The Pi-Rate Ratings

August 17, 2021

American Athletic Conference Preview

Today, we preview the strongest of the Group of 5 conferences.  In a couple of years, we might be referring to the American Athletic Conference as the top of the “Tier 2” leagues.  It would not be surprising to see some of the Big 12 teams and some of the AAC teams merging into one league.

Until then, the AAC remains the conference where the top team is usually the leading contender for the guaranteed Group of 5 team in a New Year’s Six bowl.  Last year, Cincinnati ran the table in the abbreviated season and then beat Tulsa in an exciting game to move to 9-0 and earn the New Year’s Six bowl bid against Georgia in the Peach Bowl.  Playing basically a road game against the in-state school, the Bearcats had a chance to win the game and fell just short.

Bearcats coach Luke Fickell welcomes back a roster that has a little rebuilding to do, but the talent-level should be a little stronger thanks to some excellent recruiting classes bringing underclassmen to the roster.

UC has back-to-back games at Indiana and Notre Dame after beginning the year with winnable home games.  If the Bearcats can pick off the Hoosiers and Fighting Irish, they could find themselves in the same position as last year–in the hunt for a Playoff bid but probably looking at a #6 or #7 final rating and a repeat trip to a New Year’s Six bowl.

The Bearcats cannot be counted out this year against the big dogs on their schedule.  A defense that gave up 16.8 points and 325 yards per game last year, could be a little better in 2021.  The secondary coverage should be one of the five best in the nation, led by the top cover corner in the nation in Ahmad Gardner.

The only question for this year’s UC team is the offensive line, which must be rebuilt with more underclassmen than upperclassmen.  In a season where other teams might field 23-year old seniors, this could come to haunt the Bearcats.

Central Florida undergoes a big change as Josh Heupel and his up-tempo, high-powered spread offense have moved to Tennessee, while former Auburn coach Gus Malzahn brings his different style of spread offense to Orlando.  The former offense was driving on the interstate in open country, while the new offense will be like the old blue highway with winding roads and hilly terrain.  It won’t be as flashy, but the Knights could benefit by playing defense a lot less than they did in recent years.  This is going to benefit UCF’s young defense that must break in eight new starters, including four excellent defensive backs.

The UCF offense can become the team’s best defense if they can sustain long drives.  In Heupel’s time in Orlando, UCF had no trouble moving the ball, but they scored so quickly, the defense fatigued.  In the Knights’ three losses last year, second half defense was the reason they lost those games by eight to Tulsa, one to Memphis, and three to Cincinnati.

This is year three for Dana Holgorsen, and he’s 7-13 in two years at the helm.  This is a school that made it public that 8-4 records were grounds for divorce with its head coach, so Holgorsen better hope he can turn things around this year, or he might receive a lump sum alimony check with orders to vacate the premises.

An Air Raid style offense that struggles to pass the ball is an anomaly.  Houston also had a problem holding onto the ball in 2020, and the defense was overly tasked due to a lot of short offensive drives that turned the ball over via fumble, interception, or punt.  

What hurt the Cougars most last year was never knowing if they were going to play from week to week.  They were like understudies when the star had a cold.  They prepared all week and then found out on Friday that their game was cancelled.  It happened eight times!

Quarterback Clayton Tune has the potential to run the Air Raid.  Houston needs to have an extra receiver step up to complement Jeremy Singleton and Nathaniel Dell.  

Defensively, we expect the UH stop troops to show considerable progress this year, especially if the Cougars cut down on the turnovers.  They gave up slightly less than 400 yards per game and 32 points per game in 2020. With most of the top players returning, those numbers could drop to 350-370 yards and 25-28 points per game.  And, what might that bring UH?  Maybe an 8-4 record, and we know what that did to former coaches Major Applewhite and Tony Levine.

Tulsa was the big surprise of the AAC last year.  After multiple years languishing near or at the bottom of the standings, the Golden Hurricane discovered how to play defense.  TU surrendered 21.6 points and 333 yards per game, holding Oklahoma State to 16, Navy to 6, undefeated league champion Cincinnati to 27, and Mississippi State to 28 in the Armed Forces Bowl.

That defense returns 10 starters, so opponents are going to be in for a fight trying to score points on the Hurricane in 2021.  If the offense can live up to expectations, then TU might repeat with another trip to the AAC Championship Game.  Quarterback Davis Brin came off the bench as the backup last year against Tulane and led TU on three consecutive touchdown drives, and then led his team to an overtime victory.  If he can play an entire season like he did in that quarter and a half, Tulsa might be playing at Cincinnati in November with first place on the line.

Tulane has slowly improved year by year during coach Willie Fritz’s tenure in the Crescent City.  Now entering year six, Fritz has a minor defensive rebuild to perform, but the offense should remain potent after averaging 35 points per game and leading the league in rushing.  This is a team that may be a year away from contending for a spot in the conference championship game, and we expect the Green Wave to remain a .500 team this year.

East Carolina coach Mike Houston was the Nick Saban of FCS football during his tenure at James Madison.  Prior to that, he did the inevitable and won at The Citadel.  After a 4-8 record in year one at ECU, his 2020 shortened season record of 3-6 included consecutive wins over Temple and SMU to finish the 2020 season.  This just might be the year the Pirates cross the .500 threshold and return to a bowl for the first time since 2014.  10 starters return to both sides of the ball.  Houston’s short passing game is almost an aerial version of Woody Hayes’ three yards and a cloud of dust.  By spreading the field and throwing quick passes for 3 to 7 yards with an occasional run after catch of another 10-15 yards, it can be difficult to bend and not break for any defense.

The key will be the defense.  If the more experienced stop side can shave a touchdown off its 2020 average, that might be enough for the Pirates to break even in the league.  The problem is that ECU plays Appalachian State, South Carolina, and Marshall out of conference.

SMU enjoyed a 7-3 season that ended with a Frisco Bowl bid that never came to fruition due to Covid.  With nine starters returning to the attack side, one would think that the Mustangs are poised to top their 39 points per game average.  But, the biggest reason why this team moved the ball with relative ease last year is one of the two not returning.  Former Oklahoma backup Tanner Mordecai might be a talented passer, but he isn’t going to match what Shane Buechele did in Dallas.  With an expected drop in offense, and a defense that at best will be as good as 2020, expect the Mustangs to take a step backward this year, but they could still earn a bowl bid.

Since Justin Fuente won 19 games his last two years at Memphis and then took the Virginia Tech job, pundits have predicted the downfall of the Tigers’ fortunes.  Mike Norvell replaced Fuente and guided the Tigers to a Cotton Bowl berth before he took the Florida State job two years ago.  Ryan Silverfield took over last year, and during Covid, UM’s best offensive players opted out.  Memphis still managed to put together an 8-3 record that included a bowl win over Florida Atlantic.

Now, the Tigers face an issue at quarterback as former QB Brady White gambled on the NFL Draft, went undrafted, signed a free agent contract with the Tennessee Titans, and did not make it to the preseason.  Two transfers from Power 5 schools expect to vie for the starting QB job this year.  Former Arizona Wildcat Grant Gunnell and former LSU Tiger Peter Parrish are competing for the job, and we expect Gunnell to be under center when Memphis runs its first play of the 2021 season.  Considering that he had very little help at Arizona, as the Wildcats struggled to compete in the Pac-12, Gunnell looked decent enough to believe he can guide Memphis to a possible break-even or slightly winning record.

South Florida hired former Clemson offensive coordinator Jeff Scott to try to return the Bulls’ program to where it was in the prior decade.  Unfortunately, Scott couldn’t bring any of Clemson’s All-Americans to Tampa.  After going 1-8 with the lone win coming against FCS The Citadel, there is nowhere to go but up for the Bulls this year.  The offense has a chance to be improved this year, but there’s one small problem.  Scott still does not know who will be his starting quarterback as August practices have been underway for a week.  The defense is missing several key parts from a unit that was downright weak in 2020.  Against FBS competition, USF gave up 44.1 points and more than 450 yards per game.  

USF has a difficult schedule this year with games out of conference against North Carolina State, Florida, and BYU.  Winning three games would be considered a major advancement this year.

Navy was one of the most disappointing teams last year, but Coach Ken Niumtalolo failed to get the Midshipmen ready to play to start the season due to Covid concerns.  After an opening game pasting at the hands of BYU, Navy rebounded to get to 3-2, but then they dropped their final five games, scoring just 13 points in the last three.

The 2021 picture is anything but rosy for Navy.  The offense suffered severe losses, as players that would normally come back for an extra year at other schools are starting their military commitment.  When a triple option team has to break in a new quarterback, two new slotbacks, and three new offensive linemen, it is expected that the offense will suffer a drop in production.  Navy only scored 16.6 points per game and rushed for just 178 yards per game, an all-time low in Niumatololo’s 13 years.  Now, Navy embarks on a 2021 season with its toughest schedule in many years.  Marshall, Air Force, Notre Dame, and Army represent one of the toughest out of conference slates in all of FBS football, as all four should earn bowls this year.  This looks like a rough year in Annapolis.

After several really good years under Al Golden, Steve Addazio, Matt Rhule, and Geoff Collins, Temple looked like they pulled off a minor coup when they hired former Northern Illinois head coach Rod Carey to keep the good times rolling in Philly.  After an 8-5 season in 2019, Temple looked more like the 2003 and 2004 program that was kicked out of the old Big East Conference last year.  A 1-6 season almost became an 0-7 season, but the Owls benefitted from USF mistakes to pull out a 2-point win.

One would think that the program couldn’t be worse than last year, but the Owls have major rebuilding projects on both sides of the ball this year.

On the positive side, if you can call it that, Temple was one of the most affected teams by Covid last year.  They almost didn’t play at all and only played their first game in Mid-October, losing narrowly to a Navy team playing its fourth game of the season.  2021 should be another tough one at Lincoln Financial Field.

Here is how the American Athletic media voted at the preseason conference meetings.

2021 American Athletic Conference Preseason Media Poll

Team (First-Place Votes)Points
1.Cincinnati (22)262
2.UCF (2)241
3.SMU188
4.Houston181
5.Memphis168
6.Tulsa153
7.Tulane132
8.East Carolina85
Navy85
10.Temple46
11.South Florida43

The PiRate Ratings are not that different.

American Athletic Conference

Team

PiRate

Mean

Bias

Average
Cincinnati116.3115.3118.0116.5
UCF102.5101.2104.8102.8
Houston101.199.5101.6100.7
Tulsa100.2100.399.7100.1
Tulane98.897.5100.699.0
East Carolina95.394.396.295.3
SMU94.395.495.495.0
Memphis92.492.894.393.2
USF91.089.790.690.4
Navy90.890.090.390.3
Temple80.682.481.981.6

AAC Averages

96.7

96.2

97.6

96.8

The PiRate Ratings are not designed to predict won-loss records for a season, as they have a use by date of the next week’s games.  Nevertheless, we issue predictions just for the fun of it.

American AthleticConf.Overall
Cincinnati8-012-1*
Central Florida6-29-4
Houston6-210-2
Tulsa6-28-4
Memphis5-38-4
Tulane4-46-6
East Carolina4-45-7
SMU3-56-6
Navy1-72-10
South Florida1-72-10
Temple0-82-10
* Cincinnati picked to win AAC Championship Game

October 14, 2020

Saturday’s College Football TV Schedule

This weekly addition to the PiRate Ratings is supposed to be the easiest edition we put out, but not this year. The TV schedule has already changed twice today after changing on Monday when Baylor postponed their game with Oklahoma St. With the cancellation of Vanderbilt and Missouri, one switch was made. Then, when it became official that Florida and LSU were moving to December 12, another change was made.

So, this is the TV schedule as of Wednesday evening, Eastern Time. We suggest you look at this feature again later in the week if other games are postponed. If the schedule changes, we will do our best to update it all the way until Saturday morning.

Time ETNetworkHomeVisitorsEntertainment Value
12:00 PMABCGeorgia TechClemsonTech turnovers could make this super blowout
12:00 PMESPNSouth CarolinaAuburnShould be rather close game–loser’s coach on hot seat
12:00 PMESPN2E. CarolinaNavyReplaces Tulsa-Cinti.
12:00 PMFOXWest VirginiaKansasProbably a dud game
12:00 PMSECNTennesseeKentuckyVols own Cats in this series, but an even matchup
12:00 PMFSNSyracuseLibertyFlames could win this one and maybe by a lot
12:00 PMESPNUSouth AlabamaTexas St.Only if you are a fan of one of the teams
12:00 PMACCNMiami (Fla.)PittsburghBoth teams coming off emotional losses
1:30 PMCBSSNUTSAArmyGame should be over quickly–maybe 120 plays
2:30 PMNBCNotre DameLouisvilleIrish need to win big to let Clemson know they are there
3:30 PMABCMemphisCentral FloridaCould it be a 90 to 100-point total?
3:30 PMSECNArkansasOle MissBefore Hogs were in SEC, this was a rivalry game
3:30 PMFSNNC St.DukeA backyard brawl that should make Pack 4-1
4:00 PMESPNMississippi St.Texas A&MAll’s not well in Starkville all of a sudden
4:00 PMACCNWake ForestVirginiaExpect a close game but maybe not entertaining
4:00 PMESPN2Georgia SouthernU MassThe Minutemen play their first game of the year
6:00 PMCBSSNLouisiana TechMarshallWinner of this game most likely wins CUSA regular season
7:30 PMABCFlorida St.North CarolinaUNC needs to top half a hundred again to be a contender
7:30 PMESPN2UTEPSouthern Miss.CANCELLED
8:00 PMCBSAlabamaGeorgiaMaybe the Regular Season Game of the Year!
8:00 PMESPNUCharlotteFlorida Int’l.CANCELLED
8:00 PMACCNVirginia TechBoston CollegeNice game but not Bama & Dogs

Coming tomorrow: our for entertainment purposes only handicapping selections that have accidentally made a decent imaginary profit this year. We must be due for a big losing week, but maybe we can back into some additional winners. We heard from a few of you that went against our warning and actually wagered on some longshot parlays that happened to win last week. Please do not think for one second that we can be this lucky again. Don’t wager real money on our fun picks!

