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SEC Spring Football Stability Ratings

Smack-dab in the heart of spring practice, we at MrSEC.com thought it would be a good time to step back and taken inventory of where each SEC football program stands as it heads into the fall of 2012.

As is usually the case around here, we looked to back things up with some numbers.  So below you’ll see that we’ve ranked the SEC’s programs — East and then West — according to their status in a number of categories.

Here’s how our formula works:


* Stability at head coach = 10 points

* Stability at offensive coordinator = 10 points

* Stability at defensive coordinator = 10 points

* Stability at starting quarterback = 10 points

* Total number of starters expected to return = 1 point per starter

* Total number of 2011 SEC wins for 2012 foes = -1 point per opponent’s victory (Missouri and Texas A&M — for argument’s sake — were graded as though they’d gone 4-4 last season… so -4 if they’re on a team’s schedule)

* Hot seat questions about coach or turmoil in the program = – 10 points


Before we show the results, let’s be clear that we understand that it’s entirely likely that fans of a school will view any coaching change as a positive.  The same goes for some quarterback departures.  But we’re grading stability here and no one can truly project who’s do what when the games start this fall.  (After all, the same coordinators and QBs you hated last year were once viewed as your squad’s saviors.)

One school — South Carolina — has lost its true defensive coordinator but promoted it’s co-defensive coordinator from within.  We gave them 5 points rather than the full 10 on the stability scale for that reason.  Paul Petrino has returned as Arkansas’ offensive coordinator after a short absence so they got 5 points on the stability scale, too.

Also, we look at which teams have their starting quarterbacks from a year ago on the roster.  That doesn’t mean last year’s starter will win the job in 2012.

Finally, we’ll explain why we’ve deducted “stress & turmoil” points for some schools as we lay out the list.

Now, to the numbers for the SEC East:


School
Opp. SEC Wins
Starters Back
QB Back
HC Back
OC Back
DC Back
Stress & Turmoil
Total Points
UGA
-22
15
10
10
10
10
0
33
VU
-27
18
10
10
10
10
0
31
USC
-33
14
10
10
10
5
0
16
UK
-31
13
10
10
10
10
-10
12
MU
-32
13
10
10
10
10
-10
11
UT
-33
20
10
10
10
0
-10
7
UF
-34
18
0
10
0
10
-10
-6



These aren’t our projections for the fall standings, of course, just a look at which programs appear to be most stable this spring moving forward.

We’ve deducted “Stress & Turmoil” points from Kentucky (Joker Phillips is on the hot seat), Missouri (they’re switching leagues and their starting quarterback is now a question mark due to injury), Tennessee (Derek Dooley is on the hot seat, 7/9ths of his staff has changed and their were team unity problems last year) and Florida (Will Muschamp will start to hear more Ron Zook talk if he doesn’t have a better Year Two than Year One).

Now for the SEC West:


School
Opp. SEC Wins
Starters Back
QB Back
HC Back
OC Back
DC Back
Stress & Turmoil
Total Points
ALA
-29
13
10
10
0
10
0
14
LSU
-32
14
0
10
10
10
0
12
ARK
-33
15
10
10
5
0
0
7
MSU
-32
13
0
10
10
10
-10
1
AUB
-36
18
10
10
0
0
-10
-8
UM
-40
17
10
0
0
0
-10
-23
A&M
-34
16
0
0
0
0
-10
-28



Again, these aren’t our fall projections.  We’re simply looking at which programs appear to be the most stable headed toward their fall schedule.

We’ve deducted “Stress & Turmoil” points from Mississippi State (last year was a step back and Dan Mullen needs to beat someone in the SEC West other than Ole Miss), Auburn (turnover with the coordinators and folks asking how good Gene Chizik really is), Ole Miss (turnover across the board), and Texas A&M (turnover across the board plus they’re switching conferences).


Observations:

Alabama, LSU, Arkansas, Georgia and South Carolina look to be in good shape overall.  Ditto Vanderbilt, though they’re successes are judged at a different level for now.

The numbers suggest Ole Miss, Texas A&M and Florida have the most obstacles to overcome over the next few weeks and months.  Doesn’t mean they can’t do it… just means they have more question marks.

As for those teams in the middle — Auburn, Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi State — it appears they’re in decent shape heading into “prove it” years or their programs and their coaches.  Moving from the Big 12 to the SEC, this season will obviously be such a year for Missouri, too.

