Braves rated Middle of College Football Pack According to Sagarin

According to Jeff Sargarin, Alcorn State is the best football team in the Southwestern Athletic Conference’s Eastern Division. This of course is based on a mathematical score of college football’s top 254 schools which includes all Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) and Football Championship Series (FCS) programs. However that same score was only good enough to rank the defending SWAC champions 175th overall.

The Braves who are 4-2 and were riding a four game winning streak prior to their 35-34 loss to Grambling received a rating of 42.46; a mark that stood as the second highest among Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU). North CarolinaA&T was the only other school in that category to get a higher grade.

To give an indication of how this rate is compared to all schools, Alabama scored the highest rating overall with a 94.33 just before their week seven matchup against Texas A&M. Davidson recorded the lowest score at 1.31, which obviously put them at 254. Despite having one victory, the Wildcats still fell three spots below the SWAC’s lowest rated team. Mississippi Valley, now 0-7, was listed at 251 as of last week with an 8.17 rating before dropping their homecoming date to Texas Southern.

Although Sagarin’s ratings are likely to place FBS (formerly Division IA) programs ahead of those that compete at the FCS (formerly I-AA) level, the Braves’ week six standings fared better than four FBS schools. New Mexico State, Georgia State, Charlotte and North Texas each mathematically fell below the success of Alcorn.

In addition to the team ratings, Sagarin also compiles numbers necessary to rate each conference. As a result, the SWAC fell to the bottom of the list with the East Division coming in at 32 and the West just ahead at 31. The Pioneer Conference was the worst in football at 33 while the SEC West top out at number one.

Jeff Sagarin is an American sports statistician known for his development of a method for ranking and rating sports teams in a variety of sports. His ratings have been a regular feature in the USA Today sports section since 1985.

Sagarin, like the developers of many other sports rating systems, does not divulge the exact methods behind his system. He offers two rating systems, each of which gives each team a certain number of points.
While considered relevant in the world of American college football and basketball, where, with hundreds of teams in NCAA Division I competition, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology grad’s methods are generally of great interest to gamblers. Gamblers use Sagarin’s ratings as a source of “Power Rankings,” traditionally used as a way to determine the spread between two teams.

By Sedrick Durr
Jackson Advocate Sports Writer