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Miami 36, Nebraska 33: Stop kneeling the clock out, coaches

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Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Nebraska @ Miami

Miami, why you do dis?

umnebWP

Top Plays

Play.Number

Offense

Down-Distance-Spot

Quarter

Play Description

Home Team Win Probability Before Play

Home Team Win Probability Added

215

Nebraska

1-10-25

5

Tommy Armstrong Jr. Pass INTERCEPTED

0.524

0.345

222

Miami (Florida)

4-9-11

5

FIELD_GOAL

0.697

0.303

211

Nebraska

2-4-8

4

Tommy Armstrong Jr. Pass to Stanley Morgan Jr. for 8, TOUCHDOWN

0.821

-0.280

220

Miami (Florida)

3-6-8

5

Team Rush for -3

0.857

-0.160

214

Miami (Florida)

1-10-75

4

Team Rush for -2

0.619

-0.095

In regard to the play bolded above ... STOP ELECTING TO KNEEL WITH SO MUCH TIME REMAINING, COLLEGE COACHES. No, Miami didn't have any timeouts left (and I don't believe the play-by-play data we receive includes timeouts, so Matt's probability tool can't do anything about that), so maybe the Hurricanes' real win probability wasn't quite 61.9%. Maybe it was only about 55%.

But like when I stay at 15 on blackjack even when the odds are slightly in my favor -- yes, I'm a chicken, just like the coaches I'm calling chickens -- coaches are forgoing odds out of fear more than reality (i.e. fear of what happened to Kansas City against Denver last week). But the worst-case scenario doesn't actually happen very often. You've got an awesome young QB and a fun receiving corps. Give them a chance to win the game.

Miami 36, Nebraska 33

Confused? Visit the Advanced Stats glossary here.

Basics Miami Nebraska Nat'l Avg
Total Plays 75 77
Close Rate (non-garbage time) 80.3%
Avg Starting FP 30.6 25.4 29.6
Possessions 16 15
Scoring Opportunities*
9 7
Points Per Opportunity 3.67 4.43 4.82
Leverage Rate** 72.7% 60.7% 68.7%
Close S&P*** 0.656 0.574 0.587
* A scoring opportunity occurs when an offense gets a first down inside the opponent's 40 (or scores from outside the 40).
** Leverage Rate = Standard Downs / (Standard Downs + Passing Downs)
*** When using IsoPPP, the S&P formula is (0.8*Success Rate) + (0.2*IsoPPP)
EqPts (what's this?) Miami Nebraska
Total 49.6 42.6
Rushing 14.2 15.4
Passing 35.4 27.1
Success Rate (what's this?) Miami Nebraska Nat'l Avg
All (close) 48.5% 37.5% 41.8%
Rushing (close) 45.2% 47.6% 42.8%
Passing (close) 51.4% 31.4% 40.7%
Standard Downs 52.1% 44.1% 47.3%
Passing Downs 38.9% 27.3% 29.8%
IsoPPP (what's this?) Miami Nebraska Nat'l Avg
All (close) 1.34 1.37 1.26
Rushing (close) 0.99 1.02 1.06
Passing (close) 1.62 1.69 1.49
Standard Downs 1.33 1.11 1.10
Passing Downs 1.38 2.01 1.81
Line Stats Miami Nebraska Nat'l Avg
Line Yards/Carry (what's this?) 2.87 3.54 2.83
Std. Downs Sack Rt. 4.6% 5.9% 4.7%
Pass. Downs Sack Rt. 0.0% 5.6% 6.6%
Turnovers Miami Nebraska
Turnovers 1 3
Turnover Points (what's this?) 6.0 18.7
Turnover Margin Miami +2
Exp. TO Margin Miami +1.32
TO Luck (Margin vs. Exp. Margin) Miami +0.68
TO Points Margin Miami +12.7 points
Situational Miami Nebraska
Q1 S&P 0.801 0.412
Q2 S&P 0.613 0.600
Q3 S&P 0.723 0.553
Q4 S&P 0.584 0.714
1st Down S&P 0.743 0.555
2nd Down S&P 0.722 0.505
3rd Down S&P 0.657 0.690
Projected Scoring Margin: Miami by 19.7
Actual Scoring Margin: Miami by 3

Basically, the projected scoring margin is saying "Surely Miami didn't blow that many scoring chances..." Alas, they did! Going 5-for-5 on field goals is a lovely accomplishment for any college kicker ... but asking him to kick five field goals is an admission of failure. But first-and-goal from the 1 turned into fourth down from the 6. First-and-goal from the 8 turned into fourth down from the 10. Third-and-1 from the 19 turned into fourth-and-6 from the 24.

And then, of course, the Hurricanes asked Michael Badgley to kick a field goal on fourth-and-1 from the 11, up 30-10, even though a touchdown would have completely put the game out of reach.

There's risk involved in going for it, and I don't really blame Al Golden and company for not being confident in their ability gain one yard on fourth-and-1 ... but fourth-and-1 odds are always in an offense's favor. Miami dropped the dagger in like four different ways, and then Nebraska's offense found a rhythm against a depleted secondary late.

And then, naturally, Miami won anyway. Weirdest game of the week.