November 14, 2006

Inside the BCS with the Colley Matrix

Chatted again with Wesley Colley of the Colley Matrix, one of the official computer poll providers for the Bowl Championship Series. If only more journalists and maybe even coaches used more rationale and science and less "gut" like Colley, I think everyone would feel better about the BCS.

Remember, the polls are two-thirds of the BCS, computers the other third.

Vince Mullins: Let's get right to The Game...Just about every computer has Michigan #1, including yours, yet pollsters all seem to agree that OSU is the better team. What are the main reasons the Colley Matrix has the Wolverines on top?
Wesley Colley: Look at my top five schedule comparison here. Texas' loss helped. So now Michigan's Notre Dame win eclipses OSU's Texas win. Also, Ohio State rotated into playing 1-9 Illinois, which Michigan has not played. Overall, Michigan's opponents are 58-52, while OSU's are 48-61.
VM: Let's assume that OSU and USC win handily - is that our championship game no matter Rutgers or the SEC?
WC: Quite likely, I'd say, but if Arkansas and Florida win out, then Florida wins in the SEC title game, who knows?
VM: What if the computer is right on Michigan, and they win a close one, coupled with a Cal upset of USC - does your hard drive start to melt?
WC: A win is a win in my system (70-0 is the same as 21-20 is the same as 3-2), so closeness is irrelevant. Really, to "first order" things don't get that crazy, though. You can play around with scenarios here... Plugging in just those games, you end up with Michigan #1, Rutgers #2, Florida, #3, OSU #4, Cal #7 and USC #8.
VM: Let me get on my soapbox - I do not believe that Notre Dame belongs in the discussion for the Championship game based on the perceived weak schedule they faced. The average computer ranking, like you, has them at five. What am I missing with the Irish?
WC:Notre Dame has beaten the ACC Coastal champion, quality Big 10 teams in Purdue and Penn State, a decent Navy squad and no lightweight in UCLA. Those aren't top 10 wins, but they shouldn't be overlooked, either. Bottom line, Irish opponents are a collective 50-48, not too shabby when you have 0-9 UNC and 1-9 Stanford thrown in at the bottom.
VM: Consider me informed on the Irish.

1 comment:

Michael Haislip said...

"Notre Dame has beaten the ACC Coastal champion, quality Big 10 teams in Purdue and Penn State, a decent Navy squad and no lightweight in UCLA"

The day I count Purdue as a quality win is the day I give up on football.