2009 College Football Projections: Week 9 From WhatIfSports.com image

2009 College Football Projections

Week 9 NCAA Football Predictions
By Paul Bessire, WhatIfSports.com
August 25th, 2009

WhatIfSports.com will preview a week of the college football season each day for 15 days, including projected scores from 10,000 simulations for all FBS games and updated standings as of that week. Once we have reached the end of the season, we will present our projected bowl match-ups with results.

Rosters and depth charts are up-to-date and as accurate as possible as of August 1, 2009. A schedule of our 2009 College Football Preview, including links to other previews that have already been posted is located here.

Also, see below for details on how you can run your own college football program with Gridiron Dynasty.

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Each regular season FBS game is simulated 10,000 times. The Absolute Record is simply the total number of games in which a team is favored. The Expected Record, the more accurate approach, is the sum of the team's win probabilities from each game. The Expected Record accounts for the fact that some wins are less certain than others (a 50.1% win is different than a 99% win). Since the favored team does not win every game (otherwise, why would we watch?), the likelihood of an upset is important to take into account. We may ultimately say that six teams are favored to win all of their games, but we don't expect any to do so.

Also, since we are rounding, it is possible for a team to win a game more often, yet score the same or fewer points than the opponent on average. In those cases, for Absolute Records, we always take higher winning percentage. We are not predicting a tie or a win by an underdog. This is another reason why the expected records are more accurate, as the teams are so evenly matched, the game could easily go either way.

The inputs to the simulations are based on a rigorous analysis of each team that considers strength-of-schedule-adjusted team and player ratings from 2008. Once this step is complete, we make our modifications for 2009 based on returning starters (who, where and how many), expected progression of returning players in new roles, depth at each position and incoming recruits and transfers.

Games for each week are ordered by the conference of the home team and then winning percentage of the home team, with the score reading the visitors first followed by the home team. If a team is listed as having a 95% chance of winning, that means that it won at 95% or more of the 10,000 simulations. Every underdog has a chance to win. Along those lines, this may be relatively obvious for some examples (i.e. James Madison vs. Maryland), but non-FBS rosters and ratings are not maintained individually due to lack of data. In other words, right or wrong, all non-FBS teams are treated equally.

Today we preview Week 9 (10/31/09).

Game of the Week: #11 West Virginia 25 @ #38 South Florida 17
In one of the marquee Big East games of the season, Noel Devine and the West Virginia Mountaineers will travel to face Matt Grothe and the South Florida Bulls. As our 11th ranked team, we expect big things from a West Virginia team that underachieved last season. At 6-4, 221 pounds and athletic, Jarrett Brown may actually be a better fit than departing quarterback Pat White for what Head Coach Bill Stewart hopes to do on offense. With Devine at running back and all of the playmakers back at receiver, this should be a fun team to watch - especially against what appears to be an easy schedule. Traveling to Tampa should be the toughest challenge the Mountaineers face all year. If they can get past the Bulls, they have a good chance at a BCS bowl. On the other side, Matt Grothe has been the quarterback of a USF team ranked as high as #2 in the nation and will do everything he can with his arm and his legs to beat West Virginia and win that elusive Big East crown. In 10,000 simulations, West Virginia prevails 78.7% of the time and by an average score of 25-17.


