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Football: A human and a computer breakdown the Olympia-Bellarmine Prep game

Post by Doug Pacey / The News Tribune on Oct. 20, 2011 at 5:44 pm with No Comments »
October 20, 2011 6:43 pm

As you’ve probably noticed, we’ve been running weekly computerized state football rankings (click here to see the Week 8 edition), courtesy of Scott Odiorne (follow him on Twitter @ScoreCzar).

Scott offered to provide a computer analysis of this week’s Olympia-Bellarmine Prep game. According to the computer, Olympia is the second-best team in Class 4A and Bellarmine Prep is No. 3. In the TNT’s rankings, we’ve got Bellarmine Prep at No. 2 and Olympia at No. 6.

Below, I’ve posted my breakdown of the game, followed by the computer analysis. Interestingly, both predicted outcomes were similar. We’ll know what to make of that after the game.

Here’s my breakdown:

No. 6 Olympia (5-0 league, 7-0 overall) at Bellamine Prep (5-0, 7-0), 7 p.m. Friday

Lowdown: Some business has already been handled – both teams have clinched postseason berths in the Week 10 state play-in games. But the league title, which Olympia has claimed in six of the past eight seasons, is up for grabs and the winner of this monumental Narrows League 4A clash will claim it. Bellarmine Prep will be without leading rusher RB Isaiah Flynn, who’s out with a strained knee, and use do-it-all Joe Lovejoy – he’s played tight end, H-back, fullback and tailback – and sophomore Lou Millie in Flynn’s place. The Lions have a superior passing attack, led by QB Sefo Liufau and field-spreading receivers Michael Rector and Calvin Chandler. Olympia QB Trevor Houser has the ability to air it out – he’s thrown for more than 1,000 yards – but RB Spenser Killman is the focal point of the Bears’ offense. Killman shredded the Lions for 207 yards and three touchdowns in Olympia’s 37-30 win last fall. Field position and turnovers could play extra-important roles, as each team is allowing an average of about a touchdown per game.

TNT pick: Bellarmine Prep 20, Olympia 16

And here’s the computer’s breakdown:

Standby for some serious pocket-protecting madness…

Olympia vs. Bellarmine Prep: Regardless of how you feel about my numbers, let’s use them for consistency sake

Overall Power Rating:
Olympia 0.65
Bellarmine Prep 0.70

Rule of thumb is the lower the OPR (Overall Power Rating), the better the team. But, these are close enough to call it a wash. Two evenly-matched exceptional teams, according to the numbers. To determine what team has the advantage, let’s take a deeper look.

Strength of Schedule:
Olympia 2.61
Bellarmine Prep 3.92

Clear advantage to Olympia, it has played a much harder schedule.

Points Allowed:
Olympia 54
Bellarmine Prep 58

Wow! Two of the fewest points-allowed totals in the state at any classification. However, I give Olympia the advantage due to their harder schedule

Points For:
Olympia 216
Bellarmine Prep 327

Clear advantage here for Bellarmine Prep. Despite its easier schedule, it makes up for it with decidedly more points.

I picked four common opponents (Central Kitsap, South Kitsap, Mount Tahoma and Stadium) and ran an aggregate of those scores. All wins for both Olympia and Bellarmine Prep. But in those contests Bellarmine Prep posted a higher winning margin of 29 points aggregate. This is a big plus for Bellarmine Prep.

Interestingly, the final score for both teams against Mt Tahoma were remarkably similar:
Olympia 39, Mount Tahoma 7
Bellarmine Prep 41, Mount Tahoma 7

For the final comparison, I ran both teams through a formula that I have designed which I call “The Predictitator.” Last week, using this program I went 25-3. The score that was delivered after all the variables were entered was: Bellarmine Prep 16, Olympia 13.

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