Next up in the series — where I jot down what I'm reading from the data viz world — is sports. My original motivation for going back to school to study journalism was sports. I'd do everything and anything to work for a professional team, but when I got to Mizzou, I was put through intense writing classes and it put me off of sports altogether. Then I came across data and visuals and life hasn't been the same since.


1) FiveThirtyEight

The folks at FiveThirtyEight are the best in the business at covering a variety of sports on a daily basis. I might be slightly biased — having interned there last fall — but Neil Paine and co inject expert analysis with often stunning visualizations from the equally talented visuals teams. And it's not just daily stories that they produce: 538 cranks out several dashboard visualizations that have kept me coming back daily.

2) The Pudding

There really isn't anything like The Pudding on the internet right now, especially when it comes to visualizing NBA data. Although their NBA pieces are few and far between, when Russell Goldenberg puts an idea on screen, it's absolutely mesmerizing. And what's even better, The Pudding pay freelancers very generously for spectacular ideas. So get in touch with any ideas.

3) Todd Whitehead aka the Crumpled Jumper

I came across Todd's stuff on Twitter — who goes by the pseudonym Crumpled Jumper — and was immediately hypnotized by the beauty and detail of his stunning portfolio. Much of Todd's stuff finds its way onto Nylon Calculus, which has a collection of some other solid sports viz pieces.

4) NBA Math

The folks at NBA Math have a selection of great tools for player and team analysis. While their actual visualizations could be slightly clearer, they do a great job in providing data that you can't find anywhere else.

5) Yale Undergraduate Sports Analytics Group

Honorary shoutout to these folks, who apply a whole lot of math to sports that I mostly don't understand, but the results are very interesting. Plus, I wish I could do this kind of stuff as an undergrad. Kudos.