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Bye Week Stat Round Up: Offense

BSU LogoNormally on Tuesdays we regale you with fun little items like stat comparisons and the like for the coming Cardinal opponent. As this week is the challenging opponent Open Date State, there is no substantive data to pour over. Except our own. Hence, the offensive and defensive production… presented in fancy graph format. Ballin’.

Part 1: Offense
To call this season’s offense things like “productive” or “efficient” or “precision” would be a certain misnomer. However, that wasn’t entirely unexpected. The losses on the offensive line, the loss of a now-playing-in-the-NFL QB will certainly make the offense take a collective step back not to mention the massive target in Darius Hill at tight end and 4 starting offensive linemen. All that equals a significant step back. A 1-8 step back? Probably not, but I think most would argue (correctly) that this team is not a 1-win talent sort of team.

The offense has unfortunately bared the brunt of the fluke luck and injuries this season losing Madaris Grant and Seth White within the first few games, and losing QB Kelly Page soon thereafter. The same Kelly Page who was beginning to show glimpses of why he was a sought after prospect by some of the major BCS caliber schools like Oregon.

Perhaps the biggest challenge for this offense is that the offensive line so far has certainly lived up to expectations, which weren’t high to begin with. The lack of consistent dominant blocking and protection impacts virtually every aspect. With no protection of the QB, the passing game struggles to even get throws away. Those that are gotten away are rarely on target or not a reach for the receivers. That lack of a passing threat results in defenses pinning their ears back and bringing heat to pressure the QB or stuff the run, which has little blocking to begin with. It’s a vicious circle and one that BSU has found itself twisting in for virtually all of 2009.

The offense so far…

off prod

No, this isn’t the NASDAQ, but the passing attack certainly looks like it.

The last three games are virtual washes statistically, not only because of their ridiculous deviation from the median, but more so because BSU has become quite one-dimensional. Throwing up your 3 highest rushing totals since the start of the season is impressive. Doing it at the expense of the pass is quite another. While having a rush-heavy attack is certainly nothing out of the ordinary, and in fact, the thing most were pointing to as needed early in the season it is the aftermath of said switch off and the rationale given by Parrish that leads many to scratch their heads at best and get fired up at worst. Questions from a fanbase about a QBs ability, talent, and skill set are one thing… having your coach reference how hard you try but what you lack in his weekly press conference is totally different territory.

Looking forward, the passing attack is the key to success. Should Tanner Justice be able to prove Stan Parrish incorrect, and more importantly, should Stan Parrish have the faith needed in him to allow him to do so, then the offense may in fact find the balance needed to pull an upset in one of their three remaining games. If not, if Justice struggles or Parrish doesn’t allow him to succeed, then expect opposing defenses to stack the box, dominate the line, and this team to struggle to even compete.

By the Numbers – Week 5, Part II

By The Numbers, Part 4

Apologies for not getting this to you sooner, but sometimes things get in the way, right?  Two days ago we covered some statistics on Ball State and Kentucky on their respective offenses.  So, as promised, here are some numbers on the other side of the ball.

As we may already know, Ball State’s defensive numbers are a bit better than the offense, but they still leave a bit to be desired.  Kentucky is also a relatively uninspired defense, save their passing numbers.  Let’s see how we’re doing (number in parentheses is national rank out of 120):

Rush Defense Stats

  Avg Yards per Rush Allowed Rushing Yards Allowed per Game Rush TDs Allowed
Ball State 4.49 (94) 184.80 (111) 6 (56)
Kentucky 4.88 (104) 190.25 (87) 5 (40)

Pass  Defense Stats

  Passing Yards Allowed per Game Passing TDs Allowed Yards Allowed per Completion Allowed Completion Percentage INTs Gained Percentage of Passes Intercepted
Ball State 242.80 (92) 13 (116) 12.39 (84) 68.53% (117) 3 (78) 2.10% (87)
Kentucky 163.00 (16) 6 (57) 12.54 (90) 49.52% (12) 3 (78) 2.86% (63)

Tackles for Loss/Sacks Stats

  Tackles for Loss Tackles for Loss Yards Sacks Sacks Yards Lost
Ball State 31 (34) 101 (60) 6 (86) 39 (90)
Kentucky 20 (99) 70 (103) 8 (63) 41 (84)

