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OAYP: “Real” Top 25

By Jim Johnson
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OAYP ranks the top 25 teams in college football as if the 2019 season is the only thing that ever existed.

A handful of various other college football analysts have been releasing their “real” top ten rankings this week.

The premise is that, while most polls are framed by recent history or preseason prognostication, these rankings being put forth are based exclusively on what teams have done to this point in the 2019 season.

The conceit is fascinating, but I’ve noticed a consistent problem with these attempts. While I certainly don’t believe anyone is being intellectually dishonest -- at least not on purpose -- though their perception of these top teams may not be skewed by preconceived notions, one can’t help but use existing opinions to formulate thoughts on the opposition.

The point is, it’s nearly impossible for any human to truly complete this endeavor with a blank slate. So, let’s take humans out of it.

OAYP is my new advanced metric that reflectively measures team strength based on opponent adjusted yards and points, and becomes predictive through its individual player component. So far this season, it’s hitting a remarkable 92% straight up, and 73.9% against the spread. Given that I’m treating this first season as a sort of beta test, I’ve been pretty blown away by that level of accuracy. Then again, it’s unique ability to account for injuries or suspensions at every position for any team in our coverage area is what I hope will continue to separate it from the pack.

Anyway, I was planning on releasing the full 130 team rankings this week, because I assumed that by now every FBS team would have played at least two other FBS teams, but that turned out to be false (looking at you, Navy). So, while those will be out next week, I decided this trend of “real top tens” would be the perfect opportunity to offer a little teaser.

That being said, this top ten is not what the actual rankings look like right now. OAYP does take last year into account, so as to avoid inordinate swings in the ratings from one week to the next, especially early on. Obviously, with each game that a given team plays, the 2018 data is correspondingly filtered out, until only 2019 remains.

However, in the interest of this exercise, I removed the 2018 data entirely. So, it's as if every team started the season with an OAYP score of 0 and all of the opponent adjustments are based solely on what the teams have done this year. While I, or anyone else, may not be able to truly “forget” all of those biases that have developed over the years, OAYP has.

This is the metric’s “real” top 25, right now, accompanied by their 2019-only offensive and defensive rankings:

1. Georgia 4.79
Offensive Ranking: 7
Defensive Ranking: 1

2. Wisconsin 4.68
Offensive Ranking: 3
Defensive Ranking: 2

3. Iowa State 4.50
Offensive Ranking: 2
Defensive Ranking: 22

4. Ohio State 4.29
Offensive Ranking: 4
Defensive Ranking: 5

5. Alabama 3.87
Offensive Ranking: 5
Defensive Ranking: 8

6. Clemson 3.80
Offensive Ranking: 10
Defensive Ranking: 3

7. Oklahoma 3.57
Offensive Ranking: 1
Defensive Ranking: 47

8. Notre Dame 3.30
Offensive Ranking: 12
Defensive Ranking: 12

9. Auburn 3.08
Offensive Ranking: 26
Defensive Ranking: 9

10. Oregon 2.96
Offensive Ranking: 21
Defensive Ranking: 7

11. LSU 2.83
Offensive Ranking: 6
Defensive Ranking: 41

12. Michigan State 2.59
Offensive Ranking: 43
Defensive Ranking: 4

13. Texas 2.44
Offensive Ranking: 8
Defensive Ranking: 49

14. Penn State 2.34
Offensive Ranking: 19
Defensive Ranking: 18

15. Washington 2.28
Offensive Ranking: 13
Defensive Ranking: 32

16. Texas A&M 2.18
Offensive Ranking: 53
Defensive Ranking: 19

17. Iowa 2.05
Offensive Ranking: 48
Defensive Ranking: 10

18. UCF 1.79
Offensive Ranking: 16
Defensive Ranking: 43

19. Arizona State 1.76
Offensive Ranking: 59
Defensive Ranking: 13

20. Florida 1.72
Offensive Ranking: 28
Defensive Ranking: 20

21. Kansas State 1.69
Offensive Ranking: 27
Defensive Ranking: 11

22. Mississippi State 1.68
Offensive Ranking: 35
Defensive Ranking: 30

23. Memphis 1.65
Offensive Ranking: 64
Defensive Ranking: 6

24. TCU 1.64
Offensive Ranking: 52
Defensive Ranking: 14

25. Baylor 1.63
Offensive Ranking: 9
Defensive Ranking: 24

Jim Johnson - Editor of Southern Pigskin, Producer of "Three & Out", and host of "Explosive Recruiting" on the Southern Pigskin Radio Network. E-mail: Twitter: @JimJohnsonSP