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16 Oct 2013

FEI Week 7: Connected

by Brian Fremeau

We have reached the midpoint of the regular season, the week in which we finally shed the preseason projected data from the ratings and get to share a boatload of supplemental data. Our preseason projection of Alabama and Oregon as the top contenders for the BCS national championship game looks good, as these teams are 1-2 in the FEI ratings. But there are plenty of surprises after that.

Stanford is the only other team projected in the top 10 that still remains ranked in the top 10. Strong early season performances from multiple Pac-12 teams -– Utah, UCLA, Washington -– have vaulted each from outside the top 40 at the start of the year to inside the top 20 this week. Miami, Baylor, BYU, and Central Florida have all leaped forward as well. Projected top-10 teams like Florida, Texas, and Notre Dame all currently sit outside of the top 25.

Among all FBS teams, the average FEI ranking change from the preseason to date is 19.4 ranking spots. 20.0 percent of all teams (and 36 percent of the FEI top 25) currently rank within five positions of their original projected rank. 29.6 percent of all teams (and 32.0 percent of the FEI top 25) have had a ranking change of at least 25 positions since the preseason.

FEI is significantly influenced by opponent adjustments, and the meaningfulness of games against highly-ranked teams in the formula has produced a few eyebrow-raising results. Utah currently sits at No. 4 in FEI, much higher than the computer rating consensus compiled by Kenneth Massey. As with the ratings of Georgia (No. 10) and Washington (No. 14), Utah's two losses aren’t an albatross in FEI. Utah has played four games against FEI top-15 teams and won two of them. They lost twice by a combined 10 points to Oregon State and UCLA. In both of those games, the Utes’ turnover value lost exceeded the scoring margin of the game.

That turnover value is captured in the game splits data I collect and publish on my site. As I discussed in the preseason FEI primer, I also calculate Alternate FEI ratings that neutralize factors like turnovers, special teams, and field position. If turnover value was neutralized for all FBS games, the Utes would be undefeated with four wins over top-15 teams. Utah is No.1 in turnover-neutral FEI.

For the most part, the Alternate FEI ratings don’t differ dramatically from the regular FEI ratings. Miami gets a bump up to No. 2 in field position neutral FEI. Florida State gets a bump up to No. 5 in special teams neutral FEI. Stanford has been dominant with field position this season. By neutralizing field position, the Cardinal would rank 11th instead of 5th. I haven’t done enough testing with Alternate FEI ratings with regard to their value in midseason game projections. I did find that they were useful in my preseason projection model.

I actually find the adjusted records just as interesting as the rankings. Missouri would be 3-2 instead of 5-0 if not for turnover value generated. Ohio State would be 3-2 instead of 5-0 if not for special teams. Georgia (4-2) would be 5-1 if not for turnovers, and 3-3 if not for field position.

In addition to the Alternate FEI ratings, I also recently published updated Points Per Drive tables and Yards Per Stop tables on my site. Those are just supplemental stats that don’t fit on the stat pages here at Football Outsiders. The data featured at Football Outsiders are the offense, defense, special teams and field position tables that form the building blocks of FEI and the supporting metrics for those ratings. I’ve provided the top-5 rankings in each category below with links to the full 125 tables for each category. As with the overall FEI ratings, opponent adjustments in the offensive and defensive FEI ratings are quite significant.

Offensive FEI Ratings

OFEI OFEI
Rk
Team FBS
Rec
FEI
Rk
OE OE
Rk
FD FD
Rk
AY AY
Rk
Ex Ex
Rk
Me Me
Rk
Va Va
Rk
OSOS
Pvs
Rk OSOS
Fut
Rk
.972 1 Georgia 4-2 10 .501 17 .667 62 .541 24 .160 35 .213 21 .535 14 .065 2 .285 56
.971 2 Texas A&M 4-1 16 1.027 3 .868 3 .701 3 .226 12 .170 39 .667 2 .360 59 .190 36
.923 3 Indiana 2-3 46 .452 20 .737 26 .517 38 .175 25 .175 35 .453 40 .113 7 .323 65
.856 4 Utah 3-2 4 .019 60 .603 100 .448 69 .162 33 .147 63 .438 49 .044 1 .127 22
.722 5 Baylor 4-0 12 1.615 1 .933 1 .756 1 .422 1 .089 101 .667 4 .678 111 .136 26

