Daily Archives: June 1, 2022

Bureaucratspeak

So, I have a question.

What the fuck is a single-division conference?  I mean, are they gonna sell naming rights to the division, or something?  Kinda like Dooley Field at Sanford Stadium?

Seriously, sometimes I wonder if these guys even realize how nonsensical the words coming out of their mouths sound.

21 Comments

Filed under SEC Football

A rising YPP lifts all boats.

Josh Hancher takes an extensive look at returning offensive production and how it impacts teams’ playoff chances.

First, here’s a handy summary of offensive YPP during the Smart era.

Let us give pause for a moment to reflect upon Jim Chaney’s offensive genius in 2018.  But I digress.

Josh then gives us a picture of what returning offensive production means for a team in the national championship hunt.

Both of those suggest that Georgia’s offense, especially considering the continuity at offensive coordinator and quarterback, is well situated for this season.  But that’s not the total picture to contemplate.  I take you back to something I posted last year when I explained why I would track conference net YPP all season.

As a general rule of thumb based on the last four seasons, you’d better create a net YPP of 2+ if you want a realistic shot at the CFP (the four-team version, that is).  And if you want to win, you’d better wind up north of 2.5.  It doesn’t matter how you get there — track Alabama’s numbers over those four years, for example — just that you do get there.

This is why I like net YPP best, when it comes to advanced stats.  It may not be perfect, but it’s relatively easy to understand and it’s a good judge of a team’s overall quality.

Realistically speaking, then, Georgia probably has to bump its offensive YPP up a full yard over the 2020 number to make the CFP field this season, assuming it can maintain its defensive excellence.  Is that doable?  Well, put it this way:  a 7.21 ypp would be the best in the program’s history.  That is the world Kirby Smart now coaches in.

Georgia, you might note from Josh’s first chart, didn’t improve its offensive YPP by a full yard last season.  It turned out, though, that the increase was more than adequate because defensive YPP improved.  The Dawgs finished last season with a net 2.83 YPP figure (6.98 o; 4.15 d), which certainly met the parameter I referenced.

So, if you assume, as most do, that Georgia’s defense will retreat somewhat from the level of last season’s production, how much does offensive YPP need to increase from last season’s amount to offset that and keep the net figure over 2.5?  Will Monken’s offense need to set a program best mark to accomplish that?  Hard to say, but it wouldn’t hurt.

**********************************************************************

UPDATE:

31 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Stats Geek!

Bye, bye, SEC divisions. You had a nice run.

Say you’re all in for the CFP without saying you’re all in for the CFP.

Very much.  All that’s left is the shouting… and this.

Again, I know that wiser heads keep insisting that the 9-game, 3+6 format is a lock, but I remain skeptical.  There’s a lot of power left in that “but bowl eligibility matters to us” part of the SEC.  And for those who believe a 1+7 format is a bridge too far for a conference that proudly wears tradition on its sleeve, as somebody pointed out on Twitter, that’s basically what the SEC is already doing with its basketball scheduling.  We shall see.

76 Comments

Filed under SEC Football

SEC win totals, 2022 edition

Clark Brooks filters the SEC schedules through Bill Connelly’s SP+ and ESPN’s FPI.  It’s a pretty interesting exercise.  Here’s how things look, presented in the order of Vegas’ over/under for win totals:

  • Georgia.  SP+ wins: 12.0, FPI wins: 11.6
  • Alabama.  SP+ wins: 12.0, FPI wins: 11.3
  • Texas A&M.  SP+ wins: 10.5, FPI wins: 7.5
  • Ole Miss.  SP+ wins: 10.0, FPI wins: 7.7
  • Tennessee.  SP+ wins: 10.0, FPI wins: 7.0
  • Kentucky.  SP+ wins: 8.0, FPI wins: 8.0
  • Mississippi State.  SP+ wins: 7.5, FPI wins: 6.4
  • Florida.  SP+ wins: 7.5, FPI wins: 7.1
  • Auburn.  SP+ wins: 7.0, FPI wins: 11.6
  • Arkansas.  SP+ wins: 6.0, FPI wins: 6.5
  • South Carolina.  SP+ wins: 5.0, FPI wins: 5.9
  • LSU.  SP+ wins: 3.0, FPI wins: 7.7
  • Missouri.  SP+ wins: 4.0, FPI wins: 5.6
  • Vanderbilt.  SP+ wins: 2.0, FPI wins: 3.0