MatchupHome Win%Avg Score
Coastal Carolina @ Clemson95.05-37
North Carolina State @ Florida State82.112-29
North Carolina @ Virginia Tech78.79-21
Duke @ Virginia44.914-15
Central Michigan @ Boston College34.619-15
Miami (FL) @ Wake Forest23.918-11
Kansas State @ Oklahoma95.07-56
Iowa State @ Texas A&M54.824-27
Kansas @ Texas Tech53.230-33
Nebraska @ Baylor52.527-29
Texas @ Oklahoma State19.942-34
Missouri @ Colorado7.031-15
Arkansas State @ Louisville37.523-21
Rutgers @ Connecticut24.321-14
West Virginia @ South Florida21.325-17
Cincinnati @ Syracuse9.330-14
Indiana @ Iowa95.07-38
Michigan @ Illinois95.011-33
New Mexico State @ Ohio State95.04-47
Purdue @ Wisconsin95.07-30
Michigan State @ Minnesota39.915-14
Penn State @ Northwestern5.327-9
Southern Methodist @ Tulsa95.014-38
Southern Miss @ Houston70.127-36
UAB @ UTEP58.527-32
Marshall @ UCF35.217-13
East Carolina @ Memphis10.626-11
Temple @ Navy91.010-27
Akron @ Northern Illinois50.521-22
Ohio @ Ball State47.218-20
Western Michigan @ Kent State15.331-19
Toledo @ Miami (OH)11.624-10
UNLV @ TCU95.08-34
Wyoming @ Utah95.07-34
New Mexico @ San Diego State43.920-19
Air Force @ Colorado State19.930-20
UCLA @ Oregon State91.49-30
California @ Arizona State7.629-10
Notre Dame @ Washington State5.038-9
USC @ Oregon5.038-14
Eastern Michigan @ Arkansas95.08-37
Georgia @ Florida95.08-46
Tulane @ LSU95.08-54
South Carolina @ Tennessee84.16-20
Mississippi State @ Kentucky45.213-12
Georgia Tech @ Vanderbilt9.627-10
Mississippi @ Auburn5.044-10
Louisiana-Monroe @ Troy93.09-32
Western Kentucky @ North Texas72.410-20
Louisiana-Lafayette @ Florida International67.816-23
Middle Tennessee @ Florida Atlantic46.820-19
Hawaii @ Nevada95.017-45
San Jose State @ Boise State95.09-34
Utah State @ Fresno State80.114-27
Louisiana Tech @ Idaho5.035-8

