2014 College Football – A Datapoint!

I know nothing. And neither does the model. The first real results won’t come in until Week 4 (with Cincinnati not even starting yet), but with a week of football marked by the revelation that Ray Rice is well versed in stuff that his fans are all too familiar with, a chance to enjoy the football I didn’t sleep through seemed like a useful respite.  Now, how does the magic happen?  It involves spreadsheets but is largely fairly straightforward:

  • The RPI Scale is a SOS adjusted winning percentage.  This is 50% record (with a road bonus), 33% opponents record (in games not involving you), 17% opponents opponents record.  The team with the highest RPI gets 1.000 and the worst gets 0,
  • The DSR scale is more complicated.  This is a schedule adjusted DSR, the drive success rate on offense compared to the opponents DSR against everybody else. This is done for both offense and defense and then subtracted.  This means, for example – if a team was 5% more successful in drives than their opponents normally allow, and a team allows 2% fewer successful drives then their opponents usually get, that is a total DSR of (5% – (-2%) = 7%).  This also gets scaled to a 0 – 1.000 rank.
  • The final rank is the average of the two.
  • To simplify calculations, all FCS teams are treated as one.  The road bonus is based on season long home win/loss percentages.
  • Potential sources of inaccuracy
    • Drive calcs – I used drive stats on ESPN.com, and then other sites as needed.  I try to take out drives which don’t count (like kneel downs) although the application is inexact.
    • Asymmetric schedules.  A number of teams do not have enough SoS data for the strength of schedules to reveal much.  Indeed, teams who have played two FBS opponents have a huge edge.
  • In any case, teams who have played two legitimate opponents have an edge – the rankings below are exactly reflective of the first two weeks we have sat through (or neglected), no more no less.  As more information comes in, the results will show.
  • I’d have more intelligent to say – but it’s Week 2!  Virginia Tech was very impressive – but let’s be honest, we know nothing about whether Ohio State is any good.  I can say the same about BYU’s win over Texas, although that is enough to keep them at the top rather justly.