Drive Stats

  First Downs Allowed Opponent Third Down Conversion Opponent Fourth Down Conversion Opponent Red Zone Drives Average Red Zone Points Allowed
Ball State 194 (99) 39.71% (74) 33.33% (30) 15 (59) 4.80 (67)
Kentucky 163 (46) 38.71% (66) 57.14% (71) 17 (75) 4.18 (33)

Once again, there you have it.  Defensively, I don’t think anyone that is a fan of either team will be surprised at any of this.  As I did a couple days ago, I will pick one stat on Ball State’s side that did slightly (annoy?) concern me.  That stat is “Allowed Completion Percentage”.  68.53% is incredibly high, don’t you think?  Raise your hand if you think our DBs have been giving a little too much room to our opponents’ receivers.  Yeah, I figured everyone’s hand would be up.  The bad thing about this is that it’s not as if we’re giving up six to eight yard curls and flats.  We’re giving up an average of 12.39 yards per completion (by the way, Kentucky’s numbers are worse).  And those Toledo bombs didn’t help that average one bit.  One thing is for sure: it’s not just the BSU offense that needs some serious attention.  I’ll be back again soon for some special teams stats for both teams.  Until then, rock on.

By the Numbers – Week 5

By The Numbers, Part 4

I originally wanted to post something that could ruffle some feathers since Alan is gone, then leave it to him to clean up the mess when he gets back from vacation.  But, I thought now that I have the floor, it would be a good time to talk about statistics for our two main teams, Ball State and Kentucky.

It’s no secret both teams have left just a little to be desired this year, but it takes looking at some statistics to see just how good (or bad) our teams are since week five just ended.

Today we’ll focus on some offensive stats.  The cool thing is that I have numbers on nearly 140 statistical categories, and while some may be very minor stats, there are some that are major and can tell a lot about the season thus far (just in case you haven’t been paying attention).   So, let’s see how we’re doing (number in parentheses is national rank out of 120):

Rushing Stats

Average Yards per Rush Rushing Yards per Game Rush TDs
Ball State 3.28 (95) 105 (98) 5 (87)
Kentucky 4.16 (52) 158 (49) 6 (68)

Passing Stats

Passing Yards Passing TDs Yards per Completion Completion Percentage INTs Percentage of Passes Intercepted
Ball State 856 (89) 5 (76) 9.30 (114) 52.57% (104) 7 (100) 4.00% (83)
Kentucky 682 (112) 5 (76) 9.61 (111) 58.2% (70) 6 (84) 4.92% (105)

Offensive Line/Blocking Stats

Tackles for Loss Allowed Tackles for Loss Yards Allowed Sacks Allowed Sacks Yards Lost Allowed
Ball State 36 (110) 177 (116) 15 (110) 131 (110)
Kentucky 16 (6) 63 (17) 5 (21) 27 (18)

Drive Stats

First Downs Third Down Conversion Fourth Down Conversion Red Zone Drives Average Red Zone Points
Ball State 87 (70) 35.14% (87) 57.14% (49) 17 (58) 4.12 (99)
Kentucky 78 (94) 41.38% (48) 66.67% (17) 11 (109) 5.36 (30)

Well, there you have it.  This is of course up through this weekend’s losses for both teams, and it does seem to show what we all are thinking in terms of offensive production for both teams.  Not too many are surprised at the dismal numbers in the “Offensive Line/Blocking” category for Ball State, and likewise the good numbers for Kentucky.  And the rushing and passing numbers are also right where they belong.  But just to pick one stat I find the most interesting is “Average Red Zone Points”.  I was fairly frustrated seeing Ball State held to mere field goals instead of scoring touchdowns in two of their red zone visits on Saturday, and I thought that the lack of points might have been low when taking into account all the other times I’ve seen red zone drives stall or have to settle for three.  And it turns out I was right, with Ball State sitting in the bottom 25% of the FBS.  Enjoy these few stats, and I’ll be back soon with some defensive numbers.

