The Big Ten and the Pac-12 occupy the top four positions in the Power Ratings as of Friday, 10/27/23.
An obvious question: Why is Oregon ahead of Washington, when Washington won the head-to-head matchup (in rather dramatic fashion)?
There are three components to the power ratings:
- Preseason Power Rating
- In-Season Power Rating
- In-Season Weight
If we set the in-season weight to 100%, then Washington would be ranked #2 behind Michigan. Most people who compute power ratings for college football teams have already placed 100% weight on in-season ratings.
Theoretically, however, it is quite clear and provable that preseason ratings should not be ignored at any point during the season…even into the playoffs, when the teams have already played between 12 and 14 games. This is because the sampling of games from any team is far too small to believe that what has been observed so far equals what would be observed if the team played hundreds, thousands, or millions of games more. (More to come on this topic in the Audibles series of analytics articles.)
Note that the midweek games (Tuesday – Thursday) are included here.
For a score prediction between two teams, compute the difference between their power ratings, and add 2.3 for home field advantage.