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Archive for the ‘College Football’ Category

C.J. Spiller Highlights

Posted by cuorange on January 29, 2010

From Shoeless Works.  You’ve probably seen it by now since it’s been on every Clemson site out there, but just in case.

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Posted in Clemson Football, College Football | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Ranking the championship teams

Posted by cuorange on January 21, 2010

I’m not a huge believer in all-decade teams and the like, but in researching a post last week I wondered who the best team of the 2000’s was. I remember ’01 Miami and certainly ’05 Texas, but who was I leaving out, or better yet, who was I selling short because of some potential bias and maybe who was I giving a lot more credit than they deserved because of a) seeing them so much and b) how they won games.

So, I developed a formula (similar to the one I used last season in baseball to predict LSU over Texas) that would theoretically take out all my biases. This formula is based on the factors that lead to a national champion and the categories that are highly correlated to a NC are weighted as such.

Rank Team Score % of Perfection
1 2009 Alabama 549.7 94.27%
2 2001 Miami 544.7 93.41%
3 2007 LSU 541.4 92.85%
4 2004 USC 539.0 92.44%
5 2008 Florida 533.3 91.46%
6 2005 Texas 517.1 88.68%
7 2003 LSU 506.6 86.88%
8 2000 Oklahoma 494.4 84.79%
9 2006 Florida 490.2 84.07%
10 2002 Ohio State 451.5 77.43%

A perfect score would be 583.100.

The scores are heavily weighted towards defense, because that’s what wins championships. So, in general, better defensive teams will score higher than offensive powers.

Certainly a case can be made for 2001 Miami, but they were crushed by 2009 Alabama in two categories that accounted for most of the difference: Rush defense (2nd for Alabama, 40th for Miami) and turnovers lost (3rd for Alabama and 26th for Miami).

Texas circa 2005 is an interesting case. The Longhorns were 3rd in total offense (one of only two of the last 10 champions to be in the top 10 in total offense) and 10th in defense, but were 40th in passing offense, 33rd in rushing defense and 36th in turnovers lost. You can see how they would be down this list.

There’s not much arguing Ohio State’s 10th place standing among this group. The Buckeyes were 70th in total offense, 92nd in passing offense, 23rd in total defense and 95th in passing defense – easily the worst in those categories among the 10 champions.

Posted in College Football | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Defense wins again

Posted by cuorange on January 13, 2010

No matter which team won the BCS National Championship game last Thursday, one thing was certain: for the 7th consecutive year and 9th time in the last 10 years the BCS Champion finished in the top 10 in total defense.

Alabama’s victory also insured that a top 10 scoring defense also won the championship for the 9th time in 10 years.

In an era when headlines and SportsCenter highlights are driven by eye-popping offensive plays, nothing is more certain than this: defense wins championships.

Year Team Total O Rush O Pass O Scoring O Total D Rush D Pass D Scoring D TO Lost TO Gain TO Margin
 2000 Okla.   18 68   13  7   8  23  9  7 88   5 30 
 2001 Miami  8 21   35    6  40  2  1 26  1  1
 2002 Ohio St.   70 31    92  41  23  3  95  2  7  33  18
 2003 LSU   31  27   43  19  1  3  18  1  83  9  39
 2004 USC  12  33   13     6  1  34  3  35  1  1
 2005 Texas  3    40  1   10  33  8  8  36  21  27
 2006 Florida  19  38    28   23  6  5  33  6  66  17  37
 2007 LSU  26  11    58   11  3  12  9  17  10  3  2
 2008 Florida  15  10   61  4  2  15  20  4  13  34  2
 2009 Alabama   42    12    92   22   9  2  10  2  3  10  4

Consider these facts:

*Only 2 of the last 10 BCS Champions were ranked in the top 10 in total offense.
*9 of the last 10 champions were ranked in the top 10 in total defense.

*Only 2 of the last 10 BCS Champions were ranked in the top 10 in rushing offense.
*5 of the last 10 champions were ranked in the top 10 in rushing defense.

*0 of 10 champions were in the top 10 in passing offense.
*5 of 10 champions were in the top 10 in passing defense.

This is not to say that offense is unimportant in the equation. The 10 champions averaged ranking 24th in total offense and 14 in scoring offense. One irony, of course, is that points scored by a team’s defense and special teams are credited to the scoring offense category. Hence, Clemson can rank 74th in total offense, but 28th in scoring offense.

In contrast, the last 10 champions have averaged a number 5 ranking in scoring defense and a 7th ranking in total defense.

