A few weeks ago I took a look at the cummulative Big 10 conference record of every team since 2000 to try and determine who had the biggest homefield advantage. So here’s a follow up with the same thing for the SEC teams. Again, I chose only conference records because each team has different non-conference schedules (both in quality and quantity). The sample size of 6 seasons gives us 48 total games (24 home and 24 road) for each team and helps eliminate some of the volatility of a conference season that does not include every opponent. It should be noted that Florida and Georgia screw up the data by playing one neutral site game against each other, so they will have only 42 games apiece. First up, the home record of each SEC team since 2000 from best to worst.
South Carolina 13-11
Mississippi St. 9-15
Now the road warriors.
South Carolina 11-13
Mississippi St. 1-23
Here are the leaders in delta points at home. Delta points are net points. Florida’s +331 means they have outscored their home opponents by 331 points (roughly 15.8 per game).
South Carolina 42
Mississippi St. -217
Now the leaders in road delta points.
South Carolina -126
Mississippi St. -477
Next up is a ranking of 'relative homefield advantage' by difference in home/road winning percentage. Mississippi St. has the largest discrepancy in home and road play in this category, winning at a .375 clip at home (9-15) versus an atrocious road record of 1-23 (.042) for a difference of .333.
Mississippi St. .333
South Carolina .083
Some observations. In the past half-decade Mississippi St. has been simply awful on the road. Their only road win in the 2000’s was in 2000 at Kentucky. They have won an unbelievable 9 times as many home conference games as road games in this time span. Surprisingly, Georgia, Kentucky, and Vanderbilt are just as likely to win at home as they are on the road. Of course this does not mean these teams similar. Georgia (along with Auburn and LSU) has been the class of the conference since 2000 and are a very good road team. Their homefield advantage is only relatively smaller because they win so many road contests. Kentucky and Vanderbilt on the other hand have been terrible both at home and on the road. Another surprise has Tennessee with a better road conference record in this six year span than home ocnference record.
Finally, here is a ranking of 'relative homefield advantage' by difference in delta points at home and on the road. Mississippi St. again has the largest discrepancy in home and road play in this category. They have -217 delta points at home and -477 on the road for a difference of 260 delta points.
Mississippi St. 260
South Carolina 168
From this second set of data, the shocker is that LSU actually has more delta points on the road than at home. What this should mean is that they have a better record in close games at home than on the road. A quick stroll through the data reveals just that. At home in conference games decided by one score (8 points or less) they are a remarkable 10-1 since 2000. In similar road games, they still managed a winning record, but it was only 5-3. This is nothing endemic to this team’s character, they have probably just gotten the lucky bounces at home and not gotten as many on the road. This also shows that they have played more close games at home than on the road. Not something you would expect from the team that plays in a place called ‘Death Valley’. As usual, all coments and questions are welcome. Big 12 and Pac 10 studies coming soon.