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» The Week In Quotes: December 19, 2014

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28 Oct 2011

VN: Playing Up to Your Level of Competition

by Bill Connelly

Last week, we took a look at Adjusted Points.

This week, we'll take a look at what we can do with this type of measure. Below are some of the tools we can use once we have a nice, weekly, opponent-adjusted evaluation at our fingertips. But first, a primer:

  • Standard Deviation: This is simply the standard deviation of each team's week-to-week Adj. Scoring Margin. The higher the standard deviation (and rank), the more a team's performance varies from week to week. This allows us to differentiate between one good/bad team and another. No. 9 Michigan State is all over the place, while No. 4 Oregon is steely and consistent. No. 72 Northern Illinois has shown some high upside and low downside; No. 81 Ole Miss has been consistently below average.
  • Off. Standard Deviation and Def. Standard Deviation: This is the same thing, but we just look at the performance of each individual unit.
  • Wtd. Margin: This is an attempted look at momentum. If we weight each progressive game as ten percent more important than the one before it, some teams' Adj. Scoring Margins change. We can compare Wtd. Margin to the full 2011 Margin to get the DIFF column, which signifies the difference between the two numbers. Teams with a positive "DIFF" have shown improvement as the season has progressed. Teams with negative numbers have not. No. 30 TCU is coming on strong after a rocky start, while No. 23 Georgia Tech, No. 33 Illinois and No. 40 Florida are dropping quickly.
  • COVAR: This stands for Covariance, a look at which teams play better against good teams and which teams play better against worse. The higher the COVAR figure, the more likely you are to rack up great numbers against lesser teams but perform at a lower level against good ones. I played with this a bit this summer, but I'm still figuring out what it could mean in terms of predictive value. Teams like No. 26 Ohio State and No. 43 Missouri are on the high side (meaning they dominate when they have an advantage but don't play up to a higher level of competition), while No. 22 Miami and No. 42 Texas Tech have tended to play better against better teams. This doesn't mean the "playing up to competition" teams are better -- it could mean you just end up with competitive losses against good teams and competitive wins/losses against lesser ones -- but it is interesting.

There is a lot of data here, but let's jump right in. Teams are listed in order of overall F/+ ranking. You can find the rankings in their normal layout here.

