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Study Hall: Stanford 56, USC 48

Incredibly even game across the board here. The main differences: turnovers and passing downs. (And, of course, that fumble in the third overtime.)

Stanford 56, USC 48

Stanford USC Stanford USC
Close % 100.0% STANDARD DOWNS
Field Position % 59.1% 54.4% Success Rate 58.5% 57.7%
Leverage % 73.9% 76.5% PPP 0.42 0.45
S&P 1.000 1.025
EqPts 37.8 28.6 PASSING DOWNS
Close Success Rate 53.4% 51.5% Success Rate 39.1% 31.3%
Close PPP 0.43 0.42 PPP 0.47 0.33
Close S&P 0.963 0.935 S&P 0.861 0.644
EqPts 16.4 9.6 Number 1 2
Close Success Rate 56.5% 52.2% Turnover Pts 8.2 9.9
Close PPP 0.36 0.42 Turnover Pts Margin +1.7 +1.7
Close S&P 0.921 0.941
Line Yards/carry 3.56 2.86 Q1 S&P 0.978 0.706
Q2 S&P 0.614 0.481
PASSING Q3 S&P 1.149 1.575
EqPts 21.4 19.0 Q4 S&P 0.740 0.858
Close Success Rate 50.0% 51.1%
Close PPP 0.51 0.42 1st Down S&P 1.013 1.037
Close S&P 1.010 0.933 2nd Down S&P 1.009 1.041
SD/PD Sack Rate 0.0% / 12.5% 0.0% / 0.0% 3rd Down S&P 0.713 0.455
Projected Pt. Margin: Stanford +10.9 | Actual Pt. Margin: Stanford +8

Quick glossary (complete with national averages) after the jump.

A Quick Glossary

F/+ Rankings: The official rankings for the college portion of Football Outsiders. They combine my own S&P+ rankings (based on play-by-play data) with Brian Fremeau's drives-based FEI rankings.

Field Position %: The percentage of a team's plays run in their opponent's field position. National average: 43%.

Leverage Rate: A team's ratio of standard downs to passing downs. National average: 68%. Anything over 68% means a team did a good job of avoiding being leveraged into passing downs.

Passing Downs: Second-and-7 or more, third-and-5 or more.

PPP: An explosiveness measure derived from determining the point value of every yard line (based on the expected number of points an offense could expect to score from that yard line) and, therefore, every play of a given game. National average: 0.32.

S&P: Think of this as an OPS (the "On-Base Plus Slugging" baseball measure) for football. The 'S' stands for success rate. The 'P' stands for PPP, an explosiveness measure that stands for EqPts Per Play. S&P is measured for all non-garbage time plays in a given college football game. Plays are counted within the following criteria: when the score is within 28 points in the first quarter, within 24 points in the second quarter, within 21 points in the third quarter, and within 16 points (i.e. two possession) in the fourth quarter. For more about this measure, visit the main S&P+ page at Football Outsiders. National average: 0.747. Standard downs S&P average: 0.787. Passing downs S&P average: 0.636.

Standard Downs: First downs, second-and-6 or less, third-and-4 or less.

Success Rate: A common Football Outsiders tool used to measure efficiency by determining whether every play of a given game was successful or not. The terms of success in college football: 50 percent of necessary yardage on first down, 70 percent on second down, and 100 percent on third and fourth down. National Average: 42%.