Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Orange Bowl 2012

The Orange Bowl hosts the Florida State Seminoles of the Atlantic Coast Conference and the Northern Illinois Huskies of the Mid American Conference.  Here is a look at each team using the NCAA FBS Production Model.

Florida State is currently 11-2 playing an easier strength of schedule as compared to the average strength of schedule for the "league".  Florida State's most impressive victory was against currently ranked #24 Clemson followed by their ACC Championship game victory over #59 Georgia Tech.  The Seminoles other nine wins were against teams currently ranked in the bottom half of the NCAA FBS.  The Seminoles worst loss (of only two) was to #70 North Carolina State.  Florida State is currently ranked as the #4 team in overall production with the #7 ranked offense and the #11 ranked defense.

Northern Illinois is currently 12-1 playing against a much easier strength of schedule than the average for the "league".  NIU is only one of three teams that have played a "much easier" strength of schedule meaning that their strength of schedule is greater than two standard deviations from the average league strength of schedule.  To put this into perspective, NIU only played two teams in the top half of the NCAA FBS production ranking (both wins) and the best of those two above average teams was against #36 Kent State.  NIU's only loss was by one point to currently ranked #78 Iowa.  NIU is currently ranked as the #3 team in overall production in the NCAA FBS, with the #3 ranked offense and the #18 ranked defense.

According to the model, these two teams are very evenly ranked, but given that NIU is slightly more productive than Florida State, the model "predicts" that Northern Illinois University will be the winner in tonight's Orange Bowl game.

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