September 13, 2020

PiRate Ratings–College Football September 13, 2020

This Week’s PiRate, Mean, and Bias Spreads

Week 3Sep. 18-19
HomeVisitorPiRateMeanBias
Oklahoma St.Tulsa16.918.119.6
Georgia St.Louisiana-16.9-16.7-17.0
PittsburghSyracuse11.911.711.5
Western Ky.Liberty11.29.411.4
TulaneNavy-1.60.6-0.5
DukeBoston College3.03.92.4
BaylorHouston4.35.96.0
MarshallAppalachian St.-2.0-1.4-4.3
Notre DameUSF24.324.626.1
North CarolinaCharlotte26.526.627.5
Georgia TechUCF-7.1-8.2-9.4
Ga. SouthernFla. Atlantic12.912.214.1
Middle Tenn.Troy-1.5-2.5-1.7
North TexasSMU-21.5-19.8-20.1
UL-MonroeTexas St.4.54.14.6
LouisvilleMiami (Fla.)11.29.110.0
Southern Miss.La. Tech3.42.50.9
NC St.Wake Forest-3.3-4.2-3.3

This Week’s FBS vs. FCS Games

FBSFCSPiRate
Coastal CarolinaCampbell22.3
CincinnatiAustin Peay27.4
UTSAS F Austin12.0
ClemsonCitadel47.5
Arkansas St.Cent. Arkansas11.8
UTEPAbilene Chr.-0.7

This Week’s PiRate, Mean, and Bias Ratings

#TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg.Conference
1Clemson123.7124.7127.6125.4ACC
2L S U123.2122.5125.8123.8SEC-W
3Alabama121.4122.3123.3122.3SEC-W
4Georgia121.1119.4121.9120.8SEC-E
5Florida119.7119.3120.8119.9SEC-E
6Auburn118.0116.6117.9117.5SEC-W
7Oklahoma117.1117.1117.3117.2B12
8Notre Dame117.2116.2117.2116.9ACC
9Texas116.3115.1116.4115.9B12
10Texas A&M115.7115.8115.9115.8SEC-W
11Oklahoma St.113.4112.8113.6113.3B12
12N. Carolina111.9112.4113.3112.5ACC
13Kentucky110.3110.5111.5110.8SEC-E
14Louisville110.7111.3109.7110.5ACC
15Virginia Tech109.2109.2111.3109.9ACC
16UCF109.2109.6110.5109.8AAC
17Tennessee109.1109.0109.6109.2SEC-E
18Cincinnati109.5108.3109.4109.1AAC
19S. Carolina109.3107.0108.7108.3SEC-E
20Memphis109.0107.7108.2108.3AAC
21Baylor108.0108.1108.2108.1B12
22Iowa St.107.9107.1107.5107.5B12
23Miss. St.106.7106.1108.4107.1SEC-W
24Virginia106.6106.1106.3106.4ACC
25BYU106.7105.2106.3106.1Ind.
26Louisiana106.2105.7106.2106.0SUN-W
27Florida St.105.5103.9105.4104.9ACC
28Pittsburgh103.9105.7104.1104.6ACC
29T C U105.0102.8105.1104.3B12
30Kansas St.104.2103.0104.1103.8B12
31Houston104.7103.2103.2103.7AAC
32Ole Miss104.1102.5103.8103.4SEC-W
33Appal. St.102.8101.9103.9102.9SUN-E
34Miami (Fla.)101.5104.1101.7102.4ACC
35W. Virginia101.4101.5101.5101.5B12
36Duke100.6101.3100.0100.6ACC
37SMU100.6100.199.6100.1AAC
38Georgia Tech100.699.999.6100.0ACC
39Missouri99.199.2100.399.5SEC-E
40Boston Coll.99.699.399.699.5ACC
41Wake Forest98.399.498.398.7ACC
42Marshall98.998.597.698.3CUSA
43Texas Tech97.296.097.496.9B12
44Navy98.196.196.096.7AAC
45W. Kentucky95.997.096.796.5CUSA
46Temple96.497.095.396.2AAC
47Tulsa97.695.795.196.1AAC
48Arkansas St.95.796.995.696.1SUN-W
49Florida Int’l.95.495.295.895.5CUSA
50Syracuse94.096.094.694.9ACC
51Arkansas94.795.892.494.3SEC-W
52Tulane94.594.793.694.3AAC
53Army93.295.393.293.9Ind.
54USF95.093.793.193.9AAC
55NC State93.593.793.693.6ACC
56Georgia Sou.92.793.794.093.5SUN-E
57U A B92.693.492.192.7CUSA
58Vanderbilt93.392.791.892.6SEC-E
59Coastal Car.91.892.492.292.1SUN-E
60E. Carolina92.192.690.991.9AAC
61Southern Miss.88.589.087.288.2CUSA
62Troy87.089.087.387.8SUN-E
63Georgia St.87.887.587.787.7SUN-E
64La. Tech86.588.087.787.4CUSA
65Liberty86.289.186.887.4Ind.
66Charlotte86.486.786.886.7CUSA
67Kansas86.386.585.086.0B12
68S. Alabama85.186.484.885.4SUN-W
69Rice86.284.285.685.3CUSA
70Middle Tenn.84.185.084.184.4CUSA
71Fla. Atlantic81.383.081.481.9CUSA
72UL-Monroe82.082.280.481.5SUN-W
73North Texas78.179.378.578.7CUSA
74Texas St.79.079.677.378.6SUN-W
75U T S A77.177.076.576.9CUSA
76U T E P63.466.063.064.1CUSA

By Conference

American Athletic Conference
East Division
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg
UCF109.2109.6110.5109.8
Cincinnati109.5108.3109.4109.1
Memphis109.0107.7108.2108.3
Houston104.7103.2103.2103.7
SMU100.6100.199.6100.1
Navy98.196.196.096.7
Temple96.497.095.396.2
Tulsa97.695.795.196.1
Tulane94.594.793.694.3
USF95.093.793.193.9
E. Carolina92.192.690.991.9
AAC Averages100.699.999.5100.0
Atlantic Coast Conference
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg
Clemson123.7124.7127.6125.4
Notre Dame117.2116.2117.2116.9
N. Carolina111.9112.4113.3112.5
Louisville110.7111.3109.7110.5
Virginia Tech109.2109.2111.3109.9
Virginia106.6106.1106.3106.4
Florida St.105.5103.9105.4104.9
Pittsburgh103.9105.7104.1104.6
Miami (Fla.)101.5104.1101.7102.4
Duke100.6101.3100.0100.6
Georgia Tech100.699.999.6100.0
Boston Coll.99.699.399.699.5
Wake Forest98.399.498.398.7
Syracuse94.096.094.694.9
NC State93.593.793.693.6
ACC Averages105.1105.6105.5105.4
Big 12 Conference
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg
Oklahoma117.1117.1117.3117.2
Texas116.3115.1116.4115.9
Oklahoma St.113.4112.8113.6113.3
Baylor108.0108.1108.2108.1
Iowa St.107.9107.1107.5107.5
T C U105.0102.8105.1104.3
Kansas St.104.2103.0104.1103.8
W. Virginia101.4101.5101.5101.5
Texas Tech97.296.097.496.9
Kansas86.386.585.086.0
Big 12 Averages105.7105.0105.6105.4
Conference USA
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg
Marshall98.998.597.698.3
W. Kentucky95.997.096.796.5
Florida Int’l.95.495.295.895.5
U A B92.693.492.192.7
Southern Miss.88.589.087.288.2
La. Tech86.588.087.787.4
Charlotte86.486.786.886.7
Rice86.284.285.685.3
Middle Tenn.84.185.084.184.4
Fla. Atlantic81.383.081.481.9
North Texas78.179.378.578.7
U T S A77.177.076.576.9
U T E P63.466.063.064.1
CUSA Averages85.786.385.685.9
FBS Independents
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg
BYU106.7105.2106.3106.1
Army93.295.393.293.9
Liberty86.289.186.887.4
Ind. Averages95.496.595.495.8
Southeastern Conference
East Division
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg
Georgia121.1119.4121.9120.8
Florida119.7119.3120.8119.9
Kentucky110.3110.5111.5110.8
Tennessee109.1109.0109.6109.2
S. Carolina109.3107.0108.7108.3
Missouri99.199.2100.399.5
Vanderbilt93.392.791.892.6
West Division
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg
L S U123.2122.5125.8123.8
Alabama121.4122.3123.3122.3
Auburn118.0116.6117.9117.5
Texas A&M115.7115.8115.9115.8
Miss. St.106.7106.1108.4107.1
Ole Miss104.1102.5103.8103.4
Arkansas94.795.892.494.3
SEC Averages110.4109.9110.9110.4
Sunbelt Conference
East Division
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg
Appal. St.102.8101.9103.9102.9
Georgia Sou.92.793.794.093.5
Coastal Car.91.892.492.292.1
Troy87.089.087.387.8
Georgia St.87.887.587.787.7
West Division
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg
Louisiana106.2105.7106.2106.0
Arkansas St.95.796.995.696.1
S. Alabama85.186.484.885.4
UL-Monroe82.082.280.481.5
Texas St.79.079.677.378.6
SBC Averages91.091.590.991.2

Conference Ratings

#LeagueAvg
1Southeastern110.4
2Big 12105.4
3Atlantic Coast105.4
4American100.0
5Independents95.8
6Sun Belt91.2
7Conference USA85.9

This Week’s TV Schedule

Friday, September 18
Time (ET)NetworkHomeVisitor
7:00 PMESPN3Coastal CarolinaCampbell
Saturday, September 19
Time (ET)NetworkHomeVisitor
12:00 PMFoxBaylorHouston
12:00 PMESPNOklahoma St.Tulsa
12:00 PMESPN3DukeBoston College
12:00 PMESPN2Georgia St.Louisiana
12:00 PMACCPittsburghSyracuse
12:00 PMABCTulaneNavy
12:00 PMESPNUWestern KentuckyLiberty
12:00 PMESPN+CincinnatiAustin Peay
1:30 PMCBSSNMarshallAppalachian St.
2:30 PMUSANotre DameSouth Florida
3:00 PMABCGeorgia TechCentral Florida
3:30 PMESPN3North CarolinaCharlotte
3:30 PMESPN3UTSAS. F. Austin
4:00 PMACCClemsonThe Citadel
4:00 PMESPN2Georgia SouthernFlorida Atlantic
4:00 PMESPNUMiddle TennesseeTroy
6:00 PMCBSSNNorth TexasSMU
7:00 PMESPN+LouisvilleMiami (Fla.)
7:30 PMABCArkansas St.Central Arkansas
7:30 PMESPNUUL MonroeTexas St.
8:00 PMACCNC StateWeake Forest
9:00 PMESPN3UTEPAbilene Christian

December 31, 2019

PiRate Ratings College Basketball For December 31, 2019

Filed under: College Basketball — Tags: , , , , , , , — piratings @ 7:34 am

Spreads for Power Conference Games

 

Home

Visitor

Spread

Florida St.

Georgia Tech

11.5

Clemson

Miami (Fla.)

2.0

Duke

Boston College

21.4

Central Florida

Temple

-2.4

 

August 13, 2019

2019 American Athletic Conference Football Preview

Today, we wrap up the Group of 5 Conference previews with the American Athletic Conference.  The AAC has seen its champion represent the Group of 5 conferences in a New Year’s 6 Bowl Game three times in the five years of the current rules set in place.  While this league is the strongest Group of 5 league to start 2019, we selected Army to be our predicted G5 team to make an NY6 Bowl bid this year.

This is a league about to undergo some transition.  Connecticut will return to the Big East after in 2020, and there will be an opening for another school to join the AAC.  It could be U Mass, Army, or Liberty, but it could also be somebody like Buffalo from the Mid-American Conference or possibly a new FCS school deciding to jump to FBS, like Villanova.

As for this season, the AAC should be a little more competitive than in the recent past.  Central Florida has dominated the league for two consecutive years, and the Golden Knights will be an excellent team once again this year.  However, teams like Cincinnati, Temple, Memphis, and maybe one or two dark horses will make UCF’s path to a “threepeat” quite difficult.

Here is how the American Athletic Conference Media voted in their preseason poll.

American Athletic Conference Media Poll
 

 

East Division
Pos. Team 1st Place Votes Overall Votes
1 Central Florida 19 169
2 Cincinnati 11 157
3 South Florida 0 107
4 Temple 0 101
5 East Carolina 0 66
6 Connecticut 0 30
 

 

West Division
Pos. Team 1st Place Votes Overall Votes
1 Memphis 15 165
2 Houston 14 162
3 Tulane 0 108
4 SMU 1 87
5 Navy 0 70
6 Tulsa 0 38
 

 

Championship Game Winner Overall Votes
Central Florida 12
Cincinnati 8
Memphis 6
Houston 4

 

Here are our preseason PiRate Ratings.

Preseason PiRate Ratings–American Athletic
East Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average
Central Florida 107.7 107.1 108.8 107.9
Cincinnati 106.6 105.0 106.8 106.1
Temple 101.9 101.0 103.2 102.0
South Florida 94.4 95.9 94.9 95.1
East Carolina 85.0 87.6 84.9 85.8
Connecticut 75.9 77.9 74.4 76.1
 

 

West Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average
Memphis 104.0 103.3 105.2 104.2
SMU 98.7 98.4 98.9 98.7
Houston 95.0 96.7 97.8 96.5
Tulane 95.4 96.6 95.5 95.8
Tulsa 91.3 91.9 92.3 91.8
Navy 86.3 89.2 85.9 87.2
AAC Averages 95.2 95.9 95.7 95.6

Note:  These preseason ratings are accurate as of August 1, 2019, and subject to change before the first week of the season due to personnel changes prior to the first week of the season.

