|Sept. 3||Hawaii||Ann Arbor, MI||12:00||ESPN|
|Sept. 10||UCF||Ann Arbor, MI||12:00||ABC|
|Sept. 17||Colorado||Ann Arbor, MI||3:30||BTN|
|Sept. 24||Penn State||Ann Arbor, MI||3:30||ABC|
|Oct. 1||Wisconsin||Ann Arbor, MI||3:30||ABC|
|Oct. 8||@ Rutgers||Piscataway, NJ||7:00||ESPN2|
|Oct. 22||Illinois||Ann Arbor, MI||3:30||BTN|
|Oct. 29||@ Michigan State||East Lansing, MI||12:00||ABC/ESPN/ESPN2|
|Nov. 5||Maryland||Ann Arbor, MI||3:30||TBD|
|Nov. 12||@ Iowa||Iowa City, IA||7CT/8ET||ABC/ESPN/ESPN2|
|Nov. 19||Indiana||Ann Arbor, MI||3:30||ABC/ESPN/ESPN2|
|Nov. 26||@ Ohio State||Columbus, Ohio||12:00||ABC/ESPN|
As some noticed on the twitters I've begun putting together the stat boxes for this year's HTTV opponent previews. I figured I might as well share some of that data here in one place.
FEI and S&P+ things: Champion stats by the two resident best internet football stats guys. Brian Fremeau (@bcfremeau) of Football Outsiders, and Bill Connelly (@SBN_BillC) of that and Football Study Hall on SBNation.
Connelly is responsible for, among other stats, S&P+ ratings (for offense, defense, etc.), which are derived from play-by-play and drive data of every FBS game. S&P+ measures four of five factors that determine game outcomes: efficiency, explosiveness, field position, and finishing drives. The fifth, turnovers, is relatively random so it's left out except as extra weight on sack rates, a thing that will effect at least one weird number we'll see. Garbage time is removed, and it's all weighted by opponents.
He also puts out pre-season projections based on recruiting, returning production, and front-weighted S&P+ of the last five years. Michigan's opponents by Bill C's Projected 2016 S&P+:
Not a lot of play in that schedule; the big rivals look to remain tough tests but that's it for the expected Top 25. The first two games should be good tuneups for O'Korn/whoever.
Brian Fremeau made FEI and F/+, based on opponent-adjusted drive efficiency. Clock kills and garbage time are filtered out, and strength of schedule is factored in. Since it's an overall efficiency thing I prefer to use FEI as a single-stat measure of an offense or defense, while going to the play-by-play nature of S&P+, I tend to use that and the raw, sack-adjusted* yards per play, to represent an offense and defense's run/pass splits.
Those and more after [The jump.]
* [The NCAA treats sacks as rushing, which doesn't make sense. So every year I take the NCAA's base stats and treat sacks as pass plays.This makes a huge difference. I've put them in a Google Doc if you want at 'em.]
They have been released by pressing. Poor guy with the schedules. He had no idea he would be crushed with rocks until they oozed out of him.
Wisconsin: remember them?
Oct. 3: at Michigan State
Oct. 10: Wisconsin
Oct. 17: Minnesota
Oct. 24: at Illinois
Oct. 31: Bye
Nov. 7: Nebraska
Nov. 14: at Northwestern
Nov. 21: at Iowa
Nov. 28: Ohio State
Dec. 5: Big Ten Championship Game
Oct. 1: Michigan State
Oct. 8: at Minnesota
Oct. 15: Northwestern
Oct. 22: Bye
Oct. 29: at Wisconsin
Nov. 5: Illinois
Nov. 12: at Nebraska
Nov. 19: Iowa
Nov. 26: at Ohio State
Dec. 3: Big Ten Championship Game
How about some bullets?
Again with the brutal home-road attractiveness swings. By lining up Wisconsin with Nebraska and Ohio State the Big Ten has turned the 2016 home slate into a 2012-like dog. It's far enough in the future that maybe Illinois could be good or something, but that is three teams that traditionally hover around .500—if they're lucky, in Illinois's case—and Iowa. Iowa may be going through a painful transition period around then if Ferentz decides to hang 'em up or is in the senescence phase of his career (he'll be 62 when the 2012 season starts).
So, like, bleah. Meanwhile: enjoy storming the @ ND, @ Wisconsin, @ Nebraska, @ OSU castle. Hopefully we have an Andre the Giant by then.
Woo Northwestern night game? Putting MSU and a bye in October severely limits options for a night game in 2016. IIRC, Big Ten teams can't play at night in November—or at least the road team has to agree to it—and Dave Brandon has said he won't let the juggalos burn down Ann Arbor. ND will also be on the road, so unless Michigan lines up an attractive nonconference home game get ready for an 8 PM start against the Wildcats. This may be the main reason Brandon is trying to lock down a Pac-12 home and home before the scheduling agreement kicks in.
2015 will obviously be Wisconsin.
Nicely situated byes at least. Two weeks to prep for important games both years and a break right in the middle of the conference season.
Of course we never see Indiana. Not that I'm making big wavy complaints about that. But after years of accidentally getting tougher than average schedules because of poorly-timed byes, the institutional bias towards tough Michigan schedules really hits home when you think about this: MSU plays Indiana 100% of the time and OSU 40% of the time. Michigan plays Indiana 40% of the time and OSU 100% of the time.