(Far Too Early, Sure To Change A Thousand Times) 2012 F/+ Projections

Perhaps I was underestimating Joseph Randle and Oklahoma State (and overestimating the hell out of Boise State) in my Far Too Early Top 25 a month ago?

Today at the Mothership, I took a look at the way recent recruiting rankings might actually have an impact on the field in 2012. To further elaborate on the impact two-year recruiting rankings and returning starter data might have on F/+ projections, I felt that going all out to create a full Top 120 (yes, 120 -- not ready to address the new teams yet) might be the best thing to do. Even in saying that Ohio State, Indiana and Vanderbilt might improve a solid amount (or that Arizona and Penn State could regress) doesn't really give you a good glimpse of the big picture.

Below are some rough F/+ projections for 2012, taking into account only three factors: 2011 F/+ ratings, two-year weighted recruiting data and lost starters. These are, after all, the components to anybody's predictions/projections, math-based or not: how were they last year, who are they bringing back, and who are they bringing in?

What we will see as the offseason progresses are more refined ways of determining these pieces. Instead of simply looking at last year, we will see more recent history taken into account. We've determined that four- and five-year history are typically more predictive than simply looking at last year. Plus, there will be adjustments made to the Returning Starters figure based on the magnitude of the players lost/returning. For instance, Oklahoma State loses only six starters, but that list includes Brandon Weeden and Justin Blackmon, both of whom were far better than the average starter. Plus, we might find there is an even better way to take recruiting into account. (In other words, I cannot stress enough how "rough" these projections are. Plus, and this is also quite important: I haven't run any of this by Brian Fremeau yet.) But I'm a visual learner, and I thought the best way to look at the impact of incoming and outgoing talent would be to isolate these three variables.

(And yes, projections see plenty to like about 20 returning starters; I doubt the final projections have either Tennessee or Texas Tech ranked this high, but it certainly does emphasize the role of experience. At least, I hope it changes, as my alma mater's new place of residence -- the SEC East -- currently has six teams in the Top 33.)

Proj.
Rk
Team Conference 2011 F/+ Rk 2012
Recruiting
F/+
Rk 2012
Returning
Starters
2012
Projected
F/+
1 Alabama SEC 35.8% 1 33.0% 1 13 32.9%
2 LSU SEC 34.1% 2 28.2% 8 14 32.6%
3 Oklahoma State Big 12 27.4% 3 17.6% 28 16 28.5%
4 Oklahoma Big 12 21.9% 7 24.8% 16 17 27.3%
5 USC Pac-12 16.2% 11 30.9% 4 17 24.0%
6 Florida State ACC 18.4% 8 31.0% 3 15 22.8%
7 Oregon Pac-12 23.8% 5 26.8% 11 13 22.5%
8 Michigan Big Ten 16.0% 12 24.9% 15 16 21.0%
9 Texas Big 12 12.1% 19 31.5% 2 17 20.9%
10 Georgia SEC 14.9% 15 29.0% 6 15 19.6%
11 Stanford Pac-12 17.7% 9 25.7% 12 14 19.4%
12 Notre Dame Independent 15.5% 13 25.1% 14 15 19.2%
13 Texas A&M SEC 14.5% 16 21.1% 22 16 19.0%
14 Florida SEC 7.8% 30 28.1% 9 18 17.9%
15 Arkansas SEC 15.0% 14 18.3% 26 15 17.3%
16 Ohio State Big Ten 5.9% 38 29.1% 5 18 16.5%
17 Michigan State Big Ten 16.8% 10 15.0% 34 14 16.3%
18 Nebraska Big Ten 10.1% 26 21.5% 21 16 15.6%
19 South Carolina SEC 11.1% 21 24.6% 17 14 14.1%
20 Tennessee SEC 1.0% 57 25.4% 13 20 13.9%
21 Auburn SEC 2.5% 52 28.4% 7 18 13.6%
22 TCU Big 12 14.2% 17 16.7% 32 13 12.9%
23 West Virginia Big 12 10.6% 23 7.8% 45 16 12.9%
24 Baylor Big 12 8.4% 29 9.4% 40 16 11.5%
25 Rutgers Big East 7.2% 34 18.6% 25 15 11.2%

As always, full list after the jump.