 

Predicted Won-Loss Records

The PiRate Ratings were not created to forecast won-loss records like other ratings might attempt.  Our ratings are valid for just the next game on the teams’ schedules, and we have pre-set adjustments built into our ratings on many teams.  For instance, if a team has exceptional starting talent but little depth, their rating has a pre-set reduction per week of the season, so that even if they win or lose a game by the exact expected margin, they will lose some of their power rating due to their depth issues.

If a team has exceptional, but inexperienced talent, their rating will have a pre-set addition per week of the season, and even if their performance may be exactly what was expected, their power rating will rise.

What you see in these predicted won-loss records are our opinion and not calculated from the ratings.  These are the estimated records based on a vote, with the Captain having 50% of the vote and the crew having the other 50%.  The Captain then rounded up or down those teams picked to have an average wins that were not whole numbers.

 

PiRate Members Predicted Won-Loss
East Division
Pos Team Conference Overall
1 Cincinnati 6-2 9-4
2 Central Florida 6-2 9-3
3 Temple 5-3 9-3
4 South Florida 5-3 6-6
5 East Carolina 2-6 5-7
6 Connecticut 0-8 1-11
 

 

West Division
Pos Team Conference Overall
1 Memphis 6-2 10-3*
2 SMU 5-3 8-4
3 Houston 5-3 7-5
4 Tulane 4-4 6-6
5 Navy 3-5 4-8
6 Tulsa 1-7 3-9
 

*

 

Memphis Picked To Win AAC Championship Game

 

Bowl Predictions
Birmingham SMU
Boca Raton Central Florida
Cure Temple
Frisco Houston
Gasparilla Cincinnati
Hawaii Memphis
Military South Florida

Also Bowl Eligible

Tulane

 

Coaches That Could Move To Power 5 Conferences

Luke Fickell, Cincinnati

Josh Heupel, Central Florida

Mike Norvell, Memphis

Willie Fritz, Tulane

 

Coaches On The Hot Seat

Randy Edsall, Connecticut

Phillip Montgomery, Tulsa

 

Top Quarterbacks

D’Eriq King, Houston

Desmond Ridder, Cincinnati

Brady White, Memphis

 

Top Offense

Central Florida

Memphis

Houston

 

Top Defense

Temple

Memphis

Cincinnati

 

Coming Tomorrow: We start previewing Power 5 Conferences with the ACC

March 24, 2019

PiRate Ratings NCAA Tournament For Sunday, March 24, 2019

Home

Rating

HCA

Visitor

Rating

Spread

Tennessee

117.9

0.0

Iowa

111.4

6.5

North Carolina

121.3

0.0

Washington

109.7

11.6

Duke

122.9

0.0

Central Florida

110.0

12.9

Texas Tech

118.0

0.0

Buffalo

115.2

2.8

Virginia Tech

115.5

0.0

Liberty

107.3

8.2

Virginia

120.8

0.0

Oklahoma

111.4

9.4

Houston

115.3

0.0

Ohio St.

110.2

5.1

Oregon

110.8

0.0

UC Irvine

106.6

4.2

Sunday’s Schedule

Time

Game

Network

Site

12:10 PM

Tennessee vs. Iowa

CBS

Columbus

2:40 PM

North Carolina vs. Washington

CBS

Columbus

5:15 PM

Duke vs. Central Florida

CBS

Columbia

6:10 PM

Texas Tech vs. Buffalo

TNT

Tulsa

7:10 PM

Virginia Tech vs. Liberty

TBS

San Jose

7:45 PM

Virginia vs. Oklahoma

TruTV

Columbia

8:40 PM

Houston vs. Ohio St.

TNT

Tulsa

9:40 PM

Oregon vs. UC-Irvine

TBS

San Jose

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

December 9, 2018

PiRate Ratings–College Football Bowls & Playoffs

Filed under: College Football — Tags: , , , , , , , , , — piratings @ 6:58 am

All times given are Eastern Standard

Saturday December 15
New Mexico Bowl 2:00 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Utah St. North Texas 11.6 10.2 12.4
Cure Bowl 2:30 PM on CBSSN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Tulane Louisiana 9.3 7.5 7.3
Las Vegas Bowl 3:30 PM on ABC
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Fresno St. Arizona St. 2.8 3.7 3.4
Camellia Bowl 5:30 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Georgia Southern Eastern Michigan -4.7 -4.2 -4.3
New Orleans Bowl 9:00 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Appalachian St. Middle Tennessee -0.6 -0.7 -0.2
 

 

Tuesday December 18
Boca Raton Bowl 7:00 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
UAB Northern Illinois -0.6 0.7 -0.2
 

 

Wednesday December 19
Frisco Bowl 8:00 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
San Diego St. Ohio U -8.7 -9.8 -9.4
 

 

Thursday December 20
Gasparilla Bowl 8:00 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
South Florida Marshall -1.9 -2.8 -3.0
 

 

Friday December 21
Bahamas Bowl 12:30 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Toledo Florida Int’l. 9.8 7.9 9.3
Idaho Potato Bowl 4:00 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Western Michigan BYU -11.1 -10.0 -11.2
 

 

Saturday December 22 12:00 PM on ESPN
Birmingham Bowl
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Memphis Wake Forest -2.3 0.7 0.3
Armed Forces Bowl 3:30 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Houston Army -1.3 -1.5 -1.2
Dollar General Bowl 7:00 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Buffalo Troy 5.6 5.8 5.1
Hawaii Bowl 10:30 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Hawaii Louisiana Tech -3.3 -3.6 -4.0
 

 

Wednesday December 26
First Responder Bowl 1:30 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Boise St. Boston College -0.3 1.7 0.5
Quick Lane Bowl 5:15 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Minnesota Georgia Tech -11.4 -11.6 -11.4
Cheez-it Bowl 9:00 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
TCU California 0.4 1.2 -0.8
 

 

Thursday December 27 1:30 PM on ESPN
Independence Bowl
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Duke Temple 6.4 4.1 5.0
Pinstripe Bowl 5:15 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Wisconsin Miami (Fla.) -6.5 -7.5 -7.0
Texas Bowl 9:00 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Baylor Vanderbilt -0.4 -2.1 -1.1
 

 

Friday December 28
Music City Bowl 1:30 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Auburn Purdue 6.8 7.2 8.4
Camping World Bowl 5:15 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Syracuse West Virginia 1.0 0.8 1.2
Arizona Bowl 5:30 PM on CBSSN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Nevada Arkansas St. 3.6 2.2 1.6
Alamo Bowl 9:00 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Iowa St. Washington St. -3.3 -3.9 -3.6
 

 

Saturday December 29
Peach Bowl 12:00 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Florida Michigan -9.7 -9.9 -9.6
Belk Bowl 12:00 PM on ABC
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
South Carolina Virginia 5.9 4.8 6.6
Cotton Bowl 4:00 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Clemson Notre Dame 12.6 12.9 14.3
Orange Bowl 8:00 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Alabama Oklahoma 19.2 18.7 20.8
 

 

Monday December 31
Redbox Bowl 3:00 PM on Fox
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Oregon Michigan St. -0.8 1.0 0.4
Military Bowl 12:00 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Virginia Tech Cincinnati 1.9 -0.2 1.0
Sun Bowl 2:00 PM on CBS
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Stanford Pittsburgh 5.3 4.2 6.1
Liberty Bowl 3:45 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Missouri Oklahoma St. 12.0 12.1 13.1
Holiday Bowl 7:00 PM on FS1
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Utah Northwestern 6.0 6.1 6.7
Gator Bowl 7:30 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
North Carolina St. Texas A&M -2.9 -2.7 -4.0
 

 

Tuesday January 1
Outback Bowl 12:00 PM on ESPN2
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Iowa Mississippi St. -7.5 -7.8 -9.3
Citrus Bowl 1:00 PM on ABC
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Kentucky Penn St. -6.7 -5.6 -6.5
Fiesta Bowl 1:00 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
LSU Central Florida 2.9 1.5 3.0
Rose Bowl 5:00 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Ohio St. Washington 6.9 7.1 6.6
Sugar Bowl 8:45 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Georgia Texas 14.9 14.3 17.1
 

 

Monday January 7
National Championship Game 8:00 PM on ESPN
Team 1 Team 2 PiRate Mean Bias
Bama or Okla. Clem or N. Dame

For those that need to know–these ratings include the list of star players that are sitting out their bowl so as not to risk injury prior to the 2019 NFL Draft.  For example, Will Grier will not play for West Virginia, and that is enough to switch the Mountaineers from favorite to underdog.  This includes a list through Saturday, December 9.

NOTE:  The PiRate Ratings will commence with college basketball coverage as soon as all the major conference teams have played their tenth game.  Our rating is meaningless until every team has played 10 games.

Once again, we have combined all three of our sub-ratings into one more accurate rating.  We will issue spreads on weekend games through the conference tournaments and then spreads on the conference tournament games.

Additionally, starting in Mid-January, we will see the return of our Bracketology Gurus, who in two years of existence have gotten all 68 teams in the tournament one year and 67 of the 68 teams in the other.  We hand-picked 12 not-so-angry men that love college basketball and devote about the same amount of time in analyzing college basketball data as we analyze Major League Baseball.

 

 

December 5, 2018

What If… An NCAA Playoffs With No Committee Choices

Four teams are happy.  At least three teams are sad and feel slighted.  Oklahoma and Notre Dame have been invited to the playoffs.  Ohio State and Georgia were jilted.

There could be an argument for Oklahoma and Notre Dame over Ohio State and Georgia.  On the other hand, the folks that know best, those sharps in Nevada, would tell you that Georgia is the third best team in the nation.  Many computers will tell you that on December 29, 2018, Ohio State would be a better team than Oklahoma.

Imagine if specially appointed committees chose other things for the rest of us.  How would you like some insider former politicians explaining to you why Candidate A will be your President instead of Candidate B, even though all the political experts say that Candidate B would be the better Chief Excutive?

What is a special committee of psychologists chose who you will marry based on their criteria.  You may be in love with Michelle, but they may choose Kelly for you because she can balance a checkbook and you cannot?

What if the NFL had to choose just four teams for the playoffs.  This year, there are five really good teams in the Rams, Chiefs, Saints, Patriots, and Texans.  Maybe the Bears and Chargers are also among the four best.  Do you want a 12-4 division winner not making the NFL Playoffs?

Of course you don’t.  And, the fandom of college football doesn’t buy for a minute that the Selection Committee knows what it’s doing.  Let’s see any of them pick games against the spread.  If they are true experts, then they will put up results that make Billy Walters look like an amateur.

The four team playoff did nothing to solve the problems of the two-team BCS National Championship Game it replaced.  In fact, this year, you could make an excellent argument that just putting Alabama against Clemson would be a better option than picking four out of six or seven deserving teams.

Any legitimate FBS Playoffs must allow every FBS team a chance to play their way into said playoffs.  There are 130 FBS teams.  There needs to be no more than 64 top level teams and preferably 32, but let’s not even talk about separating the Power 5 from the Group of 5.  Let’s talk about honest realignment into 7 conferences of 16 teams  and 1 conference of 18 teams.  In an even better world, two FBS teams would drop down to FCS, leaving 128 teams.

Divide each conference into two divisions.  Every team within a division will play each other during the regular season plus three teams in the other division.  In the 18-team conference, there will be just two teams against the other division.  The rhyme and reason to which schools a team in the other division would play would be made by the league with a rotating schedule so that a different three teams would be played every year, possibly using the NFL’s strategy of having the prior first place team in one division playing the prior first place team in the other division and so on down to the prior last place teams playing each other.

At the end of the season, the top team in each division of each conference would then make the 16-team playoff.  In the first round, the division winners of each conference would play to determine the conference champion.  This would leave eight teams for eight playoff spots.

These conference championship games could be played on neutral sites like the current Power Five Conference Championship Games, or on the home field of the team with the better conference record with set tiebreakers to determine the higher seed if there is a tie.

With the number down to eight, the next round could be played on home fields of the higher seeds as determined by criteria that all teams and all fans will know, just like home field is determined in the NFL.  At no time will a committee of so-called experts determine who is in these playoffs and who will be the home team.

After this second round of the playoffs, the final four can then be played like it is today.

This would give every team a chance to play for the national title, just like all 350 Division 1 basketball teams have a chance.  If you think this isn’t fair to Alabama or Clemson to have to play more games to become national champion, then you must absolutely hate March Madness when Sister Jean and her Loyola Ramblers or Butler or Wichita State can make a run to the Final Four.  You must hate the fact that a Gonzaga can advance from a small program into one of the top 10 in the nation.

If the entire FBS has a chance to win the national title, then all programs will have a chance to do what Gonzaga has done in basketball.

Another bonus could be in scheduling.  Instead of an SEC team like Georgia scheduling Austin Peay and Massachusetts, or Alabama scheduling The Citadel, Arkansas State, and Louisiana (the one in Lafayette and not Baton Rouge), the national schedule makers could schedule Alabama and Oklahoma, or Georgia and Michigan.

What about the FBS vs. FCS games?  Why not give each FBS team two preseason games against FCS teams, where the FBS team pays the FCS team a check just like they do now?  With all the extra billions coming into this new paradigm, the FBS teams could keep these FCS programs solvent without putting a 63-3 pasting on them in a regular season game.

