2011 CFBMatrix Out of Conference SOS Rankings
The common use for the SOS metrics that get posted by various sites are typically subjective and used for fan based arguments. The favorite ‘SOS’ ranking is usually the one that rates any one particular fan’s team the toughest. It can be very subjective and we provide our numbers as just another reference point. The SOS numbers we provide are an average strength of each game played versus the odds of losing any out of conference game (OOC) scheduled.
Our methods for calculating the SOS and EOS of every team is very easy to understand. First, we don’t change it throughout the year like the rest of the “computer” models. Why? Because at the beginning of each season, every team has a certain level of talent and size and a fixed home/away schedule. These two factors alone predict nearly 80% of all the AQ teams football games in the last 6 years and will be no different in 2011. For my modeling, the SOS is a simple as how good does the team you are playing recruit over the last 4 years plus the variable for each team if the game on the road or at home.
As in all of the metrics in the site, they are rooted in recruiting but there are some exceptions to scheduling. For example if your team is playing Virginia Tech or LSU on the road, you have a better chance for an upset than at home, thereby tweeting an SOS to reflect the toughness of teams on the road (or at home).
The breakdown for the 2011 OOC SOS shows a wide range of SOS metrics. Most teams fall into playing 3 or 4 OOC games with adjusted recruiting ranking from 60-90. The few teams outside these extremes are easy to identify. The USC Trojans are the #1 SOS rank followed by Colorado. The Big Cupcake for 2011 goes to the Red Raiders with an amazing 103.7 average strength of each OOC game.
Footnote: LSU and Clemson both play two of the top 25 toughest OOC games in the country in 2011. They are not at the top due to the averaging in of the other two gimmies on the OOC schedule. If toughest was ‘best chance to lose’ on average, these two team may be #1 and #2 in the country in 2011.
Average OOC SOS per game 2011
#1 PAC12 – 66.6
#2 ACC – 71.5
#3 Big East – 75.68
#4 BIG 12 – 75.69
#5 BIG Ten – 81.8
#6 SEC – 83.2