Turn on the TV or the radio right now, and call up your favorite sports station. I guarantee that within minutes, you’ll hear someone spouting off a list of statistics about a team or player that’s meant to provide some sort of insight into their value, or why they won or lost last weekend. But Dr. Fergus Connolly, Performance Director for Michigan Football, is here to tell you why our obsession with the numbers game is entirely misplaced.
Dr. Connolly’s new book, Game Changer, is an encyclopedic repudiation of the “big data” approach to team sports. In it, he presents a set of sophisticated and fascinating models for evaluating the game, developing the player, preparing the team, and leading as a coach. Dr. Connolly has a unique gift for finding the essential commonalities in all team sports, and using those fundamental truths to create a system by which coaching staffs can extract maximum performance from their teams on game day.
Borrowing from fields as diverse as chaos theory, psychology, high-level mathematics, anatomy and physiology, Middle Eastern philosophy, sociology and more, Game Changer represents a turning point in how coaches, athletes, and even fans should understand their sport. We dive deep into the foundations of his approach, why it’s better for players and everyone else involved, why he believes that periodization is dead, and the changes he’d like to see in team sports moving forward. If you coach, play, or even like to watch from home, this is one interview and book that is essential to your experience.