What is BennettRank (BR)? A question one might ask after perusing the pages of HERO Sports and coming across the rankings home.
BennettRank is a sports team ranking system currently focused on major NCAA Sports. All teams in all NCAA divisions are ranked twice daily based on games reported to the NCAA.
BennettRank even ranks conferences.
All teams are ranked twice daily after the third week of the season. For example, 438 D3 Women’s Soccer teams in 2017.
Here’s how it all works.
- Adjusted Margin of Victory
Every sports has their own adjustment factor. The overall concept is that there is value in margin of victory. Minimum and maximum thresholds are given to give adequate measure to a win, but minimize the potential impact of a blowout. As an example, for soccer the minimum value for a win is 1.4 goals and it is capped at 4 goals.
- Week of the season
After Week 4, the weight of each week’s games are incremented by 5 percent over the previous week. In this manner, more recent games have more weight than earlier games. After 14 weeks, this weeks games will have 50 percent more weight in the formula than week 4 games.
- Home field advantage
Yes, there is one for most sports, and it is measurable. As an example soccer has a .4 goal advantage for the home team and we adjust the Adjusted Margin of Victory depending upon whether the team is home or away.
Two factors are used to compute a preliminary ranking. It is the sum of the average Adjusted Margin of Victory of a team, and the average opponent ranks. It is an iterative process that takes between 10 and 100 iterations. More simply, it is a function of your team’s average margin of victory and the opponent’s average ranks. Based on a team’s raw scores, which are scaled between 1.000 and 0.000, the teams are ranked.
BennettRanks usually take about six games within the division to make intuitive sense. Therefore, we do not calculate any BennettRanks until week four of the season. Updated rankings are performed daily at 10:30 p.m. and 7:30 a.m. Since football has only one game per week, we use an alternative methodology until week seven, when most teams have played six games within the division.
All games played outside of the division are NOT included in the ranking, although they will show up on the HERO Sports website.
BennettRank consistently outperforms the RPI and Coaches Polls in predicting post-season tournament results. See numerous articles on this subject right here.
BennettRank’s methodical analysis and incorporation of strength of schedule concepts into it’s formula are the main factors in such results. We observe, especially for D2 and D3, that Coaches Polls tend to overweight raw wins and underweighs strength of schedule. BennettRank mends that.