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Updated for 2018: What app (or not) do you use for prep football stats?

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Robert Carter, Sep 11, 2018.

  1. Robert Carter

    Robert Carter New Member

    I thought I had retired, but a chain of local monthlies (but they take digital seriously) called me back to the sidelines for prep football. I have kept play-by-play only on a form of my own design for many years, but recently redesigned it to add columns for running stats. It works well, when I remember to update the stats columns. But I would really rather use an app for an Android phone or tablet -- would use iScore, but they only do iOS and my budget can't afford Apple stuff, and I'm not a fan of Apple anyway.

    Out of the nine schools we cover, which includes one of the toughest class-regions in the country, only one keeps stats during the game (Hoover, AL) and almost everyone else does theirs off video the next day. So doing my own stats is the only option most nights, plus tweeting after every score and quarter. I have to work the sideline because there's no room in press boxes after you have a radio crew (often two), their NFHS Network TV operations (again, sometimes two), coaches and officials. And these days I am frequently the only written-word journalist covering the game, since the Birmingham News has cut back so much.

    So what are you guys now using for stats? Still a legal pad on a clipboard with PxP only, some kind of form like mine, or an app (if so, which)? This topic has been covered before, but it's been awhile and we need an update. Thanks!
  2. HackyMcHack

    HackyMcHack Member

    I use ScoreStream to post score updates and to track scoring plays. There's the ability on that app to send ScoreStream posts directly to Twitter. Also helps me keep the scoring summary.

    As far as yardage and play-tracking go, I don't track it because I'm shooting photos. I'm at the mercy of the participating teams. Unfortunately, we only have two schools (out of 17) who will consistently send stats to us ... and that's after multiple attempts to get them to help us out.
  3. NNDman

    NNDman Active Member

    I would suggest Digital Scout, but the way that works now I'm not sure you can use it as an individual.
  4. Robert Carter

    Robert Carter New Member

    It doesn't. Tried that. It conflicted with a couple of my teams (both use it the next day while watching video).
  5. HandsomeHarley

    HandsomeHarley Well-Known Member

    I'm old school, I guess, and still use my MS Excel-generated stat sheets. But I also do play-by-play on a legal pad, so the challenge is real.

    My stat sheet (one for each team) has boxes big enough to put the current run, a slash, and the running total.

    I even have at the bottom of the page places for kickoffs-touchbacks, kick return-yards, punt return-yards, punts-yards, int ret-yards, fum ret-yards and sacks.

    Other boxes (no running totals) I have for first downs, 3rd- and 4th-down conversions, fumbles and penalties-yards.

    Not sure I could ever adapt to a computer-based program, but I would give it a shot (especially since figuring time of possession is a pain in the butt, and I can only do it at halftime and second half (when I get back to the office).
  6. BTExpress

    BTExpress Well-Known Member

    How can anyone accurately do stats from the sideline?
  7. Robert Carter

    Robert Carter New Member

    It isn't easy, but it is usually the only option I have because of lack of press box space. Having said that, since it is directly on the sideline, I often have a better view than the press box folks, as is often evidenced when they put the wrong ball-on and yards-to-go numbers on the scoreboard or announce the wrong numbers. I can also ask for help from the chain gang or the official (I know a lot of the zebras anyway).

    Biggest problem is when there's a big pile on a TD dinner from the 1. But then I just ask the players as they come off the field, if I can't tell from which one is being congratulated the most.

    I don't mind the sideline, but I would rather have an app on a phone or tablet. Unfortunately, everything available is either iPad/iPhone only, or geared toward a team stats guy, or both -- or so it appears. Which is why i am asking, to see if I am missing anything.
  8. Rockbottom

    Rockbottom Well-Known Member

    I use ScorebookLive - they have an app - and it works REALLY well.

  9. writingump

    writingump Member

    I've found that it's easier to keep stats on the sidelines. Last week, I stayed in the press box because of forecasted rain (which arrived in the third quarter, and we had a 70-minute lightning delay before OT). If the ball was inside the 10 on one side or the other, it was pretty hard to discern on which yard line it rested. On the sideline, that's not an issue.
  10. ChrisLong

    ChrisLong Well-Known Member

    I always preferred the sideline. Fumble recoveries were hard to determine if there was a pileup and the guy who recovered the ball left it there as they unpiled. If you couldn't figure it out, just ask out loud on the sideline, "Anybody see you recovered?" The hardest thing was on a punt. You had to go upfield where the return man was to make sure you got the yard line to log is return yards, especially if he ran it all the way back. So you were in trouble if someone blocked the punt and you were 40 yards away. If you miss something while in the press box, it's hard to find out who did what. And, yes, yard line in the red zone was hard to determine, especially with a slow chain gang.
  11. Robert Carter

    Robert Carter New Member

    All of that sounds very familiar. I have had a few fans make comments about the old fat guy making a beeline down the sideline after a long pass play or (last week) a 97-yard kickoff return for a TD, which took place while i was still tweeting the previous touchdown.
    PaperClip529 and ChrisLong like this.
  12. HanSenSE

    HanSenSE Well-Known Member

    Between tweeting and other social media duties, keeping stats and, given tighter deadlines, having to have something sent within minutes of the final gun if you can even make the dead tree edition the next day, I don't see how one could work on the sidelines nowadays.
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