Moonlight1

MrPacTen

  • joined Jun 10, 2010
  • last login Jul 22, 2013
  • posts 94
  • comments 1148

Writes regularly during the college football season for cfn.scout.com, and sporadically during the offseason.

User Blog

CFB Compu-Picks Ratings, Week Seven

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... 8) Oregon basically gets a "TBD" for their rating. They've done quite well so far, but barring a huge upset by UCLA or Washington, their resume will be defined by how they do against the set of: @ USC, @ Cal, vs Arizona, @ Oregon St. They'll definitely need to get better with their road performances, but if they do, jumping to #1 in this system is very much on the table. For a team that hasn't really hit the toughest part of the schedule, I'd consider #3 to be a totally reasonable rating.

CFB Compu-Picks Ratings, Week Seven

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... 3) Boise St is rated #1, partially because they've been generally dominant, and partially because they've played a pretty good schedule to date (though Virginia Tech's rating is currently inflated and likely to fall, affecting Boise's schedule strength a bit). Obviously, their schedule strength will start dropping as the year goes on (though they're already played two of their worst opponents, NM St and SJ St), and moreover, there's a very reasonable chance that one or more of the AQ teams will get on a hot streak and simply pass them. However, provided that they don't suffer stumbles like their surprisingly poor 28-21 result at Tulsa last year, I would expect their rating to remain very high. Every indication so far is that they really are an excellent football team. Of course, they're going to get hurt by the BCS's horrifically awful decision to force all of the computer rankings to ignore margin; if it turns into a close race at the end of the year, that could very well turn into the difference between whether or not Boise gets a national title bid.

Big Ten going zipper?

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University of Wisconsin athletic director Barry Alvarez confirmed Wednesday that when a two-division format for football is unveiled by league officials next month, UW and Iowa will be separated. ... wow. At this point they're splitting up Michigan and Ohio St, and then also splitting up Iowa and Wisconsin. Which probably leaves us with divisions like (just guessing here): A: Michigan, Penn St, Wisconsin (+ presumably Minnesota) B: Ohio St, Nebraska, Iowa This strikes me as one of the dumbest possible way of splitting divisions (though swapping Michigan and Ohio St might make it worse). "Competitive balance" now seems to be submarining all other considerations. Does this mean that they're just biding time until more expansion by doing a half-assed format? What do you think?

Mr Pac-10's Season Preview: Arizona / Arizona St

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... Bottom Line: After two straight losing seasons, the Erickson era has come under increasing fire. Unfortunately, 2010 doesn’t look like it’ll be much if any better. Two AA games should be easy wins, and Wazzu should be a win, but it’s tough to find many wins elsewhere on the schedule. I’m thinking 5-7, and to be honest they’re more likely to be 4-8 than 6-6. And because they play two AA teams, they’ll probably need seven wins to make a bowl game. That isn’t going to happen.

Mr Pac-10's Season Preview: Arizona / Arizona St

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... Bottom Line: With a lot of personnel losses on defense, and wholesale coaching changes on both sides of the ball, this team has a lot of work to do if they want to be serious Rose Bowl contenders. However, if they can find a way to figure things out, they have an extremely favorable schedule. I’m projecting an 8-4 record, just like in 2009, but they could easily end up anywhere from six wins and a minor bowl game to ten wins and a Rose Bowl appearance.

Mr Pac-10's Season Preview: Cal / Stanford

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... Bottom Line: This should be a good team. Unless the pass defense collapses, there’s enough talent that they should be a consistently tough out and should pull an upset or two along the way. Consistency is always an issue, but this should be an upper-division Pac-10 team, and if they can keep their poor performances to a minimum, they could surprise in 2010.

Mr Pac-10's Season Preview: Oregon / Oregon St

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... Bottom Line: This should be a pretty good, but not very good, team. The non-conference is nasty enough to expect that they’ll suffer their usual early-season swoon, but in the end, they should recover and make a run, which is why I’m projecting 7-5 despite a likely 1-2 non-conference record. If Katz develops quickly, though, they could outperform my projection.

