High Rankings vs. Low Rankings - What did you do differently?

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Hawthorn
#21
My best years were from 2013-2015 when I made the top 5k in consecutive years and top 2k in 2015. Most of this was due to stumbling upon this website and reading a lot posts. This allowed me to do so much research. Prior to this I never knew where to go for supercoach help.

Last year was my worst in awhile. I attribute it to a couple of things, travelling overseas early on in the season does not help, not using adjustment trades before price rise, picking midpricers and just pure bad luck with the amount of injury riddled players I picked. (Can't really do much about that last bit when players get injured.)

Travelling overseas, it wasn't only hard to do rookie loopholes/captain loopholes... but I didn't have anytime during the week to do any research (was too busy enjoying my holiday) or think about my trades. Not travelling anytime soon, so hopefully I bounce back up. Another thing is...normally I would burn through my trades with about 5 rounds to go. Due to this, last year I forced myself not to make any adjustment trades after rds 1 or 2 and I think it only went downhill from there. It made me hold guys like Sam Gray & Jesse Lonergan for a long time, and when the Fyfe & Houli injuries came, it forced me to keep Gray/Lonergan for longer than I had intended. Not being able to fix these mistakes continued a downward spiral which I could not get back from at all. Note to self, no more mid-price madness (other than Sandi).
 

bomberboy

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#22
I've said it before and I'll say it again but we are a blessed bunch here at SCS. To get this level of insight from a previous winner and arguably the best non-winner SC has seen is just so valuable at this stage of the year.
It amazes me how many genuinely incredible supercoachers are on this site. I never leave the site without having something to think about.
 

Obie

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#23
There are a lot of good players. The great ones are the one that can back up high finishers. Ben's Beasts and Aps1 (Slobs) are two stand out examples. Very hard to back it up with so much having to go right.
Careful preparation, experience, football nous are important aspects but you need a massive slice of luck.

There are thousands of decisions to be made throughout the season. Not just the decisions you do make, but also the ones you don't. Impossible to get them all right. You just have to hope the wrong decisions don't cost you that badly.

Started Stefan Martin instead of Natanui at the last minute to get a pod. Swore off mid-prices but got sucked into both Libba and Aaron Hall before the start of round 3 price changes. Valuable lesson learned there....

Then there's bad luck. I started Bryce Gibbs as a pod. I normally choose three pod premiums because I find that the more pod you get, the more chance that the hits get evened out by the misses. Pick a couple that I'm very confident in. Jack Riewoldt and Gibbs last year. The rest established guns and rookies. Anyway I digress.... Didn't start Fyfe last year. My first big trade was to bring him in late on the Sunday as Freo were playing Carlton. Who did I trade out? Bryce Gibbs who started the year slow. Fyfe season ending injury at halftime and Gibbs wins the game in a massive upset for Carlton.... Gibbs then goes on a golden run of massive scores and I have to trade out Fyfe next week.... A cluster of massive proportions. Trades, dollars. Killed my momentum in Round 5. Never quite recovered and copped my worst ranking in 7 years 2562...

My golden rule which has served me well is Guns and Rookies. A couple of pod premiums to create that tiny bit of difference. Let everyone else take the risks and hopefully profit. Has served me well with very good consistency for many years.
 

dicksilverman

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#24
I went 400's to 11000's to top 25.

400's was thanks to SCS education and patience in trading.

11000's was due to many injuries, missing C loopholes, traveling a lot, running out of trades early.

Too 25 was putting a lot of learning from previous 2 years into action. Key things; trust yourself! Think ahead like chess. Don't plan one week, but a few. Save trades! Avoid mid-pricers. Avoid injury plagued players. Trust history, good and bad. Seek balanced advice. Stay active all weekend. Enjoy the game! You'll make bad decisions through the year but some good ones too so don't dwell on the bad!

Great thread, enjoyed reading responses. Good luck for 2017!!!
 

jmack5

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#25
Last year was obviously my most successful year in SC to date, and comparing it to previous years I think I can identify a few changes in my strategy that may have attributed towards that:

Trust your gut. To do well in SC generally requires a great amount of research and skill, but also a great amount of luck. When I picked Max Gawn at the start of last year, did I know he would go on to be the highest averaging ruckman and 3rd highest averaging player of 2016? Absolutely not. I would have guessed that he'd go on to average around 105. But what I did know was that he was about $50,000 cheaper than Stefan Martin, and Naitanui had not played a full season since 2010.
I also trusted my gut with the decision to start Luke Parker over Shiel/Wines despite most SC sites and friends of mine telling me to do otherwise.
Whilst trusting your gut may not always turn out successfully (I picked Sam Gray in my starting lineup last year and traded in Lycett mid-season), it is extremely fulfilling to see a player succeed that you picked based on your own research and gut instinct when the masses chose another player who is not living up to their expectations.

