|Aaron Barnett, Head Coach at|
SM Northwest, is fielding one
of his more youthful squads at just
the right time. On paper the Coug-
ars have the easiest SOS in the SL.
To factor in games in which a team played an away game, I took the team's base points and multiplied it by 1.5. So if a school played at Olathe North their strength of schedule would have 18 points added to it, and if they played at Leavenworth 1.5 points would be added. This basis for away game was only factored in if it was an actual "away" game. So SM West's away game against SM East, at SM South District Stadium (the home stadium for both teams) did not count as an away game.
Also, SL teams play four out-of-conference schools during the season--Blue Valley North, who I slotted Olathe Northwest's point scale, Blue Valley West, who I slotted Olathe South's point scale, Wyandotte, who I slotted Leavenworth's point scale, and Blue Valley Northwest, who I slotted Free State's point scale. Those figures we're all estimations based on my rough guess of how well those squads will perform in 2011.
Overall the formula seemed to work pretty well. The more points a team has equates to the harder the strength of schedule, based on my preseason rankings and estimates of out-of-conference teams. Here was how the strength of schedules ranked.
Strength of Schedule Totals
1. Lawrence: 81.5
2. Olathe East: 79
3. Olathe South: 74
4. Leavenworth: 70
5. SM West: 69
6. Olathe North: 67.5
7. SM East: 66
t8. Olathe Northwest: 65.5
t8. SM North: 65.5
10. SM South: 65
11. Lawrence Free State: 64
12. SM Northwest: 54
*As a side note, the most away games I've seen a team play in the SL was six. If a team played six away games against the top six teams in the league, then played their three home games against the next three best teams, their strength of schedule would equate to a 100.5, which would essentially be the maximum score any team could achieve.
|Anthony Buffalomeat, above, and his Lawrence|
High teammates will face one of the toughest
SL schedules in 2011.
Of SM Northwest's remaining seven games, only one against Olathe East seems like an uphill challenge at this point. The other six games include Olathe Northwest, Free State, SM South, SM North, Leavenworth, and Wyandotte. The Cougars could easily go 6-3 if their new starters improve like they should as the season goes along.