November 25, 2018

PiRate Ratings–College Football Week 14

This Week’s PiRate Rating Spreads

Friday November 30
Home Visitor PiRate Mean Bias
Mid-American Conference Championship Game @ Buffalo
Buffalo Northern Illinois 5.9 6.9 7.0
 

 

Pac-12 Conference Championship Game @ Santa Clara, CA
Washington Utah 5.4 4.5 5.4

 

Saturday November 24
Home Visitor PiRate Mean Bias
Big 12 Conference Championship Game @ Arlington, TX
Oklahoma Texas 7.2 7.4 7.6
 

 

Sun Belt Conference Championship Game @ Appy St.
Appalachian St. Louisiana 17.8 17.6 18.0
 

 

Conference USA Championship Game @ Middle Tennessee
Middle Tennessee UAB 2.3 2.0 2.8
 

 

American Athletic Conference Championship Game @ Central FL
Central Florida Memphis 11.3 10.4 10.8
 

 

Southeastern Conference Championship Game @ Atlanta
Alabama Georgia 12.8 13.4 13.3
 

 

Mountain West Conference Championship Game @ Boise St.
Boise St. Fresno St. 2.7 3.0 3.2
 

 

Atlantic Coast Conference Championship Game @ Charlotte, NC
Clemson Pittsburgh 30.3 28.7 31.4
 

 

Big Ten Conference Championship Game @ Indianapolis, IN
Ohio St. Northwestern 15.5 15.4 16.0

Other Saturday Games

Home Visitor PiRate Mean Bias
Virginia Tech Marshall 12.6 8.6 10.7
North Carolina St. East Carolina 30.9 29.9 30.5
South Carolina Akron 30.2 28.2 30.4
California Stanford -5.2 -5.0 -5.2

 

FBS FCS
Home Visitor PiRate
Iowa St. Drake 42.7
Liberty Norfolk St. 26.5

 

This Week’s PiRate Ratings

PiRate Ratings
# Team PiRate Mean Bias Average
1 Alabama 141.3 139.7 143.1 141.4
2 Clemson 138.8 136.5 139.5 138.3
3 Georgia 128.6 126.3 129.8 128.2
4 Ohio St. 126.3 124.5 126.4 125.7
5 Michigan 125.9 124.5 126.3 125.5
6 Notre Dame 126.3 123.9 125.4 125.2
7 Mississippi St. 124.2 122.6 125.4 124.1
8 Washington 122.0 119.9 122.4 121.4
9 Oklahoma 121.5 120.2 121.3 121.0
10 Missouri 121.1 119.6 122.1 120.9
11 Penn St. 119.3 117.0 119.0 118.4
12 L S U 117.6 116.7 118.4 117.6
13 Auburn 116.8 115.6 118.1 116.8
14 West Virginia 117.3 116.1 116.5 116.6
15 Iowa 117.2 115.3 116.6 116.4
16 Utah 116.6 115.3 117.0 116.3
17 Washington St. 115.8 114.7 115.5 115.3
18 Miami 115.8 114.4 115.4 115.2
19 Florida 115.2 113.6 115.7 114.8
20 Texas A&M 114.6 113.6 115.1 114.4
21 Central Florida 114.0 114.4 114.5 114.3
22 Stanford 114.5 112.3 114.5 113.8
23 Texas 114.3 112.8 113.7 113.6
24 Iowa State 113.5 111.8 112.9 112.7
25 Georgia Tech 113.1 111.9 112.7 112.6
26 S. Carolina 112.9 111.7 112.6 112.4
27 Kentucky 112.7 111.4 112.5 112.2
28 Syracuse 112.7 111.4 112.2 112.1
29 N. Carolina St. 112.5 111.6 111.7 111.9
30 Fresno St. 111.8 111.3 111.8 111.7
31 Boise St. 111.5 111.4 112.0 111.6
32 Oregon 111.2 110.9 111.8 111.3
33 Michigan St. 112.0 109.9 111.3 111.1
34 Boston College 111.6 109.4 111.1 110.7
35 Utah St. 109.7 110.9 110.6 110.4
36 Northwestern 110.7 109.2 110.4 110.1
37 Arizona St. 110.2 108.9 109.8 109.6
38 Purdue 110.0 108.3 109.7 109.3
39 Pittsburgh 109.5 108.7 109.0 109.1
40 Oklahoma St. 109.6 108.0 109.5 109.0
41 Duke 109.4 107.4 108.6 108.5
42 Wisconsin 109.3 106.9 108.4 108.2
43 California 108.3 106.3 108.3 107.6
44 U S C 107.1 105.6 106.2 106.3
45 Texas Tech 107.0 105.4 105.7 106.0
46 Virginia 106.2 106.1 105.4 105.9
47 Vanderbilt 105.7 105.7 106.1 105.9
48 Temple 105.5 105.8 106.1 105.8
49 Wake Forest 106.8 105.0 105.0 105.6
50 T C U 106.5 105.2 105.1 105.6
51 Memphis 104.7 106.0 105.7 105.5
52 Nebraska 105.4 104.2 104.9 104.8
53 Kansas St. 104.8 103.6 104.1 104.2
54 Ohio U 103.3 104.5 104.2 104.0
55 Virginia Tech 104.3 103.1 103.5 103.6
56 Army 103.1 103.8 103.3 103.4
57 Cincinnati 102.7 104.1 103.2 103.3
58 Baylor 103.8 102.2 103.4 103.1
59 Florida St. 103.7 102.4 102.8 102.9
60 Ole Miss 102.5 101.8 102.7 102.3
61 Minnesota 102.8 101.4 102.3 102.2
62 Arizona 102.1 100.7 102.4 101.7
63 Maryland 102.4 100.9 101.5 101.6
64 BYU 100.9 101.5 101.9 101.4
65 Houston 101.1 101.6 101.2 101.3
66 Indiana 101.4 100.2 101.1 100.9
67 Buffalo 99.6 101.6 100.9 100.7
68 N. Carolina 100.7 100.0 100.7 100.5
69 Toledo 99.4 100.9 99.6 100.0
70 U C L A 100.7 100.1 99.2 100.0
71 Appalachian St. 98.7 100.6 100.3 99.8
72 Tennessee 98.6 99.0 98.0 98.5
73 Colorado 98.4 98.5 98.5 98.5
74 Kansas 98.4 97.1 97.5 97.7
75 Wyoming 97.2 97.7 97.2 97.3
76 Middle Tennessee 96.2 98.2 97.4 97.3
77 Miami (O) 95.7 97.6 97.8 97.0
78 U A B 95.9 98.2 96.6 96.9
79 Northern Illinois 96.2 97.1 96.4 96.6
80 N. Texas 95.7 98.2 95.7 96.5
81 Air Force 95.6 96.2 95.9 95.9
82 Eastern Michigan 95.2 96.6 95.5 95.8
83 Arkansas 96.7 94.3 95.7 95.6
84 Marshall 94.2 97.0 95.3 95.5
85 Florida Atlantic 94.4 95.6 94.8 94.9
86 Nevada 94.8 94.9 94.6 94.8
87 San Diego St. 94.6 94.7 94.8 94.7
88 SMU 94.2 93.7 93.2 93.7
89 Tulane 93.0 93.5 92.7 93.1
90 Troy 91.4 93.0 92.9 92.4
91 Arkansas St. 91.2 92.8 92.9 92.3
92 Georgia Southern 90.5 92.4 91.2 91.4
93 Florida Int’l. 89.6 93.0 90.3 91.0
94 South Florida 90.5 91.9 90.1 90.8
95 Western Michigan 89.8 91.4 90.7 90.7
96 Tulsa 90.0 89.8 90.0 89.9
97 Louisiana Tech 89.0 90.9 89.3 89.7
98 Southern Miss. 88.2 91.4 89.0 89.6
99 Rutgers 90.2 89.1 89.1 89.5
100 Navy 88.7 90.5 88.8 89.4
101 Illinois 89.6 89.0 88.6 89.1
102 UL-Monroe 85.9 86.7 86.5 86.4
103 Akron 85.6 86.5 85.1 85.8
104 W. Kentucky 84.1 87.0 84.7 85.3
105 Louisiana 83.3 85.5 84.8 84.5
106 Colorado St. 83.5 84.2 83.3 83.7
107 U N L V 83.2 84.1 83.3 83.5
108 Oregon St. 84.4 82.5 83.4 83.4
109 Louisville 83.9 83.3 82.7 83.3
110 East Carolina 83.1 83.2 82.7 83.0
111 Charlotte 81.8 84.4 82.7 83.0
112 New Mexico 82.6 83.3 81.8 82.6
113 Hawaii 82.2 83.8 81.7 82.6
114 Massachusetts 80.9 82.3 81.2 81.5
115 Bowling Green 80.5 81.4 80.9 80.9
116 Old Dominion 79.7 82.9 79.6 80.8
117 San Jose St. 80.4 81.3 79.8 80.5
118 Ball St. 79.9 81.9 79.7 80.5
119 Liberty 80.4 79.9 80.4 80.3
120 Central Michigan 79.0 81.0 79.0 79.7
121 Kent St. 78.9 80.0 78.9 79.3
122 Coastal Carolina 76.0 78.1 76.3 76.8
123 Georgia St. 75.6 77.2 75.6 76.1
124 U T S A 73.6 77.2 74.0 75.0
125 South Alabama 73.4 75.2 73.8 74.1
126 Texas State 72.8 75.2 73.1 73.7
127 N. Mexico St. 72.3 73.8 72.3 72.8
128 Rice 70.0 72.7 69.0 70.6
129 Connecticut 70.2 70.5 69.3 70.0
130 U T E P 68.8 71.8 68.6 69.7

 

