Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

2009 OVERALL COLLEGE FOOTBALL RATINGS

through games of 1/7/10

Beginning with Football Outsiders Almanac 2009, Brian Fremeau and Bill Connelly, originators of Football Outsiders' two statistical approaches -- FEI and S&P+, respectively -- began to create a combined ranking that would serve as Football Outsiders' 'official' college football rankings.

The Fremeau Efficiency Index (FEI) considers each of the nearly 20,000 possessions every season in major college football. All drives are filtered to eliminate first-half clock-kills and end-of-game garbage drives and scores. A scoring rate analysis of the remaining possessions then determines the baseline possession efficiency expectations against which each team is measured. A team is rewarded for playing well against good teams, win or lose, and is punished more severely for playing poorly against bad teams than it is rewarded for playing well against bad teams.

The S&P+ Ratings are a college football ratings system derived from both play-by-play and drive data from all 800+ of a season's FBS college football games (and 140,000+ plays). There are four key components to the S&P+:

  • Success Rate: A common Football Outsiders tool used to measure efficiency by determining whether every play of a given game was successful or not. The terms of success in college football: 50 percent of necessary yardage on first down, 70 percent on second down, and 100 percent on third and fourth down.
  • EqPts Per Play (PPP): An explosiveness measure derived from determining the point value of every yard line (based on the expected number of points an offense could expect to score from that yard line) and, therefore, every play of a given game.
  • Drive Efficiency: As of February 2013, S&P+ also includes a drive-based aspect based on the field position a team creates and its average success at scoring or preventing the points expected based on that field position.
  • Opponent adjustments: Success Rate and PPP combine to form S&P, an OPS-like measure for football. Then each team's S&P output for a given category (Rushing/Passing on either Standard Downs or Passing Downs) is compared to the expected output based upon their opponents and their opponents' opponents. This is a schedule-based adjustment designed to reward tougher schedules and punish weaker ones.

Special Teams F/+ has been added to the overall F/+ formula starting with 2007. It is a direct offshoot of the Special Teams Efficiency rating found on the FEI page. To read about the rationale behind this adjustment, go here. For years before 2007, an even combination of S&P+ and FEI is used.

