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Hank Haney's Book "The Big Miss" about his time teaching Tiger - Page 21

post #361 of 420
Quote:
Originally Posted by k-troop View Post

What was inaccurate?

I didn't bother checking his figures on Hank vs. Butch, because I don't care. But before he even got to that, he mentioned that Tiger had never fallen below #2 in the world rankings between 1998 and 2010, and I knew just from memory (which I verified) that he was #3 for several weeks in 2004. It's not a big deal, but you would think that if I knew that, Diaz would know it, or at least some editor or proofreader at the publishers would notice the mistake. It doesn't give you a lot of confidence in Hank looking at Tiger's website and punching numbers into his calculator, if nobody is checking this stuff.
post #362 of 420
You have discovered an error that is so minor, in my view, as to be of no broad significance. It is a trivial mistake imo. Is that error the sole basis for your mistrust of HH's stats analyses in the book?

Perhaps, before you draw so broad a conclusion, you should do a more thorough data check. You didn't care to analyse the Butch vs. Haney data provided by HH, yet this is a major part of Haney's analyse in the book.

Can you find an error of greater consequence?
post #363 of 420
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chas View Post

You have discovered an error that is so minor, in my view, as to be of no broad significance. It is a trivial mistake imo. Is that error the sole basis for your mistrust of HH's stats analyses in the book?
Perhaps, before you draw so broad a conclusion, you should do a more thorough data check. You didn't care to analyse the Butch vs. Haney data provided by HH, yet this is a major part of Haney's analyse in the book.
Can you find an error of greater consequence?

Like I said, I don't care. I didn't read the chapter looking for mistakes; that one just jumped out at me. I'm not going to waste my time looking for other mistakes. I know Tiger had a great record with Butch, and I know he had a great record with Haney, and I don't care if one or the other was slightly better.

But the mistake does show that several people, starting with the writers, didn't bother checking the facts (or else did a very sloppy job of checking them) in the one short chapter of the book that actually dealt with hard facts, so no, it can't be trusted. But since it's a book about golf and not heart surgery, it's no big deal, unless maybe someone is making a bar bet based on it. I just thought maybe someone might like to know that he should verify anything he bets on.
post #364 of 420

That's like saying that a particular publication (in Nature or PNAS, say) can't be trusted in the least because of some minor error in it.  That's not how I judge scientific publications, including my own, and it isn't how I judge a book like HH's either.  I'm not a heart surgeon so I can't make the more direct analogy.

 

A book isn't to be judged by it cover, or by the accuracy of every little detail.  Have you ever published anything?  If so, I trust that you wouldn't want your entire work to be condemned because of some minor oversight.  Yes, the error should have been caught .... tech tech

 

 

post #365 of 420
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chas View Post

That's like saying that a particular publication (in Nature or PNAS, say) can't be trusted in the least because of some minor error in it. 

I didn't say "in the least." I said there was an obvious error, and so there may be less obvious errors. I also said, twice, that it was no big deal, and that overall, I thought the book was worth reading. If you have a problem with any of that, I'll just have to live with it.
post #366 of 420

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by brocks View Post


I didn't say "in the least." I said there was an obvious error, and so there may be less obvious errors. I also said, twice, that it was no big deal, and that overall, I thought the book was worth reading. If you have a problem with any of that, I'll just have to live with it.

 

Well, you did say it can't be trusted.  And in your first post mentioning the inaccuracies, you simply stated that the chapter was inaccurate; you didn't say that you found a small, basically irrelevant inaccuracy which caused you to question the veracity of Hank's statistics.  So you're definitely making it out to be something more than "no big deal."

 

That's fine if you are, and your argument is valid.  You found an error in a cited statistic; if there is one error, there could be more errors.  Your conclusion based on that is that the chapter on statistics is untrustworthy and inaccurate.  It's a perfectly defensible conclusion; just because our resident scientist disagrees with you, you don't need to argue with him over whether he understood what you said.