PiRate Ratings By Conference

American Athletic Conference
East Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average AAC Overall
Central Florida 114.0 114.4 114.5 114.3 8-0 11-0
Temple 105.5 105.8 106.1 105.8 7-1 8-4
Cincinnati 102.7 104.1 103.2 103.3 6-2 10-2
South Florida 90.5 91.9 90.1 90.8 3-5 7-5
East Carolina 83.1 83.2 82.7 83.0 1-7 3-8
Connecticut 70.2 70.5 69.3 70.0 0-8 1-11
West Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average AAC Overall
Memphis 104.7 106.0 105.7 105.5 5-3 8-4
Houston 101.1 101.6 101.2 101.3 5-3 8-4
SMU 94.2 93.7 93.2 93.7 4-4 5-7
Tulane 93.0 93.5 92.7 93.1 5-3 6-6
Tulsa 90.0 89.8 90.0 89.9 2-6 3-9
Navy 88.7 90.5 88.8 89.4 2-6 3-9
AAC Averages 94.8 95.4 94.8 95.0
Atlantic Coast Conference
Atlantic Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average ACC Overall
Clemson 138.8 136.5 139.5 138.3 8-0 12-0
Syracuse 112.7 111.4 112.2 112.1 6-2 9-3
N. Carolina St. 112.5 111.6 111.7 111.9 5-3 8-3
Boston College 111.6 109.4 111.1 110.7 4-4 7-5
Wake Forest 106.8 105.0 105.0 105.6 3-5 6-6
Florida St. 103.7 102.4 102.8 102.9 3-5 5-7
Louisville 83.9 83.3 82.7 83.3 0-8 2-10
Coastal Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average ACC Overall
Miami 115.8 114.4 115.4 115.2 4-4 7-5
Georgia Tech 113.1 111.9 112.7 112.6 5-3 7-5
Pittsburgh 109.5 108.7 109.0 109.1 6-2 7-5
Duke 109.4 107.4 108.6 108.5 3-5 7-5
Virginia 106.2 106.1 105.4 105.9 4-4 7-5
Virginia Tech 104.3 103.1 103.5 103.6 4-4 5-6
N. Carolina 100.7 100.0 100.7 100.5 1-7 2-9
ACC Averages 109.2 108.0 108.6 108.6
Big 12 Conference
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average B12 Overall
Oklahoma 121.5 120.2 121.3 121.0 8-1 11-1
West Virginia 117.3 116.1 116.5 116.6 6-3 8-3
Texas 114.3 112.8 113.7 113.6 7-2 9-3
Iowa State 113.5 111.8 112.9 112.7 6-3 7-4
Oklahoma St. 109.6 108.0 109.5 109.0 3-6 6-6
Texas Tech 107.0 105.4 105.7 106.0 3-6 5-7
T C U 106.5 105.2 105.1 105.6 4-5 6-6
Kansas St. 104.8 103.6 104.1 104.2 3-6 5-7
Baylor 103.8 102.2 103.4 103.1 4-5 6-6
Kansas 98.4 97.1 97.5 97.7 1-8 3-9
Big 12 Averages 109.7 108.2 109.0 109.0
Big Ten Conference
East Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average BTen Overall
Ohio St. 126.3 124.5 126.4 125.7 8-1 11-1
Michigan 125.9 124.5 126.3 125.5 8-1 10-2
Penn St. 119.3 117.0 119.0 118.4 6-3 9-3
Michigan St. 112.0 109.9 111.3 111.1 5-4 7-5
Maryland 102.4 100.9 101.5 101.6 3-6 5-7
Indiana 101.4 100.2 101.1 100.9 2-7 5-7
Rutgers 90.2 89.1 89.1 89.5 0-9 1-11
West Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average BTen Overall
Iowa 117.2 115.3 116.6 116.4 5-4 8-4
Northwestern 110.7 109.2 110.4 110.1 8-1 8-4
Purdue 110.0 108.3 109.7 109.3 5-4 6-6
Wisconsin 109.3 106.9 108.4 108.2 5-4 7-5
Nebraska 105.4 104.2 104.9 104.8 3-6 4-8
Minnesota 102.8 101.4 102.3 102.2 3-6 6-6
Illinois 89.6 89.0 88.6 89.1 2-7 4-8
Big Ten Averages 108.8 107.2 108.2 108.1
Conference USA
East Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average CUSA Overall
Middle Tennessee 96.2 98.2 97.4 97.3 7-1 8-4
Marshall 94.2 97.0 95.3 95.5 6-2 8-3
Florida Atlantic 94.4 95.6 94.8 94.9 3-5 5-7
Florida Int’l. 89.6 93.0 90.3 91.0 6-2 8-4
W. Kentucky 84.1 87.0 84.7 85.3 2-6 3-9
Charlotte 81.8 84.4 82.7 83.0 4-4 5-7
Old Dominion 79.7 82.9 79.6 80.8 2-6 4-8
West Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average CUSA Overall
U A B 95.9 98.2 96.6 96.9 7-1 9-3
N. Texas 95.7 98.2 95.7 96.5 5-3 9-3
Louisiana Tech 89.0 90.9 89.3 89.7 5-3 7-5
Southern Miss. 88.2 91.4 89.0 89.6 4-4 6-5
U T S A 73.6 77.2 74.0 75.0 2-6 3-9
Rice 70.0 72.7 69.0 70.6 1-7 2-11
U T E P 68.8 71.8 68.6 69.7 1-7 1-11
CUSA Averages 85.8 88.5 86.2 86.8
FBS Independents
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average Conf. Overall
Notre Dame 126.3 123.9 125.4 125.2 x 12-0
Army 103.1 103.8 103.3 103.4 x 9-2
BYU 100.9 101.5 101.9 101.4 x 6-6
Massachusetts 80.9 82.3 81.2 81.5 x 4-8
Liberty 80.4 79.9 80.4 80.3 x 5-6
N. Mexico St. 72.3 73.8 72.3 72.8 x 3-9
Indep. Averages 94.0 94.2 94.1 94.1
Mid-American Conference
East Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average MAC Overall
Ohio U 103.3 104.5 104.2 104.0 6-2 8-4
Buffalo 99.6 101.6 100.9 100.7 7-1 10-2
Miami (O) 95.7 97.6 97.8 97.0 6-2 6-6
Akron 85.6 86.5 85.1 85.8 2-6 4-7
Bowling Green 80.5 81.4 80.9 80.9 2-6 3-9
Kent St. 78.9 80.0 78.9 79.3 1-7 2-10
West Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average MAC Overall
Toledo 99.4 100.9 99.6 100.0 5-3 7-5
Northern Illinois 96.2 97.1 96.4 96.6 6-2 7-5
Eastern Michigan 95.2 96.6 95.5 95.8 5-3 7-5
Western Michigan 89.8 91.4 90.7 90.7 5-3 7-5
Ball St. 79.9 81.9 79.7 80.5 3-5 4-8
Central Michigan 79.0 81.0 79.0 79.7 0-8 1-11
MAC Averages 90.3 91.7 90.7 90.9
Mountain West Conference
Mountain Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average MWC Overall
Boise St. 111.5 111.4 112.0 111.6 7-1 10-2
Utah St. 109.7 110.9 110.6 110.4 7-1 10-2
Wyoming 97.2 97.7 97.2 97.3 4-4 6-6
Air Force 95.6 96.2 95.9 95.9 3-5 5-7
Colorado St. 83.5 84.2 83.3 83.7 2-6 3-9
New Mexico 82.6 83.3 81.8 82.6 1-7 3-9
West Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average MWC Overall
Fresno St. 111.8 111.3 111.8 111.7 7-1 10-2
Nevada 94.8 94.9 94.6 94.8 5-3 7-5
San Diego St. 94.6 94.7 94.8 94.7 4-4 7-5
U N L V 83.2 84.1 83.3 83.5 2-6 4-8
Hawaii 82.2 83.8 81.7 82.6 5-3 8-5
San Jose St. 80.4 81.3 79.8 80.5 1-7 1-11
MWC Averages 93.9 94.5 93.9 94.1
Pac-12 Conference
North Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average P12 Overall
Washington 122.0 119.9 122.4 121.4 7-2 9-3
Washington St. 115.8 114.7 115.5 115.3 7-2 10-2
Stanford 114.5 112.3 114.5 113.8 5-3 7-4
Oregon 111.2 110.9 111.8 111.3 5-4 8-4
California 108.3 106.3 108.3 107.6 4-4 7-4
Oregon St. 84.4 82.5 83.4 83.4 1-8 2-10
South Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average P12 Overall
Utah 116.6 115.3 117.0 116.3 6-3 9-3
Arizona St. 110.2 108.9 109.8 109.6 5-4 7-5
U S C 107.1 105.6 106.2 106.3 4-5 5-7
Arizona 102.1 100.7 102.4 101.7 4-5 5-7
U C L A 100.7 100.1 99.2 100.0 3-6 3-9
Colorado 98.4 98.5 98.5 98.5 2-7 5-7
Pac-12 Averages 107.6 106.3 107.4 107.1
Southeastern Conference
East Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average SEC Overall
Georgia 128.6 126.3 129.8 128.2 7-1 11-1
Missouri 121.1 119.6 122.1 120.9 4-4 8-4
Florida 115.2 113.6 115.7 114.8 5-3 9-3
S. Carolina 112.9 111.7 112.6 112.4 4-4 6-5
Kentucky 112.7 111.4 112.5 112.2 5-3 9-3
Vanderbilt 105.7 105.7 106.1 105.9 3-5 6-6
Tennessee 98.6 99.0 98.0 98.5 2-6 5-7
West Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average SEC Overall
Alabama 141.3 139.7 143.1 141.4 8-0 12-0
Mississippi St. 124.2 122.6 125.4 124.1 4-4 8-4
L S U 117.6 116.7 118.4 117.6 5-3 9-3
Auburn 116.8 115.6 118.1 116.8 3-5 7-5
Texas A&M 114.6 113.6 115.1 114.4 5-3 8-4
Ole Miss 102.5 101.8 102.7 102.3 1-7 5-7
Arkansas 96.7 94.3 95.7 95.6 0-8 2-10
SEC Averages 114.9 113.7 115.4 114.6
Sunbelt Conference
East Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average SBC Overall
Appalachian St. 98.7 100.6 100.3 99.8 7-1 9-2
Troy 91.4 93.0 92.9 92.4 7-1 9-3
Georgia Southern 90.5 92.4 91.2 91.4 6-2 9-3
Coastal Carolina 76.0 78.1 76.3 76.8 2-6 5-7
Georgia St. 75.6 77.2 75.6 76.1 1-7 2-10
West Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average SBC Overall
Arkansas St. 91.2 92.8 92.9 92.3 5-3 8-4
UL-Monroe 85.9 86.7 86.5 86.4 4-4 6-6
Louisiana 83.3 85.5 84.8 84.5 5-3 7-5
South Alabama 73.4 75.2 73.8 74.1 2-6 3-9
Texas State 72.8 75.2 73.1 73.7 1-7 3-9
Sun Belt Averages 83.9 85.7 84.7 84.8

 

Conference Ratings

PiRate Ratings By Conference
# League PiRate Mean Bias Average
1 SEC 114.9 113.7 115.4 114.6
2 B12 109.7 108.2 109.0 109.0
3 ACC 109.2 108.0 108.6 108.6
4 BTEN 108.8 107.2 108.2 108.1
5 PAC12 107.6 106.3 107.4 107.1
6 AAC 94.8 95.4 94.8 95.0
7 MWC 93.9 94.5 93.9 94.1
8 IND 94.0 94.2 94.1 94.1
9 MAC 90.3 91.7 90.7 90.9
10 CUSA 85.8 88.5 86.2 86.8
11 SUN 83.9 85.7 84.7 84.8

 

Top Group of 5

Central Florida will get the New Year’s 6 Bowl Bid with a win over Memphis this week in the CUSA Championship Game.  If Memphis pulls off the upset, then UCF could still sneak in depending on how the loss looks.

Should UCF fall by a considerable margin because Mackenzie Milton is out for the season, then Boise State could move above the Golden Knights should the Broncos defeat Fresno State for the second time.

Should Fresno State beat Boise State, and Memphis beat Central Florida, then there could be some issues with the awarding of Bowl Bids.  Because Army doesn’t play Navy until December 8, and the announcement of the bowl bids is December 3, then Army could be excluded even if they blowout Navy by 50 points.  In this instance, Central Florida would probably still get the bid at 11-1.  Had Army defeated Duke at the beginning of the season, then at 11-1 with a loss only to Oklahoma (a game they came close to winning), then the Bowl Committee would have been in a heap of trouble, having to make alternate announcements pending what Army did versus Navy.

At 10-2, Army may still get a chance to play a Power 5 opponent in a bowl game.  Coach Jeff Monken would be a cinch to be offered a Power 5 job if he was not in the Paul Johnson mode.  Monken’s triple option offense is stronger than Georgia Tech’s this year, and his defense is considerably better.

 

Playoff and Bowl Projections

This week, you will see many of the bowl projection sites beginning to come to agreement on the top bowl games.  No doubt, almost every projection will have Alabama in the Cotton Bowl against either Oklahoma or Ohio State, while Clemson and Notre Dame will be in the Orange Bowl.

We thought about this for a long time Saturday night as Clemson and Alabama continued to dominate.  It looked so much like the Playoffs could be narrowed to two teams.  However, we thought about something.  Georgia is not going to lay over and die for the Crimson Tide to roll over.  The Bulldogs have a bad taste in their mouth from last year, where they could smell the National Championship Trophy in the second half of the title game, before some freshman named Tua came off the bench in the second half and looked like a combination of Joe Montana, Brett Favre, John Elway, and Doug Flutie.

We have noticed the teams that have given Alabama the most trouble through the Nick Saban years.  These teams have physical defenses and offenses with dual-threat quarterbacks that can act as another running back while still passing like stars.  Think about Cam Newton, Johnny Manziel, or DeShaun Watson.  Even Chad Kelly had legs and could take off and run.  These are the teams that gave the Crimson Tide the most trouble in the last decade.

In the last few weeks, Alabama’s defense has been exposed by this read and react style of offense.  The Citadel’s triple option basically embarrassed Alabama in the first half.  Auburn’s spread option offense did some damage, but Jarrett Stidham does not have the legs to motor on the keeper like the QBs that have outscored Alabama to victory.

Here’s the thing.  Just like Alabama last year, Georgia has their not-so-secret weapon sitting on the bench waiting to be this year’s Tua Tagovailoa.  Freshman sensation Justin Fields possesses the same skills as Newton, Manziel, and Watson.  He has the potential to lead Georgia to an upset victory and totally throw the FBS Playoffs into disarray.

What if Georgia beat Alabama?  Assuming Clemson easily dismisses Pittsburgh, then Clemson would be number one, Georgia and Notre Dame would be number two and three in either order, and Alabama would fall to number four.  Ohio State and Oklahoma would be left out.  Forget Central Florida.  Even if Bama beats Georgia, Northwestern beats Ohio State, and Texas beats Oklahoma, a Georgia team at 11-2 would get into the playoffs before UCF.

If Georgia were to upset Alabama, then four SEC teams would most likely make the NY6 bowls.  The Bulldogs and Tide would make the playoffs.  Florida would most likely make the Peach Bowl, and LSU would probably edge out Penn State and others for the Sugar Bowl.

There are 81 bowl eligible teams as of today.  Virginia Tech is a win over Marshall this weekend from becoming bowl eligible and making it  82.  Liberty can get to 6-6 with a win over Norfolk State, but they have already been eliminated from bowl eligibility as a transition team to FBS once 78 teams became bowl eligible.

If you are a fan of a Mountain West, Mid-American, or Sun Belt Conference team that is 6-6 today, you better cheer hard for Marshall to knock off Virginia Tech.  There are already three teams too many for the bowls, and if the Hokies win, they will jump over any of the Group of 5 teams hoping to land in a bowl.  Teams like Eastern Michigan, Miami of Ohio, Wyoming, and Louisiana-Monroe are holding out for a miracle.  At most one of these teams will make it to a bowl, and if Virginia Tech wins this weekend, all four are likely to have empty envelopes.  Eastern Michigan could still top Western Michigan, but the Broncos have a larger fan base than the Eagles.

What you see below is our look at the bowls should Georgia beat Alabama.  You can look at all the others on the Internet to see what it would look like if the status quo remains, but we believe you will want to read this alternative look.

 

Bowl Conferences Team 1 Team 2
New Mexico MWC CUSA Utah St. Louisiana Tech
Cure AAC SBC Memphis Troy
Las Vegas MWC Pac-12 Boise St. Arizona St.
Camellia MAC SBC Northern Illinois Appalachian St.
New Orleans CUSA SBC Southern Miss. Louisiana
Boca Raton AAC CUSA South Florida Florida Int’l.
Frisco AAC At-Large Tulane [Army]
Gasparilla AAC CUSA [Duke] UAB
Bahamas MAC CUSA Toledo North Texas
Idaho Potato MAC MWC Ohio U Nevada
Birmingham AAC SEC Cincinnati [Wake Forest]
Armed Forces AAC Big 12 Houston TCU
Dollar General MAC SBC Buffalo Georgia Southern
Hawaii CUSA MWC Middle Tennessee Hawaii
Heart of Dallas Big Ten CUSA [Western Michigan] Marshall
Quick Lane ACC Big Ten Boston College Purdue
Cactus Big 12 Pac-12 Baylor [San Diego St.]
Independence ACC SEC Virginia [BYU]
Pinstripe ACC Big Ten Pittsburgh Wisconsin
Texas Big 12 SEC Iowa St. Mississippi St.
Music City ACC/Big Ten SEC Georgia Tech Missouri
Camping World ACC Big 12 Syracuse West Virginia
Arizona MWC SBC Fresno St. Arkansas St.
Alamo Big 12 Pac-12 Texas Utah
Belk ACC SEC North Carolina St. South Carolina
Peach At-large At-large Michigan Florida
Military AAC ACC Temple Virginia Tech
Sun ACC Pac-12 Miami (Fla.) California
San Francisco Big Ten Pac-12 Minnesota Stanford
Liberty Big 12 SEC Oklahoma St. Vanderbilt
Holiday Big Ten Pac-12 Iowa Oregon
Gator ACC/Big Ten SEC Northwestern Auburn
Outback Big Ten SEC Michigan St. Texas A&M
Fiesta At-large At-large Central Florida Washington St.
Citrus ACC/Big Ten SEC Penn St. Kentucky
Rose Big Ten Pac-12 Ohio St. Washington
Sugar Big 12 SEC Oklahoma LSU
FBS PLAYOFFS
Cotton Notre Dame Georgia
Orange Clemson Alabama
Championship Game Georgia Alabama
Teams in [Brackets] are at-large selections