F/+ Rk Team Record F/+ Off
F/+
Rk Def
F/+
Rk Spec.
Tms
F/+
Rk S&P+ Rk FEI Rk
1 Alabama 14-0 +41.2% +19.7% 1 +21.0% 6 +0.5% 49 284.4 2 0.342 1
2 Florida 13-1 +40.8% +14.2% 7 +23.9% 2 +2.7% 11 290.9 1 0.290 2
3 Texas 13-1 +37.9% +12.9% 9 +21.4% 5 +3.6% 5 280.5 3 0.231 6
4 TCU 12-1 +32.1% +11.4% 12 +16.5% 10 +4.2% 3 266.8 7 0.215 8
5 Virginia Tech 10-3 +31.5% +11.5% 11 +17.1% 8 +2.9% 8 255.4 9 0.255 3
6 Penn State 11-2 +30.3% +8.2% 24 +23.8% 3 -1.7% 97 275.4 4 0.194 12
7 Boise State 14-0 +28.5% +11.0% 14 +14.7% 14 +2.8% 10 268.2 6 0.180 15
8 Ohio State 11-2 +27.8% +9.6% 19 +16.7% 9 +1.5% 29 251.7 10 0.239 4
9 Oklahoma 8-5 +27.3% +1.5% 55 +25.2% 1 +0.6% 48 269.0 5 0.157 21
10 Nebraska 10-4 +25.5% +0.4% 60 +21.8% 4 +3.3% 6 260.0 8 0.160 19
11 Iowa 11-2 +25.1% +4.3% 43 +18.7% 7 +2.1% 17 248.2 11 0.224 7
12 Pittsburgh 10-3 +21.0% +12.4% 10 +8.5% 25 +0.0% 58 240.5 13 0.199 11
13 Clemson 9-5 +20.2% +6.3% 28 +10.1% 18 +3.9% 4 230.1 26 0.189 13
14 Oregon 10-3 +20.2% +10.3% 18 +9.5% 22 +0.3% 52 230.5 24 0.202 9
15 Wisconsin 10-3 +20.0% +10.3% 17 +9.7% 21 0.0% 60 237.2 16 0.142 22
16 Texas Tech 9-4 +18.6% +10.4% 16 +8.6% 24 -0.4% 70 236.8 18 0.163 18
17 Miami 9-4 +17.8% +8.5% 23 +7.8% 26 +1.5% 28 225.5 31 0.202 9
18 Cincinnati 12-1 +17.5% +17.6% 4 -1.0% 62 +1.0% 40 230.8 22 0.181 14
19 Ole Miss 9-4 +16.9% +3.9% 45 +11.8% 16 +1.2% 33 231.1 21 0.125 27
20 Oregon State 8-5 +16.7% +11.1% 13 +3.7% 37 +2.0% 19 245.3 12 0.125 27
F/+ Rk Team Record F/+ Off
F/+
Rk Def
F/+
Rk Spec.
Tms
F/+
Rk S&P+ Rk FEI Rk
21 Georgia Tech 11-3 +15.8% +14.4% 6 +0.6% 53 +0.8% 44 222.1 35 0.236 5
22 BYU 11-2 +15.6% +8.9% 22 +6.8% 30 -0.1% 62 239.1 14 0.099 35
23 Notre Dame 6-6 +15.0% +14.7% 5 +0.7% 51 -0.4% 69 230.3 25 0.112 31
24 Tennessee 7-6 +14.5% +6.1% 30 +9.7% 20 -1.3% 86 233.6 19 0.093 38
25 Arkansas 8-5 +14.5% +9.0% 21 +4.8% 34 +0.6% 47 229.2 27 0.130 26
26 Air Force 8-5 +14.4% -1.5% 70 +15.2% 12 +0.7% 45 238.4 15 0.072 40
27 LSU 9-4 +13.7% +0.2% 63 +9.2% 23 +4.3% 2 217.0 44 0.165 17
28 USC 9-4 +13.4% +5.8% 32 +7.7% 27 -0.2% 64 224.4 32 0.141 23
29 Utah 10-3 +12.6% +3.8% 46 +7.4% 29 +1.4% 31 237.2 17 0.043 49
30 Boston College 8-5 +12.4% -2.6% 74 +15.0% 13 +0.1% 56 223.2 33 0.101 34
31 Stanford 8-5 +11.9% +18.0% 3 -10.7% 103 +4.6% 1 213.3 51 0.160 19
32 Arizona 8-5 +11.7% +2.9% 48 +7.6% 28 +1.2% 35 221.3 37 0.117 29
33 Oklahoma State 9-4 +11.7% -0.8% 66 +11.3% 17 +1.1% 36 227.5 29 0.066 42
34 Connecticut 8-5 +11.4% +9.5% 20 -0.6% 58 +2.5% 13 221.2 38 0.131 25
35 Houston 10-4 +11.3% +18.8% 2 -8.4% 92 +0.8% 43 227.5 28 0.075 39
36 North Carolina 8-5 +11.2% -2.7% 75 +15.3% 11 -1.4% 89 218.9 41 0.179 16
37 Navy 10-4 +10.4% +5.5% 33 +4.7% 35 +0.2% 53 217.6 42 0.094 37
38 Central Michigan 12-2 +10.4% +6.6% 26 +3.0% 40 +0.7% 46 225.6 30 0.097 36
39 Auburn 8-5 +9.8% +6.3% 29 +4.5% 36 -1.0% 82 222.9 34 0.111 32
40 Georgia 8-5 +9.8% +5.0% 36 +3.1% 39 +1.6% 25 213.5 50 0.117 29
F/+ Rk Team Record F/+ Off
F/+
Rk Def
F/+
Rk Spec.
Tms
F/+
Rk S&P+ Rk FEI Rk
