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SIGNS OF LIFE: STEELE SPEAKS

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Phil: Emerging from the DataBunker.

Speaks, writes, emits information at a startling rate: whatever you call what Phil Steele does, it's ramping up for the release of Steele 2008. (Per his website: June. You can usually find a few copies ahead of schedule on stands, and then call friends and bark at them incoherently with excitement. They'll get used to this after three years or so of these calls.)

He has comparative strength of schedules tables up based on last year's winning percentages, and they're further proof that the less you pay attention to winning percentages in terms of where you put teams in your preseason, the better.

1. Georgia
2. Florida
3. Arkansas
4. UCLA
4. Alabama
6. Auburn
7. Ohio State
8. Kentucky
9. Colorado
9. Baylor
9. Washington
9. Ohio Oregon State.

Que pobrelito, Baylor: you're the econ major who, through some trick of malicious scheduling, has stumbled into an advanced price theory class in your first semester. Georgia is set up so well for this year: coming in they have the awe-inspiring schedule, meaning their first real foray out of the south, interstate rivalry with a feisty Tech team, and SEC schedule have them stocked high from the onset. Coming out of the schedule, they can still have one loss (a la Florida in 2006) and may still have a legitimate nod over an undefeated team with one loss leaving the season because of THE SCHEDULE, which will be typed in all caps due to its importance in shaking out where Georgia is when the season finishes.

(Barring Knowshon being kidnapped by FARC rebels, this won't happen. We haven't saved up quite enough money to make this happen yet, but we'll keep you posted.)

BTW, Iowa claims the 95th weakest schedule by winning percentage going into 2008. Ferentz Silences Doubters With Football Renaissance. Thought we'd just type that for the six to ten sportswriters who will have to write that same inaccurate wretched story come November or December of this year. Just cut and paste it, guys!