2008, By The Numbers, Part 5

You know, sometimes it’s fun to just play with the numbers from last year and try to make comparisons, whether it be between teams or between conferences. You can learn a lot that way… or you can confuse the hell out of yourself and your readers. There’s always a risk to everything, isn’t there?

Today, let’s talk a little more on scoring, but let’s look at it from a conference standpoint. All of us watch games for different reasons. I’m talking about those non-personal games, like for instance, Oklahoma State and Missouri. Now, neither one of those teams mean anything to me, but I’m an offense guy. I like seeing how each side fares against the defense. Inevitably, the enjoyable offensive game for me is a high scoring game on both sides.

That’s not to say those 3-0 games aren’t enjoyable, but like I said, I’m an offense guy. I like to see some points in the air and on the ground (and inevitably some defensive scoring). Those who like the defensive side of the game watch for other reasons. And then there’s those that just take a game where they can get it. Perfectly fine with us.

Now, I’ll try to put aside the opinion aspect of this and get to the facts. What I did was look at each conference’s total points scored and points allowed in conference games only. From there, it was pretty simple to see what conference games net the most points per game. As it has been recently, there’s very few surprises here. Let’s look at the top three scoring conferences:

1) Big 12: Average of 67.59 points in a conference game
2) Conference USA: Average of 60.35 points in a conference game
3) Sun Belt: Average of 58.32 points in a conference game

This isn’t too surprising, and it doesn’t really tell us much. Was it good offense, or was it just shitty defense that allowed this to happen? My impression is it’s a lot of both. I can say that Oklahoma seemed to bolster that Big 12 number.

So, who was at the other end? Well, I have to actually throw out the independents here. They only played a total of four “conference games”, and their average was 41 points. So, discarding them, here’s the three lowest:

1) ACC: Average of 42.92 points in a conference game
2) SEC: Average of 45.53 points in a conference game
3) Big East: Average of 46.54 points in a conference game

Again, not too surprising or revealing. Unless you look at geography. What’s the deal with that? If you’re east of the Mississippi, your conference game doesn’t net a lot of points? Maybe there’s something to this. We will have to investigate further, once we secure more research funding (yes, you may contribute; we accept donations).

But you know what’s cool? If you’re sitting at the bar and someone starts talking about college football, you can drop this bit of knowledge on them, right? Then, the discussion can go in all directions, could become heated, possibly getting you into a fist fight… you know what… best to keep this info to yourself.

By The Numbers, Part 4

So far we’ve looked at quite a few stats in our “By The Numbers” columns. We’ve covered stat rankings, mismatched schedules in terms of rankings, and one cupcake conference. Today I think we’ll discuss some statistics about scoring.

It’s no secret that some of the elite teams this year had some pretty high scoring offenses. They’d kind of have to, right? Oklahoma, Florida, Texas… those were some pretty productive offenses. But as any relatively intelligent person will tell you, the defense has to hold their own. USC, TCU, and (gasp) Iowa weren’t too shabby last year in that department.

Now, we could give you a rundown of who scored the most points or who held their opponents to the fewest points, but that would be boring. And that’s not how we do things here at OTP. So, let’s look at who had the biggest discrepancy between points scored and points allowed. Then, we can look at those with the biggest discrepancy on the other end.

First, we present the five teams that scored the most versus points allowed:

5) Penn State. Scored: 506. Allowed: 187. Difference: 319 points.
4) Boise State. Scored:489. Allowed: 164. Difference: 325 points.
3) USC. Scored: 488. Allowed: 117. Difference: 371 points.
2) Oklahoma. Scored: 716. Allowed: 343. Difference: 373 points.
1) Florida. Scored: 611. Allowed: 181. Difference: 430 points.

Now, the not-so-top five teams that scored the least versus points allowed:

5) San Diego State. Scored: 231. Allowed: 446. Difference: -215 points.
4) Idaho. Scored: 235. Allowed: 513. Difference: -278 points.
3) Washington. Scored: 159. Allowed: 463. Difference: -304 points.
2) North Texas. Scored: 240. Allowed: 571. Difference: -331 points.
1) Washington State. Scored: 165. Allowed: 570. Difference: -405 points.

