The Power Rankings MEGALIST

thumper's Megalist Power Rankings

HUMOR LINK for 2010 ("Harrison Ford" Predictions)

What are Power Rankings? ,
Do you hate Power Rankings?

Megalist Explained: Thumper's Megalist Power Rankings was once a system which compiled the best known Power Rankings (AKA, THE Twelve BIG ONES) from major sports writers around the country. A link to each of these systems is provided below. An average rank was computed by totaling each vote for each team. As this process was laborious, I no longer care to take the time to put them together.

THE NEW MEGALIST is my own Power Ranking system which operates on the following formula:



Net points is an indication of dominance and offensive-defensive balance. NO SINGLE statistic has a higher correlation to wins than Net Points. The Net Points statistic naturally incorporates many others: a team's ability to score, gain yards, control the ball, stop scoring, and create turnovers.

EXPECTED WINS NET POINTS (DOMINANCE): Each teams' expected win % based on net points is calculated using the league-wide (week current), R-squared correlation trendline between win % and net points. The R-Squared value for Net Points against wins for 2009 was .861. Because of it's high correlation value, Net Points is weighted as a 5% total influence league-wide. Each teams % will vary based on their performance.


The abililty to endure a schedule is resiliance. Many purist avoid schedule discussion saying it's meaningless. To make a hyperoblic point, any team that played BUF and CAR every week would probably have a 10 win season. While reality makes most schedules close to .500, the small differences in schedules effect wins to and equally small degree. Schedule should be fractionally considered in a Power Ranking system. That said, good teams still tend to beat whomever they play, and bad teams tend to lose to whomever they play, which is why wins factor in the most in this system.

EXPECTED WINS SCHEDULE (RESILIANCE): Each teams' expected win % based on schedule is calculated using the league-wide (week current), R-squared correlation trendline between win % and strength of schedule. The R-Squared value for SOS against wins for 2009 was .367. Because of it's lower correlation value, Schedule is weighted as a 2% influence league-wide per team.


Wins are weighted the strongest (about 90%), with only fractional "power adjustments" (2nd part of equation) made for dominance and schedule. The average win adjustment per team is only about .6 per team. That means and 92.5% of the emphasis is SOLELY on wins, and 7.5% is based on functions associated with wins (Net Points Strong, and Schedule moderate). Some teams will have larger adjustment. Some hardly any. Some will be positive, and some negative. Each adjusment value is displayed in the table below, along with the MEGALIST POWER RANKING WINS (PR WINS). If any team with a lower # of wins is higher than a team with more wins, you should be able to quickly see their net points and/or schedule is significantly higher. You will often then observe such a team has been dominant in it's wins, and if they have lost, they have been close losses to good teams. The RSQ values for NET POINTS expected wins and SOS EXPECTED wins are displayed in the table. Last, the PR wins is re-correlated with observed wins to R-Squared = .9624, showing a fairly insignificant bias (which should please the purists).

One other VERY IMPORTANT consideration when looknig at these rankings is NOT TO VIEW them as distinct ranks. A 1-32 ranking system tends to exaggerate differences in teams that could be considered very equal. For example, in the rankings below, if one team has rank of .905, and another .894, they should not be distinguished as a #3 and #4, but rather as a .905 and .894 (a difference of only .011, where as a 1/32 difference is .031, three times as much difference).

CALCULATION EXAMPLE : If win % is .714, net points expected win % is .761, and schedule expected win % is .594
.833 + (.761 - .714)/2 + (.714 - .594)/5 = .714 + .048 = .762
A positive value for the Net Points component of the equation = a team was dominate in their wins, but underacheived in actual wins.
A positive value for the Schedule component of the equation = a team was resiliant to their schedule.

Sports Writer Power Rankings

(Auto Updates Tue AM)
Saragin: USA TODAY (S)
(Auto Updates Mon PM)
(Auto Updates Tue PM)
(Auto Updates Tue PM)
(Tue AM)
AIKMAN (A) via twitter
(Auto Updates Tue AM)
ColdHardFootballFacts (CHF)
(Auto Updates, Wed AM)
Don Banks: SI
Don Banks, Wed AM)
(Auto Updates Tue AM)
DVOA: FootballOutsiders (D)
(Wed AM, Click Week)
Covers (C)
(Auto Updates Tue AM)
(Auto Updates Tue AM)

COMPILED LIST of MANY OTHER RANKINGS SYSTEMS -- if you find any others, please email me
If Peter King didn't produce these on Monday, he'd be included: PETER KING


TRUST or BUST? Football Myths...
Megalist 2006 ARCHIVE
Megalist 2007 ARCHIVE
Megalist 2008 ARCHIVE
Other Ranking Systems

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