Albama Arkansas Auburn Florida Georgia Kentucky LSU Mississippi State Missouri Ole-Miss USC Tennessee Texas A&M Vanderbilt
Latest News

Some Numbers To Go With The “Fast Offenses Cause Injuries” Debate

stop-watchAt SEC Media Days, Auburn coach Gus Malzahn — a man who wants to run the fastest offense in the nation — said he thought it was a joke when he was first told that some coaches were claiming hurry-up offenses are more dangerous for athletes.

Speaking later on the same day, Arkansas coach Bret Bielema — a man who has pushed that “hurry-ups are dangerous” theory — said, “I’m not a comedian,” and proceeded to angrily list the reasons for his belief.

But no one had any hard and fast numbers to back up either man’s argument.  That changed this week.  Sort of.

The NCAA doesn’t keep official data for the number of injuries each team in the country sustains.  The closest anyone really comes to this type of info is the king of the preseason football guides, Phil Steele.  Steele tracks how many starts are lost to injury.  Now, with starting lineups changing from week to week — and not necessarily due to injuries — we’re not quite sure how he tracks that number.  So part of this requires giving Steele the benefit of the doubt, something we’re willing to do due to a) his track record and b) his geekery, which we love.

A website called CFBMatrix.com has taken Steele’s injury data and compared it to the number of plays run by teams across the country.  They chose to focus on the 20 fastest and 20 slowest teams in the country in terms of snaps per game.  Again, it can be debated whether only using the 20 at each end is accurate, but because they’ve attempted to dig deeper into this topic than anyone else, we’ll give them the benefit of the doubt, too.

So what did CFBMatrix.com find?  That the slower teams lost more starters to injury than the faster teams.  According to Rivals.com:

 

“According to the numbers at CFBMatrix.com, on the 20 “fastest” teams in college football last season, who ran an average of 83.12 players per game, there were 143 total starts lost to injury with 7.15 average number of starts lost per team.  Of the 20 “slowest” teams, who ran an average of 65.85 plays per game, there were 151 total starts lost to injury and an average of 7.55 number of starts lost per team.”

 

Tip: Don’t tell Bret Bielema.  You wouldn’t like him when he’s angry.

CFBMatrix.com took things a big further still and compared the snaps-per-game and injury data of each of (what were) the six major conferences.  The slowest conference in terms of average plays per team per game was the SEC (70.40 plays per game).  The fastest conference was the Big XII (75.20 snaps per game).

Factoring in the injury data to find which league suffered the most starters lost per play, the SEC had the most injuries and the Big XII had the fewest.  Obviously, you can make a case that with twice as many NFL draft picks flying around in the SEC there were bound to be more injuries.  Bigger bodies colliding at faster speeds, in theory, would produce more injuries.

Still, it’s hard to ignore the fact that in both of these examinations, the slowest teams suffered more injuries than the fastest teams.  Ditto for the conferences.

Will one website’s conclusions end the debate of hurry-up offenses?  Of course not.  So we say again: As long as the NCAA is getting serious about protecting the health of its student-athletes, college sports’ governing body should commission its own serious study into the issue.

(A tip of the hat to the folks at CFBMatrix.com.  As a site that wastes a good amount of time itself on new statistics and data, we know it must’ve been a time-consuming process to pull that info together.)

 


8 comments
RandyReece
RandyReece

I hate when media guys quote random people who play with numbers rather than do statistical math. If those samples were statistically significant (which they are not), they would be statistically equivalent, not proving a point one way or the other. But go ahead, write something meaningless again.

HoustonVol
HoustonVol

When you compare conference to conference, the data is a bit firmer. In theory in the B12, you have up tempo offenses playing each other, and slower offenses in the SEC. However with few plays a game, the SEC is having more injuries than the B12. By the data presented in the article, it appears that faster offenses produce fewer injuries than slower offenses. The opposite of what Saban and Bielema have been claiming.

VagabondVol
VagabondVol

Doesn't the following line say the opposite of what you intended? "Still, it’s hard to ignore the fact that in both of these examinations, the slowest teams suffered fewer injuries than the fastest teams. Ditto for the conferences."

GatorBuc2
GatorBuc2

I had the same thoughts that the study would have to look at the injuries sustained by defenses that play aginst up-tempo offenses.  Common sense tells me that the defense should have appropriate time to at least line up properly.

the_voice
the_voice

Pseudo analysis for a pseudo argument. If a defensive player is so bloated that they can't play for 10, 5 second bursts, over 3 or 4 minutes, they need to work more on endurance. If a defensive player is so small they can't hold up to a larger offensive player, they need to bulk up. The game evolves over time. Adapt to that in whatever fashion you like as a coach, but don't complain because change occurs. It's as silly as if Woody Hayes had argued that passing leads to more injuries than running does. Or maybe we need weight and speed restrictions on players because if you're big and fast you cause more injuries to others. This isn't a safety issue. It's a silly issue.

WillieT
WillieT

It's not the "fast" teams sustaining more injuries because of their tempo, it is their opponents, who are not accustomed/acclimated/trained to play at the higher tempo who are more likely to sustain injury. Or at least that's how I read the comments from Bielema, Saban, and others who have brought up the issue. 