F/+
Rk
Team St.
Dev.
Rk Off. St.
Dev.
Rk Def. St.
Dev.
Rk Wtd.
Margin
2011
Margin
DIFF Rk COVAR Rk
1 Alabama 7.6 91 5.3 99 10.0 25 34.2 34.2 0.0 58 -93.5 98
2 LSU 10.7 50 7.2 65 9.7 30 24.3 24.5 -0.2 70 197.3 21
3 Boise State 7.3 93 8.2 48 12.1 19 21.6 21.8 -0.1 67 11.6 73
4 Oregon 5.2 114 5.5 97 8.9 35 21.3 21.2 0.1 54 12.0 72
5 Wisconsin 7.2 97 10.1 16 7.9 45 20.0 19.2 0.8 25 -191.4 115
6 Oklahoma State 7.8 90 5.7 93 3.0 115 12.6 12.9 -0.3 78 -15.6 79
7 Stanford 8.1 86 5.0 104 9.6 31 17.1 17.4 -0.2 72 56.3 59
8 Oklahoma 16.2 12 6.7 76 14.9 8 20.4 21.7 -1.3 114 81.1 55
9 Michigan State 18.3 6 6.9 73 17.4 2 20.3 19.9 0.4 41 290.7 9
10 Texas A&M 12.5 31 10.4 13 3.4 110 14.3 15.5 -1.2 113 -56.5 88
11 Notre Dame 13.0 26 8.1 49 7.2 51 14.2 15.3 -1.1 108 77.1 57
12 Michigan 12.6 29 6.0 89 9.8 29 12.1 12.8 -0.7 96 295.9 7
13 Virginia Tech 13.6 22 9.6 23 14.6 9 11.8 13.0 -1.2 111 124.9 40
14 Arizona State 7.0 98 7.1 67 2.3 118 6.4 6.9 -0.5 87 -88.5 97
15 Clemson 9.8 67 5.4 98 7.4 48 6.1 5.6 0.5 36 -301.2 119
16 Penn State 11.7 41 6.2 84 11.4 23 13.4 14.7 -1.3 115 91.5 49
17 Arkansas 7.3 95 4.2 116 5.9 65 5.5 5.9 -0.4 82 -112.6 104
18 Georgia 11.9 37 9.8 20 12.2 17 13.1 14.0 -0.9 101 226.1 15
19 Toledo 12.8 27 7.5 59 7.2 52 9.6 8.6 1.0 15 -65.1 92
20 Florida State 9.9 61 6.8 75 7.3 50 13.4 13.8 -0.4 83 291.9 8
F/+
Rk
Team St.
Dev.
Rk Off. St.
Dev.
Rk Def. St.
Dev.
Rk Wtd.
Margin
2011
Margin
DIFF Rk COVAR Rk
21 USC 8.1 87 6.2 83 6.9 54 6.8 5.9 0.9 21 -104.3 100
22 Miami 13.3 24 14.5 2 12.0 20 7.6 6.9 0.8 28 -291.5 118
23 Georgia Tech 10.3 54 12.0 8 5.7 67 4.5 6.4 -1.9 118 210.2 18
24 Temple 12.5 30 6.3 81 8.1 44 7.9 7.4 0.4 38 287.5 10
25 Southern Miss 11.7 40 9.1 29 6.6 57 6.7 5.6 1.1 11 -5.4 75
26 Ohio State 19.2 3 7.0 72 14.4 11 4.9 6.1 -1.2 112 492.2 2
27 Baylor 9.3 74 5.7 94 6.1 63 12.5 13.6 -1.2 110 29.1 65
28 South Carolina 23.2 1 8.3 46 19.7 1 16.8 15.3 1.5 5 211.1 17
29 Houston 11.9 36 7.3 62 11.8 21 13.2 12.0 1.3 7 123.8 41
30 TCU 16.8 10 3.9 118 16.3 4 15.0 12.4 2.5 1 218.2 16
31 Kansas State 7.9 88 8.4 45 15.7 6 3.2 3.8 -0.6 94 172.4 30
32 North Carolina 5.5 112 5.0 102 3.2 112 6.1 7.0 -0.9 102 76.9 58
33 Illinois 14.7 17 6.5 78 9.9 26 7.5 9.2 -1.6 117 279.6 11
34 Nebraska 6.4 108 7.0 70 5.4 74 4.6 4.5 0.1 52 -42.8 85
35 Tennessee 14.2 18 12.0 7 3.9 100 2.3 3.3 -1.0 104 34.5 63
36 SMU 20.5 2 14.6 1 14.3 12 15.1 14.1 0.9 19 579.7 1
37 Cincinnati 9.0 75 6.2 82 9.4 34 8.8 7.8 1.1 9 20.0 70
38 Rutgers 8.7 82 9.9 18 9.6 32 1.9 2.2 -0.3 77 112.0 45
39 South Florida 11.4 44 8.8 35 8.3 41 7.4 7.2 0.3 46 251.3 14
40 Florida 12.2 35 8.9 33 6.4 61 3.1 5.1 -2.0 119 376.6 4
F/+
Rk
Team St.
Dev.
Rk Off. St.
Dev.
Rk Def. St.
