LOUISVILLE, Ky (WDRB) — I invested $40 for a season of access to Pro Football Focus Friday.
What’s the big deal?
I have also subscribed to Ken Pomeroy, Hoop Math, Synergy and the National Statistical Concern for college basketball analytics and information.
The big deal is that I don’t play fantasy football and much of the information on PFF appears to appeal to fantasy players.
I made my investment because I noticed a string of interesting tidbits and stats about college football tweeted from the Pro Football Focus account.
On Day One of my subscription, I found something to share:
A lack of respect for Louisville, Kentucky and Indiana.
Anthony Treash crafted a story about the biggest Trap games for PFF’s Top 10 teams in 2020, just one game for each team in their Top 10.
Guess which opponents filled the role of Trap Game opponent for four of Pro Football Focus’s Top Six teams.
Louisville — for its Week 2 meeting with No. 1 Clemson.
Indiana — for its Week 10 trip to No. 2 Ohio State.
Kentucky — for its Week 12 trip to No. 5 Georgia as well as for its Week 2 trip to No. 6 Florida.
Early bulletin board material for Scott Satterfield, Tom Allen and Mark Stoops.
PFF defines a trap game as one that “essentially boils down to a high-ranked team playing in a game that everyone expects them to win against a far lesser opponent (not necessarily a losing team).”
It’s been awhile since I’ve considered Kentucky “far lesser” than Florida. Louisville sagged against Clemson the last two seasons but we have all watched U of L make the Tigers sweat.
Their definition is not my definition. I consider a trap game as a game parked on the schedule in a spot where the favored team would have reasons to look back or ahead. The circumstances are determined by who the favored team played a week earlier or is supposed to play the following week.
Clemson playing Syracuse the game before the Tigers visit Notre Dame would be a trap game.
The Tigers hosting Louisville Sept. 12 after opening their season at Georgia Tech is a stretch as a trap game. With all the drama and discussion about the viability of simply having a season this fall, who thinks Clemson will be uninspired for its home opener?
Ohio State getting Nebraska at home after back-to-back road games with Michigan State and Penn State is a trap game.
Florida playing at Ole Miss in between home games with Louisiana State and Georgia absolutely smells like a classic trap game.
But those games did not make the list.
Louisville qualified as a trap game for Clemson because the Tigers only play one team ranked in PFF’s pre-season Top 25 — Notre Dame. In fact, it is the top Trap Game on the list.
Treash said, “If any team has a chance to knock off Clemson other than the Fighting Irish, it’s the Louisville Cardinals in Week 2.”
But the game will be Clemson’s home opener and the Cardinals have yet to defeat the Tigers since joining the Atlantic Coast Conference.
At No. 2 overall, Indiana qualified as a trap game for the Buckeyes because PFF has designated the Hoosiers as a sleeper team this season, giving high marks to quarterback Michael Penix Jr. and receiver Whop Philyor.
But the game is in Columbus and the Hoosiers have not defeated the Buckeyes in any location in more than 30 years. Until there is evidence IU can actually beat Ohio State, I can’t endorse that one.
As for Kentucky, the Wildcats Nov. 21 game with Georgia at Kroger Field might qualify. Kentucky will be the Bulldogs’ seventh consecutive SEC opponent and Georgia visits Lexington a week after playing Tennessee.
The Georgia-UK game is fifth on the list, followed by UK-Florida.
But Kentucky won its last trip to Gainesville. The Wildcats led the Gators 21-10 after three quarters last season.
Kentucky is tucked between Eastern Washington and South Alabama on the Gators’ schedule.
The only trap for Florida is that Mark Stoops has built a formidable roster over his first seven seasons at UK. Yes, he has only defeated the Gators once but there was the triple overtime loss in 2014, the five-point loss in 2015 and the one-point loss in 2017.
We’ve passed the point where Kentucky is a guaranteed victory for Florida.
But Kentucky is the only team listed as a Trap Game opponent not once, but twice. Louisville sits at the top, followed by Indiana.
Just in case the Cardinals, Wildcats and Hoosiers need bulletin board material.
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