41 South Carolina 7-6 +9.7% -2.4% 73 +13.8% 15 -1.7% 94 230.6 23 0.059 44
42 Florida State 7-6 +9.0% +13.3% 8 -7.6% 90 +3.2% 7 220.3 39 0.133 24
43 Wake Forest 5-7 +7.1% +10.4% 15 -1.5% 65 -1.7% 97 221.8 36 0.049 46
44 Purdue 5-7 +6.3% +1.8% 53 +6.2% 31 -1.7% 93 217.3 43 0.045 48
45 West Virginia 9-4 +6.0% +4.8% 37 +2.1% 44 -1.0% 83 205.2 62 0.110 33
46 Michigan State 6-7 +5.4% +6.5% 27 -2.1% 68 +1.0% 41 208.9 53 0.070 41
47 Texas A&M 6-7 +5.1% +5.9% 31 +2.0% 45 -2.8% 110 231.3 20 -0.023 67
48 East Carolina 9-5 +4.4% -1.0% 68 +3.5% 38 +1.9% 20 214.6 49 0.030 54
49 Kansas 5-7 +3.5% +4.8% 38 -1.0% 61 -0.4% 71 216.0 46 -0.006 62
50 Missouri 8-5 +3.2% +4.7% 40 -1.5% 64 +0.1% 57 215.9 47 0.000 61
51 Northwestern 8-5 +3.0% +2.5% 50 +2.2% 43 -1.7% 95 206.4 59 0.047 47
52 Temple 9-4 +2.2% +0.7% 58 -0.4% 56 +1.9% 22 206.0 60 0.021 55
53 Kentucky 7-6 +2.1% +0.2% 62 -0.7% 59 +2.5% 14 201.9 67 0.052 45
54 Arizona State 4-8 +1.1% -7.8% 93 +9.8% 19 -0.9% 80 207.4 56 0.007 59
55 Mississippi State 5-7 +1.0% +0.3% 61 +0.7% 50 +0.0% 59 209.5 52 0.062 43
56 UCLA 7-6 +0.8% -3.7% 80 +2.6% 41 +1.9% 21 204.9 63 0.042 50
57 California 8-5 +0.7% +5.1% 35 -2.9% 72 -1.4% 90 207.5 55 0.041 51
58 Michigan 5-7 +0.5% -2.1% 71 +1.5% 46 +1.1% 37 207.2 58 0.007 59
59 South Florida 8-5 +0.4% -2.3% 72 +6.2% 32 -3.5% 116 215.8 48 0.010 57
60 Bowling Green 7-6 +0.1% +4.8% 39 -5.7% 82 +1.0% 39 219.5 40 -0.062 78
F/+ Rk Team Record F/+ Off
F/+
Rk Def
F/+
Rk Spec.
Tms
F/+
Rk S&P+ Rk FEI Rk
61 Rutgers 9-4 -0.3% -4.0% 82 +1.1% 48 +2.6% 12 207.3 57 0.033 52
62 Troy 9-4 -2.0% +1.0% 57 -4.2% 75 +1.2% 34 216.1 45 -0.073 83
63 Washington 5-7 -2.1% +0.6% 59 -1.1% 63 -1.6% 92 201.7 68 0.008 58
64 N.C. State 5-7 -4.1% +4.5% 41 -4.6% 79 -4.0% 117 197.8 74 -0.009 64
65 SMU 8-5 -4.2% -3.4% 79 +0.3% 55 -1.1% 84 197.1 76 -0.023 67
66 Fresno State 8-5 -4.2% +3.0% 47 -10.0% 102 +2.8% 9 208.9 54 -0.070 81
67 Minnesota 6-7 -4.8% -4.4% 84 -2.0% 67 +1.6% 27 186.4 94 0.032 53
68 Duke 5-7 -5.2% +0.0% 64 -5.4% 81 +0.1% 55 191.7 83 -0.029 69
69 Southern Miss 7-6 -5.3% +2.2% 52 -9.0% 95 +1.5% 30 186.7 93 -0.016 66
70 Marshall 7-6 -5.4% -0.8% 67 -4.3% 76 -0.2% 65 204.9 64 -0.072 82
71 Middle Tennessee 10-3 -5.5% -10.7% 105 +5.6% 33 -0.3% 68 205.5 61 -0.060 77
72 Central Florida 8-5 -5.6% -8.0% 95 +0.6% 52 +1.8% 24 195.9 77 -0.050 75
73 Buffalo 5-7 -5.8% +1.2% 56 -4.0% 74 -3.0% 114 198.9 70 -0.042 71
74 Virginia 3-9 -6.1% -8.2% 98 +2.5% 42 -0.5% 74 184.6 99 0.020 56
75 Northern Illinois 7-6 -6.3% -3.4% 78 -5.1% 80 +2.1% 16 189.8 89 -0.014 65
76 Louisiana Tech 4-8 -6.4% -7.1% 92 +1.0% 49 -0.3% 66 198.4 71 -0.068 79
77 Ohio 9-5 -6.4% -6.1% 89 -2.2% 69 +1.9% 23 186.9 92 -0.008 63
78 Kansas State 6-6 -6.5% -6.2% 90 -2.4% 70 +2.1% 18 195.1 79 -0.049 73
79 Tulsa 5-7 -7.2% -6.2% 91 -3.4% 73 +2.4% 15 191.8 82 -0.102 88
80 Iowa State 7-6 -8.1% +2.9% 49 -12.6% 111 +1.6% 26 198.4 73 -0.059 76
F/+ Rk Team Record F/+ Off
F/+
Rk Def
F/+
Rk Spec.
Tms
F/+
Rk S&P+ Rk FEI Rk
81 Maryland 2-10 -8.6% -7.9% 94 -0.5% 57 -0.3% 67 190.2 87 -0.039 70
