Coaching – Net Game Effect. In the CFBMatrix modeling a team that out recruits another team over the previous 4 years is expected to win at home nearly 74% of the time. Nothing else correlates to winning and losing like the CFBMatrix composite 4 year recruiting ranking. When you add in the home/away adjustment for each team, that number jumps to over 80% correct in some conferences. By using the special CFBMatrix adjusted recruiting rankings and a home/away adjustment specific to each team (yes it has taken nearly a decade of numbers to calculate it for each team), it levels the playing field in comparing teams and coaches.
When a team fails to beat another team, whether at home or on the road this is a +1 (for an upset) or -1 game (for being upset) against the coaching staff. Most coaches fall within close range of predicted expectations. 36 of the current 52 AQ teams with experienced head coaches are within +/- 1.5 games of their predicted annual win totals. It is the teams on the extreme ends of the curve where you will find the tough home teams, the road warriors, the Coaches doing more with less and the hottest seats in college football.
These rankings are not about the ‘best overall coaches’, but rather how well they do relative to their recruited talent. You need to keep in mind, that elite teams have very few opportunities to earn +1 games and are always on an ‘upset alert’. The flip side is true of very poorly talented teams like Duke, Iowa State, et al, in that nearly every conference game is a chance for an upset. A zero effect for these low ranked recruiting teams is an indicator of a stagnating program.
Link: 2011 CFBMatrix Coach of the Year
Link: 2011 CFBMatrix Charlie Weis Anti-Coach of the Year Award
An example on the elite side is the Oklahoma Sooners. The Sooner fan argument is always “Why isn’t Stoops higher on the coaching effect list? They haven’t lost at home for nearly 6 years.”. They have not played a single team during that streak that out recruited them over the previous 4 years to overcome the national home field advantage average so the CFBMatrix model expected them to win all those games. That is why they are a Zero effect at home. It is actually very good for an elite to be at or near Zero effect. The reverse would be Washington State or Purdue that recruit at the bottom 20% of AQ teams, but can’t even get to a positive game effect.
Please check out all the rankings and rating for each team and keep in mind the previous review. In addition to the total ranks, I have broken it down by the toughest/worst at home and on the road as well as teams that performance above average on the road vs home. New coaches, that have no metrics, are not included.
Total Coaching Effect Chart
PAC 12 Coaching Effect Rankings
SEC Coaching Effect Rankings
ACC Coaching Effect Rankings
BIG TEN Coaching Effect Rankings
BIG 12 Coaching Effect Rankings
Big East Coaching Effect Rankings
Top 10 Total Coaching Effect
There is no real surprise to have this Top 10 dominated by the lower ranked recruiting teams. Nevertheless, these are all the teams in the country with an experienced coach with a Coaching Effect over +1 per year. The very impressive numbers belong to the second tier recruiting ranks in Arkansas, Oklahoma State and Michigan State. The most impressive being Arkansas, as they are in the toughest division/conference in football. Every conference but the Big East is represented in this Top 10.
Bottom 10 Total Coaching Effect
The Trojans get the nod as the ‘average’ per year net negative game coaching effect due to Coach Kiffin’s first year in guiding USC. They had a really great schedule in 2010 and tremendous talent and really earned the -5 game effect, but I do not expect that trend to continue. If I am wrong, it will not take Kiffin long to get into the rare air occupied by the current biggest under achievers for talent at UCLA, Texas A&M and Illinois (Texas had one real bad year and a NC in the last 4 years). The bottom half of this top 10 are 1st year coaches and long time under achievers. It is very critical for those new coaches to turn the trend. Take a look at the 3 and 4 year coach trends. Most are negative on both home and away games. This is not a road to tread for new coaches as it is easy to get on a hard to get off.2011
CFBMatrix Recognition: Biggest 4 years of wasted talent and recruiting (’07-’10 seasons): UCLA Bruins with -16 games.
Top 10 to Upset you at Home
It is quite clear that there is little in terms of ‘home field advantage’ as perceived by individual team fans. With the lower top 10 teams not even above +1 game over the CFBMatrix model, talent drives the most home field results. I do have a standard national home variable used for most teams, but the real over performers against recruited talent is very few. The first five on this list are the really home difference makers. The bottom half is full of head coaches with one year under their belt and a couple of small net positive coaches that have been at it for quite a while. However, these are all teams that will ‘get one’ at home at least once a year more often than blowing a favored home win. I expect Cincy, Virginia and Kentucky to really separate in 2011 with at least two of those three moving down the list.