IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Skill Evaluation in Women's Volleyball


  • Florence Lindsay W

    (Brigham Young University)

  • Fellingham Gilbert W

    (Brigham Young University)

  • Vehrs Pat R.

    (Brigham Young University)

  • Mortensen Nina P.

    (Brigham Young University)


The Brigham Young University Women's Volleyball Team recorded and rated all skills (pass, set, attack, etc.) and recorded rally outcomes (point for BYU, rally continues, point for opponent) for the entire 2006 home volleyball season. Only sequences of events occurring on BYU's side of the net were considered. Events followed one of these general patterns: serve-outcome, pass-set-attack-outcome, or block-dig-set-attack-outcome. These sequences of events were assumed to be first-order Markov chains where the quality of each contact depended only on the quality of the previous contact but not explicitly on contacts further removed in the sequence. We represented these sequences in an extensive matrix of transition probabilities where the elements of the matrix were the probabilities of moving from one state to another. Each row of the count matrix, consisting of the number of times play moved from one transition state to another during the season, was assumed to have a multinomial distribution. A Dirichlet prior was formulated for each row, so posterior estimates of the transition probabilities were then available using Gibbs sampling. The different paths in the transition probability matrix were followed through the possible sequences of events at each step of the MCMC process to compute the posterior probability density that a perfect pass results in a point, a perfect set results in a point, etc. These posterior probability densities are used to address questions about skill performance in BYU Women's Volleyball.

Suggested Citation

  • Florence Lindsay W & Fellingham Gilbert W & Vehrs Pat R. & Mortensen Nina P., 2008. "Skill Evaluation in Women's Volleyball," Journal of Quantitative Analysis in Sports, De Gruyter, vol. 4(2), pages 1-16, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:bpj:jqsprt:v:4:y:2008:i:2:n:14

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: For access to full text, subscription to the journal or payment for the individual article is required.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. George Miller, 1952. "Finite markov processes in psychology," Psychometrika, Springer;The Psychometric Society, vol. 17(2), pages 149-167, June.
    2. H. Theil & Guido Rey, 1966. "A Quadratic Programming Approach to the Estimation of Transition Probabilities," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 12(9), pages 714-721, May.
    3. Bruce A. Craig & Peter P. Sendi, 2002. "Estimation of the transition matrix of a discrete-time Markov chain," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 11(1), pages 33-42.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:bpj:jqsprt:v:4:y:2008:i:2:n:14. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Peter Golla). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.