Gaskin Fuels Dawgs; D Defuels Eagles

Zaxby's Heart of Dallas Bowl, Dallas, Texas. The following grades the Huskies' positional effort for the bowl game against the University of Southern Mississippi Golden Eagles. UW won the game 44-31.

But first let me get my two cents in.

Coasting to victory, led by of Myles Gaskin (181 yards rushing), true freshman Jake Browning, and a stout run defense, the Huskies thoroughly dominated the statistics, e.g., Possession Time 34:25 to 25:35, Total Yards 580 to 375, and OL Efficiency 338.1 to 186.71. USM's potent running attack was held in check by the Dawgs' front seven, which yielded just 22 yards on the ground.

Click on this link for the statistics Stats USM Game

Quarterback; Grade A  -- True freshman Jake Browning completed 23 of 34 passes for 284 yards, without a touchdown pass or pick. Jake's pass efficiency on the day was a credible 137.81. He threw accurately and guided the Dawgs' offense like a veteran.
Offensive Line
; Grade A: The Huskies' Offensive Line Efficiency rating was 338.1 compared to Golden Eagles' 186.71. Whoever wins this stat usually wins the game. The OL is the most important positional unit on the team, which is why this stat tracks with wins and losses. (See the calculation below).

Pass Receivers: Grade A: 284 yards passing, 12.3 yards per completion, with a mix of 9 different receivers, seemed adequate enough.

Ball Carriers; Grade A: The Dawgs posted 296 yards rushing, averaging 6.7 yards per carry. Myles Gaskin ran 26 times for 181 yards, averaging 7.0 yards per carry. In the third quarter after Southern Miss had tied the score at 24-24, Gaskin's ensuing 86-yard touchdown run from the ine of scrimmage figuratively broke the Eagles' back. Gaskin had four touchdown runs on the night. Listen to Bob Rondeau's description: click here.

Special Teams: Grade A: Tristan Vizcaino kicked off nine times, averaging 58.0 yards per kickoff, with four touchbacks. Korey Durkey punted two times, averaging 56.o yards per punt.  Cameron Van Winkle booted three field goals without a miss (24, 21, and 23 yarders).

Defense; Grade B:
The defense yielded 375 total yards; its defensive passing efficiency rating of 159.62 lowered my grade for this unit.

Coaching; Grade A: From Macbeth, William Shakespeare:

"So well thy words become thee as thy wounds;
They smack of honor both. Go get him surgeons."

Computing a hypothetical per game offensive line efficiency

Our hypothetical measure is a function of a team's passing efficiency rating, its rushing yards per carry, its rushing touchdowns, its third-down conversions; its number of offensive plays; its offensive line's penalty yards and its sacks allowed. That is,

OLE = PEO + YPC * X + RT * Y + TDC * NOP - OLPY - 5 * SA

Where PEO = pass-efficiency offense; YPC = yards per carry; x and y = normalizing numbers; RT = rushing touchdowns; TDC = third-down conversions; NOP = number of offensive plays; OLPY = offensive line penalty yards; SA = Sacks Allowed

In the game against USM, the OLE's were:

UW Offensive line efficiency = 137.81 + 6.7 *20.57 + 5*5.09 + 78 * 7/13 - 0 - 5 * 1 = 338.1

USM  Offensive line efficiency = 159.62 + .7*20.57 + 1*5.09 + 69* 6/15 - 0 - 5 * 4 =  186.71

(*) The normalizing numbers X=20.57 and Y=5.09 were chosen so that YPC plus RT would be equivalent to a Passing Efficiency Rating of 100. X and Y are the averages for the Pac-12 stats involving YPC (X = 90/4.375) and RT (Y = 10/1.96) for the 2013 season. The numbers 90 and 10 were chosen so that YPC would have more weight in the computation than RT; the numbers 4.375 and 1.96 are the Pac-12 averages for YPC and RT. To guard against a meaningless rating resulting from a limited number of carries, the normalizing number x needs to be restricted. For one, if the number of carries is less than z then set x=1, with the value of z yet to be determined. Alternatively, the value of the factor yuck * x could be controlled in a similar way to the limits placed on the NFL's passer rating computation.

More specifically, the equation for OLE is a function of 12 metrics:

  • Pass attempts (PA)

  • Pass completions (PC)

  • Yards passing (TY)

  • Number of passing touchdowns (TD)

  • Number of interceptions (I)

  • Yards per carry (YPC; sack yardage figures into the calculation)

  • Rushing touchdowns (RT)

  • Third-down conversions (TDC)

  • Number of offensive plays (NOP)

  • Offensive line penalty yards. (OLPY)

  • Sacks allowed (SA)

  • The values for x and y (Pac-12 averages for the 2013 season)

The complete equation is as follows:

OLE = (TY*8.4+PC*100+TD*330-I*200)/PA + YPC * X + RT * Y + TDC * NOP - OLPY - 5 * SA

Note that this hypothetical computation correlates with UW's won/lost record (9-4) for the 2013 season, with UW dominating the statistic in its 9 wins and losing the stat in its 4 losses.



Richard Linde can be reached at

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