By The Numbers - Purdue Preview

Submitted by The Mathlete on November 6th, 2009 at 7:54 PM
All numbers are points per game vs an average team. They are adjusted for strength of opponent.  No 1AA games or stats are included.  For more detailed questions on how the numbers come about, click here.

Rushing Offense

Michigan Rush Offense: +2 (20)
Purdue Rush Defense: -1 (78)

After rough outings versus Indiana and Michigan State, the rushing attack seemed closer to back on track after 2 solid performances against very good defenses in Iowa and Penn State.  And then last week.  Last week would have been an outlier even for a bad rushing offense.  After adjusting for Illinois' weakness against the run, Michigan rated out a -11 for the game.  Of the 896 matchups between 1A teams Michigan's performance on Saturday ranked as the 887th best, only 9 teams have had a worse game this year on the ground than Michigan had last Saturday.

Game - Rush+
Game - Rush+
Def Week Total Off Rush Yards TD
Indiana 4 -1.50 47 153 3
Michigan State 5 -3.30 25 61 0
Iowa 6 9.24 43 190 3
Penn State 8 4.80 33 134 1
Illinois 9 -10.96 38 129 1

Purdue, meanwhile has had everything from a +5 against Northwestern to a -8 in last week's debacle against Wisconsin.

Game - Rush+
Game - Rush+
Off Week Total Def Rush Yards TD
Notre Dame 4 0.21 39 188 2
Northwestern 5 4.66 40 102 2
Minnesota 6 -3.56 41 216 4
Ohio State 7 1.87 23 110 1
Illinois 8 -3.38 34 194 2
Wisconsin 9 -7.86 50 279 2

The way these two teams have been playing, this could be anything from a huge advantage for M or Purdue, or it could be a total draw.  There doesn't appear to be much consistency to either of these units.

Pass Offense

Michigan Pass Offense: +0 (58)
Purdue Pass Defense: +2 (42)

Ready for more inconsistency? Since Big 10 play started the Wolverines have bounced back and forth between positive and negative:

Game - Pass+
Game - Pass+
Def Week Off Total Att Comp Yards TD INT
Indiana 4 4.60 26 15 216 2 1
Michigan State 5 -5.05 34 19 180 2 1
Iowa 6 0.60 23 11 124 0 2
Penn State 8 -4.16 38 18 114 0 2
Illinois 9 1.40 27 17 247 0 0

Unfortunately, this week is slated for a negative game.

Even excluding the fantastic performance against Mr. Schematic Advantage and crew, Purdue's defense has been consistently solid in Big 10 play, with only one significantly negative performance on the season against Northwestern.

Game - Pass+
Game - Pass+
Off Week Def Total Att Comp Yards TD INT
Notre Dame 4 10.67 40 24 195 1 1
Northwestern 5 -3.43 47 29 204 0 0
Minnesota 6 4.67 13 8 58 0 2
Ohio State 7 4.66 34 20 202 1 2
Illinois 8 -0.96 30 17 128 0 1
Wisconsin 9 1.88 22 12 101 0 1

It does not appear that there is much in the past several games that indicates Purdue being a team Michigan can significantly exploit through the air.

Rush Defense

Michigan Rush Defense: -3 (102)
Purdue Rush Offense: +0 (50)

Michigan's rush defense hasn't been nearly as good as their rush offense, but the ebb and flow of the season has mirrored very closely.

Game - Rush+
Game - Rush+
Off Week Total Def Rush Yards TD
Indiana 4 -5.89 32 209 3
Michigan State 5 -1.92 47 206 3
Iowa 6 -0.37 32 98 1
Penn State 8 3.49 38 178 0
Illinois 9 -11.31 52 414 4
   
Bad games against Indiana and Michigan State, solid games against Iowa and Penn State and a disaster against Illinois.  The magnitudes are different in some cases, but directionally these two units have been intertwined for the whole Big 10 season.

Purdue had been consistently bad going -4 or -5 against ND and its first three Big 10 foes before posting a +5 against Illinois and a +1 against Wisconsin last week.

Game - Rush+
Game - Rush+
Def Week Total Off Rush Yards TD
Notre Dame 4 -4.60 23 91 0
Northwestern 5 -4.91 24 68 0
Minnesota 6 -3.56 26 112 0
Ohio State 7 -4.60 29 82 0
Illinois 8 4.51 38 228 3
Wisconsin 9 0.83 24 90 0

This appears to be as good of a chance as Michigan is going to have to shut down a running game the rest of the season.  With that said, the performance against Illinois indicates that if Michigan does not step up their game, this could be another negative performance for what has so far been the worst unit for Michigan this year.

Pass Defense

Michigan Pass Defense: +2 (37)
Purdue Pass Offense: +0 (62)

For Michigan in the passing game, it all comes down to the big plays.  When they haven't been giving up gashes in the passing game, this has surprisingly been one of the best units in the Big 10, however, you can't take away those plays and the reality is that for all of the patchwork going on, this group has held its own.

Game - Pass+
Game - Pass+
Off Week Def Total Att Comp Yards TD INT
Indiana 4 0.01 39 22 258 0 1
Michigan State 5 2.86 30 21 212 0 2
Iowa 6 5.66 40 22 269 2 1
Penn State 8 0.91 29 18 218 4 0
Illinois 9 -3.82 15 12 88 1 0

Purdue has really been all over the map on the season with great games and terrible games alike.

Game - Pass+
Game - Pass+
Def Week Off Total Att Comp Yards TD INT
Notre Dame 4 3.32 40 24 271 3 1
Northwestern 5 11.15 30 21 300 3 1
Minnesota 6 -7.46 49 27 287 2 2
Ohio State 7 13.18 53 31 277 2 2
Illinois 8 -4.80 25 16 158 0 0
Wisconsin 9 -14.98 36 12 59 0 1

Big games against Ohio State and Northwestern were offset by really bad games against Wisconsin and Minnesota.  How Purdue's passing attack fares could swing the game as there has been 4 touchdowns worth of variance in their performance this year in Big 10 play alone.

Pace

Both Michigan and Purdue are currently top 20 in both expected points per game and total drives per game.  This could be a fast paced up and down game since both teams have packed the possessions so far this season.

Turnovers

Purdue and Michigan are both in the bottom 20 on turnover spread on the year, virtually tied at -25 points on turnovers this year.  What's surprising for Purdue is that they are 13th in the country, generating +32 points off of opponent turnovers on the season vs Michigan's defense at +7.  That gap is made up with Purdue propensity for throwing picks.  Only four teams have been hurt worse by picks than Purdue's -41.

Special Teams

Michigan +0.7 (33)
Purdue: -2.3 (94)

An average 3 point swing on special teams is a huge one for Michigan.  Let's see if Michigan can get a few big plays this week and justify the use of the term "bright spot."

Prediction

Michigan 31 Purdue 26

Elsewhere:
Illinois 17 Minnesota 31
Northwestern 7 Iowa 27
Ohio State 14 Penn State 21
Wisconsin 35 Indiana 17
Western Michigan 28 Michigan State 38



Comments

tubauberalles

November 7th, 2009 at 8:45 AM ^

Would there be any value in including UM's performance against ND as another shared comparison point? The only other shared point is Illinois and that's (hopefully, please) an outlier.