FanPost

ACC Offensive Line Game 1 Starters- A Statistical Breakdown

After the year the FSU offensive line had, I wondered how the other ACC teams faired when it came to starters and games played. I know subjectively we all felt the line was in flux but statistically what were the odds of this line falling apart like it did.

In order to find out I decided to take each ACC teams Game 1 starters and find out how many times they started the rest of the season. I approached it this way for the following reasons:

  • 1. If an offensive lineman started Game 1, odds are he was viewed as one of the 5 best lineman available to the coaches
  • 2. An offensive lineman plays most of the game and only comes out in the case of a substantial injury, I focused on starts to show if a player could play game in and game out they were producing better then the backups available
  • 3. I broke down every starter individually and then I broke down each team as a whole.

In order to find what I was looking for I listed the number of starts from each offensive lineman, who started Game 1, and found the mean and standard deviation for all of these starters with in the ACC.

Name

Year

Games Started

Dev. About the mean

x-mean^2

Andrew Datko T

Sr.

4

(6.82)

46.47

David Spurlock OL

Sr.

5

(5.82)

33.83

FSU

Bryan Stork G

So.

10

(0.82)

0.67

Zebrie Sanders T

Sr.

12

1.18

1.40

Jacob Fahrenkrug OG

Jr.

12

1.18

1.40

Dalton Freeman, C

Jr

12

1.18

1.40

Antonie McClain

Sr

12

1.18

1.40

Clemson

Brandon Thomas

So

8

(2.82)

7.93

Landon Walker

Sr

12

1.18

1.40

Phillip Price

Sr

11

0.18

0.03

Dennis Godfrey

Sr

9

(1.82)

3.30

Joe Looney

Sr

12

1.18

1.40

Wake

Garrick Williams

Jr

11

0.18

0.03

Michael Hoag

Sr

12

1.18

1.40

Doug Weaver

Sr

12

1.18

1.40

Max Garcia

So

12

1.18

1.40

R.J. Dill

Jr

12

1.18

1.40

Maryland

Andrew Gonnella

Sr

5

(5.82)

33.83

Bennett Fulper

Jr

10

(0.82)

0.67

John Cary

So

9

(1.82)

3.30

R.J Mattes

Jr

10

(0.82)

0.67

Duran Christophe

So

11

0.18

0.03

NC St

Camden Wentz

Jr

12

1.18

1.40

Zach Allen

Jr

12

1.18

1.40

Mikel Overgaard

Sr

12

1.18

1.40

John Wetzel

Jr

12

1.18

1.40

Spinney

Sr

10

(0.82)

0.67

Gallik

Fr

3

(7.82)

61.10

BC

White

So

12

1.18

1.40

Cleary

Jr

12

1.18

1.40

B. DeChristopher

Sr

12

1.18

1.40

Jaymes Brooks

Sr

12

1.18

1.40

VT

Andrew Miller

So

12

1.18

1.40

Greg Nosal

Sr

12

1.18

1.40

Andrew Lanier

Sr

12

1.18

1.40

Oday Aboushi

Jr

12

1.18

1.40

Morgan Moses

So

12

1.18

1.40

UVA

Anthony Mihota

Sr

12

1.18

1.40

Austin Prasztor

Sr

12

1.18

1.40

Luke Bowanko

So

12

1.18

1.40

Ray Beno

So

12

1.18

1.40

Will Jackson

So

12

1.18

1.40

GT

Jay Finch

So

12

1.18

1.40

Omoregie Uzzi

Jr

12

1.18

1.40

Tyler Kidnet

So

5

(5.82)

33.83

Brandon Washington

Jr

12

1.18

1.40

Karland Gunn

Sr

12

1.18

1.40

Miami

Tyler Horn

Sr

12

1.18

1.40

Brandon Linder

So

12

1.18

1.40

Jon Feliciano

Fr

8

(2.82)

7.93

James Hurst

So

12

1.18

1.40

Brennan Williams

Jr

12

1.18

1.40

UNC

Jonathan Cooper

Jr

12

1.18

1.40

Travis Bond

Jr

12

1.18

1.40

Cam Holland

Sr

10

(0.82)

0.67

Kyle Hill

Sr

11

0.18

0.03

John Coleman

So

10

(0.82)

0.67

Duke

Dave Harding

So

9

(1.82)

3.30

Laken Tomlinson

Fr

12

1.18

1.40

Perry Simmons

So

12

1.18

1.40

649

1.42109E-14

294.9833

Sum

649

Count (n)

60

Average (mean)

10.81667

variance (s^2)

4.999718

Std. Dev (s)

2.236005

Median

12

Mode

12

From that I found the statistical breakdown of an ACC offensive lineman who started week one.

