The Vols have made the top 25 of the FEI Ratings. So what are the FEI Ratings, you ask?
According to their website, the Fremeau Efficiency Index is “a college football rating system based on opponent-adjusted drive efficiency.” So what does that mean exactly? “Preseason projected ratings are a function of five-year program ratings, recent recruiting success, and returning offensive and defensive experience,” says the website.
So the FEI Ratings are based on a program’s performance over a five-year period, their recruiting prowess, and returning offensive and defensive experience. And with that in mind, the Vols have made the top 25 of said ratings, coming in right at No. 25 on the list.
The rating system charts out each team’s probability of losing a number of games in the season. And according to the FEI Ratings, the Vols have the highest likelihood of losing between 4-6 games in 2017.
Here’s a breakdown of the percentages for the Vols’ probability of losing anywhere between zero and all 12 games in 2017:
One loss: .004%
Two losses: .028%
Three losses: .106%
Four losses: .224%
Five losses: .292%
Six losses: .216%
Seven losses: .095%
Eight losses: .031%
Nine losses: .004%
Ten-twelve losses: 0.0%
In last year’s ratings, the Vols were ranked 20th, and that’s fairly close to where Tennessee ended up ranked in the final polls of 2016. The Vols finished 22nd in the final AP Poll of the year.
According to the actual FEI score, the Vols are tied with Miami for No. 24 on the list with a score of .98 in the system. But the Hurricanes have a higher percentage of losing fewer games, so they land just ahead of the Vols.
Alabama is No. 1 in the FEI Ratings, and several other SEC teams fall in line behind them.
Georgia comes in at No. 7, LSU at No. 9, Auburn at No. 13, Florida at No. 14, and Texas A&M at No. 21. Ole Miss (28th) and South Carolina (30th) make it just inside the top 30. Kentucky is the lowest-rated SEC team, coming in at No. 59 on the list.
The Vols have made a number of preseason top 25 rankings, but only time will tell if they make the AP Poll’s top 25 to start the season.