 

I could extend Chas's argument to your review.  "Brocks reviewed Hank's book; in that review, he claimed that the chapter on statistics ("Adding it Up", or somesuch) was inaccurate.  It was later revealed that his observed "inaccuracy" was this:  HH claimed that Tiger never dropped below #2 from 1998 to 2010.  In reality, Tiger dropped to #3 OWGR for two weeks in 2004.  The thesis of the chapter was a comparison of Tiger's performance with Hank vs. his performance with Butch; the inaccurate statistic was from a time when Tiger was with Butch, and it actually made Tiger look better with Butch than he actually was.  Brocks' conclusion that the chapter is "inaccurate" is therefore logically correct, but very misleading, because the erroneous statistic was immaterial, and the correct statistic actually made HH's argument stronger.  If Brocks' review was misleading as to this point, his entire review is untrustworthy and should be disregarded.


Edited by k-troop - 4/30/12 at 6:13pm
post #367 of 420
Quote:
Originally Posted by k-troop View Post

Well, you did say it can't be trusted.  And in your first post mentioning the inaccuracies, you simply stated that the chapter was inaccurate; you didn't say that you found a small, basically irrelevant inaccuracy which caused you to question the veracity of Hank's statistics.  So you're definitely making it out to be something more than "no big deal."

LOL, this board must be full of Hank's in-laws, because you guys are giving me a much harder time than I gave him.

Look, I'm a mathematician. If something is 1% wrong, it's wrong. If it's about Tiger's record in a chapter devoted to Tiger's record, then it's relevant. But if it's in a golf book, rather than the plans for a nuclear reactor, and it's in a chapter that virtually nobody bought the book for, then it's no big deal.
post #368 of 420

I wouldn't sweat it too much, the chapter is there only to make Hank feel better about what he did to Tiger.  Now he can say, "I wrote this book about him to make some cash but at least his game was as good with me as it was with Butch." 

Quote:
Originally Posted by brocks View Post


LOL, this board must be full of Hank's in-laws, because you guys are giving me a much harder time than I gave him.
Look, I'm a mathematician. If something is 1% wrong, it's wrong. If it's about Tiger's record in a chapter devoted to Tiger's record, then it's relevant. But if it's in a golf book, rather than the plans for a nuclear reactor, and it's in a chapter that virtually nobody bought the book for, then it's no big deal.

 

 

post #369 of 420

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by newtogolf View Post

I wouldn't sweat it too much, the chapter is there only to make Hank feel better about what he did to Tiger.  Now he can say, "I wrote this book about him to make some cash but at least his game was as good with me as it was with Butch." 

 

 

 

His conclusion is actually that Tiger's results were better under Hank than under Butch.  Again, I don't see why this is such a big deal for folks that HH defended his record.  It's a perfectly reasonable position for him to take in a book "about his time coaching Tiger", especially given the fact that both fans and experts routinely criticize Hank for ruining Tiger's swing.  HH thinks he made Tiger better, and provides some pretty compelling statistics to support his position.   I don't understand why people think it's unprofessional (lame, self-serving, etc.) of HH to do this. 

 

It's like the guy can't win with you guys.  If it's about non-golf, it's a breach of trust.  If it's about golf, then it's lame and self-serving.  Brocks even thinks the stuff about golf was a breach of trust--some betrayal of corporate secrets (as if Tiger had a patent on being laid off at the top). 

post #370 of 420
Quote:
Originally Posted by k-troop View Post

It's like the guy can't win with you guys.  If it's about non-golf, it's a breach of trust.  If it's about golf, then it's lame and self-serving. 

You say that like it's a contradiction. Of course opinions will differ, but I don't see why you find it strange that people can dislike both aspects of the book, for different reasons.

"The guy can't win" because he's a greedy, opportunistic snake. Thanks to his association with Tiger, he has a show on TGC that probably pays him ten times more than he ever made as a coach, but that's not enough for him. The guy could have "won" by not including stuff about Tiger's personal life that only a guest in his home would know, and by not publishing things that only Tiger's swing coach would know until after Tiger retired from active competition. Haney's fact-checking is the least of my problems with him.
post #371 of 420
And by the way, the stats chapter *was* lame. Not because he got some stuff wrong, just the whole approach. I have to go from memory because I don't have the book any more, but basically he said something along the lines of, "I got onto the PGA website and Tiger's website, and started punching numbers into my calculator. Tiger won X events with Butch for a winning percentage of Y, ..."

