~ ~

Friday, October 16, 2015


Thanks to SpartanMan82 for getting the ball rolling on the analysis of Michigan's opposition thus far this season. We can all see their "Team Defense" ranks at the top of the list, but that data-point is for yards-gained, not points-scored. Yards-gained do not win games. Points-scored win games. So let's look at the UM opponents listed by national rank in "Scoring Offense":

Scoring Offense (points per game)
  79 - BYU
  74 - UNLV
  25 - UTAH

Michigan State ranks #56 nationally in Scoring Offense, meaning the Spartans are statistically better than any team that UM has played thus far this season. The median national ranking for the UM opponents this season is #87.

Michigan State ranks #42 nationally in Scoring Defense, meaning the Spartans are statistically better than any team that UM has played thus far this season. The median national ranking for the UM opponents this season is #71.

Further, if we take a microscope to Utah, the only team to beat Michigan this year, we find:
  • The difference in scoring offense between Utah and MSU is just under 7 points per game.
  • The difference in scoring defense between Utah and MSU is less that 2 points per game.

The team most similar to MSU on the UM schedule
season, based on aggregate scoring on 
the ball, 
is Utah
the team that defeated Michigan.

 ****** Click on NO COMMENTS (or # comments) below to enter and view reader comments.   ----- Remember to check Spartan Headline links, updated real time, in the left column of (Web version only). *****Note: If you are receiving this post via automated email, you need to go to the site to view headline links and embedded videos in this post: (Web version only). SIGN UP TO RECEIVE POSTS VIA EMAIL, TWITTER OR FACEBOOK IN THE RIGHT COLUMN.*****


  1. Yup, Utah, the team that destroyed the ONLY real opponent msu has played. If you are going to downplay who UM has played and beaten easily you might put it against the teams msu struggled against week after week.

    1. No doubt UM has "played better". (see above) No doubt MSU appears to be "struggling". If you assume that your team will continue to play better and my team continues to struggle, you will be happy tomorrow.

      Our point is that they have played as good as they can but their team stats are not against B1G-level competition, much less a Top Ten team. And oh-by-the-way, they are playing a Top Ten team tomorrow. And we think that UM HAS played their "best game" while MSU HAS NOT played their best game.

  2. Useless numbers. Of course Michigan's opponents have not so good stats. 1 of the 5 games they played they got pummeled by michigan. Dummy

    1. I agree that all of these numbers may be "useless". In which case, it's a Rivalry Game and let's see who plays better tomorrow.

      But no, you're wrong, one bad game out of six does not necessarily throw these stats off. For example, Northwestern still "appears to have" a top-ranked Team Defense despite giving up the bundle to the Bluebloods. (Look it up.)

      Can you comprehend? I just disproved your point, using the same "useless numbers" that you "used" to make your point.

      To get any value out of these numbers, you have to recognize that the teams that did not do well against Michigan (offense & defense) DID NOT DO WELL AGAINST OTHER TEAMS, EITHER (offense & defense).

      So yeah, I guess you could say the "numbers" that are being used to pump up UM are, potentially, "useless" - - - ESPECIALLY TOMORROW.


Please sign in using the method most convenient for you. We do not receive your login information. This function is provided by Blogger.