Adjusting For Opponent: Take 'Noles' 6-1 Record With A Grain Of Salt

Get excited.  Friday will debut the F/+ ratings for 2010 and for the first time this year the the pre-season projection data has been removed.  Both components of the combined rating are already out:  FEI is one half of the F/+ ratings (S&P+ being the other).  Let's take a look at what these sets say about FSU.

In FEI, created by our friend Brian Fremeau, Florida State rates as the 44th-best team in the country. That probably puzzles many of you, as it did me, so let's take a look. The schedule is the obvious factor here.

The "system rewards playing well against good teams, win or lose, and punishes losing to poor teams more harshly than it rewards defeating poor teams. In the formula, the relevance factor is partly a function of the relative ratings of the two teams. The least relevant results receive about one-eighth as much weight as the most relevant results."

Florida State has faced the 35th-most difficult schedule to date. Last year it faced the 5th. FSU's schedule definitely gets tougher from here on out as 5 of FSU's 7 toughest games have yet to be played.

Here are the Game Efficiency scores (and significance), Per Brian, made specifically for TN.  Be sure to check out Brian's article, linked above.

FSU Game Efficiency Chart
Opponent GE Rk OFEI Rk DFEI Rk GFEI Rk Rel
at Oklahoma -0.54 659 0.381 286 0.314 408 0.008 341 Med
BYU 0.231 151 0.371 289 0.12 327 0.072 283 Med
Wake Forest 0.324 91 -0.554 588 -0.813 40 -0.091 425 Low
at Virginia 0.429 57 0.759 151 0.114 322 0.23 149 Low
at Miami 0.261 129 1.491 12 0.101 318 0.621 4 High
Boston College 0.055 277 0.403 275 0.448 454 -0.157 486 Med

 

Florida State checks in with the #28 offense in the country.

  • FSU has avoided a 3-&-out on 64% of its drives, good for 68th in the country
  • gained 49% of possible yards, good for 39th in the country
  • has had an explosive drive 15% of the time, good for 39th in the country
  • had 17% of its drives exceed 10 plays, good for 26th in the country and 
  • has faced the 32nd-best set of defenses in the country, to date.

That last factor is very important.  Oklahoma-18th best defense, BYU-66th best defense, Wake Forest-104th best defense, Virginia-86th best defense, Miami-9th best defense and Boston College-44th best defense.  Almost all of the teams FSU has faced have a defense that is a lot better than its offense.  Wake Forest is the exception.

Inside, I'll go into much more detail.

Here is a chart comparing FSU's defense to the other defenses FSU's offense has faced.  DFEI= defensive score, adjusted for opponent.  

-0.025 61 FSU -0.262 24 0.623 36 0.349 16 0.082 29 0.148 79 0.482 79
DFEI DFEI Rk Team DE DE Rk FD FD Rk AY AY Rk Ex Ex Rk Me Me Rk DSOS DSOS Rk
-0.399 18 OU -0.209 31 0.62 35 0.402 36 0.127 64 0.085 16 0.408 61
0.043 66 BYU 0.286 97 0.671 68 0.494 85 0.137 71 0.164 88 0.168 5
0.386 104 Wake 0.573 117 0.77 110 0.593 116 0.213 110 0.164 87 0.18 6
0.228 86 UVA 0.482 110 0.846 119 0.585 112 0.154 83 0.179 97 0.237 22
-0.492 9 UM -0.345 17 0.551 11 0.338 12 0.087 34 0.087 18 0.37 51
-0.157 44 BC -0.213 30 0.517 5 0.358 17 0.086 33 0.103 33 0.309 33
-0.235 33 NCST -0.179 39 0.61 29 0.361 19 0.104 46 0.065 4 0.32 37
-0.296 26 UNC -0.376 12 0.667 60 0.418 50 0.106 47 0.167 89 0.395 58
-0.412 17 Clem -0.301 20 0.609 28 0.373 25 0.125 62 0.109 42 0.246 25
-0.364 22 MD -0.19 37 0.712 88 0.494 86 0.102 44 0.203 108 0.462 72
-0.21 40 UF -0.25 25 0.662 59 0.389 33 0.099 42 0.085 15 0.299 31

As you can see, the meat of FSU's schedule is still very much coming up, but as you will see below, the defenses FSU's offense has faced are much, much more impressive than the offenses FSU's defense has faced. Elsewhere, Clemson and Florida get big bumps for having played very tough sets of defenses (#1 and #6, respectively).

On the flip side, FSU's defense checks in at 61st in the country. Yes, 61st. Some believe that FSU's defense is better than its offense, but that is where taking the opponent into account is so important.

