Category Archives: Stats Geek!

It’s just a passer rating, dog.

Man, this may be the harshest thing Marc Weiszer has ever written about Matthew Stafford’s Georgia career:

Georgia’s Matthew Stafford in 2006 ranked 86th in the nation in passing efficiency with seven touchdowns and 13 interceptions. One spot behind him was Georgia Tech’s Reggie Ball.

Talk about your measure of greatness.


Filed under Georgia Football, Georgia Tech Football, Stats Geek!

A little more on the McIllece Sports data

I don’t know if you spent any time looking at the data from McIllece Sports I linked to yesterday, but if not, there’s something I wanted to follow up with.  The site calculates a power ranking for each program, based on the following:

Power, Offense, and Defense Ratings

These are the three primary ratings that measure the quality (or predicted quality) of a team, in terms of points scored and points allowed. They are all schedule-adjusted, meaning that the quality of opposition faced is factored into the calculations.

  • Offense = The points scored value of a team’s offense (high is good)
  • Defense = The points allowed value of a team’s defense (low is good)
  • Power = Offense – Defense. Conceptually, this is the expected margin of victory (or defeat, if negative) versus an average FBS opponent on a neutral field. An average FBS team has a power rating of zero.

Therefore, for a simple estimate of how many points Team1 would score against Team2, add the Offense rating of Team1 to the Defense rating of Team2. This would be equal to the expected Points Scored (PS) for Team1. Analogously, to estimate how many points Team2 would score in that same game against Team1, add Team2’s Offense to Team1’s Defense.

Based on that, here’s what the numbers for Georgia over the last ten seasons look like.

2006 12.8 17 4.2
2007 19.9 22.2 2.3
2008 14.5 24.3 9.8
2009 11.6 20.8 9.3
2010 14 20.7 6.7
2011 15.9 22.1 6.2
2012 24.8 27.8 3.1
2013 18.1 29.2 11.1
2014 29.7 32.5 2.7
2015 12.3 16.1 3.8

(If you want a little context for those numbers, consider that since 2010, besides Georgia, there have been a total of five seasons when SEC East teams had power ratings in the twenties:  Florida in 2012, Missouri in 2013, South Carolina in 2012-3 and Tennessee in 2015.)

Look at what Georgia’s numbers track.  You can see the fall of Willie Martinez from 2007-9 and the immediate improvement Grantham brought.  Then you can see what a disaster Grantham was in 2013 and how good Pruitt was as his replacement.

There’s also the Bobo to Schottenheimer transition, the less said about which, the better.  Also, Bobo detractors need to check out that 2013 offensive power number that came despite all the key injuries.

As for Richt, he deserves credit for taking a mediocre 2011 squad to the SECCG and deserves an equal amount of blame for failing to do the same with his best team over the decade in 2014.

All in all, it paints a pretty good numbers picture of what I subjectively feel about the last ten years of Richt’s work.  Given that, it’s probably worth noting that not much improvement is projected for Smart’s first season, with a 16.8 offensive value and a 4.1 defensive value netting a 12.7 power rating.  Kirby would seem to have his work cut out for him.  At least he’s got a friendly schedule.


Filed under Georgia Football, Stats Geek!

Free stuff in July

If you’re bored, click here for a little fun, if you’re into analytics.  It’s a link to a preseason analytics and predictions e-guide produced by McIllece Sports.  What’s McIllece Sports, you ask?  For the last two seasons, the site has finished second in the Stassen Poll, which tracks preseason college football predictions.

Anyway, it’s free and you’ve got nothing better to do than wade through it, right?

If you want to go straight to the punch line, head to page 118 for their preseason outlook on Georgia.  You’ll find it’s not particularly optimistic:  game by game, it works out to 8-4 overall and 4-4 in the conference, good for third in the East.  Losses are projected against Ole Miss, Tennessee, Florida and Auburn.  Note that the latter two are by the narrowest of probability margins, and that their overall odds actually favor a 9-3 record (which at this point feels right to me) slightly over 8-4.


Filed under Georgia Football, Stats Geek!

Catch the damned ball, Godwin.

Interesting post about SEC superlatives at Pro Football Focus based on analytics of conference players, with one Georgia player making the list:

Best hands: Terry Godwin, Georgia

Seven players in the SEC had a perfect drop rate last year, but none saw more targets than the 35 catchable passes thrown Godwin’s way in 2015. The Bulldogs will be hoping he can follow that up with another solid season in 2016.

A perfect drop rate?  Gotta admit I don’t remember Godwin being that accomplished last season.  But I bet Greyson Lambert does.


Filed under Georgia Football, Stats Geek!

Never could win the big one.

Bill Connelly updates his look at how coaches did in actual wins versus expected wins…

Last offseason, I tinkered with a measure called second-order wins. It is basically my version of the Pythagorean Wins concept, where you look at a certain component (usually points or runs scored and allowed) and determine what a team’s record probably should be as opposed to what it actually is. If you’re losing a ton of close games but winning a bunch of blowouts, that’s probably a sign that, on average, you would be faring better than you are.

My second-order wins concept looks at the single-game win expectancy figures you see in the 2015 Schedule & Results chart below. The idea behind win expectancy is simple: It takes the key stats from a given game (success rates, explosiveness, field position factors, and other factors that end up going into the S&P+ ratings), mashes them together, and says, “With these stats, you probably could have expected to win this game X percent of the time.” Add those figures up over the course of a season, and you get a glimpse of what a given team probably could have expected its record to be.

… and finds that Mark Richt finished right about in the middle, along with the likes of Steve Spurrier.  Surprised, or not?


Filed under Georgia Football, Stats Geek!

Sometimes, experience isn’t a compliment.

Check out Phil Steele’s ranking of experienced Conferences for 2016 based on the average rank of their teams in his Experience Chart:

1. ACC 46.2
2. Mountain West 55.1
3. CUSA 56.0
4. MAC 57.25
5. American 67.5
6. SEC 70.7
7. Pac 12 71.3
8. Big 12 73.2
9. Big 10 73.3
10. Sun Belt 73.8

The gap between the ACC and the rest of the P5 is eye-popping.  But not necessarily in a good way.

… The ACC had an average rank of 46.2 while the other four power five teams were in the 70’s. I took it a step further and did the group of five conferences. Their experience rankings were better by conference than the Power 5. I guess the reason for that is fewer players leave early for the draft so they have more seniors.

I suppose you can argue this both ways.  The loaded programs lose more players early because they’re loaded, which means they have to regroup, while programs with less highly rated talent keep their players together longer.  On the other hand, those loaded programs are more likely to have equally talented players who can step up and fill the openings, while the programs with more returning players are… well, still relying on players who weren’t seen as being as attractive to the NFL, talentwise.

It’s the old question:  would you rather play with Alabama’s level of experience or Vanderbilt’s?


Filed under College Football, Stats Geek!

As luck would have it

If regression to the mean comes into play this season with regard to turnover luck, it’s gonna be an even longer year for Boom than I already thought.


Filed under Stats Geek!