1,024 Coastal Division Scenarios Remain

That's right, there are now only ten ACC games left involving Coastal Division teams. With UVA beating GT, Miami beating Louisville, and Virginia Tech beating Wake Forest, 3 teams have been eliminated from Coastal contention: Duke, GT, and UNC. For the four teams left in contention, this is how things stack up at the moment, once again using last week's SP+ numbers for the relative odds until those get updated tomorrow now using the post-Week 11 SP+ numbers:

Team Odds # Outcomes
Virginia 65.8% 584
Virginia Tech 26.5% 336
Pittsburgh 6.01% 64
Miami 1.31% 32
Tie* 0.31% 8

* - A tie that is reaches step #7 on the list of tiebreakers, all 8 of which are 3-way ties between Pitt, UVA, and Virginia Tech

At this point, only Virginia Tech and UVA control their own destiny within the Coastal Division. Furthermore, a loss to Georgia Tech next week would not eliminate said control, but it would remove any chance of winning the Coastal with a loss to Pitt. Also, in the case of wins over GT and UVA and a loss to Pitt, we would still have a decent shot of winning the division, depending on how the other games shake out (57% VT, 37% Pitt, 3% UVA, 3% Tie).

Chart time:

While UVA's chunk on each graph is still overwhelmingly large and slightly bigger than last week, our piece of both pies grew by a larger amount. EDIT: I've adjusted the charts to reflect the updated SP+ rankings from today, and they confirm what we already expected, that we were the big winners this weekend. Despite still holding a majority of both charts, UVA's odds fell from 72% to 66%, even while beating GT, and ours skyrocketed from 12% to 27%. We still have to win at least 2 of our last 3, with one of the 2 coming against UVA, to have a shot, but at least at this point it seems most likely to come down to the head-to-head matchup in Charlottesville in Black Friday, and I have 15 years of evidence that the numbers may be judging the situation slightly incorrectly in this case.

DISCLAIMER: Forum topics may not have been written or edited by The Key Play staff.


OK so we should just win them all. got it. Thanks for the maths.

Warning: this post occasionally contains strong language (which may be unsuitable for children), unusual humor (which may be unsuitable for adults), and advanced mathematics (which may be unsuitable for liberal-arts majors)..

So what has to happen if we beat GT and UVA but lose to Pitt?

MUST WIN against the hoos!!!!! TieBreak will decide at that point I believe

If we beat GT and UVA but lose to Pitt, there are 128 scenarios left. We win 80 of them, Pitt wins 32, UVA wins 8, and the last 8 result in an a 3-way tie between those 3 teams that'll be resolved by some sort of secretive analytical ranking system (step 7 of the tiebreakers).

UVA wins if:
- Duke wins out, AND
- Pitt goes 1-1 against UNC and BC

Pitt wins if:
- Pitt wins out

Result is a TIE to step 7 if:
- Duke beats Miami but goes 1-1 against Syracuse and Wake Forest, AND
- Pitt beats UNC but loses to BC

Therefore, VT wins in any other scenario.


This team has shown that they can win out. No question they can now.

"I play real sports, not trying to be the best at exercising..." - KP

Pretty sure I read your probabilities as:


uva - the taint of the ACC

This reminds me of the screenshot I took from the HokieSpa progress pie chart just after graduating:

Beat those fucking boohoos, that's all I care about right now

VT '10--My avatar will flip, when things are right at VT again.

Rick Monday... You Made a Great Play...

Romanes Eunt Domus

I hear you, but...

I don't love the idea of going into Scott Stadium with a 15-year win streak on the line, playing for bowl eligibility to keep our bowl streak alive, all while LOLuva and Perkins have nothing to lose. I think that a win at Lane North doesn't come in a vacuum - there will have to be some VT momentum from these next two match-ups to render that result.

Leg for use of pie charts. I love pie.

Well I guess there's only one thing left to do...

"You know when the Hokies say 'We are Virginia Tech' they're going to mean it."- Lee Corso

It just occurred to me that whoever wins the Coastal will more than likely go to the Orange Bowl to play the highest ranked SEC team not in the playoff.....
The Coastal Champ is gonna get sacrificed to Clemson and Bama

A) there's a not-unreasonable chance for Wake to recover and become the second-highest ranked ACC team if we drop a game along the way, meaning they might go to the Orange Bowl instead

B) it's not the highest ranked SEC team not in the CFP, it's the higher of the second-highest SEC team and the second-highest B1G team not in the CFP. Bama is practically a lock for either the CFP or the Sugar Bowl.

Bring on ped state then!!!!!!πŸ€›πŸ½

uva - the taint of the ACC

Since we play them next year I'd rather see someone else in the bowl game

Rumor was they were going to pull out of that series, however I think it's probably too late now without some major financial implications

uva - the taint of the ACC

That seems to be the popular rumor about every major non-conference series scheduled, and yet most of them go off without a hitch.

IF we do win out and make it back to the Orange, I honestly would love it if we got Wisconsin. They can't dodge us forever!

I think this has been discussed before, but are we sure there's no way Notre Dame can get the Orange Bowl spot? I'm pretty sure their tie-ins with the ACC bowls do not include the NY6. Plus they already have a contractual tie-in to the Orange Bowl but it's as a possible opponent of the ACC champ or next highest ranked ACC team.

If Clemson goes to the CFP them the Orange takes the next highest ranked ACC team vs the highest ranked SEC, Big Ten, or Notre Dame team AFTER the Sugar Bowl selects a SEC team and the Rose selects their Big Ten team.

My only question that I can't find an answer to is what happens if there isn't a second ranked ACC team?

I'm fairly certain that, in cases where there isn't a ranked team to fill a guaranteed slot, the committee announces which team would have been highest ranked if the rankings went far enough. At least that's what I remember reading a few years back when there was concern about possibly not having any ranked G5 champions for the G5 slot, so I assume the same would apply for the ACC.

Nope. Up to the Orange Bowl committee at that point.

Jesus they are going to take FSU with 6 wins.

Wet stuff on the red stuff.

Join us in the Key Players Club

so I guess this weekend we're all hornets fans (not to be confused with yellow jackets, mind you) and the following we're all gator fans. Then we kick back and enjoy seminole tears

Warning: this post occasionally contains strong language (which may be unsuitable for children), unusual humor (which may be unsuitable for adults), and advanced mathematics (which may be unsuitable for liberal-arts majors)..


Can't embed but interesting tweet I saw. Apparently if no other ACC team is ranked and Clemson is in the playoff, the Orange Bowl will select the ACC representative for the game. If we can win out, that should bode very well for us. Orange Bowl knows Hokie fans will travel well and people will watch vs a small school like Wake who won't put many eyeballs on tvs or butts in seats.

I got you, fam. However, in my O&M glasses optimism, I see us winning out and there's no way we aren't ranked by then. I can't see our being dropped from the rankings with a loss to Clemson, no matter how bad, unless we limped our way into the ACCCG with lackluster wins over GT, Pitt, and LOLUVa.

Warning: this post occasionally contains strong language (which may be unsuitable for children), unusual humor (which may be unsuitable for adults), and advanced mathematics (which may be unsuitable for liberal-arts majors)..

Thanks, fam. Agree, I don't think it matters because we will be ranked if we take care of business. However, good to know that things are likely in our favor even if we somehow aren't.

FSU with 6 wins.

Wet stuff on the red stuff.

Join us in the Key Players Club

'Cuse so Obie and Otto can hang out and do Orange things.

It's been discussed, and we're sure. Notre Dame cannot take the ACC spot in the Orange Bowl.

In fact, there's a clause that could bump them out of the other side of the OB if it creates a rematch of a regular season game. Technically, that applies to any team on the list, but ND has the highest probability of being affected, as they play 5 ACC teams a year.

Now, there is an interesting twist involving this rematch rule.

If Clemson goes to the CFP and no other ACC team is ranked, then the Orange Bowl has their pick for the ACC side of the game. Based on who gets the non-ACC side of the game, the rematch rule could affect the ACC pick - most notably VT or uvanus if ND is the opponent.

My guess is that Bama goes to Sugar and Penn St goes to Rose so it will likely be Georgia to the Orange.

Bama goes to the playoffs, Georgia to the Sugar, Minnesota or Florida to the Orange.

^^^This. I feel like anyone who thinks Bama will be left out is delusional enough to think this thing is fair. It is not and Bama will be in.

TechMo Bowl....we must win.


Let's just win out, boys and girls.


As long as I can watch the Hokies in a day trip (El Paso) is OK with me

I don't want to have to worry about who's winning other games....

Just fucking win out.

Warning- Filter lost.

"Look at this... This is just spectacular.... These people are losing their minds"

Can't read the labels on your chart because I'm old. I assume we are all the orange and all the maroon.

I just want to point out with the holiday season on the way, that is not how you slice a pie.

depends what time it is (3am)
and if I cut it with a serving spoon
and if I'm eating it out of my hand
while standing at an open fridge
and drinking milk out of the carton
wearing briefs, just briefs

You're the only ones that I can talk to about this, you guys.

I feel personally attacked.

If our boys can play like they did last night...

Just gotta fucking win out!

How do the tiebreakers hold out if Duke, VT, and UVA end up with 3 losses? We end up winning because Duke has the worst in-division record, and we beat UVA? I assume that's the same situation with Miami as well?

If next week UNC beats Pitt and we beat GT, does that lock in UVA/VT as the determining game?

Duke/VT/UVA at 5-3 - all 1-1 against each other. VT and UVA are 4-2 in division, while Duke is 3-3 and would drop out. VT wins on head to head over UVA.

VT/UVA/Miami at 5-3 goes to VT because we'd be 2-0 over the other two teams.

I think we need to beat Pitt to guarantee the Commonwealth Cup being winner-take-all. There's too many variables with 5-3 teams.

There are some scenarios where UVA can lose to VT but still win the Coastal. For that to happen, VT would lose to GT and Pitt and drop down to 4 losses. In any combination of UVA with Pitt, UNC, and/or Duke at 5-3, UVA would take head to head tiebreakers. The only scenarios I see where UVA doesn't take the division is where Miami would take it in a two way tie or a three way of UVA/Miami/Pitt. (Pitt would also have to lose to UNC and/or BC to allow any of this to happen.)

I already figured this one out (here), and we would also need Syracuse to beat Duke to lock it in as the de-facto Coastal Championship Game a week ahead of time.

If those outcomes happen, we'll have division standings looking like this after next week:

UVA 5-2
VT 4-2
Pitt 3-3
UNC 4-3
Miami 4-3
Duke 2-4
GT 1-6

We can forget about Duke and GT because they're too far down to affect anything.

We already know that VT beating Pitt will lock in the winner-take-all game.
If VT loses to Pitt, then we'll have these standings:

UVA 5-2
VT 4-3
Pitt 4-3
UNC 4-3
Miami 4-3

Then, if VT beats UVA, then we have these standings:

UVA 5-3
VT 5-3
Pitt 5-3 or 4-4
UNC 5-3 or 4-4
Miami 5-3 or 4-4

Depending on what Pitt, UNC, and Miami do in their final game determines how many teams are involved in the 5-3 tie.

Any combo that doesn't involve Pitt, VT wins on head-to-head.
VT/UVA/Pitt/UNC/Miami - VT is 3-1 in the group, and takes it on that record.
VT/UVA/Pitt/UNC - VT and UVA are 2-1, VT has head-to-head.
VT/UVA/Pitt/Miami - VT and Miami are 2-1, VT has head-to-head.
VT/UVA/Pitt - group is 1-1 against each other. UVA and VT have 4-2 division record, Pitt is 3-3. VT has head-to-head.

In short, it doesn't matter what Pitt, UNC, and Miami do in the final week, because VT would win any of those tiebreakers.

If Duke beats Syracuse, then we would need one of two outcomes on 11/23 to create the winner-take-all game: VT over Pitt or Wake over Duke.

Wrong. There's only one scenario. We beat GT, then we beat Pitt, then we destroy uvanus. We win the Coastal. Simple.

There is nothing in the world like Thursday night in Blacksburg!

Uvanus. Sounds about right.

uvanus helps answer Bronco's perpetual question:

UNAnus. Wow. Add this to the TKP glossary

All together now


It's a mash-up!

There is nothing in the world like Thursday night in Blacksburg!

Since the newest SP+ numbers were just released, I've updated the table and relevant data.

I assume UVAs % is so much better because the prediction databases give them like a 78% to beat us. But we all Know that's not a good number.

What does the data do if we adjust the UVA/VT % to a generous 50%? I bet our number improves dramatically right?

SP has it at a 73.5% in favor of UVA. I'm not 100% where macraw pulls his numbers because the odds should be at least that high for UVA, basically if they win against us they're in plus a few other scenarios (I'm getting that they should be at 77.5%). The only outcomes UVA wins the division with a loss to us are if we go 0-2 with GT and Pitt (16%), Miami loses to Duke (39%), and Pitt drops at least one of UNC and BC (65%), for a total of 4%. If you make the UVA/VT game a match up a 50-50, UVA drops down to 54%, we capture the bulk of that 23.5%, and some of it is sprinkled on to Pitt and Miami.

Where do you get your 73.5% from? I'm using a formula I found to convert from spread to odds, and generating a spread from SP+, and that process says UVA has a 63.8% chance to beat us. If you have the formula that Connelly uses (or a set of win %s that he generates) I'll gladly replace my formula with his instead.

UVA SP+ Rating: 8.1, VT SP+ Rating 2.1, Neutral Spread of -6. Home field advantage pushes it to -8.5 which translates to 74.6% according to this site. ESPN has it at 73.5%. This formula has it at 69.1%. Going off the last model and taking away HFA gives me 63.8% which might be what you're doing?

Ah, there's the disparity. Where are you getting your SP+ numbers from? Unless I'm reading this incorrectly, our rating is 3.3 and UVA's is 6.8:

If I adjust to your numbers I get a 72.8% chance for UVA to win. It's possible my standard deviation is still slightly off (I used to reverse-engineer the value that Connelly used for his team previews each offseason, and maybe it should change throughout the year instead as the sample size increases) but that at least explains most of the discrepancy between your numbers and mine.

Edit: I figured it out, your ratings are 3 weeks old:


Also, the reason ESPN gives UVA such a larger chance to win is they use FPI instead of SP+ for their picks. I'm not sure there's a direct translation for raw score, but UVA is #37 in FPI and #42 in SP+, and we're #58 in FPI and #52 in SP+, so SP+ is probably expecting that game to be much closer than FPI does.

The McHokie formula has it as 0% uva and 99.9% VT. .1% nobody wins due to total apocalypse

uva - the taint of the ACC

These are numbers I can get behind

Pure science!!! Can't argue....

"Don't go to, go through"

oof good catch, time to change where I'm scraping data from I suppose!

There's no exact science for which formula to use, but the middle number from ESPN (73.5%) is based off of their FPI, so I'd avoid that one if you're sticking strictly to SP+.

Wrong! See McHokie above.

"Don't go to, go through"

Schlabach has us playing in the Orange Bowl against Georgia on this week's predictions...

"I have a PLAN. You just need to have a little goddamn faith, Whit. I just need. more. MONEY." - Justin van der Linde

Holy overreaction Batman

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

It does seem crazy, but if we can win out there's a very, very high chance of that happening, regardless of whether we can knock off Clemson. If Clemson is in the playoff, someone from the ACC has to take the Orange Bowl slot, and it will be the next highest ranked team.

It's definitely possible, but seems a bit unlikely as a prediction and reactive to one or two games. Maybe he's just trying to be different πŸ€·β€β™‚οΈ

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

I find the two guys who do ESPN's weekly bowl predictions/projections to either be ill-informed or not very good at analyzing information.

At least Schlabach seems smarter than the other joker he works with.

Idk if I'd say it's a reaction to one or two games (as in, he saw the highlights of us beating Wake and was like "Well, Hokies are gonna win out), more like the past 2 games have put us back into peoples minds and given them a chance to look at the whole stretch of 5 games since Duke where we made the QB swap and have been improving ever since.

I don't think it's crazy to look at how individual units have improved from game to game, or how the play calling has really started to open up and workfrom game to game, or how our overall gameplan and execution of said plans has improved (with our time of possession battle against Wake being a real high point in terms of game planning and execution with that 9 minute opening drive, regardless of the outcome), and think that we'll probably continue to improve those points over the course of the next 3 games to close out the season.

Those are fair points. It really depends on how optimistic you want to be/are. I'm naturally risk averse which means I'm cautiously optimistic about the team's progress AD. I agree there has been clear and reasonably steady improvement the last 5 games. But I just don't see a team that can be trusted to win the next 3 games. That's just my useless opinion, and it clearly differs from yours and Schlabach's.

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

I mean, to be fair, as much as I'd LOVE for us to win the next three, I also don't necessarily trust us to win out hahaha...I'm mainly saying that based on our current trajectory, I understand why the talking heads might choose us.

The Hokie fan in me that has loved and watched this team for the past 21 years since he was 8, on the other hand, understands that no matter how well we're doing, we'll always have a few "wtf" games that go entirely against the grain...

Like...I could easily see us losing to GT (again) next week while pulling off easy victories against Pitt and UVA. OR destroying GT and Pitt by 30+, then losing by 20 to UVA (either way though I see us beating Narduzzi, pretty sure he's equally hated by everyone on our staff, and the players recognize that and aim to deliver). SOMETHING bad is probably gonna happen...but honestly, the fact that I've seen some real progress at one position or the other for the past 5 games AD has been pretty much everything I wanted for the season. We were stagnant at the start of the season, and AD it's been like an explosion of development on both sides of the ball...if we lose, but give our best effort and just get outplayed while our young team continues to grow, I don't consider that a loss (though I will absolutely take it personally and be disappointed until at least the following Tuesday).

Honestly it's the same attitude I have for our BBall team under CMY this year - as long as we can see the intent from the coaching staff being manifested by the athletes, I don't care if we win or lose.

Maybe the WTF games (Duke, BC) are in the rearview and the time for great sorrow is over?

Leonard. Duh.

Laying waste to projection engines since 1045 AD.

Just wanted to add. My son turns sixteen after Christmas and he has never seen UVA beat VT in football in his lifetime. We got this.

"I don't know what a Hokie is, but God is one of them.' So I'm going with God. I'm going with Virginia Tech." Lee Corso Aug 23, 2000


So....I'm curious what the pulse is moving forward.
I still think it could go many ways, but what is ok?

If we lose the next 3, we end up 6-6. Young team, but left a lot on the table.
Most Hokies would be pissed.

We win the next 3, 9-3 with ACC Champ game, bowl game.....hard NOT to be happy, despite early losses.

Any scenario where we lose to uva....not happy.

I can be happy with a 7-5 end where we beat uva, but 7-5 losing the Commonwealth Cup is not palatable.

We could have last all but one game this season and I would be somewhat happy with the win being UVA. Anything to destroy their hopes and dreams.

Fuente would've been canned at 0-3, but he would've become only the third head coach in VT history to post a perfect record against UVA, following Sally Miles (1-0, 1905) and Sumner D. Tilson (1-0, 1942).

I'm most worried about Pitt at the moment. GT may surprise us and be closer than normal. They've been playing better of late and have been close to winning a few of their losses. I've only seen Pitt play in one game and I thought they played decently. UNC i think but could be wrong. Plus they are always tough.

Watching All ACC the other night they mentioned that 80% of UVA's offense is from Perkins. We control him we control the game, plus it's at the end of the season. The only thing that makes me cautious about UVA is that they have a bye week this week and then play an FCS school the week before us. So almost two full weeks to prepare or us.

If you don't want to recruit clowns, don't run a clown show.

"I want to punch people from UVA right in the neck." - Colin Cowherd

They will be healthy. Can't imagine any significant Wahoo injuries between now the cup game.


Best defender is out for the season. Offensive line is decimated - not sure if any of those guys will be back by then.

Sometimes we live no particular way but our own

According to the recap of their game against GT UVA has lost 6 DBs including Hall for the season.

Their front 7 is stout and they have a good pass rush, but I'm really hoping we can sling it all over the yard on them. Our WRs are clearly superior.

The Orange and Maroon you see, that's fighting on to victory.

I've only seen Pitt play in one game and I thought they played decently. UNC i think but could be wrong

It couldn't have been UNC this year, as that game is this coming Thursday night. (Although it would be awesome to have a future TV.)

The only thing that makes me cautious about UVA is that they have a bye week this week and then play an FCS school the week before us.

Well, it's Liberty, so not an FCS school, but barely an FBS. Still, that gives UVA a day short of three full weeks to stare down our matchup on the calendar. But I also see them looking too far ahead and losing to Liberty.

But I also see them looking too far ahead and losing to Liberty.

Unfortunately a loss to Liberty hurts them no more than our loss to ND. If anything, they bounce back from that with all the pent up fury of a mosquito buzzing around Bud's ear.

Warning: this post occasionally contains strong language (which may be unsuitable for children), unusual humor (which may be unsuitable for adults), and advanced mathematics (which may be unsuitable for liberal-arts majors)..

Not that I'm wanting it to happen, but if that loss to Liberty comes with an injury to Perkins, it hurts them more than our loss to ND.

So, if you're bronco, do you start your backup? I mean, Fuente kept Hendon on the bench against ND and it was the right call.

Warning: this post occasionally contains strong language (which may be unsuitable for children), unusual humor (which may be unsuitable for adults), and advanced mathematics (which may be unsuitable for liberal-arts majors)..

A loss to Liberty would likely keep them out of the Orange Bowl so there is certainly something to play for

you really think the orange bowl takes them after they lose their last regular season game and don't even go the the ACCCG?

Warning: this post occasionally contains strong language (which may be unsuitable for children), unusual humor (which may be unsuitable for adults), and advanced mathematics (which may be unsuitable for liberal-arts majors)..

I think Bud should spy Perkins on almost eveyr play with Tisdale and let Ashby and Dax rotate at Mike.

I just realized that almost every single scenario of UVA's 65.8467% chance of winning the Coastal involves beating VT.

I'm going to sleep well tonight.

If you're not sure if my comment warrants a "/s", it probably does.

512 of the 584 scenarios that UVA wins, to be precise. And it's possible that it could drop to 64 of 64 after this weekend.

64? UVA doesn't do well when the number 64 is involved.

Never Forget #1 Overall Seed UVA 54, #64 UMBC 74

After tonight's game, we're down to 512, but after adding a check to my formula to determine if any single game has any effect on the Coastal race I found that there are now two such games: NC State at Georgia Tech, and UNC at NC State, bringing the total number of relevant scenarios down to 128. Of those, UVA wins 69, VT wins 37, Pitt wins 16, Miami wins 4, and the other 2 result in an unresolvable tie between UVA, VT, and Pitt. Overall, at this point, UVA has a roughly 64% chance of winning the Coastal, VT has a 23% chance, Pitt has an 11% chance, Miami has a 1% chance, and there's a roughly 0.6% chance of that unresolvable tie happening.

As for Saturday, there are two games that will affect the race, Syracuse @ Duke and VT @ GT. Here's what the numbers look like for each possible pair of victorious teams:

Syracuse and VT:
- UVA: 64%
- VT: 25%
- Pitt: 10%
- Tie: 0.5%

Syracuse and GT:
- UVA: 65%
- VT: 20%
- Pitt: 11%
- Miami: 4%

Duke and VT:
- UVA: 64%
- VT: 24%
- Pitt: 11%
- Tie: 1%

Duke and GT:
- UVA: 65%
- VT: 20%
- Pitt: 11%
- Miami: 4%

As you can see, the Duke game has very little effect on the race, but there are 2 fringe scenarios where it could come into play (basically, the scenarios that could end up in an unresolvable tie depend on Duke winning exactly one game between Syracuse and Wake, and if they win both games in a scenario that would otherwise end in a tie then UVA would win, and if they lose both then VT would win, so that's why it's slightly in our favor for Duke to lose to Syracuse). However, a VT win eliminates Miami, and a GT win removes any chance of an unresolvable tie.

Basically, if we beat GT, there remains a chance that we could lose to Pitt and still win the division. If we lose to GT, we still control our own destiny but must win out. And a Syracuse win over Duke can only help us, but only in one of two scenarios that have a roughly 1% chance of playing out.

I appreciate the time and effort put into this breakdown.

If it were me, it would've just read: " VT needs to score more points than all 3 of their remaining opponents. If so, I'll see you in Charlotte."

VT Marketing Class of 2009
Current Roanoke-Hokie
Go Hokies!