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Tuesday, January 15, 2008

In the End - Final Rankings for 2007

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Now that the season is over, it's time to hand out the Matrix Awards for this seasons best performers.

Most Efficient Pass Offense.

Florida

It was a good season for Florida's Tim Tebow. Not only did he win the Heisman and expand his cult following, but he also managed the nation's most efficient pass offense according to the Matrix. And the nation's least efficient pass offense? Notre Dame.

Most Efficient Run Offense.

Arkansas

The only real competition for Tebow in the Heisman race was also responsible for heading the nation's most efficient run offense. But then, just as Florida was outperformed in their bowl game, Missouri's Tony Temple put on a little show for McFadden in the Cotton Bowl.

Most Efficient Offense.

1. Florida
2. Navy
3. Oklahoma

Tim Tebow is not only the best player in college football, he might also be the best offense. Navy was only a few athletes on defense short of being a real non-BCS power.
Most Efficient Pass D.

Ohio State

That most recent game notwithstanding, the Buckeye's D put up some ridiculous numbers this season.

Most Efficient Run D.

Oregon State

At one time this season, Oregon State had a Run D score over 3, which meant they gave up 3 yards less per carry than the average D1A team, opponent adjusted.

Most Efficient D

1. Ohio State
2. USC
3. LSU

I don't think this is a coincidence - defensive efficiency correlates much better with final rankings than offensive efficiency.
Consistency (minimum 5 wins).

1. Kansas
2. BYU
3. Hawaii

I have added the 5 win stipulation because so many of the consistent teams are consistently horrible. If we look at the consistent teams that have had good seasons, something sticks out - to be successful with inferior talent you must be consistent.

Toughest Schedule.

1. UCLA
2. Washington
3. Oregon

And I don't think UCLA had the toughest schedule just because the played MWC powers BYU and Utah a combined 3 times. No, the Matrix is quite clear on the fact that the PAC-10, top to bottom, was probably the toughest conference in the country this year. To their credit, the PAC-10 was also good at scheduling non-conference non-cupcakes (including Ohio State, Michigan, Tennessee, BYU(x2), Boise State, Hawaii, etc.). The weakest conference this season, according to the Matrix, is the Big 10.

Most Potential.

1. USC
2. West Virginia
3. LSU

Theoretically, the potential rating is the result we would come up with if the college football season was a giant round robin in which every team played every other team. For all of us that think that USC has had too much recent success, let us rejoice that the season isn't 120 weeks long.

Best Elo Win/Loss.

1. LSU
2. Kansas
3. Missouri

This would be the closest I come to a BCS-equivalent ranking. It only considers wins and losses which, of course, benefits an LSU team that made a habit of winning on the last play.

Best Performance.

1. West Virginia
2. LSU
3. Missouri

This rating ignores the win/loss column and only considers the point margin. West Virginia won big and lost by little.

Overall Best, non-BCS.

1. BYU
2. Hawaii
3. Utah
4. UCF
5. Troy

It is astounding to me that Utah and Idaho consistently produce quality football teams.

Final Rankings, All Teams.

1. LSU
2. Missouri
3. USC
4. Kansas
5. West Virginia
6. Georgia
7. Oklahoma
8. Ohio State
9. Florida
10.Virginia Tech

At season's end, Les Miles and the Tigers earned their title. Georgia isn't getting any love from the Matrix (which, for ranking purposes, does not give more importance to recent games). Florida breaks the top 10 with 4 losses and the Big 12 has 3 teams in the top 7.