On Tuesday, we looked at how college football teams fared following a season in which they covered the spread eight or more times. The results were somewhat surprising, considering only 10 percent of teams (out of 160) were able to match or exceed their ATS record from the previous season.
This time, we decided to look at the bottom of the barrel, the teams that finished with no more than three ATS wins. Would these teams experience an immediate turnaround, in much the same way that the good teams fell off almost entirely?
Here’s what we found:
- 149 teams have had three or fewer ATS wins in a season since 2000.
- 139 of 149 teams (93%) won more games ATS in the following season, while seven matched their win total and only three regressed and won fewer.
- 86 of 149 teams (57%) finished with a .500 or better record ATS the next year
- 63 of 149 teams (42%) finished with a winning record.
Based on the data, teams that cover the spread three or fewer times in a season almost always improve, and more often than not, finish .500 or better the following year. However, if you’re looking for a huge turnaround, keep this in mind: Only 27 of 149 teams (18%) were able to increase their ATS win total by five or more games during the 11-year period.
There are 12 teams that finished with three or fewer ATS victories in 2011. Using the data from previous seasons, we can assume that nearly seven of the teams listed below will finish with an ATS record of .500 or better:
1. Penn State 3-8-1
2. Arkansas State 3-8-1
3. Florida 3-8-1
4. UNLV 3-8-1
5. Texas A&M 3-9
6. Syracuse 3-9
7. Troy 3-9
8. Middle Tennessee 3-9
9. Mississippi 3-9
10. Florida Atlantic 3-9
11. Maryland 2-10
12. Central Michigan 1-11