Don't underestimate the bye rounds. I attribute a large portion of my success last year to the bye rounds. Most people view the bye rounds as a hinderance and don't plan for it, you should rather view it as an opportunity. I gained a large amount of ground on the leaders throughout the bye rounds last year, but I was only able to do that through careful planning. In the rounds leading up to the bye rounds, have a rough idea of what trades you are going to make and what your team is going to look like each round including how many players you will have on field. Obviously there may be unexpected injuries or price drops/increases that occur, but these can be easily accounted for by making a few tweaks to your plans. Failing to plan is planning to fail.

Cut your losses early with mid-pricers. At the end of every year, many coaches who have not had success swear they will never get sucked into the trap of "pre-season hyped" mid-pricers, but the next season rolls around and they are falling into the same temptation and have already forgotten about their last season promise. I have done this myself a few times. And whilst it's true that more often than not, mid-pricers fail rather than succeed, there have been some mid-priced picks in the past that have gone on to be extremely successful (David Swallow in 2014 is a notable one), so I don't completely write off selecting mid-pricers myself, however, know that there is a risk involved with selecting them and be prepared to cut your losses early if they don't pay off. I selected Sam Gray at the start of last year, who turned out to be a massive fail, so rather than keeping the faith I traded him out in round 5 for the ever-reliable Joel Selwood and never looked back. There is not much worse than holding onto a mid-pricer who is under-performing in hope that they will improve their output, only to be stuck with them for the remainder of the season as they've lost a considerable amount of value and it's not worth trading them (anyone who had Lumumba in 2015 will attest to this).
 

Bomber18

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#26
Last year was obviously my most successful year in SC to date, and comparing it to previous years I think I can identify a few changes in my strategy that may have attributed towards that:

Trust your gut. To do well in SC generally requires a great amount of research and skill, but also a great amount of luck. When I picked Max Gawn at the start of last year, did I know he would go on to be the highest averaging ruckman and 3rd highest averaging player of 2016? Absolutely not. I would have guessed that he'd go on to average around 105. But what I did know was that he was about $50,000 cheaper than Stefan Martin, and Naitanui had not played a full season since 2010.
I also trusted my gut with the decision to start Luke Parker over Shiel/Wines despite most SC sites and friends of mine telling me to do otherwise.
Whilst trusting your gut may not always turn out successfully (I picked Sam Gray in my starting lineup last year and traded in Lycett mid-season), it is extremely fulfilling to see a player succeed that you picked based on your own research and gut instinct when the masses chose another player who is not living up to their expectations.

Don't underestimate the bye rounds. I attribute a large portion of my success last year to the bye rounds. Most people view the bye rounds as a hinderance and don't plan for it, you should rather view it as an opportunity. I gained a large amount of ground on the leaders throughout the bye rounds last year, but I was only able to do that through careful planning. In the rounds leading up to the bye rounds, have a rough idea of what trades you are going to make and what your team is going to look like each round including how many players you will have on field. Obviously there may be unexpected injuries or price drops/increases that occur, but these can be easily accounted for by making a few tweaks to your plans. Failing to plan is planning to fail.

Cut your losses early with mid-pricers. At the end of every year, many coaches who have not had success swear they will never get sucked into the trap of "pre-season hyped" mid-pricers, but the next season rolls around and they are falling into the same temptation and have already forgotten about their last season promise. I have done this myself a few times. And whilst it's true that more often than not, mid-pricers fail rather than succeed, there have been some mid-priced picks in the past that have gone on to be extremely successful (David Swallow in 2014 is a notable one), so I don't completely write off selecting mid-pricers myself, however, know that there is a risk involved with selecting them and be prepared to cut your losses early if they don't pay off. I selected Sam Gray at the start of last year, who turned out to be a massive fail, so rather than keeping the faith I traded him out in round 5 for the ever-reliable Joel Selwood and never looked back. There is not much worse than holding onto a mid-pricer who is under-performing in hope that they will improve their output, only to be stuck with them for the remainder of the season as they've lost a considerable amount of value and it's not worth trading them (anyone who had Lumumba in 2015 will attest to this).
Top quality post. One of the best so far. I agree with your bye planning & cut your mid pricers rules. I started the season very poorly at 50k (which was also the case in 2015). However, the difference for me in 2016 was I cut the failures early. Sheridan was gone before upgrade season but in 2015 Lumumba was held far too long. I also think cutting the mid-pricers in Rnd 4-5 can give you an opportunity to jump on a player that not many had predicted to take it to the next level before the upgrade period.

