The Daily Player 12: The Divergence Begins

Published on 18-Nov-2014 by Alan Adamsson

Football - NCAA    NCAA Football Daily Update

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The Daily Player 12: The Divergence Begins

Humans wielding power being what it always is, this was bound to happen.

Looks like the College Football Playoff Selection Committee can't resist wallowing in its own wisdom.

Perhaps factions are forming, too:

  • Former coaches in one corner, consisting of Barry Alvarez, Tom Osborne, and Tyrone Willingham;
  • ADs in another, comprised of Jeff Long, Oliver Luck, Pat Haden, and Jeff Radakovich;
  • Scholars knowingly caressing their own chins, like Lt Gen Mike Gould and Condoleezza Rice;
  • College sports execs saying they've been there and done that, like Mike Tranghese and Tom Jernstedt; and
  • A former sportswriter who probably has mustard stains on his shirt, namely Steve Wieberg.

One can only imagine the rituals they've devised to bond and form consensus.

Here's the Committee's Top 12 for this week:

1. Alabama   3. Florida State xxxx
2. Oregon   4. Mississippi State
5. TCU   9. UCLA
6. Ohio State 10. Georgia
7. Baylor 11. Michigan State
8. Mississippi 12. Kansas State

OK, Alabama rising to No 1 was anticipated. This could be when the minions were summoned to bring in the Dartboard of Fate, and lots were drawn to determine who got to do the throwing.

After listening to CFB Chairman Jeff Long's rationale for the Featured Four's order, what else could they have been doing? Get this excerpt from his comments, pointed directly at Florida State:

We look at their body of work. We look at the games, how they played them, whether they've controlled the games. You know, they've had a number of come-from-behind victories ...

What the hell does that mean? That fourth-quarter points don't count as much as first-quarter points? That in-game adjustments are trivial? That team conditioning and depth isn't a factor?

Dudes and dudette, you're straying.

The Daily Player 12 is based on taking the Selection Committee at its word. More than its word, in fact. No opinions, just data:

  • Until a conference title is clinched, division leaders will be considered as first-place teams.
  • Power Five scores in non-conference games will be measured on a win-loss basis.
  • Head-to-head results will be measured separately on a win-loss basis.
  • Bookies are the only evaluators who put their dosh where their conclusions are. Bovada championship odds will be factored into the rankings.
  • Geeks have an unbiased place in this process; Anderson-Hester computer rankings are easily understandable and will be included.

As opposed to some organizations out there, the key is what one does with the data. Like assigning simple, graded values and letting it speak for itself.

  • Standings matter. The Big XII has ten teams; no other conference has a division that large, so a first-place team will get 10 points, a second-place team will get 9 points, and so forth. If a team is tied for a position, it will be considered to hold the higher position. A conference champion will be awarded 5 bonus points.
  • Non-con Power Five wins will be worth 3 points; those losses will be worth 1 point.
  • Notre Dame's schedule will be measured against ACC teams.
  • If BYU ever becomes a factor, we'll figure it out then.
  • Head-to-head conference wins will be worth 3 points; those losses will be worth -1 point.
  • Bovada and Geek rankings will be based on a 25-point scale and factored down by a constant of 0.3; thus, a first-place position will be worth (25 x 0.3) = 7.5 points, second place for either will be worth (24 x 0.3) = 7.2 points, and so on. If a team is tied for a position, it will be considered to hold the higher position.

This results in The Daily Player 12:

      Stdg NC-P5   H-H   Bov   Geek   Total
  1. Florida St ...     10     6       6     6.9      7.2     36.1
  2. Alabama ...     10     3      8     7.5      7.5     36.0
  3. Oregon ...     10     3      8     7.5      6.9     35.4
  4. TCU ...     10     3      8     6.9      6.3     34.2
  5. Miss St ...       9          5     6.3      6.6     26.9
  6. Auburn ...       7     3      7     4.5      4.8     26.3
  7. UCLA ...       9     6      1     3.9      6.0     25.9
  8. Ohio St ...     10     1      3     6.0      5.7     25.7
  9. Georgia ...       9     1      6     4.5      5.1     25.6
10. Arizona St ...       9     3      1     5.4      4.2     22.6
11. Mississippi ...       8          1     5.4      5.4     19.8
12. Baylor ...       9          5     5.7          19.7

Random thoughts:

  • Screw game control. The Daily Player 12 deals in specifics. Like final scores. As it should be.
  • This list currently has four clear-cut leaders. It's notable that they're also the Featured Four on Bovada's money line. Significant.
  • Georgia and UCLA could be the strong movers when conference title games roll around, if those two are still standing by then.
  • Baylor's still the ghost team. For the record, Anderson-Hester has them ranked No 14, with their strength of schedule rated as No 74. This weekend's tilt with Oklahoma State might now have an extra edge for the Cowboys, which is all the Bears need. Will Mike Gundy be auditioning for the Florida job?