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Monday, August 20, 2012

The Bad Coaching Index, Penalties

It is an old adage in football that well-coached teams avoid the unnecessary mistakes. Among the most obvious of those potential mistakes are penalties. But not all penalties are created equal. I focus here on what I call non-competitive penalties. These are penalties that either 1) do not occur during the play or 2) do not offer the offending team a competitive advantage/do not advance the play. Because the penalized team would (almost) always be better off avoiding these penalties, a well-coached team should commit few of them. 

The Bad Coaching Index (BCI) measures how poorly coached a team is by how often they commit these non-competitive penalties-the lower the score, the better coached the team is. Among the penalties used to create this index are false start/illegal procedure/illegal shift, delay of game, unsportsmanlike conduct, illegal participation/substitution/formation, sideline interference and ineligible receiver downfield. 

That New Mexico, Western Kentucky and Florida Atlantic find themselves at the bottom of the list for 2011 should surprise no one. That Grobe has Wake Forest near the top is, again, to be expected. The biggest surprise to me is Army at #48.

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