Earlier in the week we started looking into the offensive and defensive statistical matchups between UCLA and Florida State. As some of the commenters pointed out in that post, UCLA just cannot afford to take FSU lightly like it may have overlooked Fresno State and Wyoming in Dorrell's first two bowl games. FSU is coming into this game with a very mediocre 6-6 record (as oppose to UCLA's mediocre 7-5).
So I thought it'd be interesting to look into FSU's schedule (as well as look back into ours) and see what kind of teams the Noles and Bruins played against this season. A HT needs to go out to our friends over at Burnt Orange Nation because here we are going to take their approach of analyzing a number of great games, as they have been doing this past college football season.
Here is a breakdown of FSU's regular season opponents, which includes their W/L record and national offense and defensive rankings. All stats compiled from here:
|FSU W/L||Team||Total Offense||Total Defense||Team Record|
|6-6||-||75.25 (avg)||45.58 (avg)||84-61|
Again, as mentioned previously, FSU is coming into this bowl game on a low note. They are coming off a loss against Florida (although it was a hard fought game), and they barely qualified for this bowl bid with a nail biting win against a college football powerhouse like Western Michigan.
If you look into their opponents' W/L records, FSU?s 6 wins came against opponents with combined W-L record of 33-39 (no doubt deflated by Duke's 0-12 record), and their 6 losses came against good teams with a combined record of 51-22.
Now, before we go any further, here is a look into UCLA?s 2006 opponents W/L record and national offense and defensive rankings:
|UCLA W/L||Team||Total Offense||Total Defense||Team Record|
|7-5||-||48.00 (avg)||62.75 (avg)||84-61|
Interestingly, UCLA?s opponents have a combined record of 84-61 which is identical to FSU?s (listed above). But UCLA?s 7 wins came against opponents with a combined record of 47-38 (even including Stanford?s woeful 1-11 record). UCLA?s 5 losses came against opponents with a combined record of 37-23.
UCLA is coming off 3 wins including that magical one on December 2nd. FSU, on the other hand, is coming to this game with 2 wins in it?s last 5 games, which they got against Virginia and Western Michigan.
The Bruins have 2 really bad losses on their resume, which includes losses against a bad Washington football team, and against a mediocre Washington State one at the Rose Bowl. And then there was that meltdown against Notre Dame in last 59 seconds.
Florida State?s resume is just awful. They got shut out by Wake Forest. I mean I get it. Wake Forest is a good team that is having a magical once-in-a-lifetime BCS bowl season (which Cal still hasn?t pulled off in almost 50 years). But still. Getting shut out by the Demon Deacons at your home stadium? Sheesh. They also lost to Boston College and to Clemson at home. We mentioned the win against Western Michigan. They also had to scrape by some school named ?Troy.?
The only edge for FSU in the charts posted above is the record against a common opponent: the Rice Owls. FSU crushed them 55-7, while the Bruins barely scraped by.
So, what are we looking at here? We are looking at a talented (at least defensively) FSU team which doesn?t have a noteworthy win on it?s resume (and I wouldn?t call a ?W? over Miami a noteworthy win). They are coming in with a good defense. But a lot of their defensive stats were piled up against some atrocious and wretched offensive teams on their schedule. Not to mention their 6-6 record is littered with humiliating losses, even worse than Dorrell?s horrible losses.
UCLA, in other words, must take care of business on December 27. Sure, everyone is excited about 2007. But all that excitement will not mean much if the Bruins stumble against teams they should have beaten like Washington and Washington State. So Dorrell will have to have his team focused. They weren?t ready against Fresno State and Wyoming (not to mention they came out flat and fell behind by a large score against Northwestern). Hopefully that won?t happen two weeks from tonight.