And here’s how the conference’s strength of schedule stacks up, from toughest to easiest:

  1. Auburn
  2. Arkansas
  3. LSU
  4. Mississippi State
  5. Vanderbilt
  6. Texas A&M
  7. Florida
  8. South Carolina
  9. Kentucky
  10. Ole Miss
  11. Georgia
  12. Alabama
  13. Tennessee
  14. Missouri

Thoughts and observations:

  • Combine it all, and the number that really sticks out like a sore thumb is FPI’s win projection for Auburn, which is tied for tops in the league, despite the Tigers playing a much tougher schedule than Georgia or Alabama.  If Harsin wins 11 games this season, Auburn’s in the SECCG and the school will likely fashion another really stupid coaching contract as a result.
  • Boy, that SP+ win total for LSU.  The good news is there are a lot of one-score results there and Kelly’s a good enough coach to swing some of those games his way.
  • “This time last year, some folks figured the Gators owned the best offensive schemer in the conference, a future top 10 QB, and a defense full of athletes capable of propelling a consecutive trip to Atlanta.”  Yeah, and how did that work out for ’em?
  • If there’s a reason to think Arkansas won’t over perform, it’s the schedule difficulty.  But I thought that last year, too.
  • I don’t know how Missouri manages to keep scheduling one of the conference’s softest slates year after year, but they do.  Not that either SP+ or FPI seems much impressed by that.
  • Nothing like being the two best teams in the conference with two of its easier schedules, amirite?

By the way, I can’t resist bringing to your attention Erik Evans’ take on conference scheduling this season, which is nicely summed up in one sentence:  “Look, I’m not saying the SEC is desperately trying to schedule Florida, A&M, and Georgia into relevance…but I’m not not saying that either.”  Imagine suggesting that the SEC has to schedule the defending national champs into relevance!  The dude is into some serious tin foil hat territory.

21 Comments

Filed under SEC Football, Stats Geek!

The mating call of the control freak

Kids, Brian Kelly’s got some words of advice for you.  Pay attention.

Be careful what you wish for was LSU football coach Brian Kelly’s message when discussing the way college football is progressing in player compensation.

Speaking after the first day of SEC Spring Meetings at the Hilton Sandestin Beach Golf Resort & Spa, Kelly stressed how amateurism has become so distorted that it is moving toward professionalism.

“This has turned into a runaway train that has moved well past a student-athlete and is moving too fast toward a professional contract,” Kelly said. “I don’t think that’s what the intention was. So we’re going to need some guidelines here before this gets thrown into Congress.”

While that might seem like it could be a good thing for players, Kelly sees a shadow side to that option. If college football becomes a professional sport, that would mean other elements of professional sports that players might not like.

“I don’t think they want contracts,” Kelly said. “I don’t think they want to be traded. I’m sure they don’t want to be cut. I’m sure they’re not going to like getting a call at 3 p.m. in the afternoon saying, ‘Hey, I don’t know but we traded you today to St. Bonaventure. Oh they don’t have a football team.’”

Skip past the obvious retort that players are already being cut by college programs.  Brian Kelly thinks that anyone with a contract can be traded?  When’s the last time that happened to him?

The really great thing about this is that it’s out of the mouth of someone who’s not fully grasped he’s now operating in the den of vipers called the SEC.  How long do you think it’s gonna take one of his fellow coaches to weaponize this for the recruiting trail?  “Hey, did you hear that Brian Kelly wants to be able to trade his players?”

Idiotic.

Even Billy Napier’s figured out what to say in public.

10 Comments

Filed under It's Just Bidness, SEC Football

On the upswing

From Ari Wasserman’s mailbag ($$):

If you think of college football programs as stocks — not just for this year, but for the next 2-5 years — what programs are you buying and selling? — Mark C.

Georgia — Buy: Georgia is Apple. It is the best company in the world. It prints money and is going to be here for the long term.

Whew!

I’m not sure it’s really sunk in yet how much the perception of Kirby Smart’s program has elevated since the national title game.  If it ever does, though, I hope it doesn’t turn me into the Georgia blogging equivalent of Erik Evans.

13 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

Meanwhile, at the grownups table…

Hands down, the silliest thing to emerge from yesterday’s Spring Meetings session:

How first grade.  It’s like Sankey wanted to make sure Jimbo and Saban didn’t start pinching each other under the table.

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Filed under SEC Football

TFW you know the check has cleared

Mark Emmert:  sorry, not sorry.

4 Comments

Filed under The NCAA