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BYU Football: Do the Cougars belong with the "big boys"?

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What story do the numbers tell regarding BYU and the "Big Boys"?

How does BYU stack up to the Power 5?
How does BYU stack up to the Power 5?
George Frey

Many fans were in an uproar when the ACC and SEC didn't consider BYU a power 5 school, while national news outlets raved at Bronco's comments of how he'd love to be in the Big 12. How has BYU has fared since becoming an Independent? How have they matched up against the "big boys"? Here's the data, decide for yourself!

BYU since becoming an Independent:

-BYU as an Indy has had seasons of 10-3, 8-5, and 8-5 to make a total record of 26-13 for a 66% win pct.

-BYU as an Indy has faced 18 teams that are, or were, in power 5 conferences (including Houston last yr) and went 7-11 against those teams for a 38% win pct.

-To make it clear, as an Indy, BYU loses 62% of the time against power 5 caliber teams. The majority of BYU's wins are against non power 5 teams.

-BYU's record at home as an Indy is 16-3 for an 84% win pct. Of those 19 home games, 6 were against power 5 teams in which BYU went 3-3 for a 50% win pct.

*It's safe to say that when BYU plays a power 5 team at home, data suggests it's literally a 50-50 toss-up game.

*It's also safe to say that when BYU plays a non power 5 team at home, BYU will win. 13-0 as an Indy so far.

- BYU's record on the road as an Indy is 8-8 for a 50% win pct. Of those 16 games, 10 were against power 5 teams in which BYU went 4-6 for a 40% win pct.

*It's safe to say that when BYU plays a power 5 team on the road, BYU is more likely to lose than to win. A 40-60 game, which isn't terribly bad.

-BYU's record on a neutral field in those three years is 2-2 for a 50% win pct. Of those 4 games, 1 was against a power 5 team in which BYU went 0-1.

Summary: (based on 3 years of Indy data)

If BYU plays a power 5 team  in general as an Indy, data suggests BYU has a 38% chance of winning that game.

If BYU plays a power 5 team at home as an Indy, data suggests BYU has a 50% chance of winning that game.

If BYU plays a power 5 team on the road as an Indy, data suggests BYU has a 40% chance of winning that game.

(There has only been one game BYU has played as an Indy against a power 5 team on a neutral field, 0-1. Not enough data to formulate a hypothesis)

How does three years of Indy data stack up to the Taysom Hill and Anae 2.0 era? Many BYU fans like to separate eras for BYU based on the QB or the Offensive Coordinator or both.

BYU in 2013 with Taysom Hill at QB & Anae 2.0

-BYU against power 5 teams in general went 3-5 for a 38% win pct last year. (includes Houston because the AAC was an AQ conference last yr.)

-BYU at home against power 5 teams went 2-1 for a 66% win pct last year.

-BYU on the road against power 5 teams went 1-3 for 25% win pct last year.

-BYU on a neutral field against power 5 teams went 0-1 last year.

Summary: (Based on last year's data)

If BYU with Taysom Hill and Anae 2.0 play a power 5 team in general, there's a 32% chance BYU will win.

If BYU with Taysom Hill and Anae 2.0 play a power 5 team at home, there's a 66% chance BYU will win.

If BYU with Taysom HIll and Anae 2.0 play a power 5 team on the road, there's a 25% chance BYU will win.

 

BYU is scheduled to play 4 power 5 teams in 2014. 3 of those games will be played on the road (UConn, Texas, Cal), 1 at home (Virginia).

May the odds be ever in our favor.