Offensive FEI Ratings for all 125 FBS teams

Defensive FEI Ratings

DFEI DFEI
Rk
Team FBS
Rec
FEI
Rk
DE DE
Rk
FD FD
Rk
AY AY
Rk
Ex Ex
Rk
Me Me
Rk
Va Va
Rk
DSOS
Pvs
Rk DSOS
Fut
Rk
-.885 1 Virginia Tech 5-1 21 -.631 7 .529 8 .292 4 .059 14 .103 26 .197 3 .264 33 .211 37
-.827 2 UCLA 5-0 6 -.557 9 .627 38 .353 20 .034 2 .153 70 .250 12 .232 24 .054 3
-.818 3 Missouri 5-0 3 -.110 53 .672 61 .434 47 .098 43 .164 80 .424 84 .058 2 .111 16
-.761 4 Stanford 5-1 5 -.275 28 .587 23 .379 25 .079 31 .222 114 .322 34 .063 3 .117 17
-.714 5 Clemson 5-0 8 -.456 15 .516 6 .306 8 .125 68 .063 6 .217 5 .214 20 .280 49

Defensive FEI Ratings for all 125 FBS teams

Special Teams Efficiency Ratings

STE STE
Rk
Team FBS
Rec
FEI
Rk
FGE FGE
Rk
PRE PRE
Rk
KRE KRE
Rk
PE PE
Rk
KE KE
Rk
OFGE OFGE
Rk
6.895 1 Stanford 5-1 5 .245 50 .235 8 .629 1 -.176 35 -.326 17 .325 87
6.770 2 Alabama 6-0 2 .601 18 .253 5 .195 5 -.303 17 -.483 3 1.258 124
6.372 3 Minnesota 3-2 91 .274 48 .164 16 .333 3 -.441 6 -.320 18 -.156 35
4.347 4 Ohio State 5-0 20 .711 12 .209 11 .010 20 -.282 20 -.195 60 .253 76
4.199 5 Vanderbilt 2-3 65 1.640 1 -.005 42 -.338 111 -.346 13 -.360 11 .110 56

Special Teams Efficiency Ratings for all 125 FBS teams

Field Position Ratings

FPA FPA
Rk
Team FBS
Rec
FEI
Rk
SFP SFP
Rk
Opp
SFP
Opp
SFP
Rk
SFP
Del
SFP
Del
Rk
ShF ShF
Rk
Opp
ShF
Opp
ShF
Rk
LoF LoF
Rk
Opp
LoF
Opp
LoF
Rk
.617 1 Stanford 5-1 5 63.5 3 76.0 4 12.5 2 .186 7 .063 23 .153 22 .333 6
.614 2 Alabama 6-0 2 70.1 51 77.5 2 7.4 9 .107 64 .034 3 .232 76 .407 1
.578 3 Michigan State 4-1 22 66.7 12 75.0 8 8.3 6 .102 72 .075 34 .153 23 .269 22
.575 4 Oregon 5-0 1 62.6 1 71.3 51 8.7 5 .250 1 .068 27 .161 27 .136 115
.573 5 Missouri 5-0 3 67.4 22 74.3 16 6.9 10 .161 19 .033 2 .125 9 .197 78

Field Position Ratings for all 125 FBS teams

FEI Week 7 Top 25

The Fremeau Efficiency Index (FEI) rewards playing well against good teams, win or lose, and punishes losing to poor teams more harshly than it rewards defeating poor teams. FEI is drive-based and it is specifically engineered to measure the college game. FEI is the opponent-adjusted value of Game Efficiency (GE), a measurement of the success rate of a team scoring and preventing opponent scoring throughout the non-garbage-time possessions of a game. FEI represents a team's efficiency value over average.

Other definitions:

  • SOS Pvs: Strength of schedule based on the likelihood of an elite team going undefeated against the given team's schedule to date.
  • SOS Fut: Strength of schedule based on the likelihood of an elite team going undefeated against the given team's remaining schedule.
  • FBS MW: Mean Wins, the average number of games a team with the given FEI rating would be expected to win against its entire schedule.
  • FBS RMW: Remaining Mean Wins, the average number of games a team with the given FEI rating would be expected to win against its remaining schedule.
  • OFEI: Offensive FEI, the opponent-adjusted efficiency of the given team's offense.
  • DFEI: Defensive FEI, the opponent-adjusted efficiency of the given team's defense.
  • STE: Special Teams Efficiency, the composite efficiency of the given team's special teams units - field goals, punt returns, kickoff returns, punts, and kickoffs.
  • FPA: Field Position Advantage, the share of the value of total starting field position earned by each team against its opponents.

These FEI ratings are a function of results of games played through October 12th. The ratings for all FBS teams can be found here. Program FEI (five-year weighted) ratings and other supplemental drive-based data can be found here.

