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College Football Computer Rankings Explained

The goal of the computer rankings is to measure which teams had the best seasons. If you are looking to see who is statistically the best team regardless of wins and losses, then the power rankings are the rankings you should look at. However, the reality is teams are going to over perform and under perform and at the end of year, those things matter regardless of how powerful a team may seem. Therefore, teams with lower power scores are often going to find themselves above teams with higher power scores, and vice versa.

The basic formula for these rankings is to award teams points and take away points from those teams based on the power rating of the opponents. While the overall strength of schedule gives you the potential, the final score is based on who the team won and lost against, not a base score of win% vs sos as some computer rankings may do, which leads to problems when it comes to properly weighting these events.

If team A beats team B and team B has a power of 100.00, then team A is awarded 100 points for the game.. If team A beats team C and team C has a power ranking of 55.34, then team A is awarded 55.34 points for the week. The higher power rating of the team, the more valuable it is.

Likewise, losing to a team is also weighted based on the power of a team. The amount of points lost for a week is 100 minus the power score of the opponent. If a team A loses to team B and team B has a power score of 100 points, then 0 points are lost that week for team A. If team A loses to team C and team C has a power score of 55.34, then team A loses 44.66 points for the game. Who a team loses to matters.

Future games which have yet to be played use the computer predictions and awarded half the points for and against a team.

Margin of victory is not directly used in these rankings. However, it is a factor in determining the power rating of a team and has indirect influence.

All FCS teams are automatically worth 0 points. FBS teams have no business playing FCS teams, and winning will give a team a maxium score of 0 points, while losing is a full -100. In addition, FCS teams count as a bye week for the team.

Weekly points are tallyed up and then averaged across the amount of games as to not give teams who play extra games an unfair advantage. Final score is a mixture of the average score and the power rating.

If the team has beaten the team ranked above it, then it will be move ahead of that team even if the score is lower. This process is repeated until there is no longer any movement, so teams are capable of jumping up more than 1 ranking. In the event the teams have played more than once in a season, only the most recent game is used.

These computer rankings are in no way associated with, or used by the BCS rankings system. The forumla used was created by a fan of the game who wants to look at all teams in an unbiased manner and for no other purpose.

If you have any suggestions, comments or questions about these rankings, please use the Contact Us form or add to the discussion below.

Preseason Rankings are done based on the stats of the previous year. There are no human adjustments for things such as coaching changes, player loss and things of that nature. They represent last years teams as if they were playing on this years schedule. While a few quirks may exist, the overall result is usually pretty close.