Bye planning and value trading were also big factors. I traded into a lot of value guys with favourable bye rounds which helped me get my side complete before the byes and also pushed me into the top 1k upon completion of the byes as I had 3 consistent rounds of 1900+.
 

NT.Thunder

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#27
I think you find what works individually for you.

I see a lot of SuperCoach Coaches across many leagues, heaps that are really good and ultra-consistent year in and year out, yet they all play a slightly different brand to each other. Find a process, work-flow, structure, trade regime that works for you and be disciplined and stick with it. The game changes very slightly each year, maybe different positions bring new discounts and values but these do all translate to the same game you played last year. I think some people after a good year go into a "I can win this mentality" and step away from what works which can be dangerous and have its consequences.

I know I can't win it, I tell myself each year that, knowing there's another XXX thousand other coaches that know more about AFL and fantasy sports then me but I usually set myself which I consider realistic goals which is to finish top 1000 using the same game plan and work flow I always use.

Interesting thread, some really good coaches in here so thanks for sharing.
 

meataxe

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#28
Aside from the obvious things like nailing premiums and good rookies, avoiding injuries, I think the skill that separates the serious contenders from the rest is knowing when a midpricer is the real deal or fool's gold. Not so much before the start of the season, but a player that has played a few strong games (eg. Z Merrett 2016).

The great coaches also know when to punt off failing premiums...this is very hard to correctly evaluate.

I am poor at both of the above!

Getting into top 1000 I think can be done regularly by the skilful, top 100 needs both skill and a lot of good luck.
 

jaca

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#29
I think I joined this site sometime in 2013, but obviously wasn't a regular poster. I only really came back the season after I started Taylor Walker (2014), who actually missed the first 5 games with an injury...

So, reason number 1, don't build donuts into your starting 22.

Since then I've had 2 good(ish) years, though was left disappointed at the end of both. In 2015 I dropped 400-odd places because I had no trades the last round and got whacked. In 2016 I dropped a few 100 because I saved trades until the last round and there was no carnage.

My other big issue is I'm a lot less clued up on the game than most who've watched / played it since childhood. There's multiple players in the top 10 picked of each line that I would struggle to pick out in a line-up!
 

Wayne's-World

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#30
My experience is very recent ....last season

Here's my conclusions

1. Given the amount of team discussion, by game 1 there's a lot of similarity between teams .....the best players are those who make the right trades after that point

2. Rucks killed me last year ....didn't have Gawn or Goldy, and didn't realise how much that decision hurt me ...had Stephan Martin :( ..... when i did bring Goldy in his slump started from that point .....brought Nic Nat in and he get injured :( .....and so on & on

3. With above i played the Supercoach edict and held my premiums .....that along with injuriesto most i traded in, just saw me slide further
 
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Collingwood
#31
There is an insightful collection of posts above from some very good players. Well worth the read.

I'd guess there are a few here who approach this game from almost a share market perspective, leaving out favour for a player, a team or other. I guess in the end this is what it is. We cannot guess of a flood in the mine, a lost airliner or Hindenburg. We rely on the prospectus, will Poseidon or Goldmin strike oil or gold after their promise.

Fortunately it seems the C'wth, NAB, W'Pac or other bankers have some certainty. Danger, Pendles, JPK..
 
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dlanod

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#32
I went ~3,000 to ~25,000 and then have averaged a finish almost dead on 1,000 in the four years since. I've often wondered what I managed to in that outlier year and based off (now fuzzy) memories it basically was taking on too much risk.

Ultimately I went pretty heavily mid-pricers and they repeatedly didn't pay off. Due to the "loss averse" theory I also didn't fix those problems, backing in my original judgement and falling further and further behind.

My second worse year - 2,559th - I did the same thing again, though managed to aggressively trade my way out of it. That year I spent the first few weeks down around 100,000 and increased my rank week after week to pull it right back in.

I will also note that for some reason SCE got me on board after the debacle of finishing 25,000th so having that focused and useful input (this was before SCS), rather than the haphazard nature of the BF SC board, probably brought me in some years as well.

Damn good question. This is my perspective.

Most of us pick 12-13 keepers to begin with, a few specs. and playing JS rookies to begin with.

