For the past five years we’ve tried to bring you sets of numbers and statistics that provide a different glimpse into the world of SEC football. One of the most telling stats we’ve come up with is what we call the “Quick Strike” measure.
Obviously, the goal in football is to put up as many points as possible. The fewer snaps it takes a team to do that, the less chance for errors like penalties and turnovers. Quick Strike provides a simple look at how many points each offensive snap is worth to a given team. Literally, it reveals the number of points scored per offensive play run.
But Quick Strike is not just an offensive measure. Special teams scores and long returns can speed up how quickly a team piles up points. Turnovers can provide short fields for offenses. Defensive touchdowns are even more valuable as a team does not even need to run an offensive play and risk a turnover or penalty in order to put points on the scoreboard.
Turns out, we aren’t the only math geeks out there who like this stat. A bigger math geek than those of us here at MrSEC.com — and we mean that in a good way — has tested our numbers, applied them to the Big Ten, and found that there’s a clear correlation between a good Quick Strike number and wins in that league as well. You can find the analysis of ElevenWarriors.com here.
Now, the deeper we get into the season, the more telling this statistic will become. Eventually, we’ll begin using only numbers from SEC-versus-SEC games. For now, however, we must use the points scored and plays run against all FBS opponents.
So without further ado, here are the Quick Strike numbers to date for the SEC’s 14 teams versus FBS competition.
|School||Pts/Scored vs FBS||Off. Plays vs FBS||Pts/Off. Play|
* Georgia is the rare offense that has the ability to score via big plays through the air and on the ground with freshmen tailbacks Todd Gurley and Keith Marshall.
* Alabama might not be flashy, but they’re efficient. If not for having to settle for four field goals against Ole Miss last week, the Tide would be even closer to Georgia in terms of points per play.
* LSU has shot itself in the foot quite a bit with fumbles, red zone turnovers and penalties, but against FBS foes it really hasn’t mattered a whole lot yet.
* Mississippi State only has 88 points versus FBS foes on the year, but they’ve also needed just 192 offensive snaps to post those points. Why? Because MSU leads the nation in turnover margin and Tyler Russell and company are cashing in on short fields provided by State’s opportunistic D.
* Coming into the season, who would have guessed that Missouri (with James Franklin) and Arkansas (with Tyler Wilson) would rank 12th and 13th in the conference in this Quick Strike measure? Yes, there have been some extenuating circumstances and both of those QBs have missed a game this year, but still, to see the Tigers and Razorbacks near the bottom of the SEC in an offensive category is rather surprising.