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 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 second category we will look at is the Straight Up win percentage of each team for the last five years. There is a clear home field edge in College Football and over the last 5 years the 131 FBS teams are 2679-1523 at home for a winning percentage of 63.8% which is just slightly below the three-year average of 64%. One note about the last 5 years. In 2020 many games were played without crowds in the stadiums, so I did not count 2020 in the last 5 years. The last five years only includes games from 2022, 2021, 2019, 2018 and 2017.
Here is the last five years home field records chart.
Once again, the last five years do not include 2020 when there were no crowds at most of the games. As you can see no team earned that perfect 6.0 home field edge in this category as every team had at least one loss. Alabama lost to LSU in 2019 at home and LSU went on to become the national champs. Clemson had not lost at home in Death Valley since 2016 when Pat Narduzzi and Pitt beat them 43-42 as a 21-point dog but lost to South Carolina last year. James Madison was 37-2 at home the previous 5 years but has been facing FCS teams and in their first year in the FBS they were still a solid 5-1. Three teams have lost just one home game the last 5 years in Alabama, Clemson, and Georgia. It might surprise you to see Memphis at #14 with a 30-6 record at home in the Liberty Bowl but they are a consistent winner at home and last year they were also 30-6 in the prior 5 years. The Tigers are 2-8 on the road the last two years. UCF is another surprise near the top at 33-2 over the last 5 years (remember 2020 not included) so they are almost unbeatable in the Bounce House. UAB is 26-3 at home in the last 5 years the same number of losses as both Ohio State and Michigan.
The bottom five teams are Akron, Kansas, Rutgers, New Mexico, and UMass. Last year Kansas was at the bottom with an 8-24 home record which earned a 1.5 home field edge in this column. Kansas figures to escape the bottom 5 soon and did improve to 10-22 the last 5 years. UMass is at the bottom this year with their 8-20 home record the last 5 years earning a 1.71 grade in this category.
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Monday I will have the ATS records for each team over the last three years at home.