Proj.
Rk
Team Conference 2011 F/+ Rk 2012
Recruiting
F/+
Rk 2012
Returning
Starters
2012
Projected
F/+
26 Clemson ACC 6.3% 36 27.6% 10 14 11.0%
27 Virginia Tech ACC 11.1% 22 17.5% 29 13 10.7%
28 Utah Pac-12 2.4% 54 15.5% 33 18 10.6%
29 Missouri SEC 10.2% 25 11.5% 38 14 10.4%
30 Wisconsin Big Ten 22.3% 6 8.0% 44 10 10.4%
31 South Florida Big East 5.4% 40 3.2% 55 18 10.3%
32 Kansas State Big 12 7.3% 33 -3.9% 66 18 10.2%
33 Vanderbilt SEC 4.4% 46 6.5% 47 18 10.1%
34 Houston C-USA 12.4% 18 -1.9% 62 14 9.0%
35 Georgia Tech ACC 3.9% 48 8.4% 41 17 8.9%
36 Texas Tech Big 12 -4.7% 76 22.2% 19 20 8.3%
37 North Carolina ACC 3.7% 49 18.1% 27 15 8.3%
38 BYU Independent 6.3% 37 -6.6% 73 17 7.5%
39 Louisville Big East 4.7% 44 13.9% 36 14 6.7%
40 Miami ACC 7.4% 32 19.1% 24 12 6.5%
41 Pittsburgh Big East 4.3% 47 4.6% 51 15 5.8%
42 Cincinnati Big East 9.6% 27 8.3% 43 12 5.6%
43 Mississippi State SEC 5.1% 43 13.5% 37 13 5.3%
44 Florida International Sun Belt 0.0% 60 -5.6% 70 19 4.9%
45 Boston College ACC -3.0% 69 5.3% 50 19 4.9%
46 Penn State Big Ten 7.5% 31 10.8% 39 12 4.7%
47 Southern Miss C-USA 11.4% 20 -4.7% 69 12 4.1%
48 Washington Pac-12 -1.0% 64 21.8% 20 14 4.1%
49 California Pac-12 4.7% 45 23.7% 18 11 3.7%
50 Iowa Big Ten 5.1% 42 13.9% 35 12 3.7%
Proj.
Rk
Team Conference 2011 F/+ Rk 2012
Recruiting
F/+
Rk 2012
Returning
Starters
2012
Projected
F/+
51 Louisiana Tech WAC 5.5% 39 -16.5% 89 16 3.3%
52 Central Florida C-USA 2.5% 53 -3.9% 67 15 2.4%
53 Tulsa C-USA 6.8% 35 -13.3% 85 14 2.2%
54 UCLA Pac-12 -6.7% 83 17.2% 31 16 1.2%
55 Ole Miss SEC -9.9% 95 17.3% 30 17 -0.2%
56 Illinois Big Ten -0.1% 62 -2.3% 63 14 -0.8%
57 Connecticut Big East -0.1% 61 -21.3% 98 17 -1.0%
58 Ohio MAC 1.8% 56 -17.5% 91 15 -1.3%
59 Arizona State Pac-12 5.2% 41 8.3% 42 10 -1.5%
60 N.C. State ACC -2.6% 67 -9.3% 75 16 -1.6%
61 Boise State Big East 26.9% 4 -0.5% 60 6 -1.7%
62 Virginia ACC -1.4% 65 19.2% 23 11 -1.7%
63 Northern Illinois MAC 3.0% 50 -12.9% 84 13 -2.3%
64 SMU C-USA 1.8% 55 -3.4% 65 12 -2.8%
65 Duke ACC -5.2% 77 -5.7% 71 16 -2.8%
66 Maryland ACC -10.2% 96 6.0% 48 17 -3.0%
67 Purdue Big Ten -4.6% 73 -9.7% 78 16 -3.2%
68 Bowling Green MAC -4.7% 75 -24.3% 108 19 -3.2%
69 Oregon State Pac-12 -7.4% 86 7.5% 46 14 -4.1%
70 Iowa State Big 12 -3.9% 72 1.6% 57 13 -4.2%
71 Syracuse Big East -3.5% 71 -6.6% 72 14 -4.3%
72 Western Michigan MAC 2.8% 51 -21.3% 99 13 -4.4%
73 Northwestern Big Ten 0.6% 59 -7.0% 74 12 -4.4%
74 Wake Forest ACC -1.6% 66 -2.8% 64 12 -5.1%
75 Toledo MAC 8.8% 28 -9.6% 77 9 -5.4%
