C&IT, Cass Tech students use data analytics to present Chauncey Billups Hall of Fame nomination

Wayne State University Computing & Information Technology’s Director of Business Intelligence and Data Analytics, Carly Cirilli, and Lead Applications Tech Analyst, Minh Ha, are going back to the classroom with the Sports Analytics Club Program (SACP) at Cass Technical High School in Detroit. 

Cirilli and Ha manage and analyze important data that helps Wayne State make informed and efficient decisions that affect students, faculty and staff. When Cass Tech needed advisors for their SACP, the two were the perfect team to step in. 

Students involved in SACP work on many projects, gathering data for their school’s sports teams and tracking their statistics, as well as learning to communicate that data with others. Cirilli and Ha recently worked with 12 Cass Tech students to analyze former Detroit Piston, Chauncey Billups, statistics over 17 NBA seasons. They then took that data they collected over the projects one-month timeline and created a presentation to submit to the Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame selection committee.   

The project was chosen for Cass Tech by the national SACP organization. Students compared his statistics to current Hall of Fame players and listed his awards to strengthen their case. 

“It’s energizing to work with these kids,” said Cirilli. “Even if they don’t pursue a career in analytics, these skills can be used in any job. They're learning to present, make their case, collaborate with one another — these skills translate into any industry.” 

On Dec. 19, 2019, the selection committee announced that Billups would be considered for the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Class of 2020. 

Cirilli and Ha are still working with Cass Tech to prepare for the next SACP project, as well as the SACP at Martin Luther King Jr. High School in Detroit. 

“For a long time, we would hear ‘we don’t have the data,’ and now it’s gotten to the point where we have so much data, but not enough people that know how to work with it,” said Cirilli.  “I would love to see more diversity in this line of work and am particularly passionate about seeing more young women enter the field. Business intelligence and data analytics is a growing profession, and we need more people who can do the work.”

The final Hall of Fame inductees will be announced Feb. 14.  

The Sports Analytics Club Program mission is to advance STEM education in the United States and promote STEM relevant professional careers for young women and men, driving sports as the educational platform. Find more information at https://www.sacpinc.com. 

Computing & Information Technology is Wayne State University's central IT organization, in the Division of Academic Affairs. For tech support on campus, contact the C&IT Help Desk at 313-577-4357 or helpdesk@wayne.edu. Find FAQs at tech.wayne.edu/kb and follow us on Twitter @WayneStateCIT for instant updates. 

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