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Miscellany

College Football Top 25: Week Seven

I considered some helpful suggestions and tweaked the Top 25 poll. The three goals were to objectify the “quality win,” to weigh strength of schedule more heavily than margin of victory and to qualify losses. The reforms and the poll are after the jump.

Wins: A win is worth one point. Points may be added three ways. First the quality win. Using Football Outsiders’ FEI ratings,* teams earned a point for beating a top 30 team and half a point for beating a team ranked 30 to 60. Teams also earned +.25 for winning on the road and +.25 for an “emphatic win,” by 17 points. Winning by three scores most often means the game was not in doubt. This acknowledges that while not rewarding running up the score.

Auburn beat Arkansas (+1) who were rated in the top 30 (+1) by a margin greater than 17 (+.25). So that win was worth 2.25.

Losses: Losses were graded on a scale from -.5 to -1.5 using FEI ratings. Top 30 = -.5, 30-60 = -.75, 60-90 = -1, 90-120 = -1.25, FCS = -1.5. The penalty is reduced .25 if the defeat was on the road.

Arkansas lost to Auburn who were rated in the Top 30 (-.5) on the road (+.25). So Arkansas earned (-.25) for the loss to Auburn. This sounds insignificant, but Arkansas also missed out on an opportunity to earn points.

Tiebreakers: The first tiebreaker is win-loss record. The second is who had the better loss. The third is best win.

Objective: This should not be read as a measure of ability. View it as a team’s resume, an account of what a team has tangibly accomplished this season. If there is a disparity between where a team appears on this poll compared to the Coaches and AP polls (i.e. South Carolina), that may suggest the team is under or overrated. With the rest of the media swiveling wildly based on head to head matchups, I’m trying to retain some perspective.

* Ratings from 10/9 were used for this week.

Here are the calculations. The Duffy Top 25 is below.

1. Auburn (12.25)
2. LSU (10.5)
3. Boise State (9.75)
4. Alabama (9.75)
5. Oklahoma (9.5)
6. Michigan State (9.5)
7. TCU (9)
8. Oregon (8.75)
9. Utah (8.25)
10. Ohio State (8.25)
11. T. Boone Pickens U (8)
12. Wisconsin (7.5)
13. Missouri (7.25)
14. Florida State (7.25)
15. Nevada (6.75)
16. Arizona (6.5)
17. Stanford (6.5)
18. USC (6.5)
19. Iowa (5.75)
20. Virginia Tech (5.75)
21. Texas (5.5)
22. North Carolina (5.5)
23. West Virginia (5.25)
24. Nebraska (5.25)
25. Mississippi State (5.25)

Last Five Out: Michigan (5), East Carolina (5), Northwestern (4.75), Miami (4.75) North Carolina St. (4.75)

[Photo via Getty]

 

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