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Statistically Speaking: Regular Season Wrap-Up

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Regular Season Wrap-Up

Recapping the Mountain West and Pac-10.

Mountain West
Air Force
Record: 4-8
Conference Record: 3-5
Pythagorean Record: 5.44-6.56
Grade: C-
The third losing season in a row for Fisher DeBerry and the Falcons. Will DeBerry experience a Jo-Pa like revival or is has the game passed him by? The Falcons were an unlucky 2-5 in close games so they can expect some improvement in that area next season.

BYU
Record: 10-2
Conference Record: 8-0
Pythagorean Record: 10.67-1.33
Grade: A
In his second season, Bronco Mendenhall led the Cougars to an undefeated season in Mountain West play. Cougars were not challenged in conference play until the final game against Utah. Lost close games on the road early on against Arizona and Boston College. If they win those two, do teams crash the BCS party?

Colorado State
Record: 4-8
Conference Record: 1-7
Pythagorean Record: 4.18-7.82
Grade: D+
Like DeBerry, Sonny Lubick has endured 3 straight non-winning seasons. Rams lost 7 in a row after a 4-1 start to finish the season on a serious downer. Rams has the worst offense in Mountain West play (14.1 points per game).

New Mexico
Record: 6-6
Conference Record: 4-4
Pythagorean Record: 5.50-6.50
Grade: C+
Six years of bowl-eligibility in a row for Rocky Long’s Lobos. They didn’t really deserve the bowl bid (more on that later), but are going nonetheless. Lobos somehow lost at home to Portland State in the opener.

San Diego State
Record: 3-9
Conference Record: 3-5
Pythagorean Record: 2.13-9.87
Grade: C-
Aztec fans and prognosticators in general probably expected much more out of San Diego State this season. Looking back, some of the games look very impressive (lost by 14 at Wisconsin) and others (lost by 2 at home to Cal-Poly), well, not so much. Chuck Long’s offense averaged under 15 points per game in conference play.

TCU
Record: 10-2
Conference Record: 6-2
Pythagorean Record: 10.46-1.54
Grade: B+
Not many people seemed to notice, but the Horned Frogs won 10 games for the fourth time in five years. After beginning conference play 0-2, reeled off 6 straight conference wins, and only one was by less than 10 points.

UNLV
Record: 2-10
Conference Record: 1-7
Pythagorean Record: 2.95-9.05
Grade: D
Another two win season and another 1-7 finish in conference play for the Rebels. Mike Sanford needs to show some improvement in his third season or he may be back with brother Lamont selling junk and drinking Ripple.

Utah
Record: 7-5
Conference Record: 5-3
Pythagorean Record: 8.18-3.82
Grade: B-
Another winning season and bowl appearance for Kyle Whittingham. Still, the Utes did not compete for the Mountain West title as many observers expected. They also failed miserably in their two non-conference tests, losing to UCLA and Boise State by a combined score of 67-13.

Wyoming
Record: 6-6
Conference Record: 5-3
Pythagorean Record: 5.84-6.16
Grade: B
They finished with the same record (6-6) as New Mexico, a better conference record (5-3) than New Mexico (4-4), and beat New Mexico 14-10 (at New Mexico). Yet the Cowboys don’t go to a bowl and the Lobos do. Too bad they don’t have the Wyoming bowl in their backyard. Still, the season has to be considered a success for a team many picked to finish last in the Mountain West.

Pac-10

Arizona
Record: 6-6
Conference Record: 4-5
Pythagorean Record: 4.83-7.17
Grade: C+
Mike Stoops has his first non-losing season in Tucson. 2006 was a tale of two seasons as the Wildcats began the year 2-4 before winning 4 of their last 6 (and 3 of their last 4 including a win over Cal) to finish 6-6. The defense is where Stoops want it (18.6 points allowed per game—second in conference play), but the offense has to improve (16.9 points per game—second to last in conference play) if the team is to improve.

Arizona State
Record: 7-5
Conference Record: 4-5
Pythagorean Record: 6.90-5.10
Grade: C-
Same old song and dance for the Sun Devils got Dirk Koetter canned. Sun Devils were fourth in conference play in points scored and second to last in conference play in points allowed. Does Dennis Erickson still have it?

Cal
Record: 9-3
Conference Record: 7-2
Pythagorean Record: 8.98-3.02
Grade: B+
You know Jeff Tedford’s done a helluva job when a 9 win season is seen as somewhat of a disappointment. The Golden Bears anxiously await their first BCS bowl bid under Tedford. It will come, just be patient.

Oregon
Record: 7-5
Conference Record: 4-5
Pythagorean Record: 7.40-4.60
Grade: C+
If the Oklahoma game is officiated properly, this team is 6-6. Ducks lost their last 3 including a home beat down at the hand of Arizona. This was their worst non-USC home loss since a 55-16 loss to Washington in 2003.

Oregon State
Record: 9-4
Conference Record: 6-3
Pythagorean Record: 8.36-4.64
Grade: B+
Began the season 2-3 with blowout losses to Boise State and Cal, but rebounded to win 7 of their last 8 including the dramatic home upset of USC. Don’t overlook the regular season finale against perhaps the best Hawaii team in a long time.

Stanford
Record: 1-11
Conference Record: 1-8
Pythagorean Record: 0.85-11.15
Grade: F
Just an atrocious season for Stanford. In 9 of their 12 games, they scored 10 points or fewer. Only 3 of their losses were within 20 points.

UCLA
Record: 7-5
Conference Record: 5-4
Pythagorean Record: 7.63-4.37
Grade: B
The USC game was a microcosm of how far the Bruins defense has come since the end of last season. UCLA has nearly cut its points allowed in half (34.2 in 2005 and 17.9 in 2006) and dominated defensively against the Trojans. Hopefully the brass in LA sticks with Karl Dorrell.

USC
Record: 10-2
Conference Record: 7-2
Pythagorean Record: 10.12-1.88
Grade: A-
5 straight BCS bids for the Trojans. USC was nowhere near as dominant as they have been the last few seasons, but the defense dramatically improved and that bodes well for 2007.

Washington
Record: 5-7
Conference Record: 3-6
Pythagorean Record: 4.80-7.20
Grade: B-
Six game losing streak put a black mark on an otherwise solid season. Huskies did rebound to win the Apple Cup against Wazzu. Willingham is doing a great job at a school that won one game the season before he got there.

Washington State
Record: 6-6
Conference Record: 4-5
Pythagorean Record: 6.45-5.55
Grade: C+
Three straight losses to end the season, including a nail-biter in the Apple Cup have put Bill Doba in hot water. Cougars managed a strange 4-2 road record and 2-4 home record.

1 Comments:

Blogger STR said...

Did you see where the offensive coordinator from new mexico state got a head coaching job somewhere?

7:54 AM  

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