Mr Pac-10's Season Preview: Oregon / Oregon St

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... Bottom Line: I would rate this as the best team in the Pac-10. The schedule doesn’t set up very nicely, especially with road trips to USC and Oregon St, but I’m still pegging them to win the league title outright and earn a Rose Bowl trip. The Pac-10 will be too tough for them to run the slate, but 10 wins should be enough to send them back to Pasadena.

Mr Pac-10's Season Preview: UCLA / USC

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... Bottom Line: USC has clearly slipped a bit, but until proven otherwise, they are still a major power in the league. The talent is a bit too raw to project them to win the league, but it’s definitely possible (though of course they won’t be eligible for the Rose Bowl even if they do finish first). It’s likely that they improve only slightly from 2009’s record this year with a bigger improvement in 2011, but you should never count out this program.

Mr Pac-10's Season Preview: Washington / Washington St

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... Bottom Line: After two straight abysmal seasons, there’s little reason to think year three of the Wulff era will be much better. They should beat Montana St, and I’d guess they pull off one more somewhere along the way, just because they’ll have at least a small chance in a bunch of games. But two wins shouldn’t be enough to save Wulff’s job. Perhaps the next guy can fix the mess Wulff created here.

Mr Pac-10's Season Preview: Washington / Washington St

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... Bottom Line: Last year improvement was obvious, given a healthy Jake Locker and the total outlier season that 2008 was. In 2010, though, further improvement will be difficult. This team should be better than they were last year, but their schedule will be tougher, and there’s no guarantee that Locker will have another full season of health. If everything breaks right, this could be an 8-9 win team, but if things break wrong, their record could actually take a step back. The guess here is six wins, but I wouldn’t be surprised by anything between four and eight wins.

Top 25 Teams of 2004 - 2009

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#9 – 2004 Oklahoma Why They’re Top Ten: Before the Orange Bowl loss to USC, many people were calling this potentially the greatest team ever, and with very good reason. They had the #3-rated schedule, and were dominant throughout the regular season, with a few close games and a bunch of blowouts (31-7 over Oregon, 41-10 over Kansas, 30-3 over Nebraska, 35-0 over Baylor, 42-3 over Colorado). They also pitched a shutout against Texas, whose next lowest point total for the year was 22 against Arkansas (and they also scored 65, 56, 51, and 44 points in other games, which is crazy-high offensive numbers to get shut out by anyone). Why They’re Not Top Five: 55-19. As great as the regular season resume was, you’re not in truly elite territory if you get beaten that badly, and it’s even worse when it comes in the title game (late-season games count more in the model, which jives with most peoples’ thinking). #8 – 2008 Oklahoma Why They’re Top Ten: This team played the #1-rated schedule in 2008, and was pretty dominant against it (the 65-21 annihilation of Texas Tech, 62-21 annihilation of Mizzou, 62-28 annihilation of Nebraska and 35-10 beating of TCU were extremely impressive by any standard; throwing in 52-26 against Cincy, 61-41 against OK St and others only makes the list of victims bigger and better). The Big 12 was probably the best league in 2008, and the Sooners also played Cincy and TCU. They also played a truly exceptional Florida team in the title game and came closer than any team not named Ole Miss; considering Florida’s long string of hideous beat-downs against many quality opponents, that’s a much better result than it would look at first glance. Why They’re Not Top Five: They lost not just once but twice. They’re the highest-rated two-loss team in the system, but there’s a definite limit to how good you can look with two losses. TCU was an impressive addition to the resume, and Cincy helped too, but Washington was a big drag on the schedule strength. This was a very underrated team (Colley having them 19th is ridiculous), but two losses is still two losses.

