On the right-hand pages of the magazine for all 133 teams, I list the home field advantage. I think college football crowds are the best in sports and some teams have larger home field edges than others. In Las Vegas the standard is to give 3 points to the home team. I believe there is a large difference in home field edges in college football. Traveling to face Mississippi St and having to face the cowbell noise is a daunting task. Some stadiums that may not be 100,000 but are very loud like Oregon and Washington are a lot tougher venue than traveling to Akron or Connecticut. Last year my home field edges in the magazine ranged from 2 to 5.5.
This will be a multi-part series showing you some of the numbers that I use to determine the home field edge. I put each category into my computer and then weight the columns. My computer comes up with a home field edge number. I go down the list and adjust them based on my thoughts of each home field and how tough it is to play but I basically stay within a half point of my computers numbers as they are well thought out.
The first category we will look at is the Straight Up win percentage of each team for the last three years. There is a clear home field edge in College Football and over the last 3 years the 133 FBS teams are 1635-919 at home for a winning percentage of 64%. In 2020 many games were played without crowds in the stadiums, so I did not count 2020 in the last 3 years. The last three years only includes games from 2022, 2021 and 2019.
Here is the last three years home field records chart.
Last year when I wrote this blog There were four teams that had not lost at home over the previous three years (remember did not include fan less 2020) and they were Oklahoma, Clemson, UCF and Cincinnati. Interestingly those 4 teams combined to lose 5 home games last year with none being unbeaten! Utah last lost a home game back in 2018 so that year dropped off and Utah went 6-0 last year and they are the only team in the FBS to have a perfect home record over the last 3 years. You will notice that the perfect 100% is good enough to earn a 6.0 home field edge for the three years. There are seven teams that have lost just 1 home game the last 3 years (not counting 2020) and they are Michigan, Alabama, Oregon, Clemson, Georgia, Cincinnati and Oklahoma.
At the bottom of the chart are USF, Northwestern, UMass and Akron. Northwestern is the lowest ranked Power 5 teams and at home the last 3 years they are just 5-15 including a perfect 0-6 at home last year. Akron is 2-15 at home the last 3 years which only get a 0.71 home field edge for this category.
The average team wins 64% of their home games and the median of the 133 teams is 65%. Of the teams in that range are teams like Tulane, North Carolina, Hawaii, Washington and Florida St. Florida St and Washington figure to be in the preseason Top 10 so they will need to get that home record closer to the to stay in the Top 10.
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Once again, my computer will add up all the different categories, weight them and then spit out a computer number which I will modify for home field edge for the magazine. Monday I will look at the last 5 years records for each team at home.