All in all, most of this expected, isn’t it? To give this some numbers on the teams we cover, Ball State was 14th in this list with a scoring difference of 202 points. Kentucky appears nearly in the middle of all teams at 58th with a scoring difference of 15 points.

Now, here’s something that I do find interesting: the top 45 teams on this list all went bowling in 2008. But, six bowl teams in 2008 actually had a negative difference in points scored versus points allowed: Colorado State, Hawaii, FIU, Maryland, Minnesota, and Fresno State. Of those, two played in the New Mexico Bowl – Colorado State and Fresno State. What does this mean? Well, 1) even inefficient offenses and defenses can go bowling, and 2) watch the New Mexico Bowl only if there is nothing else on.

Two more interesting facts: Memphis both scored and allowed 353 points this season. Way to go Tigers! (Note: Derrick Rose’s SAT score was 353. Consistency is key and this is why Memphis is who we thought they were. -RV, ed.) And, of the bottom 30 teams, 12 of them now have new head coaches. That seems about right.

I’ll have more stats for you soon, but how do these numbers sit with you readers? The comment section is now open for business.

2008, By The Numbers Part 3

Welcome back to the Stat Department at OTP.

Last week we discussed 20 teams that were grossly mismatched against all their opponents, whether it be for the better (Boise State) or the worse (Washington). Today, let’s take a step back and look at a larger chunk of teams. I promised that we would let some numbers destroy a conference, and I think we’ve found it. By “destroy” I do of course mean “humiliate them in front of the rest of the class”.

We throw around the term “cupcake” around here, but I think we’re about to find out what that means. Ladies and gentlemen, let me pull back the curtains and reveal to you a conference that lives up to the “cupcake”. In fact, their logo should look something like this:That’s right. I have just called the ACC (Atlantic Cupcake Conference) a bunch of cupcakes. Wanna throw down? Well, let’s look at the figures first. Then if you still want to fight about it, we’ll meet at the jungle gym at three today where I’ll bust your ass.

I’m sure you’re aware the ACC has 12 teams. But, did you know out of all the games they played, a whopping 9.62% of them were against FCS schools? Four of the 12 teams had two FCS opponents apiece. Only one didn’t have an FCS opponent, so Wake Forest, you are free to leave from this discussion. The rest of you, sit down a minute. Now that we took away Wake’s schedule, the rest of the ACC played 10.49% of their games against an FCS school. For shame.

I suppose this brings forth some interesting questions. Why would a team really need two FCS opponents? Does any team really need one for that matter? Most programs dole out some nice cash to play an FCS school to just make sure all the practice will translate to game situations. Nearly three-fourths of all FBS school had at least one FCS opponent in 2008. But check this out: in the ACC, Florida State had two FCS opponents to start the season, Clemson had its second and fourth games against FCS opponents, GA Tech had one at the start and another at the sixth game, and VA Tech had games two and six against FCS schools. Does this make sense to anyone, really? Also, does it even make sense when you can only use one FCS game to count toward your bowl eligibility? I’m sure it looks great in Clemson’s media guide that last year “the Tigers chalked up a winning season at 7-6…”, but are they really going to put that two of those wins were against FCS opponents? How would they have looked had they played all FBS schools? 6-7? 5-8? Finally, consider this: ten of the 12 ACC schools went to a bowl last year. I’m not sure I’m okay with that.

It might be time to take a look at scheduling on a national level. If most teams want an FCS school to bang around, go for it. But when you look at how lopsided the ACC scheduling was compared to other conferences, it starts to look a bit fishy. So, could a possible solution be to make FBS/FCS games exhibition only and not count toward the regular season? Hmm, now there’s a thought.

In the near future, we’ll get into a heavier FCS debate and also detail which conference was the anti-cupcake. But now that you have a bit of knowledge on this, what’s your impression of the ACC and it’s cupcakery? How would you feel about scheduling FCS opponents only in an exhibition format? Comment away!

2008, By The Numbers Part 2 Revisited

The numbers are in, and we have finally had a chance to review some fairly interesting things from the 2008 season. A few weeks back, I took you through the top 25 most statistically balanced teams. What we found was quite expected in some cases, but in others the results were a little more surprising – maybe a bit disturbing.

