the season has truly begun now
angry Michigan-football-hating god
Back in April, I wrote a diary called Blue Moon in my Eye in which I developed a regression model that could be used to develop a projected win total assuming that reasonable estimates had been used as inputs. At the time I thought that the team would be capable of winning at least seven, probably eight, and maybe even nine out of thirteen games this season. Since then, things have, uh, how do you say … changed. With the loss of Woolfolk, how do those numbers change?
The New Blue Moon
Before I get to that, there’s a good reason to update the model. In April, I mentioned that turnover margin is meaningful factor in regard to outcomes, but I lacked enough data to break it out specifically and therefore decided to leave it as a lumped parameter; turnovers were doomed to fade into the ether that is Intercept. No more, the NCAA has finally included turnover data in its database and now there is enough data to mix into the model. The new model has an improved R-squared value (0.752 as improved from 0.675) using just three end-of-year factors: offensive yards per game, defensive yards per game, and total turnover margin. Last time I didn’t include the model because it was mine, my own, my … preciousss. That was incredibly lame and nerdy (both with holding the coefficients and referencing LOTR) but we’re talking stats here so no one should be surprised. Another reason for divulging the goods is, now that there are four dimensions, a chart would be useless. Behold, the Blue Moon Model coefficients:
- I left the P-Values in there for those who know what that is. For the rest of you, it suffices to say what I said last time: that ish be money, yo.
- The second column (Normalized Coefficients) is there to demonstrate the relative importance of each factor; in short, defense is a skosh more influential than offense and turnover margin is a little over half as important as both.
- The use of the model (first column) is simple, start with the intercept then multiply the other the coefficients with their interrogation values and add everything together. Use it to gamble at your own peril. Until such a time as you can accurately predict end of year stats for these categories, the model is only good for using as a platform to base sophisticated guesses off of.
Probable influential factors that are embedded in the 25% of the variation not explained by the model (1 – R_squared) are:
- Return Teams effectiveness. Good return teams will establish good field position thus reducing OffYds/G.
- Coverage Teams effectiveness. Bad units will allow the other team to establish good field position thereby reducing DefYds/G.
- Field Goal Kicking effectiveness. If you get into field goal position and miss, you’ll have a lot of yards but nothing to show for them.
- Penalties. Penalty yardage will increase/decrease your production depending on if they’re called on you or them but doesn’t necessarily change how effective each team is at controlling field position.
- In round terms, factor influence on winning percentage breaks down to 30% Offense, 30% Defense, 15% Turnover Margin, and 25% Other Things.
Shine Down on the Big Ten (and it’s self-absorbed neighbor)
Below is 2009 Big Ten Data and Blue Moon Model expectation (BMM Expect).
|Team||OffYds/G||DefYds/G||TrnOvrMgn_Tot||2009 Wins||BMM Expect.||Delta Wins|
Who steps up at corner with Turner out? I can't imagine that any of our incomming freshmen corners are going to red shirt now. Does Cullen Christian become the nickel back? Who's the dime back? Do you think anyone else will get moved to defensive secondary? I'm only a fan but my guess is Cullen Christian is our 3rd CB and James Rodgers is the dime back.
This is potentially old news, but I didn't see anyone else mention it on the site.
Looks like we got another hit to our potential quarterback corps. Jozy Altidore will be out for a month following toe-nail surgery (ow! http://soccernet.espn.go.com/news/story?id=638506&&cc=5901)
I have never been a big believer in sports "curses," but I can't help but notice a particular trend that has occurred in the last couple of years. Let me lay out the scenario first:
It was Novemeber 17th, 2006, about thirty hours prior to Michigan facing The Nameless Terror in arguably the biggest game in the rivalry's history: both teams undefeated, ranked #1 and #2. Michigan had defeated all odds by coming off an extremely disappointing 2005 season to get to this point, and while pressure was building on Lloyd Carr as he had only one win against The Demon of the Ancient World, there was still a feeling of confidence for the Maize & Blue faithful.
And it was at this time that our beloved leader passed.
And somewhere in a different dimension, all the Angry michigan-football-hating-gods had a wild party to celebrate. The party got out of hand, the police were called, and this manifested itself in the form of a giant black hole eating up an entire galaxy, trillions of extra-terrestrial lives were lost...
...and This happened:
yet another loss to DOTAW and Nameless Terror, another loss in the Rose Bowl. Then, in a chance for redemption, one of the most hyped Michigan teams in recent memory with a bonified Heisman candidate RB, a future first overall pick at LT, a 4th year starter at QB, and a couple of future NFL receivers, Michigan lost to arguably the lowest rated team they have ever faced.
Then Oregon finished off a four game losing streak for the first time in... how long?
Then BAM! Wisconsin and Nameless Terror again.
And my point is, Michigan is now 12-13 since Bo's passing, so I ask: when was the last time Michigan had this bad a record over a 25-game stretch? Maybe I'm crazy, but I just want to throw it out there.
Naturally, Toledo should be a game that Michigan wins, but don't be so sure. I'm going to be at the game tommorrow.
I may not have made this explicit before, but the only game I've ever been to was the App State game. Ouch. I haven't gone to another since because I'm afraid I'm bad luck (really, what are the odds of that loss being the one game you go to?). Tommorrow, I'm going to test the theory. A friend of mine already threatened to kill me if they lose.
(and to answer the inevitable -- no, I didn't go to any games as an undergrad because [a] I had prior committments every Saturday [b] I don't get out much as it is and [c] I'm lame)