PAC 12 Conference

2011 PAC12 Conference Profile

October 17, 2011 Update – The Pac12 has been the best performing conference within the CFBMatrix model for all the picks it made in March 2011.  The first half of the PAC12 conference and non-conference season has gone an amazing 45-7 picking games 6 months in advance. in conference games it jumps even higher with just 1 PAC12 game missed  halfway through 2011.  Here is a breakdown of team records compared to expectations halfway through 2011.

PAC12 North

Cal:  Exactly as expected.  Total wins and each game picked correctly.  0-3 in conference as predicted.

Washington:  Same a Cal.  6 for 6 on all games.  This team can win the North by beating Oregon and Stanford.  Not picked to do so, but that’s why the games are played.

Washington State:  1 game below expectations for 2011.  No surprise as the coaching effect for Wulff is -1 game each year.  On pace for 4 wins and last place in the North.

Oregon:  6 games and all have gone as picked.  They should win out at home but the road is tricky.  No surprise is they split UW/Stanford games.

Oregon State:  They are the biggest surprise to date in the PAC12 North.  Two home losses including Sac State.  Very unlike a Mike Riley coached team.  But the conference record of 0-3 was predicted.  The total wins predicted of 5 is a long way off.  Likely to end the season 0-4.

Stanford:  No surprises and the schedule remains on their side.  Luck’s experience is overriding Shaw’s lack thereof and the Cardinal is on pace to be better than expected.

PAC12 South

USC:  The Trojans have the only missed PAC12 conference pick in 2011 with their loss at ASU.  They are on pace for winning 9 games with loses to only Notre Dame and Oregon.  UW and Stanford will key in they sink to just the 7 total wins predicted in March due to coaching.

UCLA: Only one blown game for the Bruins season to date.  They are 2-1 conference as predicted but there are 5 more  expected wins for Coach Neuheisel to lose.  This team still remains a huge darkhorse in the PAC12 south.  Their last 5 are all division games.  Huge 2nd half potential.

Arizona:  1-5 is what their schedule and recruiting gave the Wildcats to start 2011 and it was perfect to the Matrix charts.  This downtrend really began in 2008-09 recruiting cycle and the Wildcats have little talent left after 2011.  They will need to hire a top recruiter to get this ship righted.

Arizona State: One upset win versus the Trojans and the rest to form.  The model expects them to close out 3-2 the second half of the season but could go 5-0 by having UCLA at home and playing Cal in Berkeley.

Utah:  The biggest positive surprise in the PAC12 in the first half of 2011.  While a predicted 0-3 in conference they are +2 games at 2-1 in OOCs.  The model gave the Utes a +2 games for the season so they are on pace for the predicted 5 win season.

Colorado:  Predicted to go 1-12 with the only win against Colorado State.   Right on track at 1-6  for what you would expect from the worst PAC12 recruiter over the last 4 years and the 2nd toughest SOS in the country.


Each team has a specific reason, trend and metrics behind their conference win/loss numbers.  With the PAC12 being formed, some of the past conference metrics have been tossed out as the schedule is now unbalanced in that not every team is played each year.  Some teams have great breaks, like a UCLA not having to play Washington or Oregon.  Others like Colorado, have a much tougher road ahead in 2011.   Below is each team, a link to their team page as well as some general notes about how the CFBMatrix model came up with their predicted record for 2011