Dev.
Rk Wtd.
Margin
2011
Margin
DIFF Rk COVAR Rk
41 Texas 9.9 62 5.6 95 6.1 64 3.5 4.6 -1.1 107 189.9 23
42 Texas Tech 9.8 68 7.5 61 3.9 99 3.4 2.8 0.6 33 -210.8 116
43 Missouri 18.7 4 8.1 51 15.8 5 11.7 11.8 -0.1 64 483.4 3
44 Iowa 9.9 60 8.5 44 3.7 102 2.7 1.8 1.0 16 -12.0 78
45 West Virginia 17.2 9 10.2 15 8.5 37 9.0 8.0 1.0 14 -87.9 96
46 Syracuse 9.6 69 7.8 54 6.7 55 3.3 3.0 0.2 49 -140.7 108
47 Mississippi State 7.2 96 7.8 55 5.2 79 0.4 0.6 -0.2 71 200.4 19
48 Washington 10.3 53 8.6 42 2.0 119 5.3 4.5 0.8 23 -163.8 110
49 Louisiana Tech 4.4 119 4.6 108 7.3 49 2.4 2.2 0.2 50 -79.9 95
50 Pittsburgh 12.7 28 11.9 9 4.5 91 -3.8 -3.2 -0.6 92 -165.9 111
51 Wake Forest 11.5 43 4.8 105 12.2 18 3.2 3.3 -0.1 62 199.8 20
52 California 18.6 5 7.1 68 15.5 7 6.6 6.1 0.5 35 367.0 5
53 Arizona 5.1 115 4.8 106 4.7 84 4.3 4.3 0.1 55 91.2 50
54 Virginia 17.2 8 8.5 43 14.5 10 5.7 6.4 -0.7 97 2.5 74
55 Auburn 9.8 66 8.6 41 7.6 46 2.0 2.5 -0.5 88 -49.4 87
56 Tulsa 7.3 94 2.3 120 7.4 47 2.8 3.4 -0.5 90 31.4 64
57 Arkansas State 9.9 63 6.0 88 6.4 60 3.9 3.5 0.4 40 180.1 25
58 Utah State 11.0 47 8.7 38 5.3 77 3.5 3.8 -0.3 81 181.4 24
59 BYU 6.2 110 6.4 79 5.6 70 0.8 0.0 0.8 29 40.0 62
60 Western Michigan 12.5 33 11.4 10 8.5 39 2.2 3.3 -1.1 106 125.0 39
F/+
Rk
Team St.
Dev.
Rk Off. St.
Dev.
Rk Def. St.
Dev.
Rk Wtd.
Margin
2011
Margin
DIFF Rk COVAR Rk
61 Louisville 9.0 76 8.9 31 4.2 95 -2.7 -3.8 1.1 12 -184.7 114
62 Hawaii 10.0 56 7.7 56 5.6 68 0.5 -0.2 0.8 27 -31.6 81
63 Ohio 6.5 107 9.1 28 9.5 33 1.3 2.1 -0.9 100 -48.5 86
64 Maryland 6.5 106 4.6 110 5.2 78 0.2 0.4 -0.3 73 -95.9 99
65 Vanderbilt 10.0 57 10.8 11 8.5 38 2.7 1.9 0.8 24 51.0 60
66 Central Florida 16.5 11 5.2 101 16.7 3 8.9 11.0 -2.1 120 113.1 44
67 Florida International 6.7 102 4.4 113 4.6 89 -0.8 0.2 -1.0 105 46.0 61
68 Purdue 15.9 13 8.1 50 8.6 36 2.8 2.6 0.2 48 269.4 13
69 Northwestern 10.9 49 9.3 27 5.1 80 1.7 0.6 1.0 13 -369.0 120
70 San Diego State 6.7 103 5.6 96 3.3 111 0.4 0.4 0.0 60 125.1 38
71 Utah 15.3 15 8.8 36 12.6 15 0.3 0.4 -0.1 65 18.6 71
72 Northern Illinois 17.5 7 6.4 80 13.9 13 4.7 3.9 0.9 22 25.0 68
73 Nevada 11.0 45 8.9 32 12.5 16 5.1 4.8 0.3 42 140.8 36
74 UTEP 11.8 39 9.4 26 8.2 43 1.2 -0.6 1.8 4 -6.2 76
75 Navy 12.5 32 12.1 6 4.3 93 1.1 1.6 -0.5 85 -167.3 112
76 Duke 6.9 99 4.5 111 2.7 117 -4.1 -3.8 -0.3 75 123.3 42
77 Connecticut 9.5 71 7.0 71 6.9 53 -4.0 -3.4 -0.6 93 158.3 31
78 N.C. State 8.9 78 5.3 100 8.2 42 -1.1 -2.2 1.1 10 -180.6 113
79 Fresno State 8.7 80 8.6 40 5.6 71 -3.1 -4.0 0.9 20 28.4 66
80 Oregon State 9.0 77 7.5 60 5.5 72 -3.4 -4.3 0.9 18 -8.4 77
F/+
Rk
Team St.
Dev.
Rk Off. St.
Dev.
Rk Def. St.
Dev.
Rk Wtd.
Margin
2011
Margin
