Let me start out by saying that this is hardly an accurate way to predict the outcome of a ballgame.
So before any stats majors start sending me nasty emails and using big words like “logarithm,” please know that this is just a fun little exercise.
I simply wanted to see how Florida and Oklahoma had stacked up against their competition.
Oklahoma has looked great on offense, but they played in a league filled with joke defenses. Florida has looked super on defense, but they played in a conference filled with miserable offenses.
So which team’s numbers mean more? How will things play out in Miami on January 8th?
To find out, I averaged all the scores from Oklahoma’s and Florida’s seasons, minus the FCS-level teams that they played (OU pasted Chattanooga 57-2 and UF bombed The Citadel 70-19… both scores were thrown out.)
Oklahoma won their remaining 12 games by an average of 53.8 to 26.4 Impressive.
Florida won their remaining 12 games by an average tally of 43.1 to 12.3. Even more impressive.
But what about their opponents?
I went through each opponent’s season and averaged out the amount of points they scored per game… and the amount of points they allowed per game.
Just so we could see if Oklahoma had lit up bad defenses, or had they punished bad defenses worse than other teams had? Had Florida stuffed crummy offenses, or had they held those offenses to even fewer points than other teams had?
Here’s how Oklahoma did against their opponents.
||Vs OU D
| Ks St
| Tx A&M
| Ok St
Okay, so what does all that mean?
It means Oklahoma’s offense is as strong as advertised and it isn’t just a product of the Big 12′s shoddy defenses. The Sooners rolled up, on average, 26.16 more points per game on their opponents than all of the other teams their opponents had played.
They scored 32 more against Cincinnati than the 20 points per game the Bearcats gave up on average. They scored 33 more on Nebraska, 39 more on Texas Tech, 34 more on Oklahoma State and 34 more than Missouri gave up on average, too.
Defensively, OU held their opponents — on average — to 7.41 fewer points than they were used to scoring.
For example, the Sooners, held Texas Tech to 24 points below their season average, Missouri to 22 below their average and TCU to 25 under their average.
So keep those two numbers in mind… Plus 26.16 on offense, Minus 7.41 on defense.
Now let’s look at how Florida did against their opponents.
||Vs UF D
| Ole Miss
Alright, so what does that show us about Florida?
First, it says that their defense is the real deal. Sure they went up against some sad sack offenses, but they shut them down for a lot less than their other opponents had. Only Ole Miss even managed to hit their average against the Gators. Miami was held to 25 below their average, Georgia to 22 below their average, Florida State to 18 below their average and Alabama to 11 below their average. Overall, they held their opponents to 13.66 fewer points per game than their opponents averaged against everyone else.
On offense, UF was nearly as impressive as Oklahoma. The Gators — on average — scored 21.0 points per game more against their opponents than their opponents usually gave up.
Plus 13 on Tennessee’s fourth-ranked defense, plus 25 against LSU, plus 41 against Kentucky, plus 36 against South Carolina, plus 24 against Florida State and plus 18 against Alabama’s tough D.
So remember these numbers: Plus 21.00 on offense… Minus 13.66 on defense.
And here’s where the fun begins. Let’s compare Oklahoma and Florida’s averages against one another:
Oklahoma averaged 53.8 points per game.
Florida, on average, held their opponens to 13.66 points per game less than they scored.
If that holds in this game, Oklahoma will score 40 points.
Oklahoma averaged giving up 26.4 points per game to their rivals.
Florida, on average, scored 21 points per game more on their opponents than they usually gave up.
If that holds in this game, Florida will score 47 points.
Florida averaged 43.1 points per game.
Oklahoma, on average, held their opponents to 7.41 points per game less than they scored.
If that holds in this game, Florida will score 36 points.
Florida averaged giving up 12.3 points per game to their rivals.
Oklahoma, on average, scored 26.16 points per game more on their opponents than they usually gave up.
If that holds in this game, Oklahoma will score 38 points.
Finally, let’s compare those results:
In one method, Florida would score 47 points… in the other they would score 36 points. That’s an average of 42 points (rounding up, of course).
In one method, Oklahoma would score 40 points… in the other they would score 38 points. That’s an average of 39 points.
So our guaranteed, cash-the-check, lock prediction for the BCS Championship Game:
Florida 42, Oklahoma 39.
Might as well not even play the game.