Inside the Numbers: TSL’s 2005 Defensive Player of the Year

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We wrap up our coverage of the 2005 football season (don’t
laugh) with one of our favorite analysis articles, the one in which we hand out
the Defensive Player of the Year award. We’ll tell you right up front: this
year’s winner ran away with the award and even posted one of the best-ever
seasons for a VT defender. Who was it? Click, and ye shall find.

By now, loyal TSL readers are familiar with TSL’s
Defensive Player of the Game award and how it’s calculated. The DPOG award is
strictly numbers-based, and at the end of every win, we throw the defensive
stats into our spreadsheet, crunch the numbers, and spit out that week’s winner.
The weekly winners score anywhere from about 20 points to as much as 40-50

At the end of the season, we throw the cumulative season
stats into our formula and award a Defensive Player of the Year Award. We’ve got
six years of data now, from the 2000-2005 seasons, which enables us to compare
players across seasons. (And one of these days, we’re going to start pulling out
old media guides and going back in time … one of these days.)


First, a refresher on how the calculation is done. If
you’re already familiar with this, or you’re not numbers oriented and don’t’
really care about the details, then skip ahead to the section titled "The
Results … and the 2005 Winner."

As always, we got our statistics from

Here are the point totals awarded for each type of
defensive play.

Play Points Awarded
UT (unassisted tackle) 2
AT (assisted tackle)