DIFF Rk COVAR Rk
81 Ole Miss 4.3 120 7.1 69 4.1 98 -6.5 -7.1 0.6 32 -61.1 91
82 UCLA 12.2 34 9.8 21 4.7 86 -0.5 0.1 -0.6 91 -17.3 80
83 Bowling Green 9.5 70 5.8 92 5.7 66 -2.1 -1.8 -0.3 76 149.6 35
84 Air Force 6.7 104 5.0 103 5.6 69 -1.5 -1.6 0.1 53 -112.0 103
85 Boston College 5.1 116 4.6 109 1.8 120 -8.5 -9.3 0.7 30 -106.7 101
86 East Carolina 7.8 89 10.4 14 3.4 109 -5.0 -4.9 0.0 61 98.4 47
87 Marshall 9.9 64 8.8 34 6.7 56 -7.7 -7.0 -0.6 95 -107.1 102
88 Iowa State 10.6 51 7.3 64 4.5 90 -6.4 -6.1 -0.3 79 -138.3 107
89 Buffalo 11.9 38 10.0 17 5.1 81 -5.4 -6.2 0.8 26 114.2 43
90 UL-Lafayette 7.4 92 9.7 22 6.3 62 -5.4 -6.3 0.9 17 20.7 69
91 Western Kentucky 13.6 23 13.4 3 8.4 40 -2.5 -4.5 2.0 3 -35.5 84
92 Kentucky 13.0 25 8.7 37 10.5 24 -9.2 -8.7 -0.5 86 341.9 6
93 San Jose State 6.3 109 7.6 57 4.6 87 -8.1 -8.8 0.7 31 90.8 51
94 Middle Tennessee 5.0 117 2.5 119 3.7 104 -1.5 -1.5 0.0 59 -34.5 83
95 UL-Monroe 15.3 14 5.9 90 11.8 22 -2.0 -2.1 0.1 51 157.3 32
96 Troy 10.9 48 8.3 47 3.7 103 -8.4 -7.2 -1.1 109 -135.8 105
97 New Mexico State 5.7 111 5.8 91 5.4 76 -5.1 -5.3 0.2 47 -75.6 93
98 Washington State 10.6 52 6.1 85 6.6 58 -8.0 -7.1 -0.9 103 105.1 46
99 Rice 6.5 105 4.5 112 4.2 97 -9.3 -9.0 -0.3 74 26.8 67
100 Colorado 9.3 73 8.7 39 4.7 85 -8.8 -7.2 -1.6 116 194.3 22
F/+
Rk
Team St.
Dev.
Rk Off. St.
Dev.
Rk Def. St.
Dev.
Rk Wtd.
Margin
2011
Margin
DIFF Rk COVAR Rk
101 Central Michigan 11.6 42 9.4 25 9.8 28 -7.2 -7.1 -0.2 68 179.0 26
102 Miami (Ohio) 8.7 81 9.0 30 6.6 59 -8.4 -8.7 0.3 44 -148.6 109
103 Indiana 8.3 85 7.3 63 4.2 96 -9.8 -9.9 0.1 56 -136.0 106
104 Ball State 10.2 55 9.8 19 3.1 114 -7.2 -7.8 0.5 34 276.1 12
105 Eastern Michigan 8.7 83 6.8 74 5.4 75 -6.3 -6.7 0.4 39 175.4 28
106 Idaho 4.5 118 4.4 114 3.5 107 -12.0 -11.7 -0.3 80 90.1 52
107 Colorado State 6.8 101 6.1 86 3.7 101 -14.0 -13.8 -0.2 69 -57.2 89
108 Kent State 11.0 46 4.7 107 12.8 14 -10.4 -10.5 0.1 57 84.8 54
109 Wyoming 5.2 113 4.0 117 4.8 83 -8.2 -8.5 0.3 45 87.5 53
110 Kansas 6.9 100 4.3 115 4.3 92 -7.1 -6.8 -0.4 84 94.4 48
111 North Texas 9.3 72 6.6 77 3.5 106 -8.8 -9.3 0.5 37 -31.7 82
112 Tulane 13.7 21 10.8 12 5.0 82 -11.1 -11.0 -0.1 66 -79.5 94
113 Army 14.1 20 6.0 87 9.9 27 -3.3 -3.2 -0.1 63 134.2 37
114 UAB 14.8 16 12.4 5 3.2 113 -11.4 -13.4 2.1 2 -57.5 90
115 Akron 10.0 58 7.8 53 3.0 116 -12.4 -13.8 1.4 6 178.9 27
116 Minnesota 9.8 65 7.6 58 4.3 94 -11.8 -11.3 -0.5 89 78.4 56
117 Florida Atlantic 8.6 84 7.8 52 3.7 105 -17.7 -18.0 0.3 43 152.5 33
118 Memphis 8.9 79 7.2 66 4.6 88 -17.1 -18.2 1.1 8 149.9 34
119 UNLV 14.1 19 12.7 4 5.4 73 -14.0 -13.2 -0.8 99 -290.8 117
120 New Mexico 10.0 59 9.5 24 3.4 108 -17.2 -16.5 -0.8 98 173.1 29

