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Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Fun with Numbers: Best & Worst Non-Conference Performers

This morning, I ran down a list of the SEC's dominance in non-conference competition. This afternoon, I figured we could go through some of the individual teams that have enjoyed the most (and least) success in non-conference play.

(Side Note: ESPN's Chris Low offers his list of the top SEC non-conference games for 2010 HERE.)

Best non-conference records among BCS teams, 2005-2009:

TeamNC W
Win %
Florida 231
LSU 23 1 .958
Southern Cal
20 1 .952
Penn State
22 2 .917
Texas 22 2 .917
Wisconsin 22 2 .917
Kansas 20 2 .909
Georgia 21 3 .875
Boston College
21 3 .875
Missouri 21 3 .875

Looking at that list, I'm guessing there aren't many surprises for people who follow college football. Maybe Missouri or Boston College or Kansas, but you also probably wouldn't be too surprised to know that much of their non-conference slate has been filled with less-than-stellar competition.

In any case, it's a bit more evidence that Mark Richt warrants being mentioned with the most successful coaches in the country.

And here's yet another check mark in Richt's column. If we just look at non-conference victories over BCS-conference teams, Georgia's record looks even better.

Most non-conference wins vs. BCS opponents, 2005-2009:

(Note: For the purposes of analysis, I counted Notre Dame as a BCS opponent. Given their recent track record, however, that may have been generous on my part.)

Win %
USC 16 1 .941
Georgia 11 3 .786
West Virginia
11 4 .733
Florida 10 1 .909
Penn State
10 2 .833
Louisville 9 4 .692
Wake Forest
9 5 .643
LSU 8 1 .889
Missouri 8 1 .889
California 8 2 .800
Iowa 8 5 .615

Just one team in the nation has won more games than Georgia vs. non-conference BCS foes in the past five years -- and if you take Notre Dame out of the equation, then UGA and USC are even.

Of course, that's the good news for Georgia and some of the other top teams of the last half-decade. But who are the worst performers? That probably won't come as a huge surprise either.

Win %
Stanford 5 11 .313
Duke 7 12 .368
Washington 6 10 .375
Colorado 8 13 .381
Syracuse 10 14 .417
Illinois9 11 .450
Virginia 11 10 .524
North Carolina
11 10 .524
Arizona 9 8 .529
Mississippi State
11 9 .550

No surprise to see my Syracuse Orange listed there. Frankly, I'm shocked they've won 10 games period during that stretch. Oh, and poor Ron Zook.

Give teams like Syracuse and Illinois a little credit, though. At least they didn't shy away from a few challenges along the way. A few others though...

Fewest non-conference wins vs. BCS opponents, 2005-2009:

Team BCS W
Win %
Arizona 03
Mississippi State
0 4 .000
Texas A&M
0 7 .000
Kansas State 0 5 .000
Stanford 1 6 .143
Washington 1 7 .125
Colorado 1 9 .100
Washington State
1 5 .167
Minnesota 1 6 .143
Indiana 1 3 .250
Arkansas 1 5 .167

Wasn't expecting to see Arkansas on that list, but again, not too many surprises. But seriously, how do you go a half a decade without winning a single non-conference game against a BCS opponent? I mean, call up Syracuse's AD and work something out... just to get the monkey off your back.

Oh, and just in case you were curious where the Bulldogs' in-state rivals rank in all of this... Georgia Tech is 14-10 in non-conference games in the past five years overall, good for 51st nationally among 65 BCS-conference teams. They're 7-8 against those BCS-conference foes during that span.


Anonymous said...

So, you're telling me Tech has TWO losses to non-BCS, non-conference opponents? Way to go wreck!

Who and when?

Hobnail_Boot said...

'05 Emerald Bowl to Utah, '07 Humanitarian Bowl to Fresno State.

I did that from memory.. what do I win?

Chad said...

I notice that Arizona only played 3 games against non-conf BCS teams in the past three years...boy that seems low. Considering many teams have at least one annual rival from another conference (Georgia/GT, USC/Clemson, Michigan/ND, Florida/FSU, etc.) and many others have regular home-and-away series (Texas/OSU, OSU/SoCal, OklaSt/UGA, etc) it just seems odd that in five years the Wildcats have only 3 games recorded in the past five years. Are there other teams that have this kind of deficit? Is 'Zona the worst in that category, too?