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Fun with Snap Count Data

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Lance King

If you love spreadsheets, then I've got some great news for you!

I've been taking the participation data that the Pack gives out as part of its weekly release and running some basic calculations on it. You can find the data here in all its nerdtastic glory.

For those of you less into perusing the data yourself, here are some interesting things to be gleamed out of the first two games.

Percentage of Snaps by Class

Class Snaps Taken
FR 16.15%
SO 25.42%
JR 33.20%
SR 25.23%

So when Dave Doeren discusses playing a lot of young players, this is not coachspeak. Over 40 percent of all spans are going to underclassmen in two games that were competitive deep into the 4th quarter, which bodes well for the future and potentially even this year and these guys theoretically adjust to their first taste of real college football. Eight percent of all snaps are also going to true freshman, which feels like a remarkably high number for an ACC school.

Defensive Formations

# per snap Week 1 Week 2
Defensive Linemen 3.98 3.82
Linebackers 2.02 2.00
Defensive Backs 5.02 5.24

I actually think the Pack ran exclusively a 4-2-5 look against Georgia Southern in Week 1 and the data is simple off by a snap or two, but the Pack did experiment some with a 3-2-6 look against Old Dominion. I never actually saw them go to this formation during the game, but my hunch is they mostly went to it late when ODU was down multiple scores.

Offensive Formations

# per snap Week 1 Week 2
Quarterbacks 1.00 1.00
Offensive Linemen 5.00 5.00
Running Backs 1.08 1.01
Wide Receivers 2.57 2.51
Tight End/Fullbacks 1.08 1.49

The Pack went a little more run-heavy against Old Dominion, so no surprise to see the number of tight ends and fullbacks tick up while snaps going to wide receivers went down. Interestingly, the number of running backs is over one per snap each week - largely a result of Matt Dayes occasionally splitting out wide as a receiver in formations. And unfortunately the Pack has to experiment with the controversial three-quarterback formation.

WR Playing Time

FR Bo Hines - 12.40%
FR Stephen Louis - 11.59%
SO Johnathan Alston - 19.95%
SO Bra'Lon Cherry - 19.95%
SO Marcus Valdes-Scantling - 22.10%
JR Bryan Underwood - 12.67%

Through two games, that's the percentage of WR snaps going to each of the six main receivers the Pack is using in its formations. As much hype as Bo Hines got out of the spring, and for as much talk as the coaches made of getting Bryan Underwood the ball, neither are rotation favorites as the sophomore are getting the bulk of the snaps. Louis actually took the second most snaps against Old Dominion, so he appears to be eating into the playing time of Cherry and Valdes-Scantling.