The Weekly Six-Michigan State

Submitted by The Mathlete on November 7th, 2013 at 2:23 PM

I believe this photo was taken before the game (Upchurch)

Let’s try this again after accidentally deleting the original version.

1 The Six Factors

  Exp Score Early Conv Bonus Yds Avg 3rd Dist Adj 3rd Conv Red Zone
Michigan 22.3 37% 101 12.7 -18% 3.0
MSU 26.5 35% 116 7.4 +4% 7.0

Gave up a few points in field position, that could be worse…

Actually did better getting early conversions than MSU, that’s encouraging…

Lost the bonus yards, that’s a bit troubling…

Oh wow, that average third down distance is awful…

And that adjusted 3rd down conversion is after adjusting for the 12.7 average…

At this point the red zone doesn’t even matter.

When it went bad on Saturday, it went really bad. Take out the final two drives and my prediction of holding the MSU offense a touchdown below field position is about spot on. Michigan State owned the world when Michigan had the ball. The 12.7 average is the third worst number on the season for any team in any game. It was not good.

Six Factors for all FBS teams

2 Individual Performances

QBs: Points Added (opp. adjusted), Win Percent Added (Weekly National Rank)

Devin Gardner: +2, –4% (43)

Connor Cook: +1, +12% (54)


Fitzgerald Toussaint: +0.2, –3% (n/a)

Jeremy Langford: –1.5, +3% (72)


Jeremy Gallon: +4.5, +11% (101)

Bennie Fowler: +7.2, +16% (32)

[Game chart of impending doom followed by doom, follwed by more doom.]

3 Game Chart


Pictured: World’s worst roller coaster

6.+5.7% Matt Wile hits from 49 yards out

5. –6.2% Gardner loses 7 on 3rd and 2 at the MSU 14

4. –6.3% Cook to Fowler for the game’s first touchdown

3. –7.1% Crazy fullback throwback on MSU’s opening play

2. +9.2% Raymor Taylor with the interception (+6.5%) and returns it 17 yards (+2.7%)

1.  +10.8% Gardner to Chesson for 58 yards

The sacks allowed and the bad snap contributed a total of 26% of lost win percent over the course of the game.

4 Dumb Punt

Kirk Ferentz has been absent from the worst offenders list for a while but he managed to catch up this week, punting from the 35 and the 42 in the opening quarter of Iowa’s loss to Wisconsin.

5 Hoke’s Road Woes

I wanted to look more deeply into the gap that Michigan has seen between home and road games under Brady Hoke. First I wanted to compare Hoke’s performance versus prior Michigan coaches and his earlier stints at Ball St and San Diego St.


Opponent adjusted average game score

Hoke as Carr at home and RichRod on the road sounds about right. The 12 point gap in performance is a big one. Only five coaches have had that large of home and road splits over the course of their careers with at least 40 games: Dennis Erickson, Steve Sarkisian, Gene Chizik, Mike Price and JD Brookhart.

Lloyd Carr had a pretty standard 5 point game between home and road and Rodriguez was equally mediocre at both. Only four coaches have had less of a home field advantage than Rodriguez, Lane Kiffin, Pete Carroll, Bobby Johnson and Mack Brown.

Hoke didn’t seem to have the same challenges at either San Diego St or Ball St, both stints yielding a 3-4 point difference between opponent adjusted home performance and road performance. At first it looks like a new occurrence, but then I split the performance for just offense:


Opponent adjusted average offensive game score

Carr’s offenses were nearly the same home and away, Rodriguez’s offense did substantially better on the road but that Hoke split is massive. That’s a full 15 points different home versus away. It wasn’t nearly as bad at San Diego St but an 8.5 point difference for one side of the ball is still very large. The three point gap at Ball State is much more in line with a typical expectation. I pulled Borges’ time at Auburn and it too was in line with a typical spread. So what happened when Hoke and Borges joined forces? Has Hoke pressured Borges on style for the road and Borges hasn’t been able to still generate productivity? Is it just a random fluke that’s in its fifth year? Either way, the question of Hoke on the road is really a question of Hoke & Borges or maybe just Borges on the road.

6 Prediction

  Exp Score Early Conv Bonus Yds Avg 3rd Dist Adj 3rd Conv Red Zone
Michigan O 29.6 (24) 47% (42) 177 (19) 8.8 (124) -1% (63) 5.1 (65)
Nebraska D 25.7 (48) 54% (110) 118 (24) 7.4 (40) +9% (111) 6.0 (117)
Nebraska O 29.0 (32) 46% (52) 114 (93) 7.1 (71) -10% (122) 6.1 (10)
Michigan D 31.0 (110) 44% (41) 121 (30) 6.9 (70) +6% (102) 4.6 (30)


Devin Gardner: +8.8 (8th NCAA/1st B1G)

Taylor Martinez the first: –3.2

Tommy Armstrong the second: –2.4

Ron Kellogg the third: +1.2


Fitzgerald Toussaint: –2.2 (151/17)

Ameer Abdullah: +2.0 (20/6)


Jeremy Gallon: +9.2 (5/1)

Devin Funchess: +5.4 (51/6)

Quincy Enunwa: +4.5 (10/101)

This is a pretty blah Nebraska team. They aren’t really great at anything, the offense is decent at moving the ball, but one of the least explosive teams in the country. The defense isn’t the tire fire it once was but is still ranked 100+ in three different categories.

Michigan 28 Nebraska 21



November 7th, 2013 at 3:15 PM ^

Very odd (to me, anyway) that Carroll actually had a worse homefield advantage than RR.  Is it just that his teams were extremely consistent wherever they played?


November 8th, 2013 at 10:17 AM ^

The away record is clear and unmistakable. The important question that he asks, but cannot answer, is why? We all see the team has had flawed offenses and understand that the road is more difficult, but what is making it so that the road-home difference would be particularly large for this staff and team?

Unless someone can give me a particularly good reason, I still think it's mostly chance. The offense isn't as good as it's looked at home and not as bad as it's looked on the road.