One new trend may be emerging – turnover margin. In the last three years the champion has finished 2nd (2007 LSU), 2nd (2008 Florida) and 4th (2009 Alabama) in turnover margin. It also appears that the most important element in turnover rankings is very rarely turning the ball over (as opposed to gaining a lot of turnovers but giving up a fair amount, too as Texas did in 2009).

So when the 2010 season rolls around and there is talk turns to which team is going to win the BCS National Championship remember defense should come first.

Posted in College Football | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Pick ’em standings – FINAL

Posted by cuorange on January 8, 2010

AccuScore takes the overall prize with a solid bowl season.  Adam Eargle wins the human title (kind of like winning the MAC) and CUOrange turns in a solid 4-21 record in the bowls!

Contestant Won Loss Push Pct GB
AccuScore 81 82 2 48.15
A. Eargle 73 90 2 44.24 8
Texas D 71 92 2 43.03 10
B. Rink 70 93 2 42.42 11
CUOrange 70 93 2 42.42 11

Posted in College Football | Tagged: | 2 Comments »

Pick ’em standings – CORRECTION

Posted by cuorange on January 4, 2010

Adam Eargle is the lead human.  AccuScore has wrapped up the title. 

Contestant Won Loss Push Pct GB
AccuScore 78 82 2 48.15
A. Eargle 72 88 2 44.44 6
CUOrange 70 90 2 43.21 8
Texas D 70 90 2 43.21 8
B. Rink 68 92 2 41.98 10

Posted in College Football | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Pick ’em standings through the Orange Bowl

Posted by cuorange on January 2, 2010

There are 7 games left and the field (at least the humans) are jumbled up and very close. AccuScore appears to have run away from the humans, going 11-7 in the first 18 bowl games while CUOrange was an impressive 3-15.

Contestant Won Loss Push Pct GB
AccuScore 76 80 2 48.10
CUOrange 69 87 2 43.67 7
A. Eargle 69 87 2 43.67 7
Texas D 68 88 2 43.04 8
B. Rink 67 89 2 42.41 9

Posted in College Football | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Pick ’em – Bowl edition 2

Posted by cuorange on December 26, 2009

Game Spread AccuScore Predicted Score Actual Score AccuScore CUOrange Texas D B. Rink A. Eargle
NW vs. Auburn NW +7  31-21 Auburn  38-35 AU  AU  AU  NW  NW  AU 
WVU vs. Florida St. FSU +3  33-29 WVU  33-21 FSU  WVU WVU  WVU WVU  WVU 
Penn St. vs. LSU  LSU +3 25-20 PSU   19-17 PSU  PSU PSU  PSU  LSU  LSU 
Ohio State vs. Oregon OSU +3.5    26-22 OU  OSU 26-17  OU OU   OU OU   OU
Florida vs. Cincinnati  UC +12 34-24 UF  51-24 UF  UC  UF   UF UC   UC
SC vs. UConn UConn +4.5  27-24 SC  20-7 UC   UC UC UC  SC  SC 
Oklahoma St. vs. Mississippi  OSU +3 25-23 UM   21-7 UM OSU  UM   UM UM  UM 
Arkansas vs. East Carolina ECU +8  35-27 UA  20-17 UA   ECU  UA ECU  UA  ECU
Michigan St. vs. Texas Tech  MSU +8.5  34-26 TTU 41-31 TTU   MSU  MSU  MSU MSU  MSU 
Boise St. vs TCU BSU +8  TCU 32-25  17-10 BSU  BSU  TCU  TCU  BSU  TCU 
Iowa vs. Georgia Tech  Iowa +4  27-26 GT  24-14 Iowa  Iowa GT   Iowa GT  GT 
Texas vs. Alabama Texas +4.5  25-19 Bama  37-21 Bama  Bama  Texas  Texas  Bama   Bama

Posted in College Football | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

In depth look at third downs

Posted by cuorange on December 23, 2009

Here’s a table with the results of every third down situation this year (including 3rd and goal to go of the various distances). When you’re clicking along at 38.67% (70 for 181) overall you know there are going to be some ugly stats mixed in there and we don’t have to look far to find those.

While 59.1% doesn’t sound so bad, it doesn’t really sound great when it’s third and 1. Think about that. Over 40% of the time the Tigers failed on 3rd and 1. Wow. And when you get to third and 5 or more, well lets just say the chances aren’t good.

The moral of the story for the Tigers is to go into third down with 4 or less yards to go that way Clemson has a 59.7% chance of converting. Otherwise, it’s 26.3% chance for the Tigers, basically one of every 4.

