How to make a stat useless.

Matt Hinton briefly mentioned this on his Twitter feed yesterday (that’s all you can do on a Twitter feed, isn’t it?), but I thought I’d take a more detailed look at a fairly obscure stat, quarterback hurries.  More particularly, how quarterback hurries are calculated in the SEC.

For some context, here’s the list of 2010 sack totals, by team.

  • South Carolina, 41
  • Arkansas, 35
  • Auburn, 35
  • LSU, 34
  • Mississippi, 31
  • Alabama, 27
  • Tennessee, 26
  • Mississippi State, 26
  • Georgia, 24
  • Florida, 21
  • Vanderbilt, 20
  • Kentucky, 19

No huge surprises there, based on what I watched last year.  But check out the quarterback hurry numbers (you have to dig for these team by team at cfbstats.com):

  • Auburn, 99
  • Alabama, 52
  • Tennessee, 44
  • Mississippi State, 43
  • South Carolina, 43
  • Arkansas, 26
  • LSU, 24
  • Vanderbilt, 20
  • Kentucky, 19
  • Mississippi, 17
  • Florida, 13
  • Georgia, 8

No, that’s not a typo you’re reading there.  We’re supposed to conclude from those stats that Auburn hurried opposing quarterbacks at a rate twelve times greater than Georgia.  (This is Georgia we’re talking about, the defense that’s made the skill of not quite getting to the quarterback into an art form.)

I’m guessing from this that this particular stat is tracked by the schools as opposed to the conference.

In case you’re interested, it’s a similar, although less pronounced, story on the other side of the ball.  You’ll find the conference sacks allowed totals here.  Compare that to quarterback hurries allowed:

  • Florida, 18
  • Mississippi, 19
  • Mississippi State, 19
  • Georgia, 21
  • Kentucky, 23
  • LSU, 23
  • Alabama, 24
  • Arkansas, 26
  • Tennessee, 33
  • Vanderbilt, 33
  • Auburn, 50
  • South Carolina, 50

Anybody who wants to believe that Tennessee’s sieve of an offensive line gave up more sacks than allowed quarterback hurries last season… well, that beachfront property in Hahira I’ve been offering is still available.

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12 Comments

Filed under SEC Football, Stats Geek!

12 responses to “How to make a stat useless.

  1. UFTimmy

    Throw Florida into that mix. No way we only had that many hurrries against our O-line.

    Must be tracked by the school.

  2. Go Dawgs!

    While I understand why the concept of a “quarterback hurry” is important, I don’t buy subjective stats. Without question, if a quarterback is flushed from the pocket in less than two seconds and ends up throwing on the run, yeah, that’s a hurry. However, there are many, many situations where two people can look at the same play and one see a guy getting forced to throw early and the other guy will just see the QB seeing a good throw and taking it. Sacks and knockdowns are indisputable. Hurries? Eye of the beholder. And any compilation of that stat as a conference, where many different folks have been tabulating it? Unreliable.

  3. Senator,

    The QB hurry stat is unofficial, the official scorers get little (or no) guidance on what constitutes a QB hurry and what doesn’t. So it’s up the individual home team scorer’s discretion on crediting a QB hurry, so the number of QB hurries can vary wildly from team to team.

    Schools will sometimes go back after the game statistics have been posted and use the coaching staff’s numbers based on their review of game tape. I believe that’s why the number on the official Georgia website differ so much from those on cfbstats.com. As an additional clue that this occurred, look at how Georgia is credited with 129 QB hurries but Georgia’s opponents are only credited with 21.

    Marty
    cfbstats.com

  4. I look at the statistic links for the road games of Murray. Looks like it is where his freshman inexperience really showed. Not that I am blaming him alone for the losses but the fact is he won only one game on the road— sort of shaky knees when the wolves are running after you.

    • Biggus Rickus

      His two worst games were at neutral sites. In true road games he was fine.

      • Mayor of Dawgtown

        Uh…BR…please don’t say you think Jacksonville is a “neutral site.” Playing FLA in Jacksonville is about as neutral as playing Bama in Birmingham.

  5. Cojones

    Has anyone considered the individual team strenth of schedule in this subjective free-for-all?

  6. baltimore dawg

    i wonder if they counted all of auburn’s qb hurries, knockdowns, and side-swipes after the qb got rid of the ball, too.

  7. Cojones

    Nah! They said that he was blocked into him every time.