Arizona Wildcats – Model gave a 2-7 number for straight up off recruiting rankings.  Coach Stoops is a plus 1 game coach.  Only 4 conference home games where the team is stronger.  Recruiting rank one of the worst in conference and got worse with last cycle which fits into a lower win total in 2011 v. 2010.
Arizona State Sun Devils – Plan and simple here.  Coach Erickson is a flat Zero effect coach.  CFBMatrix model shows a 5-4 record in conference with the #9 ranked PAC12 SOS.  @ Utah may be the game to be the default PAC12 South rep in the first conference championship.  Doesn’t matter much as either one will likely be modeled to loose a conference championship game.  Don’t expect much more than 5 wins.  Overall 4 year recruiting rank is poor and the 2011 recruiting cycle was terrible for the Sun Devils.  It will get worse in coming years before it gets better.
Cal Golden Bears – This was a really odd profile to look at when the modeling was completed.  Good recruiting rank over the last 4 years (#27) with a #13 composite class should spell a much better season in 2011.  However, the Bears have the #1 SOS in the PAC12 this year and 5 of 9 are on the road.  Coach Tedford is -6 games net negative effect over the last 4 years on the road.  The conference baseline on the road is 4 losses with the net negative for the 5th one.  The Bears have no real home field advantage over the last 4 years in the model so they should go 3-1 at home in conference.  To be better than .500, Coach Tedford is going to need to win games on the road that historically, he has not won.
Colorado Buffaloes – With a new coach, there is nothing to adjusted for coaching effect.  The Buffaloes have the worst talent in the PAC12, play the toughest OOC schedule and the #2 SOS for in-conference schedule.  4 OOCs including Cal and at Ohio State with NO BYES!  Losses will pile up as fast as injuries.  The model give zero wins for the Buffs, even with a standard home/away variable we have calculated.  While is it very hard to go 0-13 in D1 college football, Colorado is going to give it a try.  Odds say at least 1 or 2 total wins and 1 in conference but those will be gifts.
Oregon Ducks – Recruiting is trending up, Coach Kelly is a +1 game per season coach and the home variable makes any home loss a surprise to the model.  More talent than any conference team on the road which makes a 9-0 predicted record for 2011 (’10 was modeled at 8-1). 
Oregon State Beavers – The Beavers are always a pain to model as Coach Riley wins a bunch of games (2.25 annually) he shouldn’t in the model but looses several he should win.  The model put out 2 wins after recruiting rank comparison and home/away adjustments.  Add in the +2 games per year and it gave 4 wins in the conference for the Beavers.  However, with flat recruiting, the number is most likely to be +/- one game versus the 2010 win conferecne win total of 4.
Stanford Cardinal – Stanford has a great conference schedule in 2011.  The baseline gives them 4 wins and adds 3 on their home field adjustment variable.  With a new coach, there is no coaching adjustment to the schedule and thus the 7 wins in the model.  8-1 is very tough to repeat or even beat and this is a rare case of the model going against the recruiting up-trend by predicting a drop in conference wins. 
USC Trojans – This is a team, on paper, models straight up to 9-0.  But not many teams make 4+ game justs season to season, especially with net negative game coaches.   With home/away game schedule adjustments it dropped to 8-1.  Coach Kiffin was a -5 in 2010, which is well outside the normal range and even worse then his net negative at Tennessee.  However, negative game coaches seem to stay that way and so I blended his metrics from Tennessee with USC results for a -2 game effect for the season.  This took the Trojans down to 6-3 in the PAC12, but there would be little shock and well within the range if they posted 7-8 conference wins.
UCLA Bruins – On paper this is an 8-1 team, but I developed the home/away game variable and coaching effect for a reason.  The Bruins have the easiest SOS in the entire conference and with USC facing sanctions, every Bruin fan would be dreaming about hosting the PAC12 conference championship game this year.  But, that is not the case as Coach Neuheisel has been a -4 net game effect PER season for 4 years.  That immediately drops UCLA to an expected 4-5 in the PAC12.  The once elite recruiting has suffered as well with the last recruiting cycle being the worst in recent UCLA memory and with the schedule road adjustment it takes the Bruins down to an expected 3 conference wins for 2011 season.  Of all the PAC12 teams, never turn your back on the ones with talent. 
Utah Utes – There is probably more pressure on the Utes than any other school in the country.  As the first of the 3 overcelebrated non AQ teams to move to an AQ conference, their results will, at least in the mind of many, validate or invalidate the last few years of high rankings and hype.  While Coach Whittingham was above .500 against AQ schools when the games counted, the model is not giving Utah the pre-season hype that so many fans are generating.  The model gives 3 wins plus a +2 game effect adjustment for Whittingham and that takes them to 5 wins.  They have the 2nd easiest PAC12 schedule behind UCLA (due to 5 road games vs. 4 for UCLA) so that should help them.  Hosting Arizona State should be the tie breaker game for subbing in for USC in the conference title game.
Washington Huskies – The initial conference pass put the Huskies at 7-2 and then adjusted down to 6-3 with home/away scheduling adjustments.  Coach Sarkisian has been a consistent -1 net game coach each year (all on the road) and I expect 2011 to be the same.  This puts the Huskies at 5-4 in the conference, the same a 2010.  With recruiting improving that should be the lowest record expectation for Washington.  Anything less and there was severe injuries or under-performing coaching.  A solid coaching effort could put the Huskies at 7 or even 8 wins and in a fight with Stanford for a higher position in the conference. 
Washington State Cougars – The Cougars should thank the Buffaloes for stepping to take some bottom dweller heat and for the AD scheduling a weak OOC to start off 3-0 before conference play.  The model started the Cougs with 2 conference wins and adjusted down 1 for road games and negative coaching effect.  Bad average recruiting got even worse with another down year leading to expectations of the same or worse conference record compared to 2010.  The odds and all trends point to 1 conference win in 2011.

Conference Championship Game:  Arizona State Sun Devils* @ Oregon Ducks

*wins tie breaker via win at Utah
PAC12 North 2011 Predictor Conf. Record 2010 Conf Record Conf SOS Conf EOS 2011 Recruiting Rank Recruiting Rank Diff vs. 4 yr MA
Oregon 9-0 9-0 32.11 16.11 11 5
Stanford 7-2 8-1 29.78 3.78 21 5
Washington 6-3 5-4 34.78 10.78 23 1
Oregon State 4-5 4-5 30.00 -18.00 48 0
California 3-6 3-6 25.56 -1.44 14 13
Washington State 1-8 1-8 27.56 -27.44 63 -8
PAC12 South
USC 6-3 5-4 32.13 30.13 5 -3
Arizona State 5-4 4-5 33.56 -2.44 74 -38
Utah 5-4 NA (7-1) 35.89 -22.11 42 16
UCLA 3-6 2-7 37.00 22.00 46 -31
Arizona 3-6 4-5 27.00 -26.00 59 -6
Colorado 0-9 NA (2-6) 26.11 -41.89 68 0

PAC 12 Team Schedules

PAC12 Team SOS and EOS Ranks

PAC 12 Team Rosters/Depth Charts

PAC 12 Coaches – Net Game Effect Numbers and Rankings

PAC 12 Team Recruiting Rankings

  1. Rank by Overall Conference – 2011
  2. Rank by 4 Year Recruiting Rank Average
  3. Conference Breakdown by Team Recruiting Rank
  4. Year over Year (’10-’11) Conference Recruiting Rank Change

Twitter Feeds:

Follow these folks on twitter for the most up to date PAC12 team info around!  Tweet me @cfbmatrix to get listed!

@chris_fetters     @jhopkins247     @maxwilliams247     @tonyDiFrancisco     @prehmmr     @kengoe     @oregonducksncaa    @COUGFANcom   @ArizonaStateFan    @GoDucksnet     @bartonsimmons   @bcondotta


@bnnace: @cfbmatrix love your work with #Pac12! Great stuff


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s