FEI Week 6: Sooners Rally Punctuates Weekend of Comebacks
On the finish of the primary quarter on Saturday in Dallas, the Oklahoma Sooners trailed the Texas Longhorns by a rating of 28-7. Texas had related on a 75-yard landing go on the primary play of the sport, added a pair of short-field landing drives, and related on a 48-yard landing go late within the quarter, mixed with stifling protection that compelled three Oklahoma three-and-outs in between. The Longhorns had been completely dominating the Sooners on each side of the ball by way of 9 possessions, holding a bonus of 10.5 yards per play and a commanding out there yards proportion benefit (74% to 23%). The primary quarter-hour don’t resolve the end result of video games, however this one was very practically out of hand.
Oklahoma sat struggling quarterback Spencer Rattler and inserted freshman Caleb Williams to begin the second quarter, dealing with a important fourth-and-1 from its personal 34-yard line. Williams took the snap, slipped out of a deal with to safe the primary down, then exploded in a 66-yard dash to the top zone to chop the result in 28-14. He was unstoppable on the play, and the Sooners offense was practically unstoppable for the rest of the sport, scoring on 9 of its closing 12 drives and outscoring Texas 48-20 over the ultimate three quarters. Oklahoma operating again Kennedy Brooks rolled up 217 yards on the bottom and drove the ultimate dagger by way of Texas’ coronary heart on the final play from scrimmage, a 33-yard landing scamper on a direct snap to win the sport with three seconds left.
Oklahoma’s epic 21-point comeback victory highlighted one of many wildest days in current school soccer historical past. The Alabama Crimson Tide, unbeaten in 100 straight video games towards unranked opponents, misplaced to unranked Texas A&M after initially roaring again and overcoming an early multi-score deficit of their very own. The Iowa Hawkeyes fell behind by 14 factors to Penn State, then leveraged area place benefits and a smothering protection to intestine out a 23-20 victory and stay undefeated. Ten groups gained on Saturday after trailing by no less than 10 factors within the recreation, essentially the most double-digit comeback victories in a single week in three seasons. The eventual successful groups trailed in some unspecified time in the future in two-thirds of the weekend’s 51 FBS video games, the best proportion of comeback victories in a full common season week of video games since 2007.
As thrilling as comeback victories will be for the victorious, and as demoralizing they are often for the groups that give up them, there’s nothing notably significant concerning the comeback itself in my possession effectivity work. Had Oklahoma and Texas traded scores over 4 quarters extra evenly moderately than in streaks of scores, every group’s drive effectivity knowledge can be the identical. The Sooners topped the Longhorns by 0.24 factors per drive, outgained them by 10.8% of accessible yards, and had been very barely edged out by 0.01 yards per play. These closing recreation effectivity measures are the inputs that drive my total, offense, and protection group and unit rankings. The 21-point deficit and rally to victory is the colourful narrative model of a comparatively simple knowledge story so far as recreation effectivity is worried.
The sequencing of drive knowledge shouldn’t be as related as the combination drive knowledge. Momentum could really feel prefer it performs a giant half in recreation outcomes, however the outcomes of any possession have little to do with the outcomes of the possession that preceded it except for the beginning area place generated. Nevertheless, I acknowledge that I’m not capturing a big knowledge blind spot when key personnel adjustments catalyze the change in efficiency. Iowa rallied solely after knocking out Penn State’s beginning quarterback. Oklahoma’s offensive fireworks during the last three quarters had been a direct results of a change at signal-caller. FEI shouldn’t be capturing that stage of element.
What, if something, do comebacks point out when it comes to forecasting group fortunes? The 28 groups that reached the School Soccer Playoff area since 2014 usually performed with a lead and didn’t flirt with catastrophe in these seasons. On common, these groups had solely 4.9 wins per season wherein they trailed at any level within the recreation, and solely 0.8 wins per season wherein they trailed by no less than 10 factors. Not one of the nationwide champions in that span wanted a 21-point comeback victory to remain within the playoff chase. The 2010 Auburn Tigers are the one nationwide champion since no less than 2007 that had such a win.
Behind its new quarterback, will Oklahoma management extra video games from begin to end, or will they proceed to reside dangerously all year long? Regardless, the Sooners will have to be extra environment friendly total in the event that they need to make a championship run. They rank sixtieth in internet drive effectivity by way of 5 video games and twelfth total in FEI regardless of being propped up considerably by a lofty preseason projection. The season continues to be younger, and Oklahoma has loads of time to rally. The quarterback change that sparked the comeback towards Texas could ignite a season-long possession effectivity comeback over the following two months, and it might want to if the Sooners anticipate to compete for the nationwide title.
2021 FEI Scores (by way of Week 6)
FEI rankings (FEI) symbolize the per-possession scoring benefit every group can be anticipated to have on a impartial area towards a mean opponent. Offense rankings (OFEI) and protection rankings (DFEI) symbolize the per-possession scoring benefits for every group unit towards a mean opponent.
Preseason projected rankings are progressively phased out over the course of the season. Expanded rankings for all groups embody total, offense, protection, and particular groups effectivity rankings. Scores and supporting knowledge are calculated from the outcomes of non-garbage possessions in FBS vs. FBS video games.