Seriously, that sounds like an eighth-grader's homework assignment, not a best-selling book co-written by a professional journalist. If I did care to verify Hank's numbers, it would be difficult, because if I find a discrepancy, what does it mean? Was Hank counting the Chevron World Challenge, or only official events? Did he miscount the number of events, or the number of wins, or just hit the wrong button on his calculator?

What they should have done was give Tiger's results, nicely formatted and tabulated, event by event and year by year, with appropriate subtotals, totals, and percentages. Then it would have been a useful reference, instead of a pathetic plea for approval.
Edited by brocks - 4/30/12 at 8:02pm
post #372 of 420

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by brocks View Post


LOL, this board must be full of Hank's in-laws, because you guys are giving me a much harder time than I gave him.
Look, I'm a mathematician. If something is 1% wrong, it's wrong. If it's about Tiger's record in a chapter devoted to Tiger's record, then it's relevant. But if it's in a golf book, rather than the plans for a nuclear reactor, and it's in a chapter that virtually nobody bought the book for, then it's no big deal.

 

Thanks for the info and I'm not surprised, you seem quantitatively inclined.  I run analyses on oncology clinical trials including some (but far from all) of the statistics - we have a shared professional interest in numbers.  That is good.

 

Look, if you were reviewing a mathematics manuscript for a journal you would look over all of the data before issuing a blanket statement about reliability of the analysis.  I'm sure you would but correct me if I'm wrong. 

 

Why not do us all a favor (meant sincerely) and do QC on the Haney vs. Harmon analyses in the book.  Then report your findings for that, as well as the overall maths that is presented in the tome.  You're probably the one to do that, not me, since you're the mathematician. 

(talk about a cop-out .... it's not that I'm lazy you see a1_smile.gif)

 

p.s. why not email HH pointing out the error? hopefully it will be corrected in the next edition.  Maybe you'll get an acknowlegement .....

post #373 of 420
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chas View Post

Why not do us all a favor (meant sincerely) and do QC on the Haney vs. Harmon analyses in the book.  Then report your findings for that, as well as the overall maths that is presented in the tome.  You're probably the one to do that, not me, since you're the mathematician. 

Impossible for two reasons. One, it was a library book, and I've already returned it. Two, as I said in my previous post, Hank gave no data to analyze. He just said he punched some numbers into his calculator.
post #374 of 420

I actually liked Hank before the book.  I watched the Haney Project and since I'm not a good enough golfer to critique his coaching advice, I thought it was a fun show.  The guy can't win with some of us now because what he did was ethically wrong.  I know you're a lawyer and since no contract appears to be in place he was within his legal rights to co-author and publish this book.  Outside of a courtroom he's being vilified because he disclosed information he was only privileged to because he worked for Tiger Woods.   This also has nothing to do with Tiger, if he did this to Phil, Bubba or any other pro golfer he coached I'd feel the same way. 

 

HH made money directly from Tiger (coaching fee), he cashed in on endorsement deals he received and got his own GC television show only because he was Tigers coach.  All that still wasn't enough so he wrote a tell-almost-all book about the guy that made him rich, talk about an ingrate.  The justification that HH probably knew more damaging details than he wrote about is like commending the Secret Service for not hiring more prostitutes in Columbia.  The fact he may not have spewed all the sordid details he knew about doesn't make the ones he shared any less of a violation of Tigers trust.   

 

As for the stats, who cares, we all know statistics can be manipulated to tell whatever story you want.  Hanks feelings are hurt because people think Butch was a better coach, he needs to get over it.  He was so insecure he felt the need to dedicate an entire self indulgent chapter on his interpretation of Tigers stats while he was his coach.  If Hank believed Tigers performance spoke for itself he wouldn't feel the need to shout to the world how good a coach he was, you don't see Butch doing any spin doctoring with the numbers. 

Quote:

Originally Posted by k-troop View Post

 

It's like the guy can't win with you guys.  If it's about non-golf, it's a breach of trust.  If it's about golf, then it's lame and self-serving.  Brocks even thinks the stuff about golf was a breach of trust--some betrayal of corporate secrets (as if Tiger had a patent on being laid off at the top). 

