I always try to do at least a little “pre-scouting” before an event I’m competing at. I figured with these Pick’em drafts becoming more of a thing, I thought I would do my pre-scouting in the context of looking at the value of teams in a theoretical auction draft. After doing this, I compared what I came up with to the values the teams spent in the live FUN draft. I thought I would post what I found were the top 10 under-valued teams in that draft based on my estimations.
In a short summary, based on a number of factors (including OPR, Alliance Selection 2019 history, Elimination Performance 2019 history, Probability of making eliminations, and some other criteria) I generated a projected auction draft value for every team given the constant of 10 draft teams with a budget of $200 each (same as the draft Monday night). Based on these generated values, I have compared them against the actual values from the FUN draft and came up with this list.
Before anyone asks, I am not going to post how exactly I generated my projected values. I may put together a “most overvalued” list later, but I generally don’t like to talk down other teams, so we’ll see.
Most Under-Valued Teams in the FUN Live Auction Draft
#1) 364 - Team Fusion - Gulfport, MS
Proj. Value: $52.02
Proj. Value Rank: 4th
FUN Value: $28
It is likely the biggest reason this team was not bid up higher in the FUN draft is because they are from Mississippi, an area generally less known to the community. An exit in the SF in Carver at Houston did not help either probably. However, 364 sported a mean OPR on the season of 40.32, good for 4th best out of the entire field behind only 2056, 2910, and 1114. They won both of their regionals this season, and seeded #1 in Carver.
#2) 3707 - Brighton Technodogs - Brighton, MI
Proj. Value: $50.99
Proj. Value Rank: 5th
FUN Value: $34
Chalk this one up to 3707 being one of the last high contenders still available. By the time they were drafted, most of the draft teams were running low on funds, which contributed to 3707 being sold for a lower amount. With the 5th highest mean OPR (39.51) behind the same teams mentioned above and 364, I think everyone expects 3707 to be gone early on in alliance selection.
#3) 2403 - Plasma Robotics - Mesa, AZ
Proj. Value: $31.97
Proj. Value Rank: 26th
FUN Value: $19
Similar to 364, I think 2403 was hurt by their location. With IRI and the FUN draft participants being “North Champs” heavy, less people are familiar with Arizona teams. While not super high on the projected value list like the previous two teams, the projected values show that 2403 has a good chance to be on an alliance on Saturday afternoon, which plays a big part in the Pick’em game.
#4) 3478 - PrepaTec LamBot - San Luis Potosi, Mexico
Proj. Value: $23.14
Proj. Value Rank: 48th
FUN Value: $11
As the trend continues, 3478 is definitely being hurt by being from out of the country. Only 1730 had less money spent on their bid in the draft; 3478 is clearly worth more then the $11 spent on them. While projections don’t show them making eliminations, with how many ups and downs can occur at an event like IRI, with the right uptick in performance and some help from the schedule gods, I could see them making it.
#5) 111 - Wildstang - Arlington Heights, IL
Proj. Value: $33.80
Proj. Value Rank: 21st
FUN Value: $22
No this isn’t your Dad’s Wildstang. But it also isn’t your know-it-all college mentor’s Wildstang either. After going through a lot of turbulence the last 5-6 years, 111 has really come back strong and it showed this year after they won both their regionals and the Carson division. I would be surprised if they weren’t in eliminations this weekend, and that alone makes the $22 spent on them too low.
#6) 234 - Cyber Blue - Indianapolis, IN
Proj. Value: $29.09
Proj. Value Rank: 33rd
FUN Value: $18
This host team likely was a victim of the Indiana syndrome when it comes to IRI, where Indiana teams can sometimes be valued lower simply because they are local and there is an assumption that the barrier of entry for them is lower. But with 234, they definitely belong in the mix. I currently have them projected to just be on the outside looking in on Saturday afternoon, which means there is still a decent chance they make it. A consistent team with a solid OPR, don’t sleep on this historic team.
#7) 1676 - The Pascack PI-oneers - Montvale, NJ
Proj. Value: $27.72
Proj. Value Rank: 39th
FUN Value: $17
This 2017 world champion team is likely still thought of in that 3rd-4th robot role. But this season 1676 competed at a high level in the MAR region all season, and was able to seed #1 in the Darwin division. They’ll need a couple things to swing their way or to step up their game to make it to eliminations, but they are likely worth more then the $17 they went for.
#8) 1023 - Bedford Express - Temperance, MI
Proj. Value: $33.76
Proj. Value Rank: 22nd
FUN Value: $24
Always a strong MI team, 1023 had a tough draw in the Curie elims, losing to the 3538/195 alliance in the QF, and this likely hurt them in the auction. Their one of those zippy swerve robots that can crank through cargo really well, and isn’t a slouch at hatches either. Definitely a team I would be surprised to not see in eliminations, as they would likely play great defense if needed.
#9) 3604 - The Goon Squad - Brownstown, MI
Proj. Value: $28.21
Proj. Value Rank: 36th
FUN Rank: $19
For a team that won the MI State Championship as the third overall pick in their division, it’s a bit surprising to see them go for only $19. They were the third robot on the #6 alliance that lost in the QF on Darwin, so this is likely the last thing people remember, but with multiple offseasons of practice over the last month, 3604 will likely be one of the sharper teams ready and our on the edge for making it to Saturday afternoon.
#10) 118 - The Robonauts - League City, TX
Proj. Value: $38.42
Proj. Value Rank: 15th
FUN Rank: $30
What a way to end this list. Probably the only time 118 will ever make an “undervalued” list. Their H drive this year is clearly the biggest reason people are doubting them. Their SF exits at TX States and Worlds hurt them, and many argue that the H drive was a big factor. Their play during qualifications all season and eliminations at their district events prove that they are still an offensive powerhouse when not defended. If the rumors are true about making some changes to their drive, then look out because they could be the 118 we are all used to seeing at IRI. Even if they don’t switch away from the H-drive, it’s still 118 and I would still expect them to end up a captain, 1st pick, or an early 2nd round selection.