Rk Team FBS
Rec
FEI LW GE GE
Rk
SOS
Pvs
Rk SOS
Fut
Rk FBS
MW
FBS
RMW
OFEI Rk DFEI Rk STE Rk FPA Rk
1 Oregon 5-0 .303 6 .453 2 .565 69 .136 8 9.2 4.6 .532 11 -.569 11 3.622 10 .575 4
2 Alabama 6-0 .299 3 .320 5 .413 38 .516 62 9.8 4.5 .343 24 -.668 7 6.770 2 .614 2
3 Missouri 5-0 .288 4 .218 10 .433 43 .406 43 9.5 5.2 .057 57 -.818 3 .134 59 .573 5
4 Utah 3-2 .275 16 .011 62 .214 5 .192 14 8.3 4.7 .856 4 -.181 47 .986 45 .478 83
5 Stanford 5-1 .260 1 .212 11 .292 15 .164 12 9.1 4.3 .205 35 -.761 4 6.895 1 .617 1
6 UCLA 5-0 .254 5 .272 7 .367 29 .079 1 8.8 4.7 .229 34 -.827 2 2.529 16 .542 25
7 Miami 4-0 .249 9 .291 6 .813 108 .361 36 9.6 5.9 .696 7 -.368 22 -.377 68 .546 21
8 Clemson 5-0 .244 12 .210 12 .605 77 .410 44 8.3 3.9 .356 20 -.714 5 -.382 69 .531 36
9 Florida State 4-0 .244 13 .455 1 .887 120 .262 21 9.3 5.5 .426 16 -.479 14 -.148 64 .537 32
10 Georgia 4-2 .243 10 .027 53 .169 2 .525 63 8.2 4.1 .972 1 -.085 57 .291 55 .452 108
11 LSU 6-1 .230 7 .205 13 .364 28 .215 17 8.2 2.6 .709 6 -.250 43 1.091 42 .514 52
12 Baylor 4-0 .223 17 .450 4 .832 109 .401 42 9.3 5.6 .722 5 -.251 42 -4.144 119 .530 38
Rk Team FBS
Rec
FEI LW GE GE
Rk
SOS
Pvs
Rk SOS
Fut
Rk FBS
MW
FBS
RMW
OFEI Rk DFEI Rk STE Rk FPA Rk
13 BYU 4-2 .207 22 .124 27 .444 47 .483 57 8.5 3.8 .071 56 -.672 6 1.213 36 .537 31
14 Washington 3-2 .201 11 .071 42 .221 6 .230 19 7.3 4.2 .656 8 -.324 33 -1.320 91 .472 88
15 Oregon State 5-0 .201 45 .172 17 .419 40 .125 6 7.6 3.5 .460 14 -.260 40 .638 51 .545 23
16 Texas A&M 4-1 .194 19 .142 21 .379 34 .202 15 7.8 4.1 .971 2 .419 107 2.365 20 .555 17
17 South Carolina 5-1 .188 42 .137 22 .342 21 .238 20 7.6 3.1 .481 13 -.471 15 -2.774 109 .462 98
18 Louisville 5-0 .183 8 .452 3 .925 124 .716 85 10.0 5.1 .173 41 -.548 12 4.188 6 .543 24
19 Central Florida 4-1 .178 32 .233 9 .627 80 .569 66 9.9 6.0 .604 9 -.036 64 3.329 13 .546 22
20 Ohio State 5-0 .177 14 .239 8 .752 101 .602 72 9.1 4.7 .322 26 -.341 27 4.347 4 .558 15
21 Virginia Tech 5-1 .168 25 .040 51 .278 13 .468 55 7.7 3.7 .073 55 -.885 1 -2.466 107 .508 57
22 Michigan State 4-1 .160 28 .133 24 .589 72 .622 76 8.6 4.7 .034 60 -.638 9 .039 60 .578 3
23 Oklahoma State 3-1 .147 29 .108 33 .887 119 .309 27 7.7 4.4 .202 36 -.488 13 -1.996 98 .510 55
24 Texas Tech 5-0 .145 21 .192 15 .861 114 .345 33 7.8 3.5 .345 23 -.328 29 -.942 84 .504 62
25 Mississippi 2-3 .140 33 -.030 74 .174 3 .371 37 6.5 4.2 .086 54 -.338 28 1.113 40 .474 86

Posted by: Brian Fremeau on 16 Oct 2013

3 comments, Last at 17 Oct 2013, 1:59pm by Kal

Comments

1
by Kal :: Wed, 10/16/2013 - 8:28pm

So looking at the F/+, I'm a bit confused. S+P ranks Alabama 6th and FEI ranks them second. Oregon is ranked 5th by S+P and 1st in FEI. How is it that Alabama is higher than Oregon in F/+? I know that the top four teams are right now neck and neck, so it's not like one is better than another; this is just odd math.

Is it because F/+ effectively double-counts the special teams component of FEI?

2
by Brian Fremeau :: Wed, 10/16/2013 - 8:47pm

It isn't double-counted. F/+ is a function of the separate offensive and defensive ratings of our two systems, plus the special teams ratings.

3
by Kal :: Thu, 10/17/2013 - 1:59pm

Huh. Even more confused then. I'm guessing some odd version of Simpson's paradox in action.