View the National Collegiate Sports Analytics Championship, powered by GOAL, frequently asked questions and answers below. Send other questions to and we’ll add answers here.

Virtual preliminary rounds (November 1-15, 2023)

  1. When will the data be ready to download to analyze? Wednesday, November 1, 8am.
  2. When is the 5-minute PowerPoint presentation due to be uploaded? Friday, November 3, midnight.
  3. How many teams and students from a school? One team (up to 4 students) for undergrad and one team (up to 4 students) for each program/dept. Students may compete independently, without a team.
  4. What if we have multiple programs? Schools like Baylor have a team from a business school program (S3E) and another from the statistics department, unrelated to the business school program. Distinctly different programs at a school might want to be involved and that’s great.
  5. Will we need to record the virtual round? No need to record, but one could. These are Zoom calls arranged between one student and one judge at a time.
  6. What do the virtual round scores have to do with the in-person finals? The virtual round determines seeding for the finals in Dallas. Finals participants who do not compete in the prelims will be unseeded in the NCSAC brackets at the in-person event. The virtual round provides practice for the Finals.

Getting ready to go to Dallas (February 21-22, 2024) and where to go

  1. Is there anything going on before the event? Yes, we will have a reception for judges, recruiters and sponsors the evening before the event.
  2. How should I prepare? Judges, participants and professors should carefully read the new Study Guide when it is released to know what to expect. Students–use the practice sets to get ready because the Finals data sets will be similar but not the same.
  3. Parking? Free parking is available in the Lexus garage located on the Northeast corner of the AAC at 2620 N Houston Street, Dallas, TX.
  4. Entrance & registration? Check-in and enter the East side lobby on Houston Street. Meals and business sessions will be in the East side lobby. See below.
  5. What to wear? Professional dress (read: suits) for students. Daily business or professional attire for judges & professors.
  6. How many are competing? We expect over 25 schools and 100 students to compete. Deadline is January 31, 2024 to register. A registration link is located here.
  7. Should we follow on LinkedIn so we can see the latest announcements? Yes, click here to follow the NCSAC page.
  8. Can other faculty or graduate students from participating schools come to observe? Yes, but please register ($50) as we need to account for space, food, and who’s in the building. Deadline is January 10, 2024.
  9. Where are the heats for each round going to be? On the Admiral Level. For graduate students Round 1 will be on the West side of the building (Suites 1306 to 1318; right to left) and for undergraduates Round 1 will be on the East side of the building (Suites 1356 to 1339; left to right).

The Competition

  1. Can professors or others watch the presentations? No, only the students and judges assigned to the heats.
  2. Do students work together? No. This is like the Olympics where each person competes as an individual in the event. Judges will ask questions to determine if the student worked independently as part of the integrity component of the competition. Judges are then able to evaluate who can analyze and present well.
  3. Can a student graduating in December still compete in both competitions? Yes, as long as the student is not employed before the championship.
  4. How do teams win? Among teams with at least 3 students, the average scores of each student’s last heat are used to determine the team winners.
  5. Is the data the same as the preliminary round? No, it will have new variables and a different prompt related to GOAL objectives. See
  6. Can professors watch the presentations in each heat? No, but the Final 4 includes everyone.
  7. Will students, professors and judges have color-coded name tags so we know who’s who? Yes, that’s the plan.
  8. Is there free WiFi? Yes, with no need to login at the AAC.
  9. Do students bring their own laptops to do the analysis? Yes. Make sure yours has as much RAM & storage as possible because you will download and work with big data. There will be places to plug-in but be sure to fully charge in advance in case you want to sit away from available plugs.
  10. Where will students analyze the data after downloading? A large work room with tables and outlets will be available on the Admiral Level in the Admiral Meeting Rooms. Students may also choose seats or tables the Platinum Level near the Lexus Club but those lack electrical outlets.
  11. Where will the Final Four Presentation be held? In the Admiral Room on the Admiral Level.
  12. Can students use other materials/notes while analyzing the data? Yes. The main point of integrity is that the student prepares and completes the analysis independently. That includes no texting, messaging or other interaction with others from 7am until Noon on the day of the competition.
  13. PowerPoint? Each student will prepare a PowerPoint presentation using the NCSAC PPT template that will be downloadable on the day of the event.
  14. What is the presentation format? Students will be placed in heats of 4 in a suite. Each will present for five minutes to the judges in the suite one after another while the others wait in the hallway. The top two in each heat advance to the next round.
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