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Thread: OHSAA Playoff Harbin Ratings System

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    Thumbs up OHSAA Playoff Harbin Ratings System

    5. Football Team Computer Rating System
    The procedure used to rate football teams is based upon a system developed by Jack Harbin of
    Cleveland and used with his permission. The Board of Directors has modified the original system.

    Each team will earn points as explained below.
    On the first level:
    Points are earned for each game a team wins.
    Points are earned for each game a team ties.
    On the second level:
    Points are earned for each game a defeated opponent wins.
    Points are earned for each game a defeated opponent ties.
    Points are earned for each game a tied opponent wins.
    Points are earned for each game a tied opponent ties.
    Points are earned on the following basis:
    Division VI opponent win – 3.5 points; tie – 1.75 points
    Division V opponent win – 4.0 points; tie – 2.0 points
    Division IV opponent win – 4.5 points; tie – 2.25 points
    Division III opponent win – 5.0 points; tie – 2.5 points
    Division II opponent win – 5.5 points; tie – 2.75 points
    Division I opponent win – 6.0 points; tie – 3.0 points

    5.1 First Level Points are awarded for
    a. Each game a team wins (full value)
    b. Each game a team ties (half value)
    c. No points are awarded for game lost

    5.2 Second Level Points are awarded as a result of a team defeating or tying an opponent
    according to the following formula:
    a. Defeating an opponent awards to the winner the loser’s first level points.
    b. Tying an opponent awards the team one half the opponent’s first level points.
    c. No second level points are awarded for losing to an opponent.
    d. A divisor is used to determine second level points. It is based on the number of games
    that opponents have played to date. For each open date that an opponent has had to
    date, a smaller divisor is used to calculate second level points.
    Note: Before any games are played, the computer assumes that the opponents on each school’s
    schedule will play a full complement of games and assigns the divisor of 100 (10 weeks times 10
    opponents=100). After each week of the season, for each open date that occurs for an opponent that a
    school has played to date, the computer subtracts the divisor by one. In other words, if week five has just
    been completed and all five of a school’s opponents have played a full complement of games, then the
    divisor remains at 100, and second level points are divided by 100. If one opponent on a school’s
    schedule to date has an open date, then the divisor reduces by one to 99, and second level points are
    divided by 99, and so on. The second level points are then multiplied by the factor 10 in order to move
    the decimal point higher so that the averages are comparable to those in past years.

    5.3 Non-member OHSAA school opponents are assigned a point value based upon male
    enrollment in grades 9-11. Second level points are awarded based upon the point value of
    the OHSAA non-member school multiplied times the number of victories by the non-member
    school (one-half value for a tie).
    Note: It is the responsibility of the OHSAA member school to report the weekly results of the
    games of non-member OHSAA by entering the information into myOHSAA by 10 A.M. on the
    Monday following the game.

    5.31 When the non-member school plays more than 10 regular season games, only the first 10
    games will count unless the game with the OHSAA member school is the 11th game in
    which case the nine games preceding it shall be counted.

    5.32 When the non-member school plays less than 10 regular season games, the open dates will
    be considered an open date except in those states which conduct a state tournament in
    which case the first round tournament game in those states will be counted, when the first
    round game is played before the final OHSAA football computer ranking is completed.

    5.4 Calculation of Points for Ranking Purposes
    Each week, a team’s first level points will be added to the team’s second level points. The
    total points obtained will be divided by the number of games played to obtain a per game
    average. Teams will then be ranked within each region based upon their per game average.
    The margin of victory is not a factor. A win by one point or 20 points counts only as a win. In
    order to be eligible for tournament participation, a team must play a minimum of eight games.
    If a team plays less than eight games during the season, the divisor for the end of season
    rankings will be eight.
    Regard your soldiers as your children, and they will follow you into the deepest valleys.
    Look on them as your own beloved sons, and they will stand by you even unto death!”
    – Sun Tzu, quotes from the Art of War

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    Note: Jack Harbin was a typewriter repairman from Wickliffe (who Martins Ferry just played on 9/6/13), a Cleveland suburb in Lake County. Harbin developed the system and pitched it to the OHSAA for a number of years using simulated models to show how the system might have worked with that years actual results, had it been in place. They finally decided to give it a try in 1972, and in its original format, there were 3 classes AAA, AA, and A, with 4 regions in each class. Only the region winner made it to the playoffs, which meant that there were only 12 teams that made the playoffs each year for many years, as opposed to the 224 under the current format. that also meant that there were only 2 playoff games per class, a semifinal and a final. I have read that the playoff system which Harbin "dreamed up" completely on his own, is the basis for many other playoff systems across the country.

  3. #3
    Valued Contributor RES874's Avatar
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    A failure in the system in 1972 kept River out of the playoffs.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RES874 View Post
    A failure in the system in 1972 kept River out of the playoffs.
    yes, I have written about this before. the calculation error was found by the River athletic department but it was determined after the schedule had been set so the OHSAA ruled that River could not participate. River was awarded the region trophy but was not allowed to participate in the playoffs (there was only one team from each of the 4 regions in each of AAA, AA, and A that made the playoffs...a total of only 12 teams statewide) similarly, in 1975 Bellaire (Lance Mehl's senior year) was kept out of the playoffs after going 9-0-1, because of an error their athletic department found in the calculation of points for out of state wins. unfortunately, the OHSAA agreed it was an error, and changed the rule for the following year, but were handcuffed from correcting it for 1975 because they had to abide by the way the rule was written and approved. in both of the cases above, I remember a lot of legal wrangling that ended being moral victories, but neither team made the playoffs


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