, while lower numbers are better for defense. These ratings are additive, so totaling the production numbers of any five players gives an estimate of the offensive and defensive efficiency that lineup would expect to post against an average power conference team.


The net value, expressed in terms of points per 100 possessions, a player would contribute on an average Power Six team.

Player Stats


Player Estimated Net Contribution Inferred from Linescore is a quick-and-dirty estimate of the number of points a player's effort in a given game was worth to his team by multiplying each number in his game line score by a set coefficient. The coefficients are based on a regression model using historical data from games played between power conference teams over the past five seasons. The current formula is:

PENCIL = (MIN * -0.144) + (2GM * 1.424) + (2GA * -0.691) + (3GM * 2.106) + (3GA * -0.737) + (FTM * 0.564) + (FTA * -0.103) + (OR * 0.972) + (DR * 0.811) + (AST * 0.180) + (TO * -0.815) + (BLK * 1.008) + (STL * 0.941) + (PF * -0.449)

Note that there are no adjustments in PENCIL for pace of play, quality of opponent, site of game, or anything else; it is merely a crude snapshot of a player's single-game contribution to his team's margin of victory or defeat.

TAPE Ratings


Team Adjusted Probablistic Effectiveness ratings are an estimate of how a team would perform against an average power conferencnce team. Ratings are produced on a scale of 0 to 1000, and correspond with estimated winning percentage. A team with a rating of 500, for example, would expect to win half of its games in a power conference, and thus would likely be around the NCAA Tournament bubble.

Unless otherwise noted, all adjusted stats appearing on this site are pegged to this index.