Friday, February 15, 2013

On Florida and Indiana

Florida and Indiana have been at the top of the PM's power rankings since the beginning of the year, and in recent weeks have opened a significant lead (about 20 points) on the rest of the field.   In the polls Indiana has been in the top two or three consistently, but Florida languishes down in the lower half of the Top Ten.  Meanwhile, Miami (which has an identical 19-3 record against weaker opponents) has bounced up to #3.

No matter.  Polls are mostly entertainment, and the Tournament will crown a de facto champion.  But Matt Woods over at TeamRankings.com has an interesting piece putting Indiana and Florida in a historical perspective:
As of February 15th, 2013, Indiana and Florida lead the nation in average scoring margin with +21.7 and +21.3, respectively. The next closest team is Pittsburgh with +16.6. To put those numbers in perspective, the last team to have a higher average scoring margin at this point of the season was 2001 Duke (+22.6).
Scoring margin alone isn't a good predictor of strength because it doesn't account for strength of schedule.  But Indiana and Florida are playing very good opponents,so their scoring margin is significant -- just more evidence that these two teams really are the cream of the crop this year.

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