Week 9 Standings

ConferenceTeamAbs RecordExp Record
Atlantic CoastGeorgia Tech7 - 27 - 2
Atlantic CoastFlorida State8 - 06 - 2
Atlantic CoastVirginia Tech7 - 16 - 2
Atlantic CoastNorth Carolina State6 - 25 - 3
Atlantic CoastClemson5 - 35 - 3
Atlantic CoastMaryland5 - 35 - 3
Atlantic CoastNorth Carolina5 - 35 - 3
Atlantic CoastDuke4 - 44 - 4
Atlantic CoastMiami (FL)4 - 44 - 4
Atlantic CoastWake Forest2 - 74 - 5
Atlantic CoastBoston College2 - 73 - 6
Atlantic CoastVirginia2 - 62 - 6
Big 12Texas8 - 07 - 1
Big 12Oklahoma State7 - 17 - 1
Big 12Oklahoma7 - 17 - 1
Big 12Kansas6 - 26 - 2
Big 12Texas Tech7 - 26 - 3
Big 12Baylor6 - 25 - 3
Big 12Nebraska4 - 45 - 3
Big 12Missouri4 - 44 - 4
Big 12Kansas State4 - 54 - 5
Big 12Iowa State2 - 73 - 6
Big 12Colorado3 - 52 - 6
Big 12Texas A&M1 - 72 - 6
Big EastWest Virginia8 - 07 - 1
Big EastRutgers8 - 06 - 2
Big EastPittsburgh7 - 16 - 2
Big EastCincinnati5 - 35 - 3
Big EastSouth Florida5 - 35 - 3
Big EastConnecticut3 - 53 - 5
Big EastLouisville2 - 63 - 5
Big EastSyracuse1 - 72 - 6
Big TenPenn State9 - 08 - 1
Big TenIowa8 - 18 - 1
Big TenOhio State8 - 17 - 2
Big TenIllinois6 - 26 - 2
Big TenNorthwestern6 - 36 - 3
Big TenWisconsin6 - 25 - 3
Big TenMichigan State5 - 45 - 4
Big TenMichigan3 - 64 - 5
Big TenMinnesota3 - 64 - 5
Big TenPurdue2 - 72 - 7
Big TenIndiana1 - 82 - 7
Conference USASouthern Miss7 - 27 - 2
Conference USAHouston7 - 16 - 2
Conference USAEast Carolina6 - 26 - 2
Conference USATulsa6 - 26 - 2
Conference USAMarshall5 - 44 - 5
Conference USAUTEP4 - 43 - 5
Conference USAMemphis2 - 63 - 5
Conference USARice2 - 63 - 5
Conference USAUAB2 - 63 - 5
Conference USASouthern Methodist2 - 62 - 6
Conference USATulane1 - 72 - 6
Conference USAUCF1 - 72 - 6
Independents (FBS)Notre Dame7 - 16 - 2
Independents (FBS)Navy6 - 35 - 4
Independents (FBS)Army2 - 63 - 5
Independents (FBS)Western Kentucky0 - 81 - 7
Mid-AmericanWestern Michigan9 - 07 - 2
Mid-AmericanBall State7 - 26 - 3
Mid-AmericanCentral Michigan6 - 36 - 3
Mid-AmericanOhio6 - 35 - 4
Mid-AmericanAkron4 - 44 - 4
Mid-AmericanNorthern Illinois4 - 44 - 4
Mid-AmericanTemple3 - 54 - 4
Mid-AmericanKent State4 - 54 - 5
Mid-AmericanToledo3 - 64 - 5
Mid-AmericanBowling Green4 - 43 - 5
Mid-AmericanBuffalo3 - 53 - 5
Mid-AmericanEastern Michigan0 - 81 - 7
Mid-AmericanMiami (OH)0 - 91 - 8
Mountain WestTCU8 - 07 - 1
Mountain WestUtah7 - 17 - 1
Mountain WestBrigham Young5 - 36 - 2
Mountain WestAir Force7 - 26 - 3
Mountain WestColorado State4 - 54 - 5
Mountain WestNew Mexico3 - 53 - 5
Mountain WestSan Diego State3 - 53 - 5
Mountain WestWyoming2 - 63 - 5
Mountain WestUNLV4 - 53 - 6
Pacific-10USC8 - 08 - 0
Pacific-10California7 - 16 - 2
Pacific-10Oregon State7 - 16 - 2
Pacific-10Arizona5 - 25 - 2
Pacific-10Oregon6 - 25 - 3
Pacific-10Stanford6 - 25 - 3
Pacific-10Arizona State4 - 45 - 3
Pacific-10UCLA2 - 62 - 6
Pacific-10Washington1 - 71 - 7
Pacific-10Washington State0 - 81 - 7
SoutheasternFlorida8 - 08 - 0
SoutheasternAlabama8 - 07 - 1
SoutheasternLSU7 - 17 - 1
SoutheasternMississippi7 - 17 - 1
SoutheasternGeorgia5 - 35 - 3
SoutheasternTennessee5 - 35 - 3
SoutheasternArkansas4 - 44 - 4
SoutheasternVanderbilt5 - 44 - 5
SoutheasternKentucky2 - 63 - 5
SoutheasternSouth Carolina3 - 63 - 6
SoutheasternMississippi State2 - 73 - 6
SoutheasternAuburn2 - 72 - 7
Sun BeltTroy6 - 25 - 3
Sun BeltMiddle Tennessee6 - 35 - 4
Sun BeltArkansas State5 - 24 - 3
Sun BeltLouisiana-Lafayette5 - 34 - 4
Sun BeltFlorida International4 - 44 - 4
Sun BeltFlorida Atlantic3 - 43 - 4
Sun BeltLouisiana-Monroe1 - 72 - 6
Sun BeltNorth Texas1 - 82 - 7
Western AthleticBoise State7 - 17 - 1
Western AthleticNevada7 - 16 - 2
Western AthleticLouisiana Tech6 - 26 - 2
Western AthleticFresno State5 - 35 - 3
Western AthleticHawaii3 - 53 - 5
Western AthleticUtah State3 - 53 - 5
Western AthleticNew Mexico State2 - 73 - 6
Western AthleticSan Jose State2 - 52 - 5
Western AthleticIdaho0 - 91 - 8

A schedule of our 2009 College Football Preview, including links to other previews that have already been posted is located here.

Ever wanted to be in be in charge of your own college football program? With Gridiron Dynasty from WhatIfSports.com, you have a chance to do just that. From recruiting and running practice to gameplanning and scheduling - it is all under your control. Start at DIII and try to work your way up to winning the DI championship at your favorite school.

Paul Bessire is the Product Manager of Content and Quantitative Analysis for WhatIfSports.com, a division of FOX Sports Interactive specializing in NCAA Matchup analysis and college football sim games. With any comments, questions or topic suggestions, Paul can be reached at BtB@whatifsports.com. Thanks!

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