 

 

post #375 of 420

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by newtogolf View Post

 

As for the stats, who cares, we all know statistics can be manipulated to tell whatever story you want.  Hanks feelings are hurt because people think Butch was a better coach, he needs to get over it.  He was so insecure he felt the need to dedicate an entire self indulgent chapter on his interpretation of Tigers stats while he was his coach.  If Hank believed Tigers performance spoke for itself he wouldn't feel the need to shout to the world how good a coach he was, you don't see Butch doing any spin doctoring with the numbers

 

This is the kind of stuff that, from my perspective, makes me somewhat antagonistic towards your opinions.  You are clearly implying that the chapter is full of lies and spin.  Is it?  Do you have any analysis or evidence to back that up?

 

That's not a challenge, and I really don't want it to come off that way.  It's an explanation of how I read your posts.  I see bias in them, and this is an example. 

post #376 of 420
Quote:
Originally Posted by k-troop View Post

I could extend Chas's argument to your review.  "Brocks reviewed Hank's book; in that review, he claimed that the chapter on statistics ("Adding it Up", or somesuch) was inaccurate.  It was later revealed that his observed "inaccuracy" was this:  HH claimed that Tiger never dropped below #2 from 1998 to 2010.  In reality, Tiger dropped to #3 OWGR for two weeks in 2004.  The thesis of the chapter was a comparison of Tiger's performance with Hank vs. his performance with Butch; the inaccurate statistic was from a time when Tiger was with Butch, and it actually made Tiger look better with Butch than he actually was.  Brocks' conclusion that the chapter is "inaccurate" is therefore logically correct, but very misleading, because the erroneous statistic was immaterial, and the correct statistic actually made HH's argument stronger.  If Brocks' review was misleading as to this point, his entire review is untrustworthy and should be disregarded.

I just noticed that you edited your post after I had already replied to it, to add the above paragraph.

The chapter contained inaccurate information; that is a fact. Since it did, it was inaccurate; that is another fact. I didn't call it a lie, I called it a mistake. I did not state or imply that the inaccuracy was deliberate, I did not state or imply that the inaccuracy was major, and I did not state or imply that the inaccuracy helped Hank's case; if you inferred any of those, that was your misperception, and it's not my problem. To say that my statement was misleading is, charitably, a mistake.

And not your only mistake. Tiger was #3 for five weeks, not two, namely the week of 10/3/2004 through the week of 10/31/2004. That was over six months after Haney was openly coaching Tiger, so the mistake did make his record look better. I won't say that the correct stat made his argument weaker, because I don't think WGR was what either he or Tiger were worried about at the time, but it certainly didn't make it stronger, as you assert.

As to the trustworthiness of my review, I don't know why anyone would think they should trust some anonymous poster on the internet in general, and a book review in particular. I would expect a higher standard from someone who publishes a book, and says in one interview after another that his goal in doing so was honesty, than from some guy on the internet, but maybe that's just me. And you are welcome to disregard my review, this post, and all my future posts without responding to them.

More than welcome.
post #377 of 420
Quote:
Originally Posted by newtogolf View Post

The justification that HH probably knew more damaging details than he wrote about is like commending the Secret Service for not hiring more prostitutes in Columbia. 

The Secret Service can't win with you guys.
post #378 of 420

I'm not sure what your point is.  Are you arguing that statistics can't be manipulated and that it's uncommon for two opposing sides to use the same numbers to produce statistics that favor their argument?  

 

Where did I say the chapter was full of lies, I simply stated that HH did a statistical analysis that was biased to help prove his case.  The numbers are the numbers, I'm not accusing him of not using the official results from the PGA Tour site.  I'm accusing him of interpreting the numbers he found to provide him with the results he wanted to convey. 

 

I don't have the book any longer, but if I remember correctly, in one citing HH used Top 3 to compare himself to Butch, and in another he used Top 10.  I haven't done the math (I really don't care that much), but I'd guess there's a reason he selected those ranges specifically, rather than maintain consistency in his analysis.  I'd also guess if one did the math they'd find a range maybe Top 5 or Top 20 where the numbers would favor Butch. 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by k-troop View Post

This is the kind of stuff that, from my perspective, makes me somewhat antagonistic towards your opinions.  You are clearly implying that the chapter is full of lies and spin.  Is it?  Do you have any analysis or evidence to back that up?

 

That's not a challenge, and I really don't want it to come off that way.  It's an explanation of how I read your posts.  I see bias in them, and this is an example. 

 

 

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