2014 FBS Preseason Rankings
 
 
Record
Predicted
SoS
Power
Points
Change
Conference
1
0-0
12-0
80.47
100.00
984
-
ACC
2
0-0
11-1
94.72
92.86
971
-
SEC
3
0-0
12-0
71.69
97.62
911
-
Big 12
4
0-0
12-0
74.56
92.06
910
-
Pacific-12
5
0-0
12-0
70.88
98.41
908
-
SEC
6
0-0
11-1
84.09
94.44
901
-
Big Ten
7
0-0
12-0
71.28
95.24
899
-
American Athletic
8
0-0
12-0
67.18
96.83
875
-
Big Ten
9
0-0
12-0
65.43
93.65
850
-
Big Ten
10
0-0
10-2
83.47
96.03
815
-
ACC
11
0-0
11-1
66.01
99.21
788
-
ACC
12
0-0
11-1
70.50
89.68
783
-
Pacific-12
13
0-0
9-3
89.96
89.68
748
-
SEC
14
0-0
10-2
78.24
88.89
748
-
Big 12
15
0-0
11-1
64.39
88.89
735
-
Mid-American
16
0-0
10-2
75.08
91.27
735
-
SEC
17
0-0
10-2
79.18
83.33
733
-
Pacific-12
18
0-0
11-1
65.82
76.19
695
-
Big Ten
19
0-0
9-3
83.53
87.30
692
-
SEC
20
0-0
11-1
61.91
82.54
692
-
American Athletic
21
0-0
10-2
69.59
84.92
669
-
Big 12
22
0-0
10-2
73.87
76.98
669
-
American Athletic
23
0-0
10-2
70.89
80.95
663
-
Big Ten
24
0-0
9-3
86.80
73.02
659
-
ACC
25
0-0
9-3
80.62
79.36
639
-
Pacific-12
26
0-0
8-4
88.67
86.51
638
-
SEC
27
0-0
12-0
41.23
79.36
617
-
Mid-American
28
0-0
12-0
38.04
84.92
616
-
Conference USA
29
0-0
8-4
85.80
84.92
611
-
SEC
30
0-0
12-0
43.17
73.81
609
-
Conference USA
31
0-0
9-3
75.81
78.57
601
-
American Athletic
32
0-0
9-3
76.98
72.22
584
-
ACC
33
0-0
10-2
59.80
76.19
563
-
Independents
34
0-0
11-1
47.87
71.43
545
-
Sun Belt
35
0-0
7-5
95.59
70.64
537
-
Independents
36
0-0
8-4
81.13
67.46
507
-
Pacific-12
37
0-0
8-4
73.12
81.75
506
-
Big 12
38
0-0
9-3
66.51
69.84
499
-
SEC
39
0-0
9-4
67.99
76.98
477
-
Pacific-12
40
0-0
9-3
62.77
62.70
443
-
ACC
41
0-0
8-4
72.70
65.08
437
-
Big Ten
42
0-0
7-5
82.69
65.87
424
-
ACC
43
0-0
10-2
50.94
56.35
420
-
Mountain West
44
0-0
8-4
67.17
66.67
403
-
Big 12
45
0-0
9-3
58.45
57.94
393
-
Conference USA
46
0-0
9-3
48.08
75.40
387
-
Mid-American
47
0-0
7-5
73.98
66.67
364
-
Pacific-12
48
0-0
11-2
43.26
52.38
361
-
Mountain West
49
0-0
10-2
40.74
59.52
358
-
Mid-American
51
0-0
9-3
54.73
53.17
346
-
Mountain West
52
0-0
6-6
85.25
57.94
323
-
SEC
53
0-0
5-7
89.85
64.29
294
-
Big Ten
54
0-0
8-4
53.78
63.49
293
-
Conference USA
55
0-0
7-5
71.26
52.38
288
-
Pacific-12
56
0-0
6-6
77.89
61.11
283
-
SEC
57
0-0
7-5
61.69
67.46
278
-
Mid-American
58
0-0
6-6
76.83
58.73
265
-
American Athletic
59
0-0
6-6
73.13
65.08
264
-
ACC
60
0-0
7-5
79.16
55.56
258
-
Big Ten
61
0-0
6-6
75.21
51.59
225
-
ACC
62
0-0
5-7
84.40
55.56
220
-
SEC
63
0-0
7-5
65.84
45.24
220
-
Conference USA
64
0-0
9-3
37.67
50.79
213
-
Sun Belt
65
0-0
8-4
52.95
43.65
207
-
Mountain West
66
0-0
6-6
74.78
47.62
206
-
Big 12
67
0-0
6-6
67.16
53.97
176
-
ACC
68
0-0
4-8
93.41
50.00
175
-
Big 12
69
0-0
6-6
70.73
46.03
170
-
ACC
70
0-0
8-4
46.55
43.65
161
-
Conference USA
71
0-0
5-7
84.00
41.27
160
-
Big Ten
72
0-0
4-8
92.01
42.06
133
-
American Athletic
73
0-0
6-6
69.29
34.92
115
-
Mid-American
74
0-0
5-7
74.15
44.44
101
-
Big Ten
75
0-0
7-5
52.41
37.30
90
-
Mid-American
