Friday, December 14, 2007

Defense 2007 – Another Look

For a Dawg, Senator Blutarsky of Get the Picture is surprisingly cognizant. I note this because, in my last piece about defenses and “national titles”, he points out that due to recent rule changes relating to the game clock and kickoff position, a more illustrative comparison rather than “raw” points might be comparing the teams to the overall Division I-A statistics for the particular season.

He was correct.

Going back to 2000, the eventual “national champion” was clearly a defensive leader in each of the year’s examined. The following was the results –

For this year, as one might suspect, scoring has increased notably in Division I. The average score this year is 27.00, or 1.5 per game more than the average this century. Last year’s clock rules saw an average of only 23.18 per game scored, so this year teams are scoring at a clip that is almost 4 more points per game.

In this context, Florida’s 2006 defense – while still outstanding – doesn’t look quite as good as some of the other championship teams at 9.7 ppg less than that year's D I-A average (likewise Oklahoma in 00’ and Texas in 05’). Miami’s 2001 team, on the other hand, looks outstanding.

Looking at this year’s MNC contenders going into the BCS title game using the same metrics, we have –

Ohio State – National Rank 1st, 10.7ppg, - 16.3 Difference

LSU (not adjusted for OT) – National Rank 20th, 19.6 ppg, -7.4 Difference

LSU (adjusted for OT) – National Rank 7th, 17.2 ppg, -9.8 Difference

Which leads to an obvious question – Is this LSU team’s defense good enough to win the “national” championship?

As I said before, the BCS title game might just be more interesting than it looks.


Scott said...

The wildcard here is how much injuries during the seasons affected LSU's defensive performance. If they can get some key guys back healthy they may well be able to outperform their season average.

Senator Blutarsky said...

"For a Dawg"? LOL...

Mergz said...

All in good fun my friend.

the other anonymous said...

I'm still not buying Ohio State's defensive numbers. As has been repeatedly pointed out, OSU's record (and defensive numbers) have come largely against weaker competition than LSU's.

Henry Gomez said...

OSU's defensive numbers look similar to the Buckeyes' numbers from last year while LSU's offensive numbers are better than Florida's last year. That doesn't bode too well for the sweater vest.

KG said...

LSU was decimated by injuries. Getting your best defensive lineman and your best secondary players both hobbled (knee and hamstring) not to mention losing your starting QB and top WR.

Ohio State could beat the LSU team that ended the regular season fairly easily. If LSU gets healthy then the Buckeyes will be hard pressed to defeat the LSU team that began the season.

Anonymous said...

LSU's defensive points allowed number is inflated by the multiple overtimes they played. Can you post an update with just regulation numbers?

Henry Gomez said...

LSU 2007 (in regulation)
Total Offense 439.5
Scoring Offense 36.4

Total Defense 274.2
Scoring Defense 16.7