Top 25 Teams of 2004 - 2009

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#11 – 2009 Texas Why They’re Top Fifteen: They were generally dominant against a pretty tough schedule (ranked 9th), and their only loss came in the title game against a great Alabama team. I would call this the first team on this list that you can seriously argue was legitimately great. There are reasonable counter-arguments but they definitely have a case. Why They’re Not Top Ten: Their non-conference was ULM, Wyoming, UTEP and UCF. The Big 12 was fine in 2009, but not nearly strong enough to make a schedule with zero challenge non-conference look like a real national title schedule. They lacked a real signature win; consecutive dominant wins over Mizzou and Oklahoma St were nice, but neither is the sort of game an all-time team would hang its hat on. #10 – 2008 Texas Why They’re Top Ten: They played in the Big 12, which was very good in 2008 (arguably the #1 league that year). They played a tough schedule, ranked 6th overall. They were pretty dominant against their slate Why They’re Not Top Five: Their schedule, while good, isn’t at the same level as most of the teams rated better than them. The non-conference was way too easy, with none of FAU, UTEP, Rice and Arkansas posing a legitimate challenge for a top team. Losing to Tech definitely hurt, though many at this level had a loss along the way. Their really big problem against their neighbors on this list was that they lacked a real signature win. 45-35 over Oklahoma was an impressive win, but most teams in the stratosphere dominated really good opponents instead of just beating them. 35-7 on the road against Kansas was dominant, but a five-loss Jayhawk team is nowhere near what anyone would call a really good team; the same thing applies to their 56-31 home win over four-loss Missouri. ...

Top 25 Teams of 2004 - 2009

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#47 – 2008 Utah Why They’re Noteworthy: They went undefeated, and had a nice 31-17 win over Alabama in the Sugar Bowl. Billingsley had them 10th-best of the last six years, Colley had them 14th-best, and Sagarin had them 26th best. Why They’re Not Top Twenty-Five: Only having the 53rd ranked schedule was the first negative, but wasn’t the only one. What also kept them well off of the top 25 was the lack of dominance. Even their best win, by 14 against Alabama, wasn’t exactly an ass-kicking, and wasn’t against a true national elite (Bama ended 2008 rated 10th by the model). In two other chances for impressive wins, they beat Oregon St and TCU by only 3 points each (both at home). Throw in major struggles at a sub-par Michigan team (only won by 2) and a mediocre New Mexico team (only won by 3), and it’s easy to see why they didn’t really register as a great team in this model. Throw out margin entirely, and they could move a bit up on this list, but the schedule was poor enough to even then make them questionable for the top 25 of the last six years. #15 – 2004 Utah Why They’re Top Fifteen: The highest-rated non-AQ on this list, 2004 Utah was a really good team, a fact that sometimes gets lost in the historical shuffle. Their schedule (ranked 53rd) was nothing special, but they dominated it like few others, never winning by single digits, winning nine times by 20+ points, and five times by 30+ points. Why They’re Not Top Ten: The schedule. They did about as well as humanly possible against their schedule, but there’s a ceiling to how impressive any achievements can be against a schedule that didn’t even sniff the top 25, much less the top 10 of difficulty.

Top 25 Teams of 2004 - 2009

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#12 – 2004 Cal Why They’re Top Fifteen: They were generally dominant against a pretty tough schedule (ranked 9th), played in the top-rated league in 2004, and one of their losses was a nail-biter on the road against a fantastic USC team. They had a fantastic game at Corvallis, totally destroying a legitimately good Oregon St, on the road no less. They were underrated at the time (they were more dominant against a tougher slate in the regular season than Texas, who was voted above them), and appear to be extremely underrated in retrospect (Colley had them 9th in 2004 and 46th out of all teams in the last six years, and Sagarin had them 38th, both of which were just silly; they didn’t make Billingsley’s top 100 all-time [perfectly reasonable omission, even if this model disagrees], so it’s unclear where they rate with him). Why They’re Not Top Ten: They lost twice, including a Holiday Bowl embarrassment against Texas Tech. A nail-biter home win against Oregon, and surprisingly close win at USM didn’t help their case for a Rose Bowl at-large berth, and they didn’t help their rating on this list either.