Where does it succeed or derail from there; injuries to premiums

I cannot stress how important our trades are. LTI injuries to premiums makes a big difference to our trade bank. This really hurts or can be a god send if you haven't got him. Hold your keepers.

Get in every possible money making rookie as the season goes by, this is the single most important rule to get your 22 keepers.

When upgrading, is he a player I want in my final squad.

I try to address the above, but it does not answer your question.

It requires a fair bit of luck, do you go for player A or B either as an upgrade or a new rookie.

LTI injuries to premiums.

Failed or successful mid pricers/ spec players
.
A good decision is one you are happy with based on your research.

Doesn't always work, hence some weeks, blocks of weeks, years are great or not so.

My 2c
I just want to quote this because it's almost word for word what I'd post.

Hold injured keepers if you've got cover. A trade is worth at least 100 points when covering a donut at the end of the year. If you've got an 75 point average rookie on your bench, that's a four week injury to break even on that trade.

Bring in money making rookies even if they require culling others early. Who knows when the next one will arrive?

Avoid players with little to no track record - the midpricers and speculative picks. 90% will fail. The 10% that succeed? Everyone's going to jump on them for not too much more than you paid but with a lot less risk.
 

Lost In The Sky

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#33
Some absolutely fantastic posts and insight in this thread.

For me I think that once you have worked to get yourself up to a certain level of ability, A lot really does come down to just plain luck, weather that be injuries to premo's, or nailing a VC/C call or having the right rookies on field at the right time. Sometimes you can have done all the right research and things just simply don't go your way. A few things go your way and you can have a great year and achieve a high rank... A few things go the other way and it usually leads to a poorer year. The timing of when things happen to you also plays a huge part as some things are easier to recover from than others at different times.

I've been pretty consistent over my 11 years, I've obviously been doing some things right to finish in that same range every year but there is also some things that I still need to improve on to move up to the next level.

My biggest problem is my starts, Too often I've started way behind the pack and quite often it has been because I've selected too many speculative Mid-pricers. Another problem I have is being to stubborn on players I haven't initially selected and their ability to keep it up...Docherty & Merrett immediately come to mind from last season, Both players I just didn't think could keep it up and I was wrong.

What I do think I do well is Bye Planning and execution as I always make massive leaps during that period every year, There is just so much opportunity to change your season during those 3 weeks. The other thing I usually do well is my trading for the last 2/3 of the year as every year I come charging home at full steam. So that means I need to tidy up my trading at the start of the season as I usually waste a few.

Will be focusing a bit more on my start this season, to hopefully have a great year.
 

Brettthejett

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#34
I'm putting my good season down to pretty much living and breathing sc everyday of the week at work and a lot to do with that was creeker my x co worker/bricklayer. Oh how I miss the smokos and lunchs of discussing why you shouldnt select a certain player or why you should pick someone else. Having high quality around you helps out immensely and have slid down the ranking ever since. Curse u Pete for introducing me to this great game. What I could do with all that spare time. (Well some work would be a starter)
 
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#35
One more, assuming 13 starting keepers.

3 rookie or other corrections in the first two rounds.

18 trades, one up one down making our 22.

6 LTI's to premiums

3 trades fitting into the above depending on the fire, or luxury (as if!)

Makes 30, you generally need them, use them with care. Makes such a difference with 1 or 2 left with a round or 3 to go to either to win your league, which I guess will finish a rd. or 2 short again, or/and having a high finishing rank. I guess most of us want both.
 
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Hondo

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#36
My story is I have been consistent ~ 3000 or higher each year bar one being 2012 when I ranked 15,000. Recalling that makes me cringe as it was all my own doing.

The previous 2 years I felt I had been burned by break-out picks like Ziebell, Danger, Tippett and Gray. So I went into 2012 with a fixed GnR mindset as I had seen this work very well for coaches. I was stubborn about not picking any player between $200K and $500K.

Note this was the year that Danger and Sidey were priced sub $450K.

I stuck to my rigid rule through the whole pre-season despite the good scores both produced and despite their ownership % rising all the time. I spent over $200K on two alternative forward premiums one being Trav Cloke who averaged 79 for the year compared to Danger who went at 118. IIRC Danger and Sidey got off to slowish starts so I felt vindicated for a short while until both exploded on me and I never brought either in all year.

So since then I have been adamant to always play each season on its merits with the cards that I am presented with and not get hung up on "rules" from bad (or good) experiences from prior years. I also feel strongly about keeping an open mind on players until the pre-season finishes and in particular NOT locking your structure or all your premiums until you know how the rookies are placed. I believe strongly don't get emotionally attached to a premium, a rule or a structure too early.