We’ll discuss these numbers tonight on CSS’ “SportsNite” in a bit more detail.  Hope you’ll join us at 6pm ET.

 


10 comments
MoKelly
MoKelly

This article never tried to predict who was going to win the National Championship! It only said it was trying to determine which programs were more or less stable going into the season. Take it for what it was meant to be. It was upfront and told eveyone how the rankings were calculated. It nevr claimed than everyone's QB was equal --- just that returning the same QB meant program stability. It was interesting enough. No need to be mean.

bvkv09
bvkv09

You lost all credibility when UK had a QB rating of 10. Just because the guy is coming back, does not make him a 10. c'mon man this was weak. 

kaput
kaput

Could it be ANY more subjective?  Jeez.

chrismd
chrismd

You are aware that college players can only stick around 4/5 years aren't you??? (That's three question marks right out of the Magna Carta) Why is Bama dinged for being less "stable" than UT when they had 5 or 6 defensive players move on after 2011 compared to Tennessee who only lost 2....makes zero sense

 

And how does your analysis tell me anything about how hard schedules are? 9 teams have a number with 3% of each other, and many the same.... What ab road vs home. Non conference?? (two question marks, Gettysburg Address).

 

I like your site, but just because you guys sit around an plug some numbers into a spreadsheet does not mean how your classify your conclusions are at all accurate.

chrismd
chrismd

Come on people......So you are telling me that I could return nine out of 11 defensive players but not my starting QB, and be LESS stable than a team returning 2 out of 11 defensive players AND a starting QB???  That is beyond dumb... Why waste time on the rest of it?  Hope no one gets too excited for sportsnight...

 

How many points did Bama lose the year they switched to Saban from Shula????

SEC truth
SEC truth

I enjoy this website and you guys do a solid job of covering the SEC...but I must say that this is the dumbest most irrelevant posts I may have ever seen. A bad quarterback comes back and a team gets points...an upgrade at a coordinator position and a team loses points. Just one example (of many) of how ridiculous this posting is.

MoKelly
MoKelly

OK -- but I am deducting 30 points for my own stress and turmoil due to Franklin's shoulder injury! No team ever needs their QB needing surgery (especially with a Freshman back-up) before the season begins but it is especially true for Mizzou. Gosh I hope he is 100% for the Georgia game.

John at MrSEC
John at MrSEC moderator

bvkv09...

 

Oh, no.  My credibility has been questioned by bvkv09.

 

John

John at MrSEC
John at MrSEC moderator

chrismd...

 

I always enjoy it when the smart alecks come out.  Rather than just disagreeing and moving on, you feel the need to get cute.  The four question marks were especially impressive.  (I think Jefferson used a set of those in the Declaration of Independence.)

 

What I'm telling you is that people would argue over any point value we assigned to these categories.  Knowing these ratings have no meaning other than to give folks an idea of which programs have had turnover AND figure to have easy/tough schedules this fall, we assigned the points as we saw fit.

 

Quarterback is the most important position on the field.  This summer, you'll read tons of stories predicting big things across the SEC because so many quarterbacks are returning.  So we gave that position more weight. 

 

The fact that it led you to post something ugly is a bit hard to understand.  Why not just read it, shake your head and move on?  But laughably, you actually made my point for me.

 

You brought up Alabama's turnover from Shula to Saban.  Saban -- in my view -- is the best coach in the country.  But you've obviously forgotten that even Saban finished 7-6 in his first year at Bama... losing at home to Louisiana-Monroe.

 

So, yeah, even when a better coach is hired, turnover can still be difficult.  And no one knows who'll truly be an upgrade.  If they did, Florida fans wouldn't have been so giddy a year ago over the fact that Charlie Weis had replaced Steve Addazio.

 

But thanks for being snarky about something you read at a free website.  This little exercise did what it was aimed to do -- show people which programs have had the most turnover, which programs have the easiest schedules (on paper), and which are facing offseason turmoil (in our opinion).

 

 

John

bvkv09
bvkv09

 @John at MrSEC C'mon man relax. This was a weak article, at best, and I enjoy your site.This should have never made it off the cutting room floor. Keep up the hard work, but you have to expect this with a weak article like this. 

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