Top 25 Teams of 2004 - 2009

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#22 – 2007 USC Why They’re Top Twenty-Five: The Pac-10 was pretty good in 2007, which helped USC’s resume a lot. So did a late-season surge that saw them beat ASU by 20, UCLA by 17, and Illinois by 32 in the Rose Bowl. One of the most amazing things about USC’s run from 2002 – 2008 (and you’ll be seeing plenty more of them on this list) is that even in a down year, they were still a very good team. Why They’re Not Top Twenty: Other than 2009, this was the weakest USC team of the last six years. They lost twice, and their schedule strength was sapped by playing an awful Idaho team, and down versions of Nebraska and especially Notre Dame. They really didn’t dominate their slate (though they came on strong late), beating Washington by 3, Arizona by 7, and Cal by 7 to go along with their pair of losses. #13 – 2006 USC Why They’re Top Fifteen: Definitely not the greatest USC team of the past decade, but still very strong, with a top-rated schedule (rated #1 for 2006), and the blowout at Arkansas and the 32-18 Rose Bowl win over Michigan were both extremely impressive wins. Why They’re Not Top Ten: They lost twice, including the late-season loss at UCLA which knocked them out of the title game. No truly elite team would have two losses to decent but clearly not great opponents. They also had a number of games much closer than you’d want to see from an elite team, especially the three game Wazzu-Washington-ASU stretch. ...

Pac-12 Division Analysis

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... Ultimately, I think that the best (or least bad anyway) structure is the second one, splitting the divisions as Colorado had thought they were promised, guaranteeing the California schools get to play each other every year, making the schedules fit that framework (as shown in my example), and giving the Northwest schools equal (or approximately equal) revenue sharing to soften the blow of less LA access (though again it wouldn’t help Washington much). However, if that doesn’t fly, then we could put the California schools into the South and the Mountain schools into the North, or we could try the 3-division experiment and see whether it works out or not. But whatever we do, I just hope it isn’t the zipper idea. Please let us not be that dumb.

Pac-12 Division Analysis

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... Ultimately, I think that the best (or least bad anyway) structure is the second one, splitting the divisions as Colorado had thought they were promised, guaranteeing the California schools get to play each other every year, making the schedules fit that framework (as shown in my example), and giving the Northwest schools equal (or approximately equal) revenue sharing to soften the blow of less LA access (though again it wouldn’t help Washington much). However, if that doesn’t fly, then we could put the California schools into the South and the Mountain schools into the North, or we could try the 3-division experiment and see whether it works out or not. But whatever we do, I just hope it isn’t the zipper idea. Please let us not be that dumb.

Pac-12 Division Analysis

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... Ultimately, I think that the best (or least bad anyway) structure is the second one, splitting the divisions as Colorado had thought they were promised, guaranteeing the California schools get to play each other every year, making the schedules fit that framework (as shown in my example), and giving the Northwest schools equal (or approximately equal) revenue sharing to soften the blow of less LA access (though again it wouldn’t help Washington much). However, if that doesn’t fly, then we could put the California schools into the South and the Mountain schools into the North, or we could try the 3-division experiment and see whether it works out or not. But whatever we do, I just hope it isn’t the zipper idea. Please let us not be that dumb.

Pac-12 Division Analysis

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... Ultimately, I think that the best (or least bad anyway) structure is the second one, splitting the divisions as Colorado had thought they were promised, guaranteeing the California schools get to play each other every year, making the schedules fit that framework (as shown in my example), and giving the Northwest schools equal (or approximately equal) revenue sharing to soften the blow of less LA access (though again it wouldn’t help Washington much). However, if that doesn’t fly, then we could put the California schools into the South and the Mountain schools into the North, or we could try the 3-division experiment and see whether it works out or not. But whatever we do, I just hope it isn’t the zipper idea. Please let us not be that dumb.