While the analysis seems reasonable, given the overall lack of transparency and the available data set, what is needed is a review of injuries sustained by opponents of the HUNH, not the HUNH teams themselves.

5LittlePiggies
5LittlePiggies

I don't think this data does anything to the argument that "slow coaches" have.  Their argument, from what I can tell, is the injuries for the opposing defense.  A team that runs a hurry-up offense doesn't allow the defense to substitute, or get set properly, and causes more injuries on the defensive side of the ball.  This data just says that a team that runs a hurry-up offense doesn't themselves get injured as much.  In fact, I think this data (in a backwards way) only helps the arguments of the Sabans and Bielemas.  The slow teams have more injuries because of facing these high-tempo offenses.  What they need to track are injuries to opposing defenses of hurry-up offenses.  With the current data available, I don't think that can be measured.  It's all just opinions and conjecture mixed in with a little bit of logic.  But with the upcoming season, maybe the NCAA will start to take a closer look at this and gather some hard data to either confirm or dispel the theory.  Like you said, this data comes far from ending the debate.  As always, thanks for the info, John!

John at MrSEC
John at MrSEC moderator

@RandyReece 

You know what I hate?  When commenters can't disagree with something without being ugly and insulting.

Either you didn't actually read the piece or you couldn't comprehend what was written.  I don't think I could have made it more clear that you'd have to accept Phil Steele's numbers, and CFBMatrix's numbers, if you were to believe their findings.  We posted the link to their site -- making it very clear that it wasn't our study -- because I thought many of you would be smart enough to read and it and decide for yourself if you accepted all of that data.  Like it or not, it's the first attempt to put data to this argument that I've seen.

I also wrote -- as I have many other times -- that while those numbers are interesting, an actual NCAA study is the only thing that will end this debate.

The vast majority of our readers either read the piece, made up their minds and moved on, as expected.  You chose to get nasty.  Congratulations.  From the looks of your photo you must be very happy with yourself.

So go ahead, post something ugly again.

John

Trackbacks

  1. Valuable Resources…

    [...]check here, some totally unrelated websites to ours, however, they are most trustworthy sources that we use[...]…

  2. My Homepage says:

    … [Trackback]

    [...] Read More: mrsec.com/2013/08/some-numbers-to-go-with-the-fast-offenses-cause-injuries-debate/ [...]

  3. ventilatie says:

    … [Trackback]

    [...] Read More Infos here: mrsec.com/2013/08/some-numbers-to-go-with-the-fast-offenses-cause-injuries-debate/ [...]

  4. … [Trackback]

    [...] There you will find 37357 more Infos: mrsec.com/2013/08/some-numbers-to-go-with-the-fast-offenses-cause-injuries-debate/ [...]

  5. … [Trackback]

    [...] Read More Infos here: mrsec.com/2013/08/some-numbers-to-go-with-the-fast-offenses-cause-injuries-debate/ [...]

  6. urlman cow says:

    The Slave of the Husband

    Trying to get in advance to learning added from you afterward!…

  7. website says:

    Woman of Alien

    Fantastic perform you’ve got performed, this web site is actually cool with fantastic info. Time is God’s technique for maintaining anything from happening at the same time.

  8. fast us cash advance

    Visit our site and read about fast us cash advance

  9. Links

    [...]Sites of interest we have a link to[...]…

  10. Third Flower

    My wife and that i are now delighted that Albert could execute his studies because of the ideas he had by way of your web content. It is actually every now and then perplexing to simply normally be gifting away methods which a number of people could ha…

  11. … [Trackback]

    [...] Read More here: mrsec.com/2013/08/some-numbers-to-go-with-the-fast-offenses-cause-injuries-debate/ [...]

  12. fast no fax cash advance

    Get fast no fax cash advance on my website

  13. uav says:

    … [Trackback]

    [...] Find More Informations here: mrsec.com/2013/08/some-numbers-to-go-with-the-fast-offenses-cause-injuries-debate/ [...]

  14. sources says:

    The Slave of the Husband

    In search of forward to studying further from you afterward!…

  15. Blogs ou should be reading

    [...]Here is a Great Blog You Might Find Interesting that we Encourage You[...]…

  16. Websites worth visiting

    [...]here are some links to sites that we link to because we think they are worth visiting[...]…

  17. website says:

    Thorn of Girl

    Very good information and facts could be uncovered on this world wide web blog site.

  18. website says:

    Healing’s Dragon

    to find difficulties to boost my site!I suppose its ok to produce use of a number of of your respective ideas!!

  19. Links

    [...]Sites of interest we have a link to[...]…

  20. electronics says:

    electrical stores

    Very good Early morning, I just stopped in to visit your internet site and imagined I would say I appreciated myself.

  21. website says:

    Third Flower

    My spouse and i have been now delighted that Albert could carry out his scientific studies as a result of the tips he had via your web page. It can be every so often perplexing to only constantly be gifting away techniques which a number of people migh…

  22. Sources

    [...]check below, are some totally unrelated websites to ours, however, they are most trustworthy sources that we use[...]…

  23. Recommeneded websites

    [...]Here are some of the sites we recommend for our visitors[...]…

  24. website says:

    Thorn of Girl

    Great info might be identified on this world wide web web site.



Follow Us On:
Mobile MrSEC