November 18, 2018

PiRate Ratings–College Football Week 13

There are a bevy of interesting games with something on the line this week. Playoff games are on the line, bowl eligibility is on the line, and a few coaching jobs are on the line as Rivalry Week returns.
If you are a fan of a 5-6 team this week, you better hope that they win, because there is 0.01% chance or 1 in 10,000 that a bowl will have to take a team that is worse than 6-6. As of today, 71 teams are now bowl eligible. Three games this week will pit teams with identical 5-6 records, so three more are guaranteed to become bowl eligible, bringing the total to 74. There needs to be four more teams that will need one more win, and there are an additional 16 teams that have a chance to do so. The chances that 13 of these 16 teams lose their final game are less than the chances of the San Diego Padres facing the Chicago White Sox in the 2019 World Series.
Below, we take another look at each conference so you can determine which games you want to watch this week, or if you’d rather go shopping on Black Friday and Small Business Saturday. You really should spend a few bucks with a locally owned small business this Saturday. We recommend our favorite jewelry artist, Marjorie Miller of Marjorie Miller Designs right here in the Music City at Beautiful Gifts for Her

 

This Week’s PiRate Ratings Spreads

Tuesday November 20
Home Visitor PiRate Mean Bias
Western Michigan Northern Illinois -6.5 -6.0 -6.2
Miami (O) Ball St. 17.9 17.6 20.4

 

Thursday November 22
Home Visitor PiRate Mean Bias
Air Force Colorado St. 14.7 14.6 15.4
Ole Miss Mississippi St. -17.4 -16.1 -18.1

 

Friday November 23
Home Visitor PiRate Mean Bias
Ohio U Akron 19.3 19.6 20.6
Cincinnati East Carolina 17.8 19.3 18.3
Kent St. Eastern Michigan -14.7 -15.2 -15.4
Bowling Green Buffalo -13.3 -14.5 -14.3
Iowa Nebraska 17.0 16.3 17.2
Kansas Texas -13.8 -13.8 -14.7
Missouri Arkansas 24.8 25.6 26.8
South Alabama Coastal Carolina -0.3 -1.0 -0.6
Toledo Central Michigan 19.6 18.8 19.5
South Florida Central Florida -21.0 -20.0 -21.5
Oregon St. Oregon -20.9 -22.8 -22.4
Memphis Houston 3.1 3.9 3.7
Virginia Tech Virginia -0.6 -2.1 -1.0
West Virginia Oklahoma -1.0 -0.7 -1.4
Washington St. Washington -1.6 -0.4 -2.1

 

Saturday November 24
Home Visitor PiRate Mean Bias
Miami (Fla.) Pittsburgh 6.0 5.0 5.5
Connecticut Temple -30.1 -29.9 -31.6
Louisville Kentucky -21.4 -20.6 -22.4
Clemson South Carolina 28.8 27.6 30.1
Michigan St. Rutgers 29.0 28.0 29.5
Georgia St. Georgia Southern -12.2 -12.3 -12.7
Florida Int’l. Marshall -2.1 -1.1 -2.5
Boston College Syracuse 7.6 6.8 8.0
Ohio St. Michigan -3.5 -4.2 -4.3
Northwestern Illinois 24.9 23.8 26.2
Georgia Georgia Tech 15.5 14.1 17.1
Duke Wake Forest 11.7 11.5 12.8
Wisconsin Minnesota 14.3 13.3 14.3
North Carolina North Carolina St. -11.6 -11.6 -11.2
Louisiana Tech Western Kentucky 12.4 11.6 12.4
Rice Old Dominion -13.1 -13.6 -14.0
UTEP Southern Miss. -13.3 -13.4 -14.0
Liberty New Mexico St. 11.0 8.6 11.4
Boise St. Utah St. 3.9 2.2 3.1
Utah BYU 17.8 15.8 17.6
Appalachian St. Troy 9.5 10.1 9.6
New Mexico Wyoming -8.5 -7.9 -9.0
Middle Tennessee UAB -2.1 -2.6 -1.8
California Colorado 12.9 10.6 12.8
UCLA Stanford -11.9 -10.1 -13.9
Vanderbilt Tennessee 4.3 3.6 4.8
TCU Oklahoma St. -2.2 -2.1 -3.7
Florida St. Florida -4.9 -4.5 -6.4
Penn St. Maryland 16.1 14.9 16.3
Baylor Texas Tech -7.0 -7.3 -6.2
Fresno St. San Jose St. 36.9 35.3 37.9
Iowa St. Kansas St. 11.8 11.5 12.3
Texas A&M LSU -1.4 -1.5 -1.7
Indiana Purdue -6.6 -6.0 -6.4
Tulane Navy 6.9 5.5 6.9
UL-Monroe Louisiana 5.3 3.7 4.6
Tulsa SMU -2.9 -2.9 -2.3
Florida Atlantic Charlotte 20.3 19.1 19.9
Texas St. Arkansas St. -13.8 -12.8 -15.0
UTSA North Texas -22.5 -20.9 -22.5
USC Notre Dame -17.3 -16.7 -17.8
Alabama Auburn 25.4 24.8 25.5
UNLV Nevada -13.3 -12.5 -13.4
San Diego St. Hawaii 20.3 18.8 21.5
Arizona Arizona St. -7.2 -7.3 -6.5

 

This Week’s PiRate Ratings

PiRate Ratings
# Team PiRate Mean Bias Average
1 Alabama 141.0 139.3 142.6 141.0
2 Clemson 139.2 136.9 140.1 138.7
3 Michigan 129.1 127.9 129.8 128.9
4 Georgia 127.8 125.3 129.0 127.3
5 Notre Dame 126.9 124.6 126.2 125.9
6 Mississippi St. 122.5 120.7 123.6 122.3
7 Ohio St. 122.6 120.6 122.4 121.9
8 Oklahoma 121.4 120.0 121.1 120.8
9 Washington 120.6 118.4 120.9 119.9
10 Missouri 119.8 118.3 120.8 119.6
11 L S U 117.9 117.0 118.7 117.9
12 Iowa 118.0 116.1 117.6 117.2
13 Auburn 117.1 116.0 118.6 117.2
14 West Virginia 117.4 116.3 116.7 116.8
15 Utah 116.9 115.5 117.5 116.7
16 Washington St. 117.0 116.0 116.8 116.6
17 Penn St. 117.4 114.9 116.9 116.4
18 Texas 114.9 113.5 114.6 114.3
19 Central Florida 114.0 114.4 114.3 114.2
20 Stanford 114.8 112.5 115.0 114.1
21 Boston College 114.8 112.6 114.5 114.0
22 Texas A&M 114.0 113.0 114.5 113.8
23 Michigan St. 114.6 112.5 113.9 113.7
24 Miami 114.3 112.7 113.6 113.6
25 Georgia Tech 113.7 112.7 113.3 113.3
26 Fresno St. 113.3 112.7 113.5 113.2
27 Iowa State 113.8 112.2 113.4 113.1
28 N. Carolina St. 113.3 112.5 112.7 112.8
29 Florida 112.8 111.1 113.3 112.4
30 S. Carolina 112.0 110.8 111.5 111.4
31 Northwestern 111.8 110.3 111.8 111.3
32 Duke 112.2 110.2 111.4 111.3
33 Wisconsin 112.1 109.7 111.4 111.1
34 Boise St. 110.9 110.6 111.2 110.9
35 Utah St. 110.0 111.4 111.1 110.8
36 Pittsburgh 110.8 110.2 110.6 110.6
37 Kentucky 110.5 109.2 110.3 110.0
38 Arizona St. 110.5 109.2 110.1 109.9
39 Oklahoma St. 110.3 108.8 110.3 109.8
40 Syracuse 110.2 108.9 109.5 109.5
41 Purdue 110.0 108.2 109.6 109.3
42 Oregon 109.1 108.9 109.7 109.2
43 Texas Tech 108.8 107.3 107.6 107.9
44 California 108.3 106.2 108.3 107.6
45 Virginia 106.3 106.4 105.7 106.1
46 U S C 106.5 104.9 105.4 105.6
47 Florida St. 105.8 104.6 104.9 105.1
48 T C U 105.6 104.2 104.1 104.6
49 Temple 103.9 104.1 104.5 104.2
50 Kansas St. 104.5 103.2 103.6 103.8
51 Ohio U 103.0 104.2 103.9 103.7
52 Maryland 104.3 103.0 103.6 103.6
53 Ole Miss 103.7 103.2 104.0 103.6
54 Vanderbilt 103.5 103.4 103.7 103.6
55 Memphis 102.8 104.1 103.7 103.5
56 Nebraska 104.1 102.9 103.4 103.4
57 Army 103.1 103.8 103.3 103.4
58 Virginia Tech 104.2 102.8 103.2 103.4
59 Houston 102.7 103.2 102.9 102.9
60 Cincinnati 100.9 102.4 101.2 101.5
61 Arizona 101.8 100.4 102.1 101.4
62 Wake Forest 102.5 100.7 100.7 101.3
63 BYU 100.6 101.3 101.4 101.1
64 Baylor 101.8 100.1 101.3 101.1
65 Indiana 101.4 100.3 101.2 101.0
66 Tennessee 100.8 101.3 100.4 100.8
67 N. Carolina 100.2 99.4 100.0 99.9
68 Appalachian St. 98.6 100.6 100.2 99.8
69 U C L A 100.4 99.9 98.7 99.6
70 Minnesota 100.3 98.9 99.6 99.6
71 U A B 98.2 100.6 99.0 99.3
72 Buffalo 98.0 100.0 99.3 99.1
73 Colorado 98.4 98.6 98.5 98.5
74 Toledo 97.6 99.0 97.6 98.1
75 Northern Illinois 97.5 98.5 97.9 98.0
76 N. Texas 96.9 99.2 97.1 97.7
77 Florida Atlantic 97.0 98.2 97.5 97.6
78 Kansas 98.1 96.7 96.9 97.2
79 San Diego St. 96.8 96.9 97.3 97.0
80 Arkansas 98.0 95.6 97.0 96.9
81 Miami (O) 95.5 97.3 97.7 96.8
82 Nevada 96.4 96.5 96.4 96.4
83 Air Force 95.9 96.5 96.3 96.2
84 Eastern Michigan 95.4 96.9 95.9 96.1
85 Marshall 94.2 96.8 95.3 95.5
86 Wyoming 95.4 95.7 95.3 95.4
87 Middle Tennessee 93.6 95.5 94.7 94.6
88 SMU 94.8 94.4 94.0 94.4
89 Tulane 93.3 93.8 93.2 93.4
90 Troy 91.5 93.0 93.0 92.5
91 Louisiana Tech 91.5 93.5 92.0 92.3
92 South Florida 91.5 92.9 91.3 91.9
93 Florida Int’l. 89.6 93.2 90.3 91.0
94 Arkansas St. 89.9 91.4 91.5 90.9
95 Georgia Southern 89.9 91.7 90.5 90.7
96 Western Michigan 88.5 90.0 89.2 89.3
97 Tulsa 89.4 89.1 89.2 89.2
98 Navy 88.4 90.2 88.3 89.0
99 Rutgers 88.6 87.5 87.5 87.9
100 Illinois 88.5 87.9 87.2 87.9
101 Southern Miss. 85.9 89.0 86.5 87.2
102 Louisville 87.6 87.0 86.4 87.0
103 UL-Monroe 86.5 87.2 87.2 87.0
104 Akron 85.7 86.6 85.2 85.9
105 East Carolina 85.6 85.6 85.4 85.5
106 Oregon St. 86.2 84.2 85.2 85.2
107 New Mexico 84.4 85.3 83.7 84.5
108 Old Dominion 82.9 86.1 82.8 84.0
109 Louisiana 82.7 85.0 84.1 83.9
110 Colorado St. 83.2 83.9 82.9 83.3
111 W. Kentucky 81.6 84.4 82.0 82.7
112 Bowling Green 82.1 83.0 82.5 82.5
113 U N L V 81.6 82.5 81.5 81.9
114 Massachusetts 80.9 82.3 81.2 81.5
115 Central Michigan 80.5 82.6 80.7 81.3
116 Hawaii 80.5 82.1 79.7 80.8
117 Ball St. 80.1 82.2 79.8 80.7
118 Liberty 80.6 79.9 80.8 80.5
119 Charlotte 79.2 81.7 80.0 80.3
120 Kent St. 78.7 79.7 78.5 79.0
121 San Jose St. 78.9 79.9 78.1 79.0
122 Coastal Carolina 76.1 78.4 76.6 77.0
123 Georgia St. 76.2 77.9 76.3 76.8
124 Texas State 74.1 76.6 74.5 75.1
125 South Alabama 73.3 74.9 73.5 73.9
126 U T S A 72.4 76.2 72.6 73.8
127 N. Mexico St. 72.1 73.8 71.9 72.6
128 Connecticut 71.8 72.2 70.9 71.6
129 U T E P 70.6 73.7 70.6 71.6
130 Rice 67.8 70.5 66.8 68.4

 