This could really be about four different columns in one, but I wanted to present this information so we had it for reference heading into the next month.

One thing we could use this data for is picks. Here are all of the Week 9 F/+ Projections. In tomorrow's Boston College-Maryland game, we basically know what we are going to get from both teams. The "Maryland by 10" pick might be a bit safer than, say, the "Tennessee by 7.8 over South Carolina" or "Texas A&M by 15.1 over Missouri" picks. Those teams, either because of youth, injuries or general multiple personality disorder, might be incredibly unsafe. I will be tracking this in future weeks.

"What The...?" Team of the Week

Southern Miss. After a weak start, the Eagles have caught fire in recent weeks. They looked atrocious on offense against Louisiana Tech (W, 19-17) and Marshall (L, 20-26) but have averaged 44 points and 35.9 Adj. Points per game since then. The defense, meanwhile, has played at an above-average level in five of seven games and completely shut SMU down in a 27-3 win this past weekend. In terms of F/+ rankings, Southern Miss has the overall edge over No. 29 Houston.

Big Movers

Notable Rises

USC (25 spots, from 46th to 21st). I am not sure where this defense has come from, but the Trojans have begun to click on that side of the ball. They graded out quite poorly over the first few weeks of the season, but they have allowed just 26 points and 596 yards the last two weeks against California and Notre Dame and have forced eight turnovers. This was the USC we expected to get all season.

Syracuse (21 spots, 67th to 46th). My goodness, they were nearly flawless in their 49-26 win over West Virginia last Friday night. They had shown no indication that they could be this efficient on offense, but against the Mountaineers they gained a steady 6.0 yards per play and foiled every attempted WVU comeback with more points.

California (21 spots, from 73rd to 52nd). The Golden Bears allowed just 178 yards to a flailing Utah squad in an easy 34-10 win. When the offense stays out of its own way, this is a pretty good team.

Texas Tech (14 spots, from 56th to 42nd). Seth Doege passed for 441 yards and four touchdowns, completing passes to 12 different receivers, in Tech's 41-38 win over Oklahoma. It should be a general rule: end a decade-long conference home win streak, rise 14 spots in the rankings.

Others: Arkansas State (76th to 57th), Arizona (66th to 53rd), Western Kentucky (104th to 91st), Cincinnati (49th to 37th), Miami (34th to 22nd).

Notable Tumbles

West Virginia (30 spots, from 15th to 45th). Sure, Syracuse looked great, but they got help. Dana Holgorsen's new offense takes a step backwards for every step forward, but the defense was equally to blame for this loss.

Utah (23 spots, from 48th to 71st). Of all the bold projections in the Football Outsiders Almanac 2011, I was almost most confident in the pick of Utah to win the Pac-12 South. I underestimated both quarterback Jordan Wynn's ability to stay healthy and the offensive line's ability to recover from the loss of a couple of all-conference performers. Their introduction to the Pac-12 has been a dud.

Washington State (18 spots, from 80th to 98th). It seemed for a couple of weeks that Wazzu might be able to make a bowl run and save Paul Wulff's job. Then they allowed 551 yards (8.1 per play) and got blown out by Oregon State.

UCLA (17 spots, from 65th to 82nd). They deserved to fall even further for their ridiculously bad performance against Arizona. Rick Neuheisel is on the hot seat, and his team lays the biggest egg of the weekend. Not a good sign.

Others: Central Florida (51st to 66th), Northern Illinois (58th to 72nd), Maryland (52nd to 64th), Washington (37th to 48th), Auburn (44th to 55th).

Upset Watch

Syracuse over Louisville (Spread: Louisville -3 | F/+ Projection: Syracuse +7.0). The newly competent Orange get the West Virginia Bump in this one. We'll see if they can maintain last week's level of play on the road.