  • FSU has forced 38% 3-&-outs, good for 36th in the country.
  • The Noles have allowed 35% of possible yards, good for 16th in the country.
  • FSU has allowed an explosive drive 8% of the time, 29th in the country.
  • Florida State has allowed a 10-play drive 15% of the time, 79th in the country.   (FSU is still learning to play this defense and will probably force more turnovers next year, preventing 10-play drives.  For now, the 'Noles keep everything in front.)
  • Those are impressive numbers but you have to consider that FSU has faced the 79th-best set of offenses in the country so far.

Oklahoma checks in with the 8th-best offense, BYU the 90th offense, Wake Forest the 74th, Virginia the 92nd, Miami the 55th (wow), and Boston College the 115th offense.  FSU's defense is clearly better than it was last year, but only playing one offense in the top 50 in the country, and getting horribly drubbed by that offense, hurts FSU.  5 of the 7 best offenses FSU's defense will play are yet to come.  Compared to what other teams have done to these offenses, FSU's defense has not stood out.  

Here is a chart comparing FSU's offense to the other offenses FSU's defense has faced.  

0.24 28 FSU 0.186 37 0.644 68 0.489 39 0.153 39 0.169 26 0.287 32
OFEI OFEI RK Team OE OrRk FD FD RK AY AY RK Ex EX RK Me Me RK OSOS Rk
494 8 Oklahoma 0.372 21 0.743 24 0.51 33 0.129 52 0.2 12 0.35 47
-0.245 90 BYU -0.429 107 0.662 57 0.381 83 0.027 119 0.122 73 0.231 17
-0.093 74 Wake Forest -0.072 65 0.524 115 0.361 98 0.095 76 0.159 36 0.353 50
-0.29 92 Virginia -0.473 109 0.643 69 0.369 92 0.119 60 0.167 28 0.537 90
0.059 55 Miami -0.272 90 0.656 62 0.399 75 0.141 44 0.156 42 0.374 54
-0.524 115 BC -0.705 119 0.452 120 0.259 116 0.048 107 0.065 112 0.46 72
0.223 32 NCST 0.028 54 0.753 19 0.497 35 0.117 62 0.104 87 0.355 52
0.445 13 UNC 0.172 39 0.656 61 0.449 57 0.156 38 0.188 15 0.15 3
0.194 34 Clemson -0.11 72 0.629 78 0.388 78 0.129 50 0.097 93 0.174 6
0.088 51 Maryland -0.194 80 0.614 86 0.368 93 0.175 31 0.035 118 0.245 21
0.207 33 Florida -0.037 61 0.701 44 0.445 59 0.045 112 0.224 6 0.132 1

Notice how the offenses of Clemson, UNC,  and Florida get big bumps for having played very tough sets of defenses (#1, #3, and #6, respectively).

Thanks to poor return teams overall (though improving), FSU doesn't place all that well in the field position ratings (though turnovers yielded and forced also play here and FSU has not lucked into many turnovers yet and has given away a few).  

How The Other Half Lives

Here is the other half of the F/+ rankings, the S&P+ system of Bill Connelly.  This set calls FSU the 19th best team so far, with the #22 offense and the #34 defense.  Apparently this set is more forgiving of the Oklahoma debacle, and it absolutely loves Miami's and BC's defenses (Miami's defense has torn up everyone except for Fisher's Noles).  I have included FSU and the other teams on the 'Noles schedule, in order.

Overall S&P+ RK TEAM OFF S&P+ RK DEF S&P+ RK
243.9 19 Florida State 116.5 22 108.5 34
252.9 11 Oklahoma 123.8 12 113.2 21
195.6 71 BYU 85 95 111.5 26
189 83 Wake Forest 95.8 70 94.2 75
205.6 59 Virginia 98.5 61 100.9 51
262 6 Miami-FL 109.5 38 134.7 2
206.6 56 Boston College 88.4 88 109.3 32
223.5 42 NC State 106.8 44 106.2 42
236 29 North Carolina 117.5 21 107.2 38
225.8 40 Clemson 106.6 45 107.8 36
197.8 67 Maryland 95 74 94.6 74
239 26 Florida 112.3 30 113 23

When the combined ratings debut Friday, FSU will likely be around #25.  While I certainly do not believe there are 25 better teams than Florida State right now, it's perfectly reasonable to say that FSU's body of work, accounting for opponent quality (or lack thereof) is around the 25th-best so far.  I think the designers of these two systems would agree that FSU is trending upward quite a bit.  If FSU can finish 9-3 or 10-2 against this final slate, it will move up considerably, as the data is quite flexible right now with most teams playing only 5-7 D1 games so far..  But for now, FSU is winning the games against bad teams that it should win.  There is still much to learn about this team in what is still very much a re-tooling year under first-year head coach Jimbo Fisher.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

Join Tomahawk Nation

You must be a member of Tomahawk Nation to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Tomahawk Nation. You should read them.

Join Tomahawk Nation

You must be a member of Tomahawk Nation to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Tomahawk Nation. You should read them.

Spinner

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9341_tracker