Phil Steele's 2016 Ohio State Preview is now posted here.
Despite being one of the "least experienced teams in the country", Steele has gone aheead picked Ohio State to win the Big Ten title.
Phil Steele published his popular "Turnovers = Turnaround" piece today.
One of the most popular articles that appears annually in my magazine is entitled “Turnovers=Turnaround.” The basic premise of the article is simple: teams that benefit from a large turnover margin in a particular year are not likely to enjoy that same margin in the upcoming year. As a result, a team’s record is more likely to decline if it relied heavily upon turnovers as a core basis for winning. Conversely, a team that struggles with an unfavorable turnover margin will often experience a reversal of fortunes. Since turnover margin is such a critical factor in a football game, a change in turnover margin can lead to dramatically different results.
This is not to say that turnovers are a complete fluke. In fact, certain teams have been able to create turnovers somewhat consistently on a year-to-year basis, usually via interceptions as opposed to fumbles. Again, fumbles are not completely random and some teams are better than others at stripping (or protecting) the ball, but it is a bit of a toss-up as to whether a team will be able to recover a fumble once an oblong ball starts bouncing around on the ground.
The examples are limitless but the core theory is simple and has proven to be accurate year-in and year-out.
Michigan State +19
Louisiana Tech +16
Arizona State +14
Northern Illinois +12
Georgia Tech +11
Georgia State -22
Eastern Michigan -18
Washington State -17
West Virginia -15
New Mexico State -13
Texas Tech -13
San Jose State -12
Southern Mississippi -10
Phil Steele Bowl Prediction (Week 3)....wait for it....Michigan vs. Arizona in San Francisco Bowl! :)
Right. And since when is Phil Steele correct in predicting anything?
Okay, I know, I know.
But today he really did day this is gonna happen and so I just think that....
And at Levi's Stadium! Woo Hoo! Thanks Phil!
2013 Phil Steele Preseason Top 40 Countdown revealed he has Michigan #24 and MSU #23. More importantly, you can get a PDF preview of his writeups on both teams on his website. I still think Steele's previews are the best of all the preview mags just for the stats page.
Michigan (#24): http://www.philsteele.com/Pdf/2013Top40Countdown/24Michigan.pdf
The links for previously covered teams are still active if you are interested. Some teams of note:
Northwestern (#32): http://www.philsteele.com/Pdf/2013Top40Countdown/32Northwestern.pdf
Over at Eleven Warriors, Phil Steele gives a long interview on his process of ranking teams, along with his take on Ohio, Michigan, and the rest of the Big 10. It is a fascinating read, and gives a sense of why Steele does such a good job of predicting. (LINK: http://www.elevenwarriors.com/2012/07/12344/12-0-is-a-possibility-chatting-with-phil-steele#more)
Of greatest interest here are his comments on Michigan. Here are a few quotes:
Last season, Brady Hoke and the Wolverines were one of the bigger success stories in the country. Do you think that can be sustained?
Phil Steele: Last year, Michigan had the best case scenario. Going 11-2, that’s about as good as it can get. When you look at things a little bit closer, the bowl game (against Virginia Tech)for example, they got out first-downed 22-12, outgained 377-184, but at the end of the game, they ended up winning.
You look at the Notre Dame game, heading into the fourth quarter you’re thinking Notre Dame is going to win by 24 points. They completely dominated the game and then ended up coming up short when Denard Robinson had a touchdown pass in the final seconds.
This year the schedule gets a little bit tougher. I do think this season’s team is a little bit stronger if they can get the defensive line going.
I just don’t think they’ll overachieve like they did last year.
I have them as an underdog against Alabama, a slight underdog at Notre Dame, an underdog at Nebraska and an underdog at Ohio State. That doesn’t mean they’ll lose all of them, but I think their odds of getting 11 wins are a little more difficult.
There is more in the interview on Michigan, but you can only quote so much. The whole piece is very good. Interestingly, Eleven Warriors predicts that Michigan will beat Alabama (although, Steele begs to differ, and thinks it would be quite an upset.)
I personally think it's a little low, especially when you consider that he has ND at #21. Notable:
Pointing downward are the fact thatthey benefitted from 3 net close wins, were +7 in TO's, hadbeneficial off (12.2) and def (18.5) ypp's and my Stock MarketIndicator (pg 27) has them -5.0. This is an improved tm thatprobably won't match LY's 11 win total with gms away fromhome vs Alabama, ND, Neb and Ohio St but unlike LY, theycould find themselves in the B10 Title game