Sports Data Scientist, ESPN
Brian Burke, founder of the popular website Advanced Football Analytics and an early pioneer in football analytics, joined ESPN as a sports data scientist in June 2015. As a member of ESPN Analytics, Burke is expanding upon his previous work to ensure ESPN has the best-in-class football analytics. His recent accomplishments include Receiver Tracking Metrics, the widely successful Pass Block and Run Block Win Rate metrics and other models based on player tracking data. Burke founded AdvancedFootballAnalytics.com in 2007, where he pioneered the development of metrics like Expected Points and Win Probability, which remain the core tools for analysis in football. Burke was a regular contributor to The New York Times, The Washington Post, Slate and other outlets.
A regular speaker at the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference, he also previously worked as an analytics consultant for multiple NFL teams and supplied statistics and analytics insights to NBC Sports and ESPN The Magazine. Before entering the world of sports analytics, Burke had a distinguished career as an officer and aviator with the United States Navy as an F/A-18 carrier pilot. He flew numerous combat missions and was awarded the Air Medal, the Navy Commendation Medal, and numerous other personal and unit commendations.
Originally from Baltimore, Burke graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy with the Class of 1993. He attended the Naval Postgraduate School and returned to Annapolis as an instructor. After leaving the Navy, Burke worked as a defense contractor, serving as a strategy and tactics expert and then as a business unit director before launching Advanced Football Analytics.
He earned a masters degree in Operations Research from George Mason University and teaches there as adjunct faculty. When not analyzing football and other sports, Burke can be found zipping around the local raceway in his track car. He resides with his family in Reston, Virginia.