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After The Defensive Surge (Fun Stat Nerd Tidbit: Missouri)

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Photo via <a href="http://www.rockmnation.com/section/photo-galleries" target="new">Rock M Nation's Bill Carter</a>.
Photo via Rock M Nation's Bill Carter.

UPDATE: The Missouri Tigers And The Living, Breathing Spread is now up at the mothership.

The spread offense really has taken hold in a way other formations/alignments/ways of thinking have not. The Wishbone was awesome, but it's a running offense. The run-and-shoot is a passing offense. But the spread can be whatever you want it to be. And as defenses across the country get lighter and faster in an effort to adapt to the spread's success, it is likely that offenses will adapt with more size and more running. It is a constant dance between offensive innovation and defensive adaptation, and as we reach Phase Two of the spread's life cycle, Missouri is a team worth watching.

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From 2007-09, 25 teams improved their Def. F/+ ratings by at least 10% in one season. Only 14 of them (56%) regressed the next season. Considering how telling one-year surges are for a team overall -- they are typically a sign of sure regression -- this is surprising. Quite a few teams did the deed in 2010; Missouri's +12.6% improvement was only the eighth-best in the country. About half of these eight will take steps backwards. Care to take a guess which ones?

Overall
F/+ Rk
Season Team Record Def F/+ Change From
Prev. Season
The Next
Year
16 2009 Nebraska 10-4 +23.6% +26.3% -9.8%
23 2010 N.C. State 9-4 +8.4% +21.4%
4 2010 Stanford 12-1 +10.5% +20.6%
1 2008 Florida 13-1 +15.8% +18.4% +3.8%
89 2007 Louisiana Tech 5-7 +1.6% +17.8% -6.3%
33 2010 Illinois 7-6 +10.2% +17.4%
113 2007 Temple 4-8 -2.4% +16.8% +6.0%
62 2009 Middle Tennessee 10-3 +9.8% +16.4% -13.0%
17 2010 Notre Dame 8-5 +12.8% +16.3%
104 2010 Florida Atlantic 4-8 -4.5% +15.9%
6 2008 TCU 11-2 +25.8% +15.7% -4.8%
24 2010 Texas A&M 9-4 +9.8% +15.0%
41 2007 Central Florida 10-4 +6.9% +14.4% +7.0%
15 2010 Florida State 10-4 +4.0% +14.2%
9 2008 Boise State 12-1 +14.0% +13.5% +1.5%
16 2010 Missouri 10-3 +10.5% +12.6%
32 2007 Utah 9-4 +13.3% +12.3% -3.8%
58 2007 Troy 8-4 +4.5% +12.2% -0.6%
45 2009 Central Michigan 12-2 +2.7% +12.0% -7.2%
31 2010 Maryland 9-4 +9.1% +11.7%
99 2008 San Jose State 6-6 +7.2% +11.7% -14.8%
112 2007 Army 3-9 -0.8% +11.4% +3.1%
12 2007 Oregon State 9-4 +16.7% +11.3% -12.2%
26 2010 Mississippi State 9-4 +13.5% +11.2%
1 2009 Alabama 14-0 +22.6% +11.2% -10.4%
37 2009 Oklahoma State 9-4 +8.7% +11.1% -1.6%
57 2008 Navy 8-5 -9.6% +11.0% +10.3%
13 2009 LSU 9-4 +14.7% +10.8% -3.2%
99 2010 Idaho 6-7 -6.8% +10.7%
70 2008 Minnesota 7-6 -0.9% +10.3% +4.0%
20 2007 UCLA 6-7 +17.5% +10.3% -13.3%
79 2008 Marshall 4-8 +2.3% +10.3% -4.9%
46 2009 Navy 10-4 +0.7% +10.3% -4.6%
22 2009 BYU 11-2 +2.2% +10.2% +5.0%
98 2009 Kent State 5-7 +0.5% +10.1% +1.0%
10 2008 Ole Miss 9-4 +7.6% +10.0% +2.3%