76
0-0
8-4
39.85
38.09
90
-
Sun Belt
77
0-0
7-5
45.26
39.68
48
-
Mountain West
78
0-0
3-9
87.38
49.21
40
-
Pacific-12
79
0-0
8-4
39.00
26.19
36
-
Mountain West
80
0-0
5-7
63.48
45.24
27
-
Conference USA
81
0-0
5-7
67.34
37.30
23
-
American Athletic
82
0-0
3-9
90.01
35.71
5
-
SEC
83
0-0
4-8
78.98
33.33
4
-
Pacific-12
84
0-0
4-8
75.64
34.92
-14
-
Big Ten
85
0-0
7-5
40.50
30.16
-25
-
Sun Belt
86
0-0
3-9
81.34
38.09
-48
-
ACC
87
0-0
2-10
100.00
25.40
-51
-
SEC
88
0-0
4-8
71.57
32.54
-53
-
American Athletic
89
0-0
3-9
84.30
30.95
-55
-
Big 12
90
0-0
5-7
58.98
27.78
-76
-
Mountain West
91
0-0
6-6
47.53
19.84
-103
-
Mid-American
92
0-0
3-9
78.91
22.22
-129
-
ACC
93
0-0
2-10
89.59
23.81
-133
-
SEC
94
0-0
2-10
85.09
28.57
-147
-
Big 12
95
0-0
4-8
61.01
26.98
-152
-
Mid-American
96
0-0
2-10
81.42
30.95
-164
-
American Athletic
97
0-0
1-11
89.96
36.51
-168
-
Big Ten
98
0-0
5-7
53.45
12.70
-176
-
Conference USA
99
0-0
2-10
76.76
34.13
-185
-
Big Ten
100
0-0
5-7
54.68
7.94
-186
-
Mid-American
101
0-0
1-11
95.36
19.05
-198
-
ACC
102
0-0
2-10
82.40
15.87
-217
-
Pacific-12
103
0-0
5-7
44.74
15.87
-227
-
Sun Belt
104
0-0
4-8
54.46
19.05
-232
-
Conference USA
105
0-0
2-10
75.19
24.60
-235
-
American Athletic
106
0-0
4-9
54.42
22.22
-246
-
Mountain West
107
0-0
4-8
52.28
18.25
-251
-
Mountain West
108
0-0
3-9
60.27
19.84
-274
-
Independents
109
0-0
5-7
37.96
14.29
-283
-
Sun Belt
110
0-0
3-9
62.14
11.11
-295
-
Conference USA
111
0-0
1-11
79.38
19.84
-311
-
American Athletic
112
0-0
4-8
48.26
9.52
-315
-
Sun Belt
113
0-0
1-11
77.99
13.49
-347
-
Pacific-12
114
0-0
1-11
80.80
7.94
-348
-
Big 12
115
0-0
2-10
62.87
11.91
-375
-
Mountain West
116
0-0
2-10
66.03
0.79
-396
-
Conference USA
117
0-0
2-10
55.66
17.46
-405
-
Mountain West
118
0-0
1-11
74.06
4.76
-410
-
Big Ten
119
0-0
2-10
61.46
5.56
-411
-
Mid-American
120
0-0
2-10
62.26
3.97
-411
-
Conference USA
121
0-0
2-10
59.20
7.94
-417
-
Conference USA
122
0-0
1-11
67.41
2.38
-468
-
Mid-American
123
0-0
1-11
62.82
1.59
-504
-
Mid-American
124
0-0
3-9
34.17
6.35
-518
-
Sun Belt
125
0-0
3-9
37.10
0.00
-522
-
Sun Belt
126
0-0
2-10
40.33
10.32
-545
-
Mountain West
127
0-0
2-10
43.06
3.17
-554
-
Sun Belt
128
0-0
1-11
40.58
0.00
-672
-
Sun Belt
2014 Conference Rankings
 
 
Record
Predicted
Avg SoS
Avg Power
Avg Points
1
Southeastern Conference
0-0
100-68
84.45
68.59
385.61
2
Atlantic Coast Conference
0-0
98-70
77.22
61.79
285.23
3
Pacific-12 Conference
0-0
83-62
77.16
59.99
264.58
4
Big Ten Conference
0-0
94-74
76.41
58.79
230.75
5
Big 12 Conference
0-0
64-56
77.82
58.49
214.13
6
Independent
0-0
29-19
67.64
55.36
208.92
7
American Athletic
0-0
66-66
75.15
52.67
129.70
8
Mid-American Conference
0-0
81-75
56.36
39.01
-52.42
9
Conference USA
0-0
79-77
55.91
36.14
-80.58
10
Mountain West Conference
0-0
72-74
50.89
31.61
-158.56
11
Sun Belt Conference
0-0
58-74
41.07
21.79
-347.28
2014 Preseason Rankings Discussion
 
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