Proj.
Rk
Team Conference 2011 F/+ Rk 2012
Recruiting
F/+
Rk 2012
Returning
Starters
2012
Projected
F/+
76 Arizona Pac-12 -5.5% 79 5.5% 49 12 -6.1%
77 Miami (Ohio)
MAC -6.5% 82 -26.6% 116 18 -6.4%
78 Temple MAC 10.3% 24 -20.5% 96 9 -6.9%
79 Utah State WAC -3.1% 70 -20.9% 97 14 -7.2%
80 Kentucky SEC -8.9% 89 2.5% 56 13 -7.8%
81 San Diego State MWC -2.9% 68 -10.3% 79 12 -7.8%
82 Western Kentucky Sun Belt -7.0% 84 -23.1% 105 16 -8.2%
83 Nevada MWC -0.8% 63 -19.1% 95 12 -8.2%
84 Washington State Pac-12 -12.1% 100 -0.1% 59 15 -8.2%
85 Arkansas State Sun Belt 0.8% 58 -9.6% 76 10 -8.7%
86 Indiana Big Ten -18.3% 112 1.3% 58 19 -8.8%
87 Minnesota Big Ten -11.0% 99 3.6% 54 13 -9.1%
88 Eastern Michigan MAC -10.4% 97 -25.1% 110 18 -9.2%
89 Marshall C-USA -7.9% 87 -0.8% 61 12 -9.3%
90 East Carolina C-USA -8.9% 90 -10.9% 80 14 -9.5%
91 Navy Independent -5.8% 81 -17.4% 90 13 -10.0%
92 Central Michigan MAC -12.4% 101 -22.7% 102 18 -10.3%
93 UL-Lafayette Sun Belt -5.5% 78 -13.6% 86 12 -10.4%
94 Hawaii MWC -4.6% 74 -17.5% 92 12 -10.7%
95 Ball State MAC -9.4% 93 -27.8% 118 16 -11.2%
96 Colorado State MWC -15.4% 105 -15.6% 87 18 -11.2%
97 Fresno State MWC -8.5% 88 -31.5% 120 16 -11.3%
98 North Texas Sun Belt -13.6% 102 -22.9% 103 18 -11.3%
99 Kent State MAC -9.4% 92 -25.3% 111 15 -11.8%
100 UL-Monroe Sun Belt -9.7% 94 -26.0% 114 15 -12.2%
Proj.
Rk
Team Conference 2011 F/+ Rk 2012
Recruiting
F/+
Rk 2012
Returning
Starters
2012
Projected
F/+
101 Colorado Pac-12 -17.1% 108 3.7% 52 14 -12.5%
102 Wyoming MWC -13.7% 103 -11.6% 83 14 -13.3%
103 Kansas Big 12 -19.8% 113 3.7% 53 15 -13.4%
104 UTEP C-USA -9.0% 91 -25.0% 109 13 -14.1%
105 Army Independent -15.9% 106 -23.3% 107 16 -15.3%
106 Rice C-USA -10.8% 98 -11.3% 82 11 -15.5%
107 San Jose State WAC -7.1% 85 -25.4% 113 11 -16.0%
108 Troy Sun Belt -16.2% 107 -22.6% 101 15 -16.6%
109 Tulane C-USA -20.9% 114 -18.1% 93 17 -17.2%
110 Memphis C-USA -24.1% 117 -4.6% 68 15 -18.6%
111 Buffalo MAC -13.7% 104 -31.3% 119 13 -19.1%
112 Air Force MWC -5.7% 80 -11.1% 81 7 -20.5%
113 UAB C-USA -18.0% 111 -16.2% 88 11 -21.8%
114 Idaho WAC -17.4% 110 -25.3% 111 12 -21.9%
115 Florida Atlantic Sun Belt -24.6% 118 -18.2% 94 15 -22.2%
116 UNLV MWC -23.5% 116 -22.3% 100 15 -22.2%
117 Middle Tennessee Sun Belt -21.9% 115 -23.2% 106 13 -23.5%
118 New Mexico State WAC -17.2% 109 -26.7% 117 10 -25.2%
119 Akron MAC -27.5% 119 -26.1% 115 15 -26.3%
120 New Mexico MWC -35.5% 120 -23.0% 104 15 -31.8%

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