PiRate Ratings By Conference

American Athletic Conference
East Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average AAC Overall
Central Florida 114.0 114.4 114.3 114.2 7-0 10-0
Temple 103.9 104.1 104.5 104.2 6-1 7-4
Cincinnati 100.9 102.4 101.2 101.5 5-2 9-2
South Florida 91.5 92.9 91.3 91.9 3-4 7-4
East Carolina 85.6 85.6 85.4 85.5 1-6 3-7
Connecticut 71.8 72.2 70.9 71.6 0-7 1-10
West Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average AAC Overall
Memphis 102.8 104.1 103.7 103.5 4-3 7-4
Houston 102.7 103.2 102.9 102.9 5-2 8-3
SMU 94.8 94.4 94.0 94.4 4-3 5-6
Tulane 93.3 93.8 93.2 93.4 4-3 5-6
Tulsa 89.4 89.1 89.2 89.2 1-6 2-9
Navy 88.4 90.2 88.3 89.0 2-5 3-8
AAC Averages 94.9 95.5 94.9 95.1
Atlantic Coast Conference
Atlantic Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average ACC Overall
Clemson 139.2 136.9 140.1 138.7 8-0 11-0
Boston College 114.8 112.6 114.5 114.0 4-3 7-4
N. Carolina St. 113.3 112.5 112.7 112.8 4-3 7-3
Syracuse 110.2 108.9 109.5 109.5 5-2 8-3
Florida St. 105.8 104.6 104.9 105.1 3-5 5-6
Wake Forest 102.5 100.7 100.7 101.3 2-5 5-6
Louisville 87.6 87.0 86.4 87.0 0-8 2-9
Coastal Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average ACC Overall
Miami 114.3 112.7 113.6 113.6 3-4 6-5
Georgia Tech 113.7 112.7 113.3 113.3 5-3 7-4
Duke 112.2 110.2 111.4 111.3 3-4 7-4
Pittsburgh 110.8 110.2 110.6 110.6 6-1 7-4
Virginia 106.3 106.4 105.7 106.1 4-3 7-4
Virginia Tech 104.2 102.8 103.2 103.4 3-4 4-6
N. Carolina 100.2 99.4 100.0 99.9 1-6 2-8
ACC Averages 109.7 108.4 109.1 109.0
Big 12 Conference
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average B12 Overall
Oklahoma 121.4 120.0 121.1 120.8 7-1 10-1
West Virginia 117.4 116.3 116.7 116.8 6-2 8-2
Texas 114.9 113.5 114.6 114.3 6-2 8-3
Iowa State 113.8 112.2 113.4 113.1 5-3 6-4
Oklahoma St. 110.3 108.8 110.3 109.8 3-5 6-5
Texas Tech 108.8 107.3 107.6 107.9 3-5 5-6
T C U 105.6 104.2 104.1 104.6 3-5 5-6
Kansas St. 104.5 103.2 103.6 103.8 3-5 5-6
Baylor 101.8 100.1 101.3 101.1 3-5 5-6
Kansas 98.1 96.7 96.9 97.2 1-7 3-8
Big 12 Averages 109.6 108.2 109.0 108.9
Big Ten Conference
East Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average BTen Overall
Michigan 129.1 127.9 129.8 128.9 8-0 10-1
Ohio St. 122.6 120.6 122.4 121.9 7-1 10-1
Penn St. 117.4 114.9 116.9 116.4 5-3 8-3
Michigan St. 114.6 112.5 113.9 113.7 4-4 6-5
Maryland 104.3 103.0 103.6 103.6 3-5 5-6
Indiana 101.4 100.3 101.2 101.0 2-6 5-6
Rutgers 88.6 87.5 87.5 87.9 0-8 1-10
West Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average BTen Overall
Iowa 118.0 116.1 117.6 117.2 4-4 7-4
Northwestern 111.8 110.3 111.8 111.3 7-1 7-4
Wisconsin 112.1 109.7 111.4 111.1 5-3 7-4
Purdue 110.0 108.2 109.6 109.3 4-4 5-6
Nebraska 104.1 102.9 103.4 103.4 3-5 4-7
Minnesota 100.3 98.9 99.6 99.6 2-6 5-6
Illinois 88.5 87.9 87.2 87.9 2-6 4-7
Big Ten Averages 108.8 107.2 108.3 108.1
Conference USA
East Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average CUSA Overall
Florida Atlantic 97.0 98.2 97.5 97.6 3-4 5-6
Marshall 94.2 96.8 95.3 95.5 5-2 7-3
Middle Tennessee 93.6 95.5 94.7 94.6 6-1 7-4
Florida Int’l. 89.6 93.2 90.3 91.0 6-1 8-3
Old Dominion 82.9 86.1 82.8 84.0 2-5 4-7
W. Kentucky 81.6 84.4 82.0 82.7 1-6 2-9
Charlotte 79.2 81.7 80.0 80.3 3-4 4-7
West Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average CUSA Overall
U A B 98.2 100.6 99.0 99.3 7-0 9-2
N. Texas 96.9 99.2 97.1 97.7 4-3 8-3
Louisiana Tech 91.5 93.5 92.0 92.3 5-2 7-4
Southern Miss. 85.9 89.0 86.5 87.2 3-4 5-5
U T S A 72.4 76.2 72.6 73.8 2-5 3-8
U T E P 70.6 73.7 70.6 71.6 1-6 1-10
Rice 67.8 70.5 66.8 68.4 0-7 1-11
CUSA Averages 85.8 88.5 86.2 86.8
FBS Independents
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average Conf. Overall
Notre Dame 126.9 124.6 126.2 125.9 x 11-0
Army 103.1 103.8 103.3 103.4 x 9-2
BYU 100.6 101.3 101.4 101.1 x 6-5
Massachusetts 80.9 82.3 81.2 81.5 x 4-8
Liberty 80.6 79.9 80.8 80.5 x 4-6
N. Mexico St. 72.1 73.8 71.9 72.6 x 3-8
Indep. Averages 94.0 94.3 94.1 94.1
Mid-American Conference
East Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average MAC Overall
Ohio U 103.0 104.2 103.9 103.7 5-2 7-4
Buffalo 98.0 100.0 99.3 99.1 6-1 9-2
Miami (O) 95.5 97.3 97.7 96.8 5-2 5-6
Akron 85.7 86.6 85.2 85.9 2-5 4-6
Bowling Green 82.1 83.0 82.5 82.5 2-5 3-8
Kent St. 78.7 79.7 78.5 79.0 1-6 2-9
West Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average MAC Overall
Toledo 97.6 99.0 97.6 98.1 4-3 6-5
Northern Illinois 97.5 98.5 97.9 98.0 6-1 7-4
Eastern Michigan 95.4 96.9 95.9 96.1 4-3 6-5
Western Michigan 88.5 90.0 89.2 89.3 4-3 6-5
Central Michigan 80.5 82.6 80.7 81.3 0-7 1-10
Ball St. 80.1 82.2 79.8 80.7 3-4 4-7
MAC Averages 90.2 91.7 90.7 90.9
Mountain West Conference
Mountain Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average MWC Overall
Boise St. 110.9 110.6 111.2 110.9 6-1 9-2
Utah St. 110.0 111.4 111.1 110.8 7-0 10-1
Air Force 95.9 96.5 96.3 96.2 2-5 4-7
Wyoming 95.4 95.7 95.3 95.4 3-4 5-6
New Mexico 84.4 85.3 83.7 84.5 1-6 3-8
Colorado St. 83.2 83.9 82.9 83.3 2-5 3-8
West Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average MWC Overall
Fresno St. 113.3 112.7 113.5 113.2 6-1 9-2
San Diego St. 96.8 96.9 97.3 97.0 4-3 7-4
Nevada 96.4 96.5 96.4 96.4 5-2 7-4
U N L V 81.6 82.5 81.5 81.9 1-6 3-8
Hawaii 80.5 82.1 79.7 80.8 4-3 7-5
San Jose St. 78.9 79.9 78.1 79.0 1-6 1-10
MWC Averages 93.9 94.5 93.9 94.1
Pac-12 Conference
North Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average P12 Overall
Washington 120.6 118.4 120.9 119.9 6-2 8-3
Washington St. 117.0 116.0 116.8 116.6 7-1 10-1
Stanford 114.8 112.5 115.0 114.1 4-3 6-4
Oregon 109.1 108.9 109.7 109.2 4-4 7-4
California 108.3 106.2 108.3 107.6 3-4 6-4
Oregon St. 86.2 84.2 85.2 85.2 1-7 2-9
South Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average P12 Overall
Utah 116.9 115.5 117.5 116.7 6-3 8-3
Arizona St. 110.5 109.2 110.1 109.9 4-4 6-5
U S C 106.5 104.9 105.4 105.6 4-5 5-6
Arizona 101.8 100.4 102.1 101.4 4-4 5-6
U C L A 100.4 99.9 98.7 99.6 3-5 3-8
Colorado 98.4 98.6 98.5 98.5 2-6 5-6
Pac-12 Averages 107.5 106.2 107.3 107.0
Southeastern Conference
East Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average SEC Overall
Georgia 127.8 125.3 129.0 127.3 7-1 10-1
Missouri 119.8 118.3 120.8 119.6 3-4 7-4
Florida 112.8 111.1 113.3 112.4 5-3 8-3
S. Carolina 112.0 110.8 111.5 111.4 4-4 6-4
Kentucky 110.5 109.2 110.3 110.0 5-3 8-3
Vanderbilt 103.5 103.4 103.7 103.6 2-5 5-6
Tennessee 100.8 101.3 100.4 100.8 2-5 5-6
West Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average SEC Overall
Alabama 141.0 139.3 142.6 141.0 7-0 11-0
Mississippi St. 122.5 120.7 123.6 122.3 3-4 7-4
L S U 117.9 117.0 118.7 117.9 5-2 9-2
Auburn 117.1 116.0 118.6 117.2 3-4 7-4
Texas A&M 114.0 113.0 114.5 113.8 4-3 7-4
Ole Miss 103.7 103.2 104.0 103.6 1-6 5-6
Arkansas 98.0 95.6 97.0 96.9 0-7 2-9
SEC Averages 114.4 113.2 114.8 114.1
Sunbelt Conference
East Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average SBC Overall
Appalachian St. 98.6 100.6 100.2 99.8 6-1 8-2
Troy 91.5 93.0 93.0 92.5 7-0 9-2
Georgia Southern 89.9 91.7 90.5 90.7 5-2 8-3
Coastal Carolina 76.1 78.4 76.6 77.0 2-5 5-6
Georgia St. 76.2 77.9 76.3 76.8 1-6 2-9
West Division
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average SBC Overall
Arkansas St. 89.9 91.4 91.5 90.9 4-3 7-4
UL-Monroe 86.5 87.2 87.2 87.0 4-3 6-5
Louisiana 82.7 85.0 84.1 83.9 4-3 6-5
Texas State 74.1 76.6 74.5 75.1 1-6 3-8
South Alabama 73.3 74.9 73.5 73.9 1-6 2-9
Sun Belt Averages 83.9 85.7 84.7 84.8

 

The Conferences Rated

# League PiRate Mean Bias Average
1 SEC 114.4 113.2 114.8 114.1
2 ACC 109.7 108.4 109.1 109.0
3 B12 109.6 108.2 109.0 108.9
4 BTEN 108.8 107.2 108.3 108.1
5 PAC12 107.5 106.2 107.3 107.0
6 AAC 94.9 95.5 94.9 95.1
7 IND 94.0 94.3 94.1 94.1
8 MWC 93.9 94.5 93.9 94.1
9 MAC 90.2 91.7 90.7 90.9
10 CUSA 85.8 88.5 86.2 86.8
11 SUN 83.9 85.7 84.7 84.8

Group of 5 Teams Still in Running for NY6 Bowl

  1. Central Florida
  2. Utah St.
  3. Boise St.
  4. Fresno St.
  5. Army

 

This Week’s PiRate Ratings Playoff and Bowl Projections

Bowl Conferences Team 1 Team 2
New Mexico MWC CUSA Utah St. North Texas
Cure AAC SBC Cincinnati Troy
Las Vegas MWC Pac-12 Boise St. Stanford
Camellia MAC SBC Northern Illinois Appalachian St.
New Orleans CUSA SBC Southern Miss. Louisiana
Boca Raton AAC CUSA SMU Florida Atlantic
Frisco AAC At-Large Memphis [BYU]
Gasparilla AAC CUSA South Florida UAB
Bahamas MAC CUSA Toledo Florida Int’l.
Idaho Potato MAC MWC Ohio U San Diego St.
Birmingham AAC SEC Tulane Vanderbilt
Armed Forces AAC Big 12 Houston [Army]
Dollar General MAC SBC Buffalo Georgia Southern
Hawaii CUSA MWC Louisiana Tech Hawaii
Heart of Dallas Big Ten CUSA [Arizona] Marshall
Quick Lane ACC Big Ten Boston College [Eastern Michigan]
Cactus Big 12 Pac-12 [Nevada] Arizona St.
Independence ACC SEC Virginia [Middle Tennessee]
Pinstripe ACC Big Ten Pittsburgh Wisconsin
Texas Big 12 SEC Oklahoma St. Texas A&M
Music City ACC/Big Ten SEC Syracuse Mississippi St.
Camping World ACC Big 12 North Carolina St. Texas Tech
Arizona MWC SBC Fresno St. Arkansas St.
Alamo Big 12 Pac-12 Iowa St. Utah
Belk ACC SEC Duke South Carolina
Peach At-large At-large West Virginia Florida
Military AAC ACC Temple Miami (Fla.)
Sun ACC Pac-12 Georgia Tech California
San Francisco Big Ten Pac-12 Michigan St. Oregon
Liberty Big 12 SEC TCU Missouri
Holiday Big Ten Pac-12 Iowa Washington
Gator ACC/Big Ten SEC Indiana Auburn
Outback Big Ten SEC Penn St. LSU
Fiesta At-large At-large Oklahoma Central Florida
Citrus ACC/Big Ten SEC Northwestern Kentucky
Rose Big Ten Pac-12 Ohio St. Washington St.
Sugar Big 12 SEC Texas Georgia
FBS PLAYOFFS
Cotton Alabama Michigan
Orange Clemson Notre Dame
Championship Game Alabama Clemson
Teams in [Brackets] are at-large selections

 

Key Games on TV This Week

All times given are Eastern Standard

American Athletic
UCF vs. USF: Central Florida easily disposed of Cincinnati, and now they must end the regular season with a swooning South Florida team that looks all out of kilter. USF was 7-0 and has now lost four consecutive games. The Bulls play one good half and one bad half in nearly every game, and if this repeats itself, UCF should win by more than 20 points. However, we suspect USF will play its best game of the year, so this game could be closer than expected, especially if USF’s better half is the first half.