Weekly Power Rankings

Rank Team W L RPI Scale DSR Scale TotalRank
1 BYU 2 0 1 (1) 0.754 (4) 0.877
2 Georgia 1 0 0.695 (42) 1 (1) 0.848
3 Auburn 2 0 0.901 (5) 0.787 (3) 0.844
4 Oklahoma 2 0 0.996 (3) 0.619 (22) 0.807
5 Mississippi State 2 0 0.897 (9) 0.696 (8) 0.796
6 Tennessee 2 0 0.901 (5) 0.687 (10) 0.794
7 UCLA 2 0 0.901 (5) 0.686 (11) 0.794
8 NC State 2 0 0.901 (5) 0.647 (16) 0.774
9 Alabama 2 0 0.863 (10) 0.671 (14) 0.767
10 Florida 1 0 0.695 (42) 0.838 (2) 0.766
11 Notre Dame 2 0 0.961 (4) 0.55 (32) 0.756
12 Arizona 2 0 1 (1) 0.503 (45) 0.751
13 USC 2 0 0.863 (10) 0.636 (20) 0.749
14 Pittsburgh 2 0 0.746 (30) 0.74 (5) 0.743
15 LA-Monroe 2 0 0.863 (10) 0.619 (21) 0.741
16 Penn State 2 0 0.863 (10) 0.582 (28) 0.722
17 Louisville 2 0 0.75 (19) 0.693 (9) 0.722
18 Ole Miss 2 0 0.858 (14) 0.576 (29) 0.717
19 Texas A&M 2 0 0.849 (15) 0.549 (33) 0.699
20 LSU 2 0 0.75 (19) 0.615 (23) 0.682
21 Iowa 2 0 0.75 (19) 0.586 (27) 0.668
22 UTSA 1 1 0.691 (45) 0.638 (19) 0.664
23 Louisiana Tech 1 1 0.796 (18) 0.515 (42) 0.656
24 Virginia Tech 2 0 0.849 (15) 0.458 (61) 0.654
25 Illinois 2 0 0.849 (15) 0.441 (63) 0.645
26 Oregon 2 0 0.75 (19) 0.532 (37) 0.641
27 Baylor 2 0 0.609 (61) 0.673 (13) 0.641
28 Michigan 1 1 0.588 (72) 0.685 (12) 0.636
29 Northern Illinois 2 0 0.712 (34) 0.53 (38) 0.621
30 Minnesota 2 0 0.75 (19) 0.487 (49) 0.619
31 North Carolina 2 0 0.75 (19) 0.485 (53) 0.618
32 Missouri 2 0 0.75 (19) 0.482 (55) 0.616
33 Boise State 1 1 0.616 (58) 0.604 (25) 0.61
34 Kentucky 2 0 0.746 (30) 0.462 (59) 0.604
35 South Carolina 1 1 0.487 (94) 0.706 (7) 0.596
36 UAB 1 1 0.652 (46) 0.533 (36) 0.593
37 Army 1 0 0.695 (42) 0.485 (54) 0.59
38 New Mexico State 2 0 0.75 (19) 0.424 (69) 0.587
39 Texas State 1 0 0.599 (65) 0.574 (30) 0.586
40 Marshall 2 0 0.611 (59) 0.561 (31) 0.586
41 Ohio State 1 1 0.649 (47) 0.517 (41) 0.583
42 Boston College 1 1 0.451 (101) 0.715 (6) 0.583
43 Maryland 2 0 0.75 (19) 0.413 (73) 0.581
44 Central Michigan 2 0 0.746 (30) 0.403 (79) 0.574
45 Arkansas 1 1 0.643 (48) 0.505 (43) 0.574
46 Arkansas State 1 1 0.643 (48) 0.503 (44) 0.573
47 TCU 1 0 0.599 (65) 0.538 (35) 0.569
48 Memphis 1 1 0.643 (48) 0.486 (50) 0.565
49 Wyoming 2 0 0.75 (19) 0.379 (88) 0.565
50 Idaho 0 1 0.481 (95) 0.645 (18) 0.563
51 Florida State 2 0 0.75 (19) 0.37 (92) 0.56
52 West Virginia 1 1 0.469 (100) 0.646 (17) 0.558
53 Texas 1 1 0.582 (73) 0.528 (39) 0.555
54 Arizona State 2 0 0.609 (61) 0.496 (46) 0.552
55 California 2 0 0.712 (34) 0.386 (85) 0.549
56 Oregon State 2 0 0.712 (34) 0.382 (86) 0.547
57 Western Kentucky 1 1 0.592 (70) 0.496 (47) 0.544
58 Texas Tech 2 0 0.746 (30) 0.333 (103) 0.54
59 Georgia Southern 1 1 0.643 (48) 0.434 (64) 0.538
60 Indiana 1 0 0.599 (65) 0.477 (56) 0.538
61 Nevada 2 0 0.712 (34) 0.359 (98) 0.535
62 Miami-FL 1 1 0.544 (77) 0.525 (40) 0.535
63 Wisconsin 1 1 0.474 (98) 0.588 (26) 0.531
64 Rutgers 2 0 0.712 (34) 0.345 (101) 0.528
65 Clemson 1 1 0.506 (88) 0.546 (34) 0.526
66 Stanford 1 1 0.435 (105) 0.61 (24) 0.522
67 Utah 2 0 0.712 (34) 0.326 (106) 0.519
68 Old Dominion 1 1 0.643 (48) 0.393 (83) 0.518
69 Nebraska 2 0 0.712 (34) 0.32 (108) 0.516
70 San Diego State 1 1 0.544 (77) 0.486 (51) 0.515
71 Michigan State 1 1 0.544 (77) 0.485 (52) 0.515
72 Navy 1 1 0.591 (71) 0.432 (66) 0.512
73 San Jose State 1 1 0.643 (48) 0.375 (90) 0.509
74 MTSU 1 1 0.544 (77) 0.464 (58) 0.504
75 Kansas State 2 0 0.611 (59) 0.391 (84) 0.501
76 Washington 2 0 0.712 (34) 0.279 (115) 0.495
77 Colorado State 1 1 0.62 (57) 0.369 (94) 0.495
78 Georgia Tech 2 0 0.609 (61) 0.379 (89) 0.494
79 Duke 2 0 0.609 (61) 0.368 (95) 0.488
80 Air Force 1 1 0.544 (77) 0.41 (74) 0.477
81 Connecticut 1 1 0.538 (85) 0.415 (71) 0.476
82 Tulsa 1 1 0.547 (76) 0.405 (76) 0.476
83 Ball State 1 1 0.544 (77) 0.405 (77) 0.474
84 Northwestern 0 2 0.283 (116) 0.663 (15) 0.473
85 Virginia 1 1 0.538 (85) 0.406 (75) 0.472
86 Akron 1 1 0.54 (83) 0.401 (80) 0.471
87 UCF 0 1 0.481 (95) 0.459 (60) 0.47
88 East Carolina 1 1 0.506 (88) 0.42 (70) 0.463
89 Utah State 1 1 0.643 (48) 0.27 (116) 0.457
90 Rice 0 1 0.481 (95) 0.425 (68) 0.453
91 Ohio 1 1 0.556 (74) 0.346 (100) 0.451
92 Appalachian State 1 1 0.506 (88) 0.381 (87) 0.443
93 UTEP 1 1 0.554 (75) 0.33 (105) 0.442
94 Southern Miss 1 1 0.643 (48) 0.236 (121) 0.44
95 Buffalo 1 1 0.506 (88) 0.355 (99) 0.431
96 Kansas 1 0 0.599 (65) 0.261 (118) 0.43
97 South Alabama 1 0 0.412 (106) 0.444 (62) 0.428
98 Oklahoma State 1 1 0.474 (98) 0.37 (93) 0.422
99 UNLV 1 1 0.643 (48) 0.196 (125) 0.419
100 Eastern Michigan 1 1 0.506 (88) 0.332 (104) 0.419
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