Yesterday, we took a look at Phil Steele’s stock market indicator, which is intended to help predict if a team is going to improve or be worse than the prior year. Steele doesn’t get into what goes into his formula, although he does state that for one year this is how he came up for Ohio State:
For example, in 2012 Ohio St had a Stock Market Indicator (SMI) of +5.5, which would be a Bull Market. The +5.5 was calculated by taking their average win total from 2009-2010, which was 11.5 (11-2 in ’09, 12-1 in ’10) and then subtracting their wins from ‘11 (just 6) which produced the +5.5. The +5.5 means that after two great seasons in ’09-‘10, the Buckeyes clearly underperformed in ‘11 and were poised for a big bounce back lthe next year (Bull Market). My Stock Market Indicator proved to be spot on as the Buckeyes were the Most Improved Team in the country going 12-0 in ’12!
Steele’s thought here is that a team that has a positive SMI generally underachieved the prior year and the team with a negative SMI generally underachieved the prior year. And this doesn’t mean that he’s predicting that the team will be terrible, but that they’ll improve on their prior year’s record. The higher the SMI, the greater the chance for a very good record. There are 8 teams that Steele is predicting will have a terrific 2017, those being Marshall, Michigan State, Oregon, TCU, Arizona, UCLA, Notre Dame, Utah State and Bowling Green. All of those teams have a +5 or greater.
As you can see here, there are four teams that Steele is predicting will be improved from 2016 to 2017.
According to Steele’s data, a team with a +0.5 has a 69% chance of having the same or better record and a 60% chance of having a stronger record. Those aren’t necessarily great odds, but in an offseason of discouraging news, this is maybe one of the things that you can point to think that Texas Tech will be better. I do think that there are teams in Steel’s Bull Market that are most likely not going to do well, namely being Michigan State, who has been gutted with significant depth issues this offseason, and I do wonder if TCU really does have a quarterback in Kenny Hill and I can’t say I know much more about teams like Marshall or Oregon other than they obviously have had good years followed by a disappointing year. The thought is that there is a good team underneath that bad record.