The MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference is the baby of Daryl Morey (Rockets GM) and Jessica Gelman (Gillette marketing executive). As the story goes, Morey wanted to start the conference after taking the Rockets job because he could no longer lecture back in Cambridge. “This is Daryl’s class,” Moneyball author Michael Lewis said.
Morey is a Sloan alum. Although the conference is held across the Charles River in Boston, this year’s MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference started the way us non-Ivy-Leaguers assume most conversations in Cambridge start. That is, with an MIT/Harvard joke. Morey jabbing at Gelman, a Harvard alum, that the Crimson aren’t much known for quantitative competencies.
From there the weekend stayed highbrow. It is after all Dorkapalooza, per Bill Simmons.
Oddly, this year’s conference didn’t open with one blockbuster panel. Last year’s sole opener was a panel headlined by Malcolm Gladwell. Although 2013 opened with multiple panels, there was one which was c...