There are 3 metrics that indicate how fouls factor into an individual’s effectiveness:

  1. Free Throw Rate (FTRate)
  2. Fouls committed per 40 minutes played (FC/40)
  3. Fouls drawn per 40 minutes played (FD/40)

Free Throw Rate (FTRate)

Free throw rate measures a player’s ability to get to the foul line relative to how often he attempts to score. It takes a players free throw attempts and divides those attempts by the player’s total field goal attempts.

FTRate = 100 * FTA / FGA

For example, PJ Washington of Kentucky had a free throw rate was 80.3 in the 2017-2018 season. This ranked 3rd amongst all Division-I players.

Washington attempted 208 free throws and 259 field goals.

FTRate = 100 * 208 / 259 = 80.3

Fouls committed per 40 minutes played FC/40

This is a straight-forward stat that shows the amount of fouls a player commits per 40 minutes played.

FC/40 = (Fouls committed / MP) * 40

For example, Quentin Snider of Louisville committed 1.32 fouls per 40 minutes in 2017-2018. This was 12th in the country.

Snider committed 38 fouls playing in 1155 minutes over the season.

FC/40 = (38 / 1155) * 40 = 1.32

Fouls drawn per 40 minutes played (FD/40)

This is a stat developed by KenPom and explained more on this page. It makes several assumptions from Division-I averages, KenPom details below:

  • each shooting foul results in an average of 1.8 free throws
  • 16.3% of all fouls are committed by the offense
  • no offensive foul results in a shot (this is not entirely true since some offensive fouls occur in rebounding situations)
  • players on defense draw fouls at equal rates
  • players on offense draw non-shooting fouls proportional to their percentage of possessions used

Applying all of these assumptions can give a fair estimate of a player’s fouls drawn.

For example, Collin Sexton of Alabama drew 7.6 fouls per 40 minutes played in 2017-2018. This ranked 7th in the nation.

Sexton played in 987 minutes in the 2017-2018 season drawing about 188 fouls.

FD/40 = (188 / 987) * 40 = 7.6