Today we discuss the other end of the spectrum from what we discussed Thursday. These teams were horribly mismatched when we looked at their entire 2008 schedule – FCS, non-conference, and conference games alike. But unlike the ones Thursday, these teams had absolutely no chance of success based on the quality of the opponents they played. We’d like to just say up front that we respect the fact that they showed up for their games, but all the Hollywood scripting in the world couldn’t have gotten these teams into “Rocky” or “Mighty Duck” status. Let’s put it this way – these teams were a combined 22-99. Ouch.

The top ten in descending order of rough schedule to ridiculously insanely impossible schedule are:

10) Mississippi St. (24.51 ranking differential) Clearly the worst in the SEC. It’s gotta be rough against all those juggernauts.

9) Utah St. (25.88 ranking differential) What’s funny is that as bad as they were, they still weren’t the worst in the WAC. I guess that’s something…

8) Texas A&M (28.51 ranking differential) Aside from the SEC, the Big 12 is arguable the toughest conference. A&M just didn’t have it this year, especially losing to non-conference Arkansas St. and Miami.

7) SMU (29.78 ranking differential) One win. That’s all we got? One goddamn win?

6) San Diego St. (30.40 ranking differential) Congratulations! The only FBS team with a loss to an FCS team.

5) Idaho (31.24 ranking differential) There’s more than potatoes in Idaho. There’s also a college that had 2 wins in 2008 and got blanked 70-0 by Arizona. Yes, this happened.

4) North Texas (33.72 ranking differential) Again, only one win, but at least it was a semi-FBS program (Western Ky.). Ball State should be ok in 2009 against these guys.

3) Syracuse (34.87 ranking differential) Charlie Weis sings, “I fought the Orange, and the Orange won.” What a dismal year.

2) Washington St. (42.07 ranking differential) Their claim to 2008? Hey, at least we’re not Washington!

1) Washington (58.40 ranking differential) Ever laugh really hard when you see someone hurt themselves – like bang their head on a shelf or rack their sack on a fence post? You feel bad, but you just can’t help it? Yeah, that’s Washington. Check this out: outscored 159-463 last year. Holy hell! But they nearly took BYU and were within 7 against Stanford. If that counted for anything, maybe Ty would still have a job… probably not, but maybe.

Ok readers, how do you feel about this list? Coming up soon: be prepared for the numbers to destroy your favorite conference.

2008, By The Numbers Part 2

The numbers are in, and we have finally had a chance to review some fairly interesting things from the 2008 season. A few weeks back, I took you through the top 25 most statistically balanced teams. What we found was quite expected in some cases, but in others the results were a little more surprising – maybe a bit disturbing.

Today what I thought we could discuss – ok, I’ll discuss, and you can comment – is the “Shame on You” factor. While these teams may have done well in terms of rankings in 17 statistical categories, they were horribly mismatched when we looked at their entire 2008 schedule – FCS, non-conference, and conference games alike. Kind of like LeBron James one-on-one against Webster. Just… shame on you LeBron.

So what we did was again analyze each team and averaged their rankings in 17 categories. We then averaged all the rankings of their respective opponents (yes, the deviation was a bit more constrained, but we’re not the BCS here) and compared them. These teams just absolutely had no business playing against the some of the teams that they did because they were “on paper” universally better than those opponents.

The top ten in descending order are:

10) Florida State (28.76 ranking differential) What really hurt them was playing two FCS teams right at the start of the season. One is enough fellas.

9) Mississippi (30.15 ranking differential) Heard of Samford? Yeah, they have a team apparently. And Mississippi State didn’t do Ole Miss any favors here.
8) Utah (33.13 ranking differential) Pretty sad when you think they wanted to be #1 because of their 13-0 record. That Mountain West conference must be a bitch, huh Utah?
7) Florida (35.34 ranking differential) Can’t really dog Florida too much because of their superior rankings, but those Hawaii, Arkansas, and Citadel games weren’t really fair at all, were they?
6) USC (35.40 ranking differential) Good stats, but Washington and Washington St. are kinda close to FCS anyway.
5) Ball State (41.78 ranking differential) Wouldn’t be an OTP post without a little Cards action. Statistically the best in the MAC, but maybe we should only schedule one cupcake instead of two from now on.
4) TCU (42.66 ranking differential) You played Stephen F. Austin. I hope to God that wasn’t just one guy.
3) Troy (42.89 ranking differential) Alcorn State, and the two Louisiana stepchildren. That Sun Belt, I tell ya…
2) Penn State (43.48 ranking differential) Quite a bit above the rest in the Big Ten really, so they are a bit like Florida. Too bad they had to murder half of Coastal Carolina’s team.
1) Boise State (46.07 ranking differential) Man, if only the WAC was a tougher conference. Then we could see just how good this team really is. But until then, Boise State is just the 13 year old in the home run derby against 8 year-olds. 8 year-olds, dude. For shame.

