Week 4: College Football Ranking Algorithm

Now that we’re a few weeks into the season, I figured it’s time to present my college football top 25. The algorithm is fairly crazy for the first couple weeks, but is starting to normalize a bit. It still has unusual results compared to the AP and Coaches polls, but that’s because those are speculative and this is entirely statistics based.

So, after 4 weeks of games, this is what is happening (low SOS and Strengths are good, high Rank Val is good):

Rank Team Win % SOS Strength Rank Val Record
1 UCLA 1.0 71.5 12 81.1 3-0
2 Alabama 1.0 64.6 25 78.7 3-0
3 Washington 1.0 81.3 9 76.7 3-0
4 Oklahoma State 1.0 83.3 10 75.0 3-0
5 Oregon 1.0 91.3 2 74.2 3-0
6 Miami (FL) 1.0 92.0 6 71.8 3-0
7 Georgia Tech 1.0 91.6 7 71.5 3-0
8 LSU 1.0 87.5 15 70.0 4-0
9 UCF 1.0 85.6 18 69.6 3-0
10 Louisville 1.0 100.25 3 68.35 4-0
11 Navy 1.0 89.5 17 67.8 2-0
12 Missouri 1.0 87.3 20 67.6 3-0
13 Clemson 1.0 80.6 31 66.1 3-0
14 Stanford 1.0 78.0 35 65.7 3-0
15 Texas Tech 1.0 96.0 14 65.4 4-0
16 Florida State 1.0 106.3 4 64.2 3-0
17 Arizona 1.0 109.0 5 62.1 3-0
18 Oklahoma 1.0 99.3 21 59.9 3-0
19 Ole Miss 1.0 84.3 42 58.4 3-0
20 Baylor 1.0 118.6 1 58.3 3-0
21 Maryland 1.0 109.0 13 58.1 4-0
22 Auburn 0.75 39.0 62 56.7 3-1
23 Ohio State 1.0 115.75 8 56.55 4-0
24 Northwestern 1.0 96.5 33 55.6 4-0
25 Penn State 0.75 71.0 28 55.05 3-1

There are still some quirky results in there, like Navy at #11. Once conference play really kicks in, I expect the rankings to shift significantly. It will also help when there are more than 3 or 4 games for each team – it will naturally increase the separation. There’s a reason that official BCS ranking aren’t released until after Week 5 of the season…people would panic at the odd results that the computers spit out with such a small sample size.

I’ll update again in a few weeks (or if something really entertaining happens – like VT getting ranked!).

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