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  • Writer's pictureMike Hanna

March Madness: How Software and Tech Have Changed Basketball



March is here, and that means Saint Patrick's Day. But for some sports fans, it specifically means March Madness. Did you know that a third of the fans glued to this NCAA tourney are over the age of 65, and nearly 40% are aged between 45 and 64? The upshot of these findings is that March Madness fans are also more affluent, with around 1/7th of them in higher income brackets.


But wait...there's more. March Madness fans are statistically more likely to actively ingest the news once a day, discuss politics with friends, and gamble. Seems like a lively bunch. One wonders what they would have to say about the inroads that software and tech have made into professional basketball.


  1. Data-Driven Game Strategy: Software like SportVU cameras are essentially automated scout systems. These high-tech cameras track the precise location of every player, the ball, and even the referees on the court 25 times per second. This translates to a massive amount of data that gets collected over the course of a game, generating millions of data points. With the help of advanced analytics software, coaches can dissect plays down to the most minute detail. They can see where open shots are being missed, how effectively screens are being set, and even analyze defensive rotations. This data-driven approach allows coaches to tailor their strategies to exploit weaknesses in opposing teams and maximize their own team's strengths.

  2. Advanced Player Training: Gone are the days of relying solely on coaches' intuition for player development. Wearable technology like heart rate monitors and GPS trackers are now commonplace in professional basketball training. This technology captures a wealth of data on a player's movement patterns, stamina, and exertion levels during practice drills and scrimmages. Apps and software then analyze this data to create personalized training programs. For example, a player who tends to fatigue late in games might be given drills that focus on building endurance. This data-driven approach to training helps players optimize their performance, minimize the risk of injuries, and ultimately reach their full potential on the court.

  3. Instant Replay and Officiating:  For decades, controversial calls in basketball were a constant source of frustration for players, coaches, and fans alike. The introduction of instant replay technology has revolutionized officiating in the NBA. High-definition cameras capture every angle of the play, allowing referees to review close calls on replays. This technology has significantly improved the accuracy of officiating by enabling referees to go back and examine the play in slow motion from multiple angles. While instant replay isn't perfect and there's still room for human error, it has undeniably improved fairness and transparency in the game.

  4. Fan Engagement and Entertainment:  The rise of mobile apps and social media platforms has transformed the way fans experience professional basketball. Dedicated team apps allow fans for real-time game updates, access to exclusive content like behind-the-scenes footage, and even interactive features like polls and quizzes. Social media platforms like Twitter and Instagram provide a platform for fans to connect with each other, share their thoughts on the game, and even interact directly with players and teams. Additionally, VR technology is on the horizon, with some teams experimenting with virtual reality experiences that allow fans to feel like they're sitting courtside at a live game. These technological advancements are fostering a deeper connection between fans, teams, and the sport itself.

  5. Sports Betting Apps:  The legalization of sports betting in many parts of the US has opened the door for a new wave of fan engagement through sports betting apps. These apps allow fans to wager on a variety of aspects of the game, from the final score to individual player performances. While some may argue that this adds an unnecessary gambling element to the sport, others see it as a way to add an extra layer of excitement and intrigue to watching a game. The rise of sports betting apps has undoubtedly changed how fans interact with professional basketball, and it will be interesting to see how this trend continues to evolve in the future.


That's a lot of interesting stuff adding some layers to leagues like the NBA, WNBA, and college basketball. Basketball is a little more conservative on player trading than other sports (like baseball), at least in terms of the number of trades: around 50 NBA players traded teams in 2023.


What about you? Are you looking to trade teams this year? Are you a manager looking to fill up your roster with some all-star talent? Whether you're a salesperson or a sales manager, I've got you covered with nearly four decades of software sales recruiting experience. Send an email to mike@michaelblair.com and let's connect!

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