99.73%

95.45%

68.27%

68.27%

95.45%

99.73%

(3SD)

(2SD)

(1SD)

Mean Games Started

1SD

2SD

3SD

4.11

6.344657

8.580662

10.81667

13.05267148

15.28867629

Basically, on average, an ACC offensive lineman who started Game 1 started 10.8 games in the 12 game regular season. There was a 68.27% chance they started between 8.58 games and to round it out all 12 games. A 2.275% that an offensive line started less than 6 games after starting Game 1 and a less than 0.135% chance an offensive lineman who started Game 1 started less than 4 games.

Name

Year

Games Started

Dev. About the mean

x-mean^2

Andrew Datko T

Sr.

4

(6.82)

46.47

David Spurlock OL

Sr.

5

(5.82)

33.83

Bryan Stork G

So.

10

(0.82)

0.67

Zebrie Sanders T

Sr.

12

1.18

1.40

Jacob Fahrenkrug OG

Jr.

12

1.18

1.40

So let's take a look at the FSU lineman and see what happened. Two of our five offensive linemen lie outside of two standard deviations of the mean starts. Statistically that is actually pretty absurd and can be considered a large part of the offensive line issues that were faced in 2011. Offensive lines are lucky to run 7-8 deep with quality so losing two starters who are asked to play the whole season is a killer. It was a double killer due to the lack of quality veteran depth behind the starting five that Bud warned us about all preseason.

Poor play can be attributed to the rest of the line as they played at or above the statistical mean of games started. On an individual basis you can see that in the ACC only Maryland and BC had a Game 1 starter who was below two standard deviations, combined tying FSU.

Now looking at the ACC teams as a whole we find FSU was setting records in probability.

Name

Games of Starters

Dev from mean

x-mean^2

VT

60

6.5

42.25

UNC

58

4.5

20.25

NC St

57

3.5

12.25

Wake

56

2.5

6.25

Miami

56

2.5

6.25

Clemson

55

1.5

2.25

Duke

54

0.5

0.25

UVA

53

-0.5

0.25

GT

53

-0.5

0.25

BC

49

-4.5

20.25

Maryland

48

-5.5

30.25

FSU

43

-10.5

110.25

Sum

642

0

251

Count (n)

12

Average (mean)

53.5

variance (s^2)

22.81818

Std. Dev (s)

4.776838

95.45%

68.27%

68.27%

95.45%

(2SD)

(1SD)

Mean

1SD

2SD

43.94632389

48.72316

53.5

58.27684

63.05368

That is right, there was 2.275% chance that an ACC offensive line unit would start below 44 games started if they started Game 1. Now these statistics cannot measure quality of the players that were playing but it is of note that the three teams that had arguably the worst line play the in conference also faced more missed games by Game 1 starters. Another note of interest is Virginia Tech was very lucky as they put the same starting five offensive linemen out for every regular season game with four of those five starters being seniors. I would look for that offensive line unit to take a good step back next year.

I have always heard consistency and chemistry make as much of a difference as the individual talent of the lineman on the field. Now it is hard to discern the impact skill talent has on the offensive out from the offensive line, but looking at the final OFEI rankings from http://footballoutsiders.com/stats/feioff2011 one can compare final ranking versus offensive line consistency. Basically if an offensive line unit played at or above the ACC mean of Game 1 Starters making starts then offensive line unit is either not that talented or not the problem.

Name

OFEI

Miami

3

GT

16

Clemson

22

VT

35

Wake

36

Duke

40

UNC

46

Virginia

51

FSU

54

NC State

58

Maryland

75

BC

95

Comparing a few teams stand out as under achieving and over achieving. First, FSU who finished 51st in the OFEI, could actually be considered overachievers given the line issues. The talent and the coaches helped to cover for the train wreck that the line was and produced at a sadly acceptable level. NC State really under achieved, 57 out of 60 starts from the Week 1 starters and they finish behind FSU in the OFEI. This leads me to believe that coaching/talent would be the issue they are facing. FSU,BC, and Maryland really had offensive line troubles throughout the season and it can be seen in their final rankings of OFEI.

After reviewing the data a few things can be taken.

  • 1. FSU faced lost starters due to injury or play level that no other team faced in the ACC and I would venture a guess in the NCAA
  • 2. The offense still produced at about as high of a level as one could hope with the instability at the line.
  • 3. Having a relatively healthy and consistent offensive line in 2012 should do a great deal to improve the effectiveness of the unit
  • 4. It is unlikely that FSU will have their Game 1 starters only start 68% of the total starts due to injury and ability in 2012, if they even come close Rick Trickett will be out of a job.
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