Ok readers, how do you feel about this list? Coming up soon: the top 10 teams that played out of their league on the other side of the coin.

2008 – By the Numbers

Numbers don’t lie. They can deceive, but they sure as hell don’t lie. We started a project a few weeks ago to analyze all 119 FBS teams’ performances. What we found was both expected and, frankly, surprising in some cases. We checked and rechecked the work, and we’ve finally come up with the most statistically balanced teams of 2008.

Before we get into the big reveal, we should establish some parameters. All teams were analyzed based on 17 statistical categories (all based on season-end stats from the NCAA). These 17 categories range from offensive rankings to defensive rankings to special teams rankings. We set each ranking equal in weight to all the other rankings for each team. Thus, “Total Offense” means as much as “Net Punting”.

Now, you’ll probably notice that “Strength of Schedule” isn’t included in this analysis. We volleyed this back and forth for some time and decided it wasn’t needed in this case. Rankings are rankings, like it or not. For example, Navy would still have probably had the best rushing statistics ranking if they had a slightly tougher schedule. Plus, most “Strength of Schedule” indices aren’t 100% objective. Again, our analysis is what it is – there’s no subjectivity in the stats used to determine these rankings.

The ultimate goal of this research was to establish the best statistically balanced teams. It’s obvious that these top teams were the best-coached all around, and their performances were consistent week in and week out. Oddly enough, some top teams lost as much as five games, but statistically, they were a sound team against their given competition. Basically, “on paper”, these teams were the best of 2008.

The OTP Top 25 Statistically-Ranked Teams:

