If you ever read articles from Phil Steele, he has a theory that a team that has forced double digit turnovers in excess of the times they turned the ball over will either equal their win total the following year, or will decrease their wins. As a corollary, a team who has turned the ball over double digit times more than they forced turnovers, will at least equal their win total the following year, or will increase their wins.
If you are like me, you are at least skeptical of this theory. So I went ahead and ran the numbers, going back to the 2006-2007 season. We looked at the team’s win total in 2006, their turnovers in 2006, and their win total in 2007. If the team had net double-digit turnovers, either to the positive or the negative, they came into the population study. Then a comparison was made between whether the team should have improved or at least stayed the same. Note that when looking at win totals for each year, I am only including regular season win totals, so no bowl games or conference championships are included.
If you want to see all of the charts since the 2006-2007 season, visit my website. For sake of brevity, I’m only going to include the 2010-2011 chart here. I’ll cover the 2011-2012 chart in a few weeks.
|Team||Conference||Net||2010 Wins||2011 Wins||Win Difference||Correct?|
|Ohio State||Big Ten||15||11||6||-5||YES|
|Oklahoma State||Big 12||12||10||11||1|
|Middle Tennessee||Sun Belt||-19||6||2||-4|
|New Mexico||Mountain West||-12||1||1||0||YES|
Since the 2006-2007 season up through the 2010-2011 season (five seasons), I reviewed the turnover differential. Here are the results:
58/76 with double-digit turnovers to the positive either won less games or stayed the same (76.3%).
55/64 with double-digit turnovers to the negative either won more games or stayed the same (85.9%).
113/140 total followed trend (80.7%)
In case you were wondering the stats from the 2010-2011 season:
16/18 with double-digit turnovers to the positive either won less games or stayed the same (88.9%).
10/12 with double-digit turnovers to the negative either won more games or stayed the same (83.3%).
26/30 total followed trend (86.7%)