Mountain West Football: On the Numbers

Troy Babbitt-USA TODAY Sports

On the Numbers is your local amateur statistician's analysis of the season and what it portends for the future.

The season is over two-thirds finished, and teams have established certain patterns. Offensively, defensively, on turnovers, etc., teams have taken on an identity. One way of analyzing these patterns and identities is through statistics. Now, before anyone raises the warning bell and calls for torches and pitchforks to chase me out of town, let me clearly state: I know that stats are an imperfect way of viewing the past or predicting the future.

They (usually) don't take into account very influential parts of sports events such as momentum, injuries, coaching changes, fan presence, wind direction or speed, turf materials, uniform design schemes, dew point, or astronomic alignments.

That being said, stats are the most accurate way of assessing what a team actually has done in the past, and what it is likely to do in the future. My statistical analyses are very superficial, and do not, for example, factor in a full strength of schedule algorithm. Surprisingly, with all their flaws, they have frequently predicted outcomes in frighteningly accurate ways. Last week, I went 3-3 against the spread, calling 5 of 6 winners correctly.

Keeping all of this in mind, here are my numerical prognostications for the MWC games this week (Week 12), listed alphabetically by the projected winning team, along with their average offensive and defensive scores, and their Offensive and Defensive Differentials (OD and DD):

Wyoming- APS 34; APA 33; OD 2; DD (+4.4)

Boise St- APS 38; APA 25; OD 9; DD -5.6

Score BSU 49 - Wyoming 26 (Boise St wins by 23)

UNM- Average points scored (APS) 34; Average points allowed (APA) 37; OD 4.2; DD (+13)

CSU- APS 34; APA 30; OD 2.8; DD (+2.1)

Score CSU 51 - UNM 38 (CSU wins by 13)

Hawaii- APS 23; APA 37; OD (-6.4); DD (+5.5)

SDSU- APS 29; APA 32; OD (-3.4), DD -2.5

Score SDSU 35 - Hawaii 19 (SDSU wins by 16)

Nevada- APS 26; APA; 37; OD (-2.6); DD (+4.7)

SJSU- APS 29; APA 30; OD (-0.4); DD (+.02)


Score SJSU 37 - Nevada 26 (SJSU wins by 11)

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