Regular readers here know I’m a fan of Matt Melton’s SDPI metric, which he summarizes as follows: “The basic idea is to look at how far above or below average (by standard deviations) a specific team is relative to their conference brethren.”
His analysis of the ACC’s SDPI for last season is posted, and as usual it’s a fun read. A few highlights:
- Jacory Harris, league MVP. That’s not meant as a compliment. Miami on paper was the best team in the ACC in 2010. On the field, not so much. And the reason was turnover margin: the Hurricanes managed the neat trick of tying for the conference lead in turnovers lost and gained, for a net +1. Division champ Virginia Tech finished +17. The good news for Al Golden is that if he can stop the bleeding, his team has a decent chance to move on up.
- Who knew? “Clemson has ranked either first or second in the ACC in defense each of the past five seasons.” So much for the axiom that defense wins championships.
- How ’bout that Al Groh? In regressing from 7-1 in conference play to 4-4, Georgia Tech’s defense slid from fourth in the ACC in 2009 to ninth last season. (Tech’s offense, believe it or not, improved from fourth to third.)
- Epitaph for mediocrity. This is as good a summary of the 2010 ACC football season as you’ll find: “For the first time since 2000, the ACC champion managed to navigate through the conference season without a loss. However, unfortunately for the reputation of the league, its champion also lost a non-conference game to James Madison.”