SouthernCollegeSports.com released its preseason college football predictions back in the summer, with previews coming out in the months of June, July, and August. From bowl projections to schedule ratings to conference predictions, nearly every possible preseason category was projected by SCS.com. But the conference predictions stood out among the rest. One website, http://preseason.stassen.com/prediction-accuracy/2002.html, annually compiles a list of the best college football preseason projections from major publications such as The Sporting News, Athlon magazine, Blue Ribbon magazine, and CollegeFootballNews.com. Though SouthernCollegeSports.com was not included in these rankings, when you compare SCS’s preseason projections to those of these and other major publications, SCS owned the most accurate predictions of all.
The website that compiles these stats uses a formula to evaluate how accurate each site’s predictions of each conference was. Looking back at where each team was projected to finish in their conference last summer, the site calculates how many spots away that was from the team’s actual finishing position. So for example, if Fresno State was projected to finish 2nd in the preseason by TSN and the Bulldogs actually finished 4th in the WAC this year, TSN would receive two points for FSU for being two spots away from their actual finishing position. Obviously, you do not want points, and the publication with the least number of points once the number for each Division I team is calculated (minus the Independent teams) has the best predictions. In the scoring system, each publication is given an advantage in that if a team was projected second in the preseason and finishes tied with two other teams for third place, that team can be said to actually finish 3rd, 4th, or 5th, whichever is most beneficial to the publication (3rd in this scenario).
Below is how SouthernCollegeSports.com fared against some of the big-name competition out there this year. The chart below has the number of points accumulated by each predictor for each conference, and again, points are not good. Only SCS.com and the next 3 best publications are listed. The complete chart, which includes several of those pricey preseason magazines, can be found at http://preseason.stassen.com/prediction-accuracy/2002.html.
Use the links below to see SCS.com’s preseason conference predictions....