The Saturday Edge just completed a three-part Q & A series on PAC 12 football this past week and we even managed to write a few 2012 college football win totals for Arizona State, Colorado, Oregon, Oregon State, UCLA and Utah.
I thought it would be interesting to compare our PAC 12 2012 college football win totals against a few other prognosticators and see what we can discern from the information.
Dave Bartoo – The College Football Matrix
Everyone familiar with The Saturday Edge knows how much I love the CFBMatrix. Dave Bartoo breaks down each FBS team by composite recruiting rank, coaching effect and strength of schedule and then uses this information in his unique model to determine how many games each team is likely to win in a given season.
Last year the CFBMatrix was the number 1 preseason publication in predicting PAC 12 win totals, so I definitely wanted to include the CFBMatrix 2012 PAC 12 Conference breakdown in the comparison.
Matthew Smith – College Football News
Matthew has developed a college football model he calls Compu-Picks. To generate his projected season win totals he uses his Compu-Picks ratings projections to simulate the entire schedule of all FBS games to pick winners in each and every game.
The model attempts to predict how well a team will rate given its rating history, as well as a number of other data points, such as returning starters, key players lost, turnovers, recruiting, poor/good injury luck, strength of schedule, etc.
Matt Lindeman – @lindetrain
I met Matt via Twitter and have come to appreciate a lot of the information he shares. Matt derives his season win total numbers by creating a power rating for each team, then using those ratings he creates a point spread for each game. He then converts the point spread to an expected win % and then adds up the win %’s to get a team’s win total.
|PAC 12 NORTH||CFBMatrix||Compu-Picks||Lindetrain||5Dimes Line|
|PAC 12 SOUTH||CFBMatrix||Compu-Picks||Lindetrain||5Dimes Line|
PAC 12 season win totals breakdown
California – I believe Cal will win between 6 and 7 games this season. Matthew and I had a conversation on Twitter the other day discussing his low projection of the Bears. His reasons for pessimism were that last year Cal had very few injuries (good luck), positive fumble luck (though overall they had a negative turnover ratio) and have a more difficult schedule this season.
Dave’s reason for optimism is the fact that Cal has recruited well the past several years. The Golden Bears definitely have some talent on their roster and QB Maynard should play better with a year of PAC 12 starting experience under his belt.
Oregon – Everyone is in agreement on the Ducks. In fact, I am on the low side with my prediction of 10 wins here. Oregon will (probably) only be an underdog in the USC game. I do believe the game at Cal has trap/look ahead/let down written all over it, but other than that it is very difficult to see Oregon losing another game on their schedule.
Recommendation: Over 10 (-155) – Push appears to be worst case
Oregon State – This is my personal favorite play for going over the posted win total and everyone seems to be more or less in agreement. I don’t project an exact number here, but rather support the belief that the Beavers will win at least 5 games this season.
Recommendation: Over 4.5 (-165)
Stanford – The Matrix and Compu-Picks like the Cardinal to go over the posted 7.5 and Matt (Lindeman) seems to believe the number is correct. As I mention on the College Football Zealots website, I believe Stanford will take a step back this year, but not as much as the prognosticators seem to think. The schedule is difficult (again), and with Andrew Luck no longer behind center, I believe the Cardinal are looking at between 7 or 8 wins this season.
Washington – The Matrix and Compu-Picks both agree with the 5Dimes posted total of 7 wins for the Huskies this season, Matt is less optimistic setting UW’s season win total at 5.19. Just looking at Washington’s schedule they will most likely start the season 2-4 and 4 of their final 6 games are on the road. I see this team winning 6 games, 7 wins would be an extremely successful season.
Recommendation: Under 7 (+100) – Push appears to be worst case
Washington State – Only Lindetrain believes the Cougars can approach the posted 5.5 total. From everything I am hearing and reading about Wazzu, the offense should be fine, but the defense still has a long way to go.
There are a lot of “toss-up” games on this schedule, at Oregon State, at ASU, as well as home games against Cal, UCLA and Washington. I believe the Cougars would have to win 3 of those 5 games to get to 6 wins. I am not confident they can do that.
Arizona – The Matrix and Compu-Picks have little faith that RichRod will turn the Wildcats around this season. Lindetrain seems to think otherwise and the The Saturday Edge’s PAC 12 aficionado Conan picked Arizona as his 2012 PAC 12 sleeper team. I project Arizona at 4 to 5 wins this season.
Recommendation: Under 5.5 (+100)
Arizona State – Like the Matrix I project a 5 win season for ASU. Lindeman has them winning between 4 and 5 games (with a slight lean towards 4). I believe Matthew’s (Compu-Picks) number is too low. His reasons are that ASU has almost every red flag on his list; declining recruiting, collapsed in 2nd half of last season, positive turnover/fumble luck margin, new coach and loss of key players.
Colorado – Pretty good range for the Buffs, Lindetrain is projecting under the posted 3.5, Compu-Picks projects 4.5 wins and the Matrix is at 5. As I point out here, Colorado should win between 3 and 4 games depending on how well they do against a very weak non-conference schedule.
UCLA – I project UCLA to win 7 games in my season win analysis of the Bruins, and the Matrix, Compu-Picks and Lindetrain are more or less in agreement that UCLA over 6 wins has value.
Recommendation: Over 6 (-130)
USC – Only Lindeman likes/leans to USC over 10.5 wins. I am in agreement with the Matrix on this one and believe the Trojans will win 10 games this season. Matthew at Compu-Picks likes the under.
Utah - Another one we all seem to be in agreement on. With the Utes favorable schedule they should win at least 8 games this season. If their offense shows even a little improvement, they might push USC for the South title.
Recommendation: Over 7.5 (-125)
That’s it for the PAC 12. Personally I have only made three wagers so far, Oregon State and UCLA large, Utah for a smaller amount. I’ll start on the SEC later this week. Let me know your thoughts on these recommendations. Which team(s) do you believe will fall short or exceed there posted 2012 college football win totals?