Will we win?
I did not make this headline up
Note: I've added the FEI rankings for offense and defense – these are currently NOT adjusted and FEI waits until week #7 to have enough data to make adjustments to OE and DE.
Synopsis: The folks at FEI are predicting just a 6-6 season for Michigan (the same as last week before the loss to ND). However, this is not quite as bad as you might suspect because early in the season, FEI has universally pessimistic predictions. At the beginning of the year, FEI predicted ZERO teams to go undefeated and ZERO teams to have just one loss! Currently, FEI is still predicting that ZERO FBS teams will go undefeated. Only 2 FBS teams are predicted to have one loss (Florida State & Alabama). All others are predicted to have at least 2 losses.
Alabama (ranked #2 in FEI) is playing only 11 FBS games this year and FEI is predicting a 10.3 FBS win season. Florida State (ranked #1 in FEI) plays just 10 FBS games and is predicted by FEI to win 8.9 FBS.
Michigan is ranked #42 in the FEI. This is an improvement from last week even though we lost the game. This should not be entirely unexpected because the basic purpose of any ranking system is to better reflect the relative strength of a team by making adjustments to the raw win/loss data. In the FEI, the GE (Game Efficiency) represents the raw data before adjustments. M is ranked #60 for GE and after adjustments is ranked #42 for FEI.
Last year after Week#4, M was ranked #10 in the FEI with 10.3 predicted wins.
Fremeau Efficiency Index: The FEI is a drive based analysis considering each of the nearly 20,000 drives each year in FBS college football. The data is filtered to eliminate garbage time (at the half or end of game) and is adjusted for opponent. A team is rewarded for playing well against good teams (win or lose) and is punished more severely for playing poorly against bad teams than it is rewarded for playing well against bad teams. (This is why M was ranked relatively high after that loss to Alabama, actually fell 13 places after the blowout of UMass, and improved 4 places after a loss to ND.)
National Rankings: The rankings for offense and defense are based on scoring (yardage statistics are inherently flawed). These are simply raw numbers without any adjustments for opponent, garbage time, or anything else. The data is from TeamRankings and includes only games between two FBS teams.
FEI Details: Here are the FEI numbers for Michigan ( Football Outsiders FEI ). FEI is predicting a 6-6 season for the Wolverines (FBS Mean Wins = 6.0). Like most predictive tools, the FEI is less reliable at the beginning of the year because there is so little data.
Points Per Possession: The defense played very well and allowed just 1.3 PPP. The offense also played well but the TOs just were too much to overcome. M lost almost 14 points due to their TOs. The overall average for offense points per possession is 2.5 and for defense points per possession is 2.0. The 2 charts show the raw data for offense and defense with the number of possessions adjusted for "kneel downs" at the half or end-of-game (maximum deduction = 2).
Using Scoring Offense and Scoring Defense National Rankings for the past 5 years (FBS AQ teams only), this table shows the percentage of teams that finish the season with a +WLM and a +5 WLM. For example, teams that finished in the Top 40 in both offense and defense had a 100% chance to be +WLM and an 82% chance to be +5 WLM (9-4 or better).