Pac-12 Division Analysis

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... Ultimately, I think that the best (or least bad anyway) structure is the second one, splitting the divisions as Colorado had thought they were promised, guaranteeing the California schools get to play each other every year, making the schedules fit that framework (as shown in my example), and giving the Northwest schools equal (or approximately equal) revenue sharing to soften the blow of less LA access (though again it wouldn’t help Washington much). However, if that doesn’t fly, then we could put the California schools into the South and the Mountain schools into the North, or we could try the 3-division experiment and see whether it works out or not. But whatever we do, I just hope it isn’t the zipper idea. Please let us not be that dumb.

Pac-12 Division Analysis

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... Ultimately, I think that the best (or least bad anyway) structure is the second one, splitting the divisions as Colorado had thought they were promised, guaranteeing the California schools get to play each other every year, making the schedules fit that framework (as shown in my example), and giving the Northwest schools equal (or approximately equal) revenue sharing to soften the blow of less LA access (though again it wouldn’t help Washington much). However, if that doesn’t fly, then we could put the California schools into the South and the Mountain schools into the North, or we could try the 3-division experiment and see whether it works out or not. But whatever we do, I just hope it isn’t the zipper idea. Please let us not be that dumb.

Pac-12 Division Analysis

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... Ultimately, I think that the best (or least bad anyway) structure is the second one, splitting the divisions as Colorado had thought they were promised, guaranteeing the California schools get to play each other every year, making the schedules fit that framework (as shown in my example), and giving the Northwest schools equal (or approximately equal) revenue sharing to soften the blow of less LA access (though again it wouldn’t help Washington much). However, if that doesn’t fly, then we could put the California schools into the South and the Mountain schools into the North, or we could try the 3-division experiment and see whether it works out or not. But whatever we do, I just hope it isn’t the zipper idea. Please let us not be that dumb.

Pac-12 Division Analysis

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... Ultimately, I think that the best (or least bad anyway) structure is the second one, splitting the divisions as Colorado had thought they were promised, guaranteeing the California schools get to play each other every year, making the schedules fit that framework (as shown in my example), and giving the Northwest schools equal (or approximately equal) revenue sharing to soften the blow of less LA access (though again it wouldn’t help Washington much). However, if that doesn’t fly, then we could put the California schools into the South and the Mountain schools into the North, or we could try the 3-division experiment and see whether it works out or not. But whatever we do, I just hope it isn’t the zipper idea. Please let us not be that dumb.

Pac-12 Division Analysis

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... Ultimately, I think that the best (or least bad anyway) structure is the second one, splitting the divisions as Colorado had thought they were promised, guaranteeing the California schools get to play each other every year, making the schedules fit that framework (as shown in my example), and giving the Northwest schools equal (or approximately equal) revenue sharing to soften the blow of less LA access (though again it wouldn’t help Washington much). However, if that doesn’t fly, then we could put the California schools into the South and the Mountain schools into the North, or we could try the 3-division experiment and see whether it works out or not. But whatever we do, I just hope it isn’t the zipper idea. Please let us not be that dumb.

Pac-12 Division Analysis

+

... Ultimately, I think that the best (or least bad anyway) structure is the second one, splitting the divisions as Colorado had thought they were promised, guaranteeing the California schools get to play each other every year, making the schedules fit that framework (as shown in my example), and giving the Northwest schools equal (or approximately equal) revenue sharing to soften the blow of less LA access (though again it wouldn’t help Washington much). However, if that doesn’t fly, then we could put the California schools into the South and the Mountain schools into the North, or we could try the 3-division experiment and see whether it works out or not. But whatever we do, I just hope it isn’t the zipper idea. Please let us not be that dumb.

Pac-12 Division Analysis

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... Ultimately, I think that the best (or least bad anyway) structure is the second one, splitting the divisions as Colorado had thought they were promised, guaranteeing the California schools get to play each other every year, making the schedules fit that framework (as shown in my example), and giving the Northwest schools equal (or approximately equal) revenue sharing to soften the blow of less LA access (though again it wouldn’t help Washington much). However, if that doesn’t fly, then we could put the California schools into the South and the Mountain schools into the North, or we could try the 3-division experiment and see whether it works out or not. But whatever we do, I just hope it isn’t the zipper idea. Please let us not be that dumb.

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