1) Penn State (11-2, average stat rank – 19.0588). Note: In only two categories were they ranked below 27th out of 119 (passing offense and punt returns). Impressive and obviously a well-balanced team.
2) Boise State (12-1, average stat rank – 19.2353). Note: While mediocre in rushing offense (54th) and kickoff returns (47th), they excelled in defensive passing efficiency (2nd) and scoring defense (3rd).
3) Florida (13-1, average stat rank – 20.7059). Note: Surprisingly a mediocre passing offense (61st) and a near-abysmal tackles for loss rank (88th). Excellent in defensive passing efficiency (3rd) and turnover margin(2nd).
4) USC (12-1, average stat rank – 21.2353). Note: Killer defensive passing efficiency, scoring defense, and passing defense (1st). Net punting (98th) and punt return (73rd) hurt.
5) TCU (11-2, average stat rank – 21.7059). Note: Great rush defense and total defense (2nd), mediocre passing offense (72nd) and poor net punting (87th).
6) Oklahoma (12-2, average stat rank – 29.0588). Note: The most Top 3 rankings of any team in 2008 with 6 categories in the top three. Net punting (85th) and passing defense (99th) need some work in 2009.
7) Troy (8-5, average stat rank – 29.9412) . Note: Yes, we’re surprised by this one too. Sacks (3rd), tackles for loss (4th), and sacks allowed (4th) saved Troy from being a 30-40th ranked team in our analysis.
8) Texas (12-1, average stat rank – 31.7647). Note: Great numbers offensively with five top ten rankings. But rushing offense (41st), punt returns (75th) and passing defense (104th) were surprisingly bad for Texas.
9) Utah (13-0, average stat rank – 32.6471) . Note: Broke the top ten in one category: turnover margin (10th). Still a statistically-sound team with a lot of numbers ranging from 11-35. Punt returns (96th) knocked the average down.
10) Mississippi (9-4, average stat rank – 32.7647) . Note: Great rushing defense stats along with sacks and tackles for loss, but poor passing defense. Offensively, a high-20s team.
11) Ball State (12-2, average stat rank – 33.1176) . Note: Offensive line was great – 4th in sacks allowed. Total offense rank of 17 and punt return ranking of 5 helped quite a bit. But the rush defense (84th) and total defense (69th) kept Ball State from the top ten.
12) Oregon State (9-4, average stat rank – 36.1765). Note: Great sacks rank and tackles for loss (4th). Better-than-average offense with rankings in the mid-30s.
13) California (9-4, average stat rank – 36.5882). Note: Terrible passing offense (83rd), but defensive passing efficiency (6th) and turnover margin (7th) worked in their favor.
14) Florida State (9-4, average stat rank – 37.3529). Note: #1 in tackles for loss and 4th in sacks, offset by an 82 in passing offense and 86 in passing efficiency.
15) Georgia (10-3, average stat rank – 37.4706). Note: Pretty bland all around, but a good passing offense (16th) and punt returns (4th).
16) Arizona (8-5, average stat rank – 39.4118). Note: Needs some help with kickoff returns (105th), but other than that, most stats fell into the top 50.
17) Ohio State (10-3, average stat rank – 39.7647). Note: Conference champion aside, this team blew when it came to passing offense (105th) and kickoff returns (108th). Mayday, mayday!
18) Oregon (10-3, average stat rank – 40.4118). Note: Stellar offense led by rushing (2nd). Secondary may need some help with a 111 for pass defense. Top ten in sacks (8th) and tackles for loss (4th).
19) Cincinnati (11-3, average stat rank – 40.5294). Note: Net punting? Yes, they were the best. But a turnover margin of 93, and a rushing offense of 95 weighed down most of the better rankings like sacks (9th) and rushing defense (19th).
20) Alabama (12-2, average stat rank – 41.2353). Note: Saban did his job with the defense with a rushing defense of 2 and a total defense of 3. But that offense needs a spark, especially the passing (97th).
21) Rutgers (8-5, average stat rank – 42.2353). Note: A wholesomely bland showing, but a passing offense of 18 and scoring defense of 19 show promise.
22) South Florida (8-5, average stat rank – 43.1765). Note: Top 10 in rushing defense and total defense, but working on th turnover margin (97th) will help South Florida crack that top 15 for sure.
23) Iowa (9-4, average stat rank – 43.4706). Note: Mostly respectable defensive ranks only hurt by sacks (96th) and passing offense (90th).
24) Oklahoma State (9-4, average stat rank – 43.6471). Note: Their offense played like men (see what I did there?). Offensively a top ten team in all but passing offense (38th), but get that defensive coordinator a hot seat – 93rd in total defense, 109th in passing defense, and 107th in sacks. Goo.
25) Missouri (10-4, average stat rank – 43.7647). Note: Great offensive numbers aside from rushing offense (52nd), but being the 3rd worst team in passing defense and 98th in total defense didn’t do Missouri many favors.

Notable teams: Tulsa 29, Texas Tech 31, Northern Illinois 38, Kentucky 40, Tennessee 46, Notre Dame 48, Eastern Michigan 55, Central Michigan 56, Rice 79, Buffalo 86, Michigan 90, Louisville 96, Indiana 100, Syracuse 113, Washington 119

RV: Ahh, statistical analysis, my favorite. I have to say, this should be one of the more discussed posts in the offseason. While Troy being anywhere near this analysis is interesting, I feel that it makes sense if you try and break down why they would be up so high. Without looking at their roster or coaches, I’d say they had a ton of upperclassmen on both lines with coaches that have tons of experience. Now, this won’t be true with everything but it is something we can use as the basis of conversation in a slow offseason. We don’t mind distributing this list amongst friends, but please just ask. Edge put in a crapload of work and it’d be a shame for one of you heathens to steal it. And we fully expect you to try.

But seriously, I’m excited to sit down and see how the MAC teams all look in regards to their schedules and each other. Does anyone else agree that this is a great indicator of experience + coaching? I plan on using this analysis, along with The CFB Bible, to do a lot of preseason and in-season work. How else do you guys think we could use this?