82 Vanderbilt 2-10 -9.2% -8.7% 100 -0.8% 60 +0.4% 51 185.5 96 -0.048 72
83 Colorado 3-9 -9.2% -9.9% 101 +1.2% 47 -0.4% 73 191.3 85 -0.075 84
84 UTEP 4-8 -9.6% +2.4% 51 -9.4% 97 -2.5% 105 195.7 78 -0.111 91
85 Syracuse 4-8 -10.2% -6.0% 88 -1.9% 66 -2.3% 103 193.0 80 -0.082 85
86 Idaho 7-6 -10.3% +7.8% 25 -17.6% 119 -0.5% 75 192.9 81 -0.166 100
87 Nevada 8-5 -11.2% +1.6% 54 -12.3% 110 -0.5% 76 202.1 66 -0.119 92
88 Indiana 4-8 -12.4% -3.8% 81 -8.6% 93 +0.1% 54 178.8 104 -0.049 73
89 UNLV 5-7 -12.6% +4.4% 42 -16.5% 116 -0.4% 72 202.2 65 -0.170 101
90 Colorado State 3-9 -12.7% +3.9% 44 -13.9% 114 -2.7% 109 198.4 72 -0.139 97
91 Baylor 4-8 -12.9% -8.2% 97 -2.6% 71 -2.0% 101 191.7 84 -0.101 87
92 Illinois 3-9 -13.4% -5.0% 85 -6.9% 87 -1.5% 91 185.3 97 -0.069 80
93 UAB 5-7 -13.5% -3.0% 77 -7.6% 91 -3.0% 113 189.5 90 -0.127 95
94 Florida Atlantic 5-7 -13.6% +5.3% 34 -17.0% 117 -2.0% 100 199.1 69 -0.192 107
95 Toledo 5-7 -13.8% -1.4% 69 -9.5% 99 -2.9% 111 197.2 75 -0.158 98
96 Louisville 4-8 -14.4% -5.8% 87 -7.5% 89 -1.1% 85 177.2 106 -0.091 86
97 Western Michigan 5-7 -14.8% -8.5% 99 -6.8% 85 +0.5% 50 179.8 102 -0.107 90
98 North Texas 2-10 -15.9% -2.8% 76 -11.2% 105 -2.0% 99 184.8 98 -0.172 102
99 Utah State 4-8 -16.0% -0.7% 65 -14.6% 115 -0.7% 78 189.8 88 -0.122 94
100 Kent State 5-7 -16.9% -11.8% 107 -4.5% 77 -0.6% 77 173.7 107 -0.102 88
F/+ Rk Team Record F/+ Off
F/+
Rk Def
F/+
Rk Spec.
Tms
F/+
Rk S&P+ Rk FEI Rk
101 Wyoming 7-6 -17.4% -10.4% 104 -6.2% 84 -0.7% 79 188.3 91 -0.192 107
102 Hawaii 6-7 -18.7% -5.4% 86 -13.2% 113 -0.1% 61 190.7 86 -0.217 114
103 Army 4-8 -18.8% -16.7% 116 +0.4% 54 -2.4% 104 171.3 108 -0.127 95
104 San Diego State 4-8 -18.9% -10.1% 102 -7.1% 88 -1.7% 96 180.6 101 -0.184 104
105 UL-Monroe 6-6 -19.3% -11.8% 108 -4.6% 78 -2.9% 112 185.9 95 -0.200 110
106 Arkansas State 4-8 -19.3% -14.6% 114 -6.1% 83 +1.3% 32 182.6 100 -0.173 103
107 Memphis 2-10 -19.7% -4.2% 83 -12.8% 112 -2.7% 108 179.7 103 -0.185 105
108 Ball State 2-10 -20.4% -11.8% 109 -9.4% 98 +0.9% 42 164.4 112 -0.119 92
109 UL-Lafayette 6-6 -21.6% -10.3% 103 -9.9% 100 -1.3% 88 178.7 105 -0.212 112
110 Miami (Ohio) 1-11 -24.1% -12.3% 110 -6.9% 86 -4.9% 119 171.2 109 -0.194 109
111 Akron 3-9 -24.1% -12.7% 113 -8.8% 94 -2.7% 107 170.2 110 -0.162 99
112 New Mexico 1-11 -25.0% -11.5% 106 -10.9% 104 -2.6% 106 169.3 111 -0.208 111
113 Florida International 3-9 -25.6% -15.0% 115 -11.7% 108 +1.0% 38 160.0 114 -0.190 106
114 Western Kentucky 0-12 -27.5% -8.1% 96 -18.1% 120 -1.3% 87 158.6 116 -0.213 113
115 Tulane 3-9 -28.9% -12.5% 112 -11.9% 109 -4.4% 118 159.6 115 -0.245 116
116 San Jose State 2-10 -30.3% -17.2% 117 -9.9% 101 -3.2% 115 164.3 113 -0.262 118
117 Rice 2-10 -30.6% -18.2% 118 -11.5% 107 -0.9% 81 156.1 117 -0.285 119
118 Eastern Michigan 1-11 -31.8% -12.5% 111 -17.1% 118 -2.2% 102 152.9 118 -0.234 115
119 New Mexico State 4-9 -32.3% -20.7% 119 -11.4% 106 -0.2% 63 149.5 119 -0.312 120
120 Washington State 1-11 -37.1% -22.9% 120 -9.1% 96 -5.1% 120 143.3 120 -0.247 117