Michigan State over Nebraska (Spread: Nebraska -5.5 | F/+ Projection: Michigan State +4.1). State has quietly risen to No. 9 in the F/+ rankings -- if anything that involves a Hail Mary win over Wisconsin can be considered "quiet" -- and get the pick over the Huskers in Lincoln. As we see above, however, the Spartans have a high standard deviation from week to week. We'll see how they handle an always tricky, and incredibly loud, Memorial Stadium.

UCLA over California (Spread: Cal -4.5 | F/+ Projection: UCLA by 0.2). Can the Bruins bounce back after last week's embarrassing performance, or are they completely dead in the water?

Tennessee over South Carolina (Spread: South Carolina -4 | F/+ Projection: Tennessee by 7.8). As mentioned above, just avoid this game with all your might. If you could name five offensive players from these two teams, four of them -- South Carolina's Marcus Lattimore (injury) and Stephen Garcia (kicked off team) and Tennessee's Tyler Bray and Justin Hunter (both injuries) -- are not playing. Good luck figuring this one out, though I figure Carolina actually has the edge due to their defense.

This Week on SB Nation

Favorite Moment of Last Weekend

It has to be the Hail Mary.

Posted by: Bill Connelly on 28 Oct 2011

5 comments, Last at 28 Oct 2011, 8:13pm by Kal

Comments

1
by trill :: Fri, 10/28/2011 - 3:56pm

Re: USM/LaTech, the game was played in a tropical depression, which would probably slow down any offense. The Marshall game featured six USM turnovers in a game they only lost by six points. The players referred to the Marshall game as a "wake-up call" on Twitter.

They have looked a lot sharper over the past few weeks, especially considering they've lost both starting RBs (Desmond Johnson and Kendrick Hardy) for the season. RS Freshman Jamaal Woodyard is picking up the slack nicely, with Tracey Lampley catching a lot of passes out of the backfield and in the slot. The offense seems to have taken a slight step back from previous years in terms of explosiveness.

What really surprises me is the huge improvement on defense, which sat somewhere in the mid-60's in S&P last year and has improved to 17th in 2011. In 2010 USM lost three games in which they scored 40+ points - this year, we've yet to allow more than 35 (@Navy, where USM put 28 on the board before Navy scored at all). It's probably a confluence of developing talent (Deron Wilson, So CB and Jamie Collins, Jr LB) and some new blood in the booth, but Hattiesburg has been pretty impressed so far.

The remaining schedule is pretty soft, with the next significant test likely to be the conference championship. This is assuming USM gets past UCF at home, and with the way the Knights have been playing this seems pretty likely. If we hit 11-1 I just hope we can keep Fedora around for a couple more years to build on this success.

2
by DSMok1 (not verified) :: Fri, 10/28/2011 - 4:18pm

Bill, the "playing to the level of the opposition" adjustment can be useful, if properly regressed. If you calc the "slope of the line" (=playing to the level or vise-versa) and develop the standard deviation of that estimate based on what the sample is, using the Working-Hotelling Method, you can then, using Bayesian methods, develop an estimate of the team's true talent level against varying strengths of opponents.

I've done some work with that for NCAA BB ratings, though I have not published the formulas. There's a link in my name to one post (which links to another) regarding how to do these adjustments rigorously.

3
by mvhuber :: Fri, 10/28/2011 - 4:36pm

What is the correlation between standard deviation and strength of schedule (i.e. does week-to-week performance vary based upon who you play). I would have to imagine that it is pretty strong.

4
by Thok :: Fri, 10/28/2011 - 7:33pm

When the offense stays out of its own way, this is a pretty good team.

Except that according to the stats, the defense is clearly driving Cal's standard deviation. The offense is what it is: Maynard isn't particularly accurate but counters with a more downfield attack than Kevin Riley gave last year when healthy.

5
by Kal :: Fri, 10/28/2011 - 8:13pm

For all day I thought the 'wtd value' was using the Win The Day motto from the ducks. And I was all congratulating you on being clever at using a positive slogan to indicate momentum.

But now, it's simply 'weighted'. Bah.

Wow, is the Oregon offense methodical and brutal in their consistency. I think that's something most noticeable between Kelly and some of the earlier Bellotti-led teams - this team does its thing over and over again. They are prepared and conditioned, and rarely come out flat. This year has been nice compared to prior years because the Oregon weakness has been on the road. This year we've only had one letdown at LSU. The rest (Arizona, Colorado) have been as dominating as any of our other wins.