I also took from 2012 to have a really good reason not to pick a player who crosses 40% ownership. You have to ask yourself the hard question and be sure there is no pride involved (pride maybe fuelled by public comments on that player earlier in the pre-season). Danger got to 40% ownership in 2012 pre-season but I thought I knew better.
 

Fiasco

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#37
Great reading in here.

My 2nd season of playing Supercoach is the year Hondo is talking about above. I started the year with both Dangerfield and Sidebottom and got on to Beams just as his huge break out started which propelled me into the top 100 where I stayed most of the year. Being my 2nd year playing I ran out of trades early but still ended up finishing with a great placement somewhere between 100-150.
I think ever since then I've been trying to repeat what happened that season and even though I consider myself a much better coach now I've never been able to get close to that result. Every year since then I've started a number of midpricers with some pretty poor results (Harry O, Lonergan etc) and so this year I've decided to try and go guns n rookies or at least no speculative break out picks. At the moment the only midpriced player I have in my team is Beams although I have been considering Sandi.
After a terrible finals run last year where I made the top 4 in 4 different cash leagues and went out in straight sets in all 4 leagues I made a few rules for the following year. 1. No midprices 2. No key forwards (after Gunstons 45 in a final) 3. No players over 30 (after Bartels 45 in a final) I probably won't stick to all these but it's there to remind me of some of the mistakes I've made in previous seasons.
In the end it does come down a lot to luck. The last couple of seasons I've started with admittedly terrible starting teams but have had a lot of bad luck too (Stef Martin getting knocked out, Nic Nat injury getting Tippet in them him getting injured) but have managed to claw my way back with some pretty good trading to around the 5000 mark at the end of the season. I feel like I just need a little bit of luck and a bit better starting side (no midpricers?) and I might get another shot at a top 100 finish.
 

Beijing_Sting

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#38
I wonder where I would have come if I'd managed almost 51000 points rather than 50330 ... I figure that's the difference between my Zaharakis pick up over Selwood - pretty sure I had the cash for both. I can't be certain when I picked him up, but think Zaharakis had scored 100 more when I did and probably went on to score about 600 less. 700 points? Is that the difference between 10000th and 5000th? Can't seem to find any stats that give rankings and points form previous seasons. Someone who score highly can tell me.

In 2012 I think I jumped on Stanton... with a similar result.
 

BomberSam

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#39
2015 was my first full season, when I was in year 12, and I committed the majority of my time to SuperCoach :rolleyes:

SuperCoach Finals Edition 2014 piqued my interest, I gave it a go and thus started my 2015 pre-season. Before any sort of team picker or planner was available, I would take my selections (with predicted price and position) down on a Microsoft Word document. I spent hours each and every day over the summer and drafted countless sides. When the season started, I would spend hours researching, second-guessing and researching some more, for each and every trade.

I remember starting Mumford, expecting him to go huge in the first few rounds. Upon scoring below the ton, I traded him in round 2 to Tex Walker, who had opened the season with a big 177. This decision alone was the biggest mistake I made in 2015.

I made some excellent use of the VC loophole, with my captain's average score being 141.36. My big highlight was locking in Priddis' 196 vs. Gold Coast in the wet west.

At the end of the season, I finished with a ranking of 790, which I am quite proud of now, although at the time I was bummed to miss out on top 500. Following the season, I made a Word Document of "Ten Commandments of Supercoach" or something along those lines, with examples and all. If I can find it on an old USB, I'll be sure to post it somewhere on the site.

I headed into the 2016 season with high hopes of a top 500 finish. I didn't get off to a flyer like in 2015 (but I didn't make any knee-jerk trades either). Halfway through the season, I must have been closing in on top 10k. Life got in the way, I had a few troubles, some personal issues and a jam-packed assignment schedule at uni and I lost my passion for the game. Somehow I managed to keep making decent and level-headed trades right through to the end of the season, but I didn't have the time to put into research and so the quality of my trades probably suffered. I finished the season ranked about 7k (I didn't care enough to record my exact final rank, which I regret now).

So the biggest differences between my successful and not so successful seasons were: time for planning/research, captain choices, and overall passion and enthusiasm for the game.

Hopefully I can get back on track and make top 500 in 2017.
 
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#40
To be first amongst equals requires luck,
To be amongst equals requires luck, skill, and work,
To become amongst equals requires luck, skill, work and the effort to try.

(Coco 2017)
 
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