First off I would just like to point out that my model from last weeks article was within a point of predicting the score differential based on Kentucky's season averages. There's something to be said for numbers when they are looked at in way too much depth. So here is how the numbers look based on last weeks game:
- Extra Points Attempted: 1- Lose by 11
- Yards off Interceptions: 52- Win by 54
- Kickoffs: 6- Win by 10
- Kickoff Yards: 405- Win by 12
- Rushing TDs: 0- Lose by 5
- UGA 3rd Down Conversions: 7- Win by 18
- Fumbles Recovered: 2- Win by 35
- Length of game: 3:26- Win by 20
- UGA 1st Downs: 16- Lose by 5
- UGA's Total Offense: 317- Lose by 3
At the end of the day we should have won by 12. We came frighteningly close to this being reality. Had Bogotay not missed that field goal the numbers would line up perfectly. Hows that for a good model?
Since the model is only getting stronger as the year goes on(bigger sample size and all) we can be more certain about the numbers lining up with reality. So what is most important to beating tech? How likely is it that we win the battle of clean old fashioned hate? all this and more after the break!Without further ado, here is the top 10 stats according to their ability to predict the scoring differential. There is a slight Thanksgiving twist :)
10. Rushing Yards- Rushing yards has finally squeaked into the top 10. Our ability to run the ball(with and without Crowell) has become crucial to our success. If Bobo decided to completely abandon the rushing game, we cemented Murray's legs to the ground, and we had to face our own smothering defense(i.e. we have 0 yards rushing) we would lose by 31. We need 122 yards to jump back into the win column. Tech is allowing their opponents 166 rushing yards per game, which would have us winning by 11. I am thankful we have Crowell, but I am more thankful that the guys behind him have both experience and talent.
9. Total Offense- Same as always, the more yards we have the better odds that we are scoring. Scoring tends to lead to having a positive scoring differential. As my dad always says "the team with the most points always wins." If we also cemented Murray's arms together and therefore had absolutely no yards on offense we would lose by 48. The winning number here is 319 yards. Tech is allowing 360 yards per game, so if we hold to average we would win by 6. I am thankful that we are playing a team in a conference not known for its stout defense.
8. 1st Downs by UGA- Same as the total offensive yards, but divided into segments of 3 or less. Every first down is at least another 10 yards closer to the goal line. If the entire game consisted of UGA 3 and outs we would lose by 48 points, just like without offensive yards. Luckily, Tech is allowing 19 1st down conversions per game which has UGA winning by 7. I am thankful that we have wide receivers that have been great at converting sets of downs because the defense never knows who Murray might target.
7. Yards off Interceptions- Although this stat dropped in the rankings, we wont forget about it. The best thing I can report about this statistic is that even without a single return yard we still win(mind you its by fractions of a point). Every yard extra is just tacking on to the point differential. Tech is allowing about 4 yards off interceptions per game, allowing us to pull ahead by 3 points. I am thankful for Jarvis Jones, who who gets in both the face and mind of every quarterback we face, forcing them to make some questionable throws.
6. Length of the Game- Im am more surprised every week how important keeping the game short is to our success. We have to keep the game under 3:36 to win. I couldnt find stats on Tech's average length of game so lets just hope the Tech band plays Flight of the Bumblebee a lot, and it kicks the Techies into high gear. I am thankful that the Redcoats would never play Flight of the Bumblebee.
5. Rushing TD's- No other type of TD makes it in the top 10(although passing TD's isnt way outside the top 10 at #12). There is nothing more disheartening than having an opponent run the ball down your throat into the endzone. Without a rush TD we would only lose by 2. Just one rushing TD later we are winning, and by 10 (does this mean a rushing TD inspires Walsh to make a FG? interesting). Tech is allowing 1.5 rush TDs per game, which has us winning by 20. I am thankful for our o-line, which has the ability to manhandle opponent' s d-lines when they need to.
4. UGA's 3rd Down Conversions- Although 1st downs are important, our ability to convert them off 3rd downs is even more important. In this case, a game full of 3 and outs would not only result in the end of an entire fan base's sanity but also a loss by 23 points. We only need to convert 4 3rd downs to win, and Tech is allowing 6 conversions per game. If so, we would win by 12. I am thankful for Bobo(yeah, its felt weird saying that) despite the fact that he is somewhat predictable he puts our boys in positions that allow them to succeed, especially on 3rd downs.
3. Yards on Kickoffs- Walsh's ability to put the ball deep is becoming paramount to our success(Butler is also important, but in the next receiving votes kind of important). This stat doesn't come out as squeaky clean as everything else so far. We need 321 yards on kickoffs to secure a win, but Tech is only allowing 288 per game. Im hoping this is just due to the fact that the kickers in the ACC aren't as strong as Walsh. I am thankful that Walsh's struggles to put a ball through the uprights has not affected his kickoff duties.
2. Kickoffs- Every kickoff but one means we have just scored in some form or fashion. We need at least 5 kickoffs to win. That translates to needing to score at least 4 times. The numbers line up pretty well here, since tech allows approximately 5 kickoffs per game. Although the predicted scoring differential is a UGA loss by 3 points, this is a matter of fractional kickoffs. I'd love to see Walsh attempt half a kickoff. I am thankful that I am not worried about needing to score 4 times. Two TD and two FGs and we are there, easy as pumpkin pie
1. Extra Points- We need to score 4 times as shown by the previous stat, but only two of those need to be TD's to win(the extra point isn't the important part here, its that they always follow touchdowns). Tech is allowing a little over 3 extra points per game, and that's not counting the two touchdowns this season the have allowed that were not followed by extra points. Based on their average we should win by 10. I am thankful that I dont have to separate the statistics of extra points made and extra points attempted, because they are the exact same numbers.
So the final formula for UGA's 10th win of the season is 1 rushing TD, 1 extra TD, and 2 other scores(either TDs or FGs). The model overall predicts a UGA win by 7 points.
This weeks Mr. Irrelevant: Total tackles. Dont tell the defense this.
Safe travels to everyone. Enjoy the holidays with your family and friends. And remember that no matter what happens in each game, the people you love are the most important thing in the world