Welcome to the Smarter Balanced Athletic Conferences Fantasy Season!

The SB AC is one of two attempts here at Act II Ministries to give you a fairer system of developing a national championship in division one college football, the only place in America without a true championship! Oh, they’ll say they have one already, but half the teams are disqualified before the season ever starts! No “Group of Five” team will ever be accepted into the current CFP! Many of the teams in the Power Five conferences would find it difficult, even with (say) an 11-1 season – if you weren’t ranked in the pre-season, before any games had been played, you won’t move far enough up the polls by season’s end to catch the committee’s semi-arbitrary eye. 

On TOP of that, if a top team happens to stumble against another top team (let’s take the OSU-TCU game as an example), even winning your conference may not be enough to overcome another conference champ who went undefeated because they played (ahem) the Little Sisters Of The Poor or someone like that for their pre-conference schedule. What if TCU wins the Big XII now? 

So, the SBAC has made a completely even playing field. 

Who you choose to play in the weeks before the conference season starts Sept. 22 is completely immaterial. All that matters is the ten-team conference that you’re in, based solely on geography and competitive balance. Want to make the playoffs? Win your conference! Want to win your conference? You play everyone, so you control that! (We’ll have two wildcards to fill out the bracket, too. Last year’s would have been Alabama and Georgia, so that was fortunate…)

To prepare you for the first games on Saturday, which will be settled by comparing the ELO-Following Football ratings and adjusting them by the teams’ on-field performance that weekend, here are the fourteen conferences and the ten teams in each of them, listed alphabetically (except for the FCS “interloper” we added to some to fill out 140 teams! They will always be listed last.) 

Do your drafting or assigning of teams NOW, before we present the first week of matchups and starting scores! If you’re running a fantasy league of some kind, we recommend you adapt some or all of the following:

* If you have two, five, or ten people in your league, every body gets the same number of teams in EACH conference (5, 2, or 1, respectively). Whether you draw names or do some kind of rotating draft (in a five-player league, for ex, player A chooses first and tenth, B chooses second and ninth, and so forth, and that rotates through as you move through each conference). 

*If you have three, four, six, or eight people in your league, every body gets the same number of teams over the course of MULTIPLE conferences: 

>> Three or six players – draw names or rotation draft over THREE conferences. (Assign two teams to NOBODY, however you see fit to select those two. Or they can be bonus rewards for two players if you have some other means of determining rewards.)

>> Four players – draw names or rotation draft over TWO conferences. You won’t have leftovers. 

>> Eight players – draw names or rotation draft over FOUR conferences. You will have FOUR teams to assign to NOBODY, as with the 3/6 set-up, or to use as bonuses.

*If you have five or seven players, open up the drawing or draft to ALL 14 conferences at once. You won’t have any leftovers. 

SCORING: Your team’s record is YOUR record. A win for your team is a point for you. (Ties are half-points.) Post-season wins count just the same as regular season wins. 

HERE’S HOW EACH INDIVIDUAL MATCH-UP IS PLAYED. Every team plays every week in each conference during the regular season. 

For each game match-up::
1. Take each team’s rating at the start of the round.
2. Now, the teams TRADE NUMBERS and use the other team’s rating as their STARTING SCORE.
2. Add three points to the home team’s starting score (if there is a home team). 
4. If a team played this weekend, consider the difference between the actual margin (before any OT)
     and the predicted margin from the ELO-FF rating for each team. Adjust each team’s
     game competition score by that difference. 
5. No overtimes: ties are left as ties. (At season’s end, point differential will determine placement if necessary.)
    
EXAMPLE: Team A (home) has a rating of 19 and Team B (visitor) has a rating of 18
Add three to team B, trade numbers (Team A “leads” 21-19 at the starting score..) 
Now, assume Team A had a bye this weekend, but Team B did well and won their game
by six points more than projected. Therefore, we add six to Team B’s score to reach the FINAL SCORE.
     So the final score is Team B 19+6=25, Team A, 21. Team B wins by four points. 

In theory, a good team will beat a weaker team, and a team with a good game in a particular round in reality should be able to translate that good game into defeating their SBAC opponent. We’ll post the starting scores (essentially the ELO-FF ratings, reversed, plus a three-point homefield advantage) in advance of each Saturday, so you can track the progress of your teams; we’ll also post the point spread forecasts for each “reality” game in advance, so you can track that. ALL of that will be on the Following Football page, not in the blog.

Finally, here are the fourteen conferences. You can number the teams from top to bottom, 1-10, to match up with our match-ups each week. (For example, the week 1 match-ups are team #10 at #1, #6 at #2, #3 at #5, #8 at #7, and #4 at #9. We’ll share starting scores later in the week.)

NEW ENGLAND (Conference 1)
Army-WP
Boston College
Buffalo
Connecticut
Massachusetts
Penn State
Pitt
Rutgers
Syracuse
Temple
OHIO (Conference 2)
Bowling Green
Kent State
Indiana
Marshall
Miami-OH
Notre Dame
Ohio U
Ohio State
Purdue
West Virginia
GREAT LAKES (Conference 3)
Akron
Central Michigan
Eastern Michigan
Michigan
Michigan State
Minnesota
Toledo
Western Michigan
Wisconsin
*North Dakota State
MIDWESTERN (Conference 4)
Ball State
Cincinnati
Illinois
Iowa
Iowa State
Nebraska
Missouri
Northern Illinois
Northwestern
*South Dakota St
MID-ATLANTIC (Conference 5)
Appalachian State
East Carolina
Kentucky
Louisville
Maryland
Navy
Virginia
Virginia Tech
Western Kentucky
*James Madison
TOBACCO ROAD (Conference 6)
Duke
Memphis
Middle Tenn St
North Carolina
No Carolina St
Old Dominion
Tennessee
Vanderbilt
Wake Forest
*North Carolina A&T
PLANTATION (Conference 7)
Charlotte
Coastal Carolina
Clemson
Georgia
Georgia State
Georgia Tech
Liberty
South Carolina
Troy
*Kennesaw State
PANHANDLE (Conference 8)
Central Florida (UCF)
Florida
Florida Atlantic (FAU)
Florida International (FIU)
Florida State
Georgia Southern
Miami-FL
South Alabama
South Florida
*Jacksonville State
DEEP SOUTH (Conference 9)
Alabama
Auburn
Louisiana Tech
Mississippi State
Ole Miss
Southern Miss
Tulane
UA-Birmingham
UL-Lafayette
UL-Monroe
GULF COAST (Conference 10)
Arkansas
Arkansas State
Houston
LSU
Rice
Texas
Texas A&M
Texas State
UT-San Antonio
*Sam Houston State
LONE STAR (Conference 11)
Baylor
North Texas
Oklahoma
Oklahoma State
SMU
TCU
Texas Tech
Tulsa
UTEP
*Illinois State
ROCKY MOUNTAIN (Conference 12)
Air Force
Arizona
Arizona State
BYU
Colorado
Colorado State
Kansas
Kansas State
New Mexico
New Mexico State
BEAR REPUBLIC (Conference 13)
California
Fresno State
Nevada
San Diego State
San Jose State
Stanford
UCLA
UNLV
USC
*Weber State
NORTHWEST (Conference 14)
Boise State
Hawaii
Oregon
Oregon State
Utah
Utah State
Washington
Washington State
Wyoming
*Eastern Washington

 

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