NFL Kicks Off Its Big Data Bowl


Big Data Bowl is a football analytics competition that lets users access historical data sets of the same player tracking data used by teams.

The National Football League (NFL) has announced the creation of the NFL Big Data Bowl. This football analytics competition for college students and professionals allows competitors to use the same player tracking historical data sets used by NFL teams.

Contestants use this data to develop insights and suggest new innovations for playing and coaching football. The contest encourages participants to rethink player evaluation tools and their uses. Next Gen Stats — the NFL player tracking technology — captures real-time location, speed, and acceleration data for each player on every play. Sensors track tags in players’ pads to gather data that’s accurate to inches.

The NFL will invite finalists to present their findings to league and club personnel at the annual Scouting Combine later this year. Those interested in participating can sign up in either the college student or professional category.

See also: How real-time sensors avoid sports injuries

“As the sports analytics community continues to expand and progress, we are excited to host an analytics competition focusing on creative and innovative ways to approach and use football data,” says Damani Leech, NFL SVP of Football Strategy and Business Development. “The NFL and its clubs use of football analytics continues to grow. Focusing the competition on college students and young professionals allows us to hear from the next generation of young minds that will help shape the industry’s future.”

Interested participants can sign up for the competition via

Sue Walsh

About Sue Walsh

Sue Walsh is News Writer for RTInsights, and a freelance writer and social media manager living in New York City. Her specialties include tech, security and e-commerce. You can follow her on Twitter at @girlfridaygeek.

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