Sunday, November 23, 2008

Separating the Big 12 South Trio

Dr. Saturday in his post about the tangled and tied triangle of the Big 12 South points out the following –

All three teams are 10-1. They're all 1-1 against one another. This is not about Texas > Oklahoma on Oct. 11 because there's another two and half months' worth of information, much of it -- like Texas Tech > Texas on Nov. 1, and Oklahoma > Texas Tech on Saturday -- directly contradictory to that single afternoon in the Cotton Bowl. This is not a plea for Oklahoma. But whichever of the three you advocate to represent the South in the Big 12 Championship, it has to be based on all the information.

What we have here is the essence of a tie – three teams, all who have each beaten one of the others. Ties are broken in all sorts of ways in sports – from overtime to “shoot-outs” in individual games, to conference records and total points in the cases of teams with tied records. However, in the case of all tiebreakers it is important to note one element – while typically “fair” in application, what is trying to be decided – the outcome of an otherwise even contest – lends the decision to the narrowest of margins by its very nature. In doing so, one (or in this case more than one) of the participants is bound to be disappointed by an victory so narrowly missed.

At Dr. Saturday’s urging, and in breaking the tie for my BlogPoll, I’m going to base my tiebreaker on the “information” available. When you have three teams that are equal in record having played each other, let’s look at the primary stats that made up those games (stats are compilation of each team against the others)-


Points Scored: 100
Points Against: 66
Net Points: 34
Total Yards: 1060
Total Yards Against: 844
Net Yards: 216


Points Scored: 78
Points Against: 74
Net Points: 4
Total Yards: 812
Total Yards Against: 1014
Net Yards: -202

Texas Tech

Points Scored: 60
Points Against: 98
Net Points: -38
Total Yards: 985
Total Yards Against: 999
Net Yards: -14

Obviously Oklahoma is by far the most impressive here. Texas has the worst net yardage, but at least they have positive net points to the net negative of 38 points for Tech.

In considering the venues played, one was “neutral” (Texas-Oklahoma), one game took place at Oklahoma (OK-TT), and one at Texas Tech (TT-Texas). So only Texas didn’t truly have a home game, though some would argue the Red River Rivalry is exactly that.

Based on this evidence I find it pretty reasonable – even easy – to rank these three as –

Texas Tech

Now where they end up in my BlogPoll overall is a totally different issue.


Henry Louis Gomez said...

Or in simpler terms Texas won one by a little and lost one by a little.

Texas Tech won one by a little and lost one by a lot.

And Oklahoma won one by a lot and lost one by a little.

Anonymous said...

Who cares! Let's begin Florida State hate week!

peachy said...

Hate. Hate! HATE!!!

Ah, that felt good. (And, pending further results, I'd guess Oklahoma will slither out of the south - they appear to have done best in the round-robin at the top of the division, and to have faced the stiffest non-conference opposition. Curiously, though Oklahoma's SOS per Sagarin is very respectable, it's weakest of the three. But Okie State will probably take care of that.)

DolFan 316 said...

Slithering is an appropriate term, peachy! I still have lots of Sooner hate for the slimy, sleazy way they SLITHERED (there's that word again) into 2 underserved national ttle game appearances and now here they are getting the benefit of the doubt yet again despite not having proven they can beat a top 5 team outside of Norman. Hey, if road record can be such a big deal in selecting NCAA basketball tournament teams, why not here?

The Sooners are basically the Buckeyes of the west, great against conference foes at home and lousy against teams with a pulse anywhere else. And I'm sick and tired of that kind of team being rewarded with a title shot every single freaking year.

Trader Rick said...

My original prediction was Sooners vs. Gators in the Big Game, but now I'm scared. OK is too much like us. I hope OK State beats them.


Anonymous said...

OK would worry me more if they didn't choke in every Big Game outside of Norman.

Andrew said...

I think you're missing the intangibles here. TT beat UT on a last second pass after UT played four straight top 10 opponents. The game was in Lubbock and the two are in-state rivals. OU's drubbing of TT disqualifies TT. So we are stuck looking at the UT/OU matchup. Luckily, it's on a neutral field. UT won, so they should get the nod.