Friday, November 22, 2013

Mike Leach Contract Extension

ESPN reports that Washington State has extended head football coach Mike Leach's contract through 2018.  So this is a great time to look at the Washington State program with head football coach Mike Leach at the helm. As a point of reference for those that are interested, I have previously analyzed Washington State under former head football coach Paul Wulff.  Below is a chart with the teams total rank, offense rank, defense rank and the worst team rank (which WSU was in both 2008 and 2009) based on the Complex Invasion College Football Production Model.  After the chart is a more details about the Washington State University Cougars football team since 2008.

Currently Washington State's record is 5-5 with their best win (win over highest currently ranked opponent) was a 10-7 victory over currently #34 ranked USC.  WSU's worst game (loss to the lowest currently ranked opponent) was a 17-55 loss to currently #39 ranked Stanford.  In fact all five losses are to teams ranked in the top third of the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision teams.  Hence, Washington State beats teams that they should (Southern Utah, Idaho and California) and some they should not (USC and Arizona) - which makes Washington State an interesting team to watch for in terms of productivity over the next few years given Leach's contract extension.  The Cougars are currently ranked as the #86 team in overall productivity with the #71 ranked offense and the #96 ranked defense.  WSU has played against a strength of schedule (SOS) of 54.90 which is "tougher" than the average schedule to date for the "league" to date.  A teams SOS is "tougher" if it is between one and two standard deviations lower than the average "league" SOS, which is currently the case.

Mike Leach's first season as head football coach of the Washington State Cougars resulted in a 3-9 record.  Washington State defeated in-state rival #59 ranked Washington 31-28 and was their best victory of the season.  The Cougars worst game was a 34-35 loss to #123 ranked University of Colorado.  WSU was the #113 ranked team in terms of overall productivity with again the #117 ranked offense and the #89 ranked defense against an average SOS.

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