Time of Possession - generally not an indicator of success, but in our case ...

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hawkwing
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Time of Possession - generally not an indicator of success, but in our case ...

Post by hawkwing »

So if you follow football statistics you may know that Time of Possession (TOP) does not correlate with winning. The top TOP schools are almost always the service academies and other option teams. They maintain the ball for a long time, but rarely win. So there are many who look at BYU's lopsided TOP stats as not an important factor in the losses. However, I want to look at TOP under a different angle and review TOP differential.

TOP Differential is a stat that compares TOP in a specific game vs a teams average TOP (excluding that game) as far as I know this stat isn't available anywhere online so I crunched the numbers myself to come up with BYU's numbers.

First the highlights.
  • BYU for the season is allowing teams +2 minutes TOP vs what they average.
  • In the 5 wins so far BYU is averaging allowing teams 0 minutes extra TOP
    • Utah was actually -4, USF -1, USU +1, Arizona and ASU both +2
  • In the 2 loses BYU is averaging allowing teams +7 minutes TOP
    • Boise was +6 and Baylor +8
There's not enough data yet to see if this has a nationwide correlation to wins and losses, however I find it very interesting to look at and keep track of.

What are your thoughts?


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snoscythe
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Re: Time of Possession - generally not an indicator of success, but in our case ...

Post by snoscythe »

hawkwing wrote: Tue Oct 19, 2021 9:48 am What are your thoughts?
When you are behind, especially by 2+ scores late in the game, your offensive philosophy moves away from the short middle of the field and downfield and towards the sidelines where 1st downs, running out of bounds, and incompletions stop the clock.

When you are ahead, especially by 2+ scores late in the game, your offensive philosophy moves away from the edges and downfield and becomes focused on running the clock down and reducing possessions for the other team by running the ball and staying in bounds while picking up first downs.

BYU was down by 2+ scores for 26:00 of the Boise State game and 29:13 of the Baylor game. That's nearly half of each game where BYU was in a big hole.

So, it's unsurprising that BYU had lopsided TOP statistics in two games where they were down by 2+ scores early and often.


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Re: Time of Possession - generally not an indicator of success, but in our case ...

Post by BroncoBot »

when your offense is gift wrapping fumbles to the BSU it also hurts your TOP.

TOP could be nothing (because your team scores in 1 minute every time they touch the ball and put up 70/game), or it could be a symptom of a much larger problem. In BYU's case I think it's a symptom.


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