Miami football underrated according to ESPN analytics

MIAMI, FLORIDA - OCTOBER 19: (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
MIAMI, FLORIDA - OCTOBER 19: (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /

ESPN writer Bill Connolly who developed the analytic SP+ wrote that the Miami football team is underrated using the metric.

The Miami football team is underrated entering the 2020 season according to the SP+ metric developed by ESPN college football writer Bill Connolly. Connolly included all 130 FBS teams in his rankings to keep continuity for this season and beyond. During the season, Connolly will only include the 76 teams playing this fall.

Connolly included the number of scheduled games and the projected wins for the 76 teams playing a fall 2020 schedule. The win projection is based on the probability a team will win each game. Home teams are given a one-point advantage this season versus a normally provided 2.5 point advantage for the hosts.

Connolly acknowledges that the win totals are conservative projections. None of the 76 teams in the SP+ projections are predicted to undefeated or winless. Miami has a projection of 6.9 wins which would mean 4.1 losses in 2020. That is based on the average percentage chance of winning or losing each game.

Only number three Clemson and number 18 North Carolina are higher ranked than Miami on the Hurricanes schedule. Each game does not have the prediction of win or lose. Miami could have an 80 percent chance of winning a game which would give them 0.8 wins for example or the likely projection of losing against Clemson.

Miami should get a good idea where it’s week one opponent UAB ranks after the Blazers play their season opener on Thursday night against Central Arkansas. UAB was 9-5 last season. The Blazers rank 66th in the SP+ preseason rankings and are predicted to win 7.3 games in the metric. SP+ has Miami as underrated.

"Miami (23rd in SP+, the equivalent of 30th per the AP). SP+ liked Miami more than its record last season — the Hurricanes suffered lots of tight, hard-to-duplicate losses — and then the Hurricanes went out and added Houston quarterback D’Eriq King and Temple defensive end Quincy Roche.If end Gregory Rousseau hadn’t opted out and gone pro, The U would have been two spots higher."

SP+ has the Miami defense ranked 10th and the Hurricanes offense 56th. The original projections for the 2020 season were released by Connolly in February. They did not include transfers or players opting out for the 2020 season. Although Miami lost Rousseau they gained four key players with the new metrics.

King, Roche, right tackle Jarrid Williams and kicker Jose Borreagales are critical for Miami in 2020. King, Williams and Borreagles improve three of the worst positions for Miami in 2019. Roche is significant because his presence with Redshirt junior DE Jaelan Phillips should ensure Miami does not have a big dropoff in their pass rush.

The Miami football team was better than its record using metrics as a judgment which is far less subjective. Six of the seven Hurricanes losses in 2019 came by single digits. If Miami had Borregales last season three of those losses could have easily been flipped. Borregales could have been the difference between 6-7 and 9-4.

Next. Miami can disrupt CFP per national CFB analyst. dark

As Miami sits one week away from playing UAB the Hurricanes are in a much better position for a successful 2020 season than they were in 2019. The schedule is much tougher with 10 of 11 games against ACC opponents. The addition of the four new players as transfers and a new offense creates a reason for optimism.