Time: Friday, 4:00 PM
TV: ESPN

Memphis vs. Houston: The West Division race is still up for grabs, and it will go to the winner of the Houston-Memphis game at the Liberty Bowl. Houston may have a little bit of dissension after some issues on the sidelines against Tulane last week. Memphis is playing its best ball of the season, and the Tigers enjoy a modicum of home field advantage. This game could have some head coaching implications. Major Applewhite is not a huge favorite in Houston, and a loss plus a bowl loss could put his job in jeopardy. On the other side, Memphis coach Mike Norvell could be on the short list of multiple Power 5 Conference jobs.
Time: Friday, 12:00 PM
TV: ABC

Teams needing to win Saturday to become bowl eligible
Tulane vs. Navy, 12 Noon on ESPNU
SMU vs. Tulsa, 3:30 PM on CBSSN

Atlantic Coast
Clemson will play Pittsburgh in the ACC Championship Game, but there are other reasons to watch the Tigers this week. CU plays rival South Carolina, and this should give us all a chance to see Trevor Lawrence face a tough SEC defense. Somewhere down the road, Clemson might play for a National Championship against an even better SEC defense. In limited action earlier this year Lawrence was 5 of 9 for 99 yards and a touchdown against Texas A&M. South Carolina became bowl eligible against Chattanooga last night, and the Gamecocks added a late replacement game for their hurricane cancellation. They now play Akron next week, so there is a chance to get to 8-4 if they can pull off the big upset in this game. At 8-4, they could move up over Missouri and Auburn in the bowl pecking order.  Clemson vs. South Carolina

Time: Saturday, 7 PM
TV: ESPN

Teams needing to win Saturday to become bowl eligible
Florida State vs. Florida, 12 PM on ABC
Wake Forest vs. Duke, 12:30 PM on ACCn

Big 12
This conference has multiple games of importance in both the Playoff and bowl picture. Let’s start by explaining how the Conference Championship Game looks.

Oklahoma leads Texas and West Virginia by one game in the standings, but the Sooners have not clinched a spot in the Championship Game. Oklahoma plays at West Virginia this week. Texas visits Kansas.

If Oklahoma wins, they are the #1 seed, and West Virginia falls to 6-3 in the league. If Texas then beats Kansas, it will be a rematch of the Red River Rivalry in Arlington, Texas, as the Longhorns will be 7-2.

If West Virginia beats Oklahoma, and Texas beats Kansas, then the Sooners are eliminated, while West Virginia and Texas play in the title game.

If Texas loses to Kansas in a monumental upset, then no matter what happens in the OU-WVU game, the two will play again the next week for the Big 12 Championship.

Oklahoma needs to beat West Virginia and Texas and hope for Northwestern to pull off a big upset in the Big Ten Championship Game to have any chance at making the Playoffs. There is a minor chance that they could get in if Notre Dame lays an egg at the Coliseum against USC this week, but the way the Trojans are playing, don’t bet on it.

There are three more important games in the Big 12 this week.  Texas Tech plays Baylor at the Cowboys Stadium in Arlington. The winner earns a bowl bid, while the loser plays again next September. If the loser is Texas Tech, there’s a good chance that somebody other than Kliff KIngsbury will be coaching the Red Raiders in 2019. His job is not totally secure unless TTU wins this game and the bowl game.
Oklahoma State is bowl eligible thanks to the upset over West Virginia. The Cowboys close the season against TCU, and the 5-6 Horned Frogs need a win to become bowl eligible. TCU had several near misses, but their defense looked strong in stopping Baylor Saturday.
Kansas State might be playing its final game under the direction of legendary coach Bill Snyder. At 79, there’s a chance that Snyder will retire for good after this season. Kansas State is 5-6 and faces a tough finishing game against Iowa State in Ames. Iowa State coach Matt Campbell might also be leading his Cyclones on the field for the last time. He could easily be gobbled up by a bigger school looking to hire a new coach. Should Urban Meyer step down at Ohio State, a lot of insiders believe that Campbell would be on a very short list in Columbus.

Big 12 Key Game Schedule
Oklahoma vs. West Virginia
Time: Friday, 8 PM
TV; ESPN

Texas vs. Kansas
Time: Friday, 12 Noon
TV: FS1

Texas Tech vs. Baylor
Time: Saturday, 12 Noon
TV: FS1

TCU vs. Oklahoma St.
Time: Saturday, 8 PM
TV: Fox

Kansas St. vs. Iowa St.
Time: Saturday, 7 PM
TV: FS1

 

Big Ten
Michigan vs. Ohio State: It’s all about the big rivalry game at the Giant Horseshoe. Michigan and Ohio State will meet for the annual grudge match, and the winner wins the East and stays in contention for the Playoffs. The loser most likely would get the consolation prize of a Rose Bowl game. Michigan has not won in Columbus since 2000, which means they are zero for their last eight. In that span, they lose their most important game prior to this one, when they fell by a field goal in 2006. Expect a hard-fought effort on both sides, and the winner just may come out of this game at somewhat less than 100%, giving Northwestern a bit more chance to pull off a big upset in the Big Ten Championship Game.

Time: 12 Noon, Saturday
TV: Fox

Indiana and Purdue face off in Bloomington in a bowl qualification/elimination game. These may be the two best 5-6 teams in the nation, and the winner will be a tough 6-6 bowl team. Purdue may be playing with some distractions, as it appears as if Coach Jeff Brohm is halfway out the door and headed south to his Alma Mater in Louisville.

Time: 12 Noon, Saturday
TV: ESPN2

The Battle for Paul Bunyan’s Axe must fall in the favor of Minnesota against Wisconsin if the Golden Gophers are to nab the Big Ten’s ninth bowl bid. UM is 5-6 and extremely inconsistent, sometimes in the same half of games. Wisconsin is coming in for a landing with a stalled engine, so this game should be close and relatively low scoring.

Time: 3:30 PM, Saturday
TV: ESPN2

Maryland has not won a game since D.J. Durkin was officially re-instated and then fired. The Terrapins were 5-3 and looking like a bowl team before the news hit. They have dropped three games in a row and must win at Penn State to become bowl eligible. Penn State is winning on fumes in November. The Nittany Lions’ offense has disappeared. Still, PSU looks like a prohibitive favorite in this game, and they actually still hold a remote chance of earning the final New Year’s Six Bowl bid. A win would almost guarantee them no worse than the Citrus or Outback Bowl games on New Year’s Day. Maryland vs. Penn St.

Time: 3:30 PM, Saturday
TV: ABC

Conference USA
CUSA lost any chance of sending a team to the Peach Bowl when UAB coughed up the ball too many times and lost at Texas A&M after coming out even in total yardage. The Blazers have clinched a berth in the CUSA Championship Game, and their contest at Middle Tennessee this week will still be important, because the East Division race is still to be decided. If Middle beats UAB, and Marshall beats Florida International, then Middle and UAB would play again next week in the CUSA Championship Game. If FIU beats Marshall and UAB beats Middle Tennessee, then FIU wins the East Division race.

Middle Tennessee vs. UAB
Time: 3PM, Saturday
TV: Online only at ESPN3

Florida International vs. Marshall
Time: 12 Noon, Saturday
TV: Stadium and Facebook

Teams needing to win Saturday to become bowl eligible
Florida Atlantic vs. Charlotte
Time: Saturday, 6PM
TV: Stadium

Southern Mississippi vs. UTEP
Time: 3 PM, Saturday
TV: ESPN+

Independents
Notre Dame can become the first team to secure a spot in the Playoffs by topping USC in Los Angeles. USC will be playing for bowl eligibility as well as Coach Clay Helton’s job security. There might be a couple of NFL head coaches, including former coach Pete Carroll interested in taking the job if it becomes available, but we tend to believe Dino Babers might be the answer if this job opens up. As for the Irish, they are peaking at the right time. A double-digit win should leave Notre Dame in the 3-slot with a trip to the Orange Bowl to face Clemson the most likely scenario.  Notre Dame vs. USC

Time: 8 PM, Saturday
TV: ABC

 

Mid-American
The MAC Championship Game will pit Buffalo and Northern Illinois unless the unthinkable happens, and the Bulls lose to a weak Bowling Green team. Should Buffalo lose, then Miami of Ohio has a chance to do the unthinkable for the second time in three years if they beat Ball St. Miami began 2016 at 0-6 and then won six games in a row to come from last to first and make a bowl game. This year the Red Hawks were 1-4 and then 3-6 before winning back-to-back games over favored Ohio and Northern Illinois teams. Ohio can only win the division if Buffalo and Miami both lose.
In the West, Toledo, Eastern Michigan, and Western Michigan all have six wins and are bowl eligible, but there is little chance that all three will be invited to bowls. At least one of these three will miss out, so, it is important to get that seventh win this week.

Key MAC Games Schedule

Buffalo vs. Bowling Green
Time: 12 Noon, Friday
TV: ESPNU

Miami (O) vs. Ball St.
Time: 7PM, Tuesday
TV: ESPN+

Ohio U vs. Akron
Time: 12 Noon, Friday
TV: CBSSN
Note: Akron is technically still in the running for bowl eligibility at 4-6, but the Zips must beat Ohio and then South Carolina, so we have eliminated them from the bowl team possibles.

Eastern Michigan vs. Kent St.
Time: 12 Noon, Friday
TV: ESPN3 online

Western Michigan vs. Northern Illinois
Time: 7 PM, Tuesday
TV: ESPNU

Toledo vs. Central Michigan
Time: 12 Noon, Friday
TV: ESPN3 online
Mountain West
Fresno State clinched a spot in the conference championship game and will face the winner of the Boise State-Utah State game. Utah State is playing for more than just a spot in the MWC Championship Game. They are the team on-deck should Central Florida fall to USF or in the AAC Championship Game. The Aggies could sneak into the Fiesta Bowl with wins over Boise State and Fresno State and a loss by UCF.

Boise State-Utah St.
Time: 10:15 PM, Saturday
TV: ESPN

Wyoming is 5-6 and needs a win over New Mexico to become bowl eligible. Even at 6-6, the Cowboys have only a slim chance to earn a bowl bid.

Time: 2:30 PM, Saturday
TV: MWCn
Pac-12
Both division races will be decided this week. In the North Division race, it comes down to the Apple Cup game between Washington and Washington St. Washington State has not won the Apple Cup since Mike Leach’s first year in the Palouse. UW has won the last five years by better than three touchdowns per game. An impressive win over Washington combined with a blowout win in the Pac-12 Championship Game could bring the Playoffs into view for WSU if Northwestern won the Big Ten Championship Game and Oklahoma did not win the Big 12 Championship.  Washington State vs. Washington

Time: 8:30 PM, Friday
TV: Fox

The South Division comes down to Utah or Arizona State. Utah has already finished their conference slate, and their game against BYU is strictly for bragging rights in the Beehive State. The Arizona State-Arizona game is the important one. If the Sun Devils win, then Coach Herm Edwards will force all those pundits to eat crow when they called his hiring a farce. ASU would win the South with a win over their rival. Arizona has a lot to play for as well. The Wildcats are 5-6 and must win to become bowl eligible, where they most likely would be shipped east as an at-large team for a bowl needing to fill a spot.

Arizona-Arizona State
Time: 3:30 PM, Saturday
TV: FS1

Colorado was 5-0, and now the Buffaloes are 5-6. Coach Mike MacIntyre is on a hot seat in snowy Boulder, and CU must venture to smoky Berkeley to face a hot Cal team that got an unexpected week off last week. CU better hope that Cal is looking forward to the Stanford makeup game the following week and overlooks the Buffs, because CU hasn’t got much left in the tank at this point.  Colorado vs. California

Time: 7PM, Saturday
TV: Pac-12
Southeastern
Alabama and Georgia will meet in the next chapter of greatness in the SEC Championship Game next week, but both teams must not overlook their arch-rivals this week, both of whom come into this game in peak performance.

Alabama should have little problem with Auburn, but the Tide showed some vulnerabilities that Auburn, and then Georgia, and possibly Clemson can attack. By saying “vulnerabilities,” we refer to something similar to the 1927 New York Yankees being a little weak at third base with Jumping Joe Dugan. Auburn last beat Alabama in Tuscaloosa in 2010, but that team has Cam Newton at quarterback and still only won by a point.

Alabama vs. Auburn
Time: 3:30 PM, Saturday
TV: CBS

Georgia cannot afford a loss to Georgia Tech, as the Bulldogs might not make the playoffs even if they subsequently beat Alabama in the SEC Championship Game. Tech has made a big turnaround since starting the season 1-3. Quarterback TaQuon Marshall has a chance to reach 1,000 rushing yards with a good game here and another in the bowl game.

Georgia vs. Georgia Tech
Time: 12 Noon, Saturday
TV: SECn

Vanderbilt and Tennessee face off in Nashville with a bowl game going to the winner and the end of the line coming for the loser. Tennessee needs quarterback Jarrett Guarantano to return from a head and neck injury suffered Saturday against Missouri. Guarantano is worth more than a touchdown to the Vols compared to backup Keller Chryst. The Vols also have concerns at wideout where Marquez Callaway also was injured against Missouri. Vanderbilt has some injury concerns at quarterback as well, but it is their number two guy that will probably miss this game. Should anything happen to Kyle Shurmur, then the Commodores would be forced to put a true freshman with zero game experience into the most important game of their season. Vandy coach Derek Mason could receive some feelers from other job openings if he can guide the Commodores to their second bowl in three years. He was courted by California last year, and a possible opening or two in the Pac-12 could attract him.  Tennessee vs. Vanderbilt
Time: 4 PM, Saturday
TV: SECn

Sun Belt
Half of the league still holds SBC Championship Game aspirations. In the East, Troy plays Appalachian State, and the winner takes the division title and hosts the inaugural SBC Championship Game. The Mountaineers host this game and have not lost a conference game at home in more than three years. These two teams did not play each other last year when they tied for first, and the last two times they played, the games came down to the final minute.

Time: 2:30 PM, Saturday
TV: ESPN+

The West Division is currently log-jammed with three teams tied for first at 4-3. Louisiana holds the trump card in this three-way race. If the Ragin’ Cajuns defeat rival UL-Monroe, they will win the division title and play in the league title game. If UL-Monroe beats Louisiana, then Arkansas State would get in if the Red Wolves beat Texas State. If UL-Monroe wins and Arkansas State loses, then the Warhawks would win the division title outright.
Louisiana vs. UL-Monroe
Time: 3 PM ,Saturday
TV: ESPN+

Arkansas State vs. Texas State
Time: 4PM, Saturday
TV: ESPN3

 

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