There are a couple of interesting anomalies in the numbers though. While the Tigers are 5 for 15 on 3rd and 6 and 1 for 16 on 3rd and 8 (what the hell?) they are 6 for 12 on 3rd and 7 and 4 of 8 on 3rd and 11. So, 33% on 3rd and 6, 6% on 3rd and 8, but 50% on 3rd and 7 and 3rd and 11.  Alrighty.

To Go Made/Att PCT
 1  13/22   59.1
2  7/12  58.3
3  10/16  62.5
4  10/17  58.8
5  4/13  30.8
6  5/16  31.3
7  6/12  50.0
8  1/16  6.3
9  4/11  36.4
10  4/14  28.6
11  4/8  50.0
12  0/6  0.0
13  0/3  0.0
14  1/2  50.0
15  1/5  20.0
16  0/2  0.0
19  0/1  0.0
20  0/2  0.0
21  0/1  0.0
23  0/1  0.0
49  0/1  0.0

Posted in ACC Football, Clemson Football, College Football | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Pick ’em – Bowl edition 1

Posted by cuorange on December 15, 2009

Game Spread AccuScore Predicted Score Actual Score AccuScore CUOrange Texas D B. Rink A. Eargle
Oregon St. vs. BYU  BYU +3  32-31 BYU 44-20 BYU  BYU  OSU  OSU   OSU BYU 
Utah vs. California Utah +3  28-27 Cal   37-27 Utah Utah   Cal Cal   Cal Cal 
Pittsburgh vs. UNC  UNC +3  26-21 Pitt 19-17 Pitt  Pitt  Pitt  Pitt   UNC UNC 
Boston College vs. USC  BC +9 28-18 USC  24-13 USC   USC BC  USC  USC  USC 
Kentucky vs. Clemson  UK +7.5  29-21 CU 21-13 CU   CU UK  UK  UK UK 
Texas A&M vs. Georgia TAMU +7  35-27 UGA   44-20 UGA  UGA TAMU   UGA  UGA UGA 
Miami (FL) vs. Wisconsin  UW +3 28-26 UM   20-14 UW  UW UM  UW   UM UM 
Arizona vs. Nebraska UN +1  22-21 UN   33-0 UN UN  UA  UA   UA  UN
Houston vs. Air Force AFA +5  33-30 UH  47-20 AFA AFA   UH  UH  UH UH 
Oklahoma vs. Stanford  SU +8  34-25 OU  31-27 OU OU  OU   SU OU  SU 
Navy vs. Missouri Navy +6  29-23 UM  35-13 Navy  UM  UM   Navy  UM  UM
Minnesota vs. Iowa State ISU +2.5   23-23  14-13 ISU ISU  ISU  ISU  ISU   UM
Virginia Tech vs. Tennessee  UT +4.5 28-21 VT  VT 37-14   VT  UT UT   VT VT 

Posted in College Football | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Calling the Heisman race

Posted by cuorange on December 12, 2009

It’s been a fascinating week in the Heisman Trophy race.  ESPN and the Heisman Trust couldn’t have asked for a closer race as the “perfect storm” hit last weekend to make the race interesting.

I’m calling for an even closer result than StiffArmTrophy.com (which as of 10:53 p.m. Pacific Time on 12/10/09 is forecasting a 100 point difference between 1st and 2nd and 10 points between 2nd and 3rd).  Nevertheless, we agree on the order of the top 5.  Ingram, Gerhart, Suh, McCoy and Tebow.

HeismanPundit.com called the race and declared McCoy the winner.  Wow.  McCoy didn’t even win with the Austin voters.  Oops.

What’s more interesting to me is the question of why Tim Tebow is in New York.  When only 3 were invited last year we were told that there was a “clear separation” after the top 3.  Fair enough, there was.  While not as large, there also appears to be a clear separation after the top 4 this year (more so when using StiffArmTrophy.com projections), with Tebow being a distant 5th.

Name CUOrange Points StiffArmTrophy Points
Ingram  1  1267  1   1229
Gerhart  2  1258  2   1129
Suh  3  1255  3   1119
McCoy  4  723  4  858
Tebow  5  294  5  269

I’m neither a conspiracy theorist nor a Tebow hater.  I think he’s a great player who has been great for college football.  I’m just not sure why he is in New York for the Heisman Trophy presentation unless the actual voting is vastly different from the projections on StiffArmTrophy.com.  Otherwise, the Heisman Trophy is headed towards becoming a sham and more of a popularity contest than it already is.

Posted in College Football | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »