Commentary

Bama opponents can't bye a win

The bad news for Alabama rivals, the 'bye week advantage' isn't one at all

Originally Published: October 8, 2010
By Brian Fremeau | Football Outsiders
Nick SabanWesley Hitt/Getty ImagesNick Saban's crew is facing six teams coming off of bye weeks this season.

Alabama heads into the South Carolina game this weekend firing on all cylinders. A thrilling win at Arkansas was followed up with an absolute demolition of the Florida Gators in Tuscaloosa. The Crimson Tide aren't just in the driver's seat for a BCS national championship game. They appear to have lapped the field.

Perhaps the only thing standing in their way is a factor beyond their control. Much has been made in the offseason about the scheduling quirk that will pit Alabama against opponents coming off of a bye weekend six times this season. Coach Nick Saban even addessed the peculiarity in his press conference on Monday, claiming Alabama researched the win/loss records of SEC teams after bye weekends. According to Saban, those teams went 29-29 in the last five years. Is there no advantage to having an extra week to prepare? Is there a possible disadvantage to having the extra time off?

Brian Fremeau

ESPN Insider
• Has been a contributor to ESPN Insider and ESPN The Magazine since 2009
• Creator of the Fremeau Efficiency Index (FEI), a measure of college football team efficiency
• Contributor to Football Outsiders and his own site, bcftoys.com