First half v. second half in the Lynch era.

One of the major criticisms of Bill Lynch, particularly in the last two seasons, has been the Hoosiers' play in the second half of games.  How does this break down season-by season?

 

 

First, here's the 2007 schedule, broken down by first half, second half, and final score.

1ST HALF        
2ND HALF        
FINAL SCORE
OPPONENT PF PA PF PA PF PA
Indiana St. 31 7 24 0 55 7
Western Mich. 31 7 6 20 37 27
Akron 17 17 24 7 41 24
Illinois 7 20 7 7 14 27
@Iowa 21 7 17 13 38 21
Minnesota 27 14 13 6 40 20
@Mich. St. 13 24 14 28 27 52
Penn St. 14 20 17 16 31 26
@Wisconsin 3 17 0 16 3 33
Ball State 24 10 14 10 38 20
@ NU 14 10 14 21 28 31
Purdue 17 3 10 21 27 24
Ok. St. 10 35 23 14 33 49

 

Next, here's a table that looks a little closer at those results.  What I mean by "first half record" and "second half record" is whether IU outscored the opponent in the half.  For example, last weekend, IU won the first half 28-17 and lost the second half 12-0.  In any event:

 

2007 (7-6/3-5)
Total PF/PA: (412/370) (+42)
First half record: 7-5-1
Second half record: 6-6-1:
First half PF/PA: 229/191 (+38)
Second half PF/PA: 183/179 (+4)
Record in games with halftime lead: 6-1
Record in games with halftime deficit: 0-5
Record in games with halftime tie: 1-0
Percentage of points scored in first half: (55.8)
Percentage of points allowed in first half: (51.6)

 

What can we draw from 2007?  Not much.  IU scored modestly more points in the first half than in the second half, allowed modestly fewer points in the second half than in the first half, played close to dead-even ball in both halves, and the "first half record" and "second half record" reasonably approximate the overall record.  IU blew one halftime lead (at Northwestern, ugh), didn't overcome a halftime deficit, and won the only game that was tied at halftime (Akron).

Here's the 2008 schedule, which was much uglier, of course, and is broken down in the same way:

 

1ST HALF       
2ND HALF      
FINAL SCORE
OPPONENT PF PA PF PA PF PA
Western Ky. 17 0 14 13 31 13
Murray St. 24 3 21 0 45 3
Ball State 20 28 0 14 20 42
Mich St. 22 27 7 15 29 42
@Minnesota 7 7 0 9 7 16
Iowa 9 17 0 28 9 45
@Illinois 7 28 6 27 13 55
NU 14 9 7 10 21 19
Central Mich. 21 21 13 16 34 37
Wisconsin 20 24 0 31 20 55
@Penn State 7 10 0 24 7 34
@Purdue 3 31 7 31 10 62

 

And here's the table with a further breakdown of 2008.

2008 (3-9/1-7)
Total PF/PA: 246/423 (-177)
First half record: 3-7-2
Second half record: 2-10
First half PF/PA: 171/205 (-34)
Second half PF/PA: 75/218 (-143)
Record in games with halftime lead: 3-0
Record in games with halftime deficit: 0-7
Record in games with halftime tie: 0-2
Percentage of points scored in first half: 69.5
Percentage of points allowed in first half: 48.4

 

Here, we do begin to see the perception become reality.  IU's first-half scoring deficit, when averaged across games, was less than three points per game.  Still, nearly 70 percent of IU's scoring game in the first half, and IU allowed just more than half of its points allowed in the second half.  Still, the first half record and the second half records both continue to approximate IU's overall record.  In other words, this IU team was so bad that the abysmal second half performance, while tough to watch, didn't have much impact on the win/loss record. 

Finally, where do the Hoosiers stand in 2009?  Here's the schedule to date:

1ST HALF       
2ND HALF       
FINAL SCORE
OPPONENT PF PA PF PA PF PA
Eastern Ky. 19 10 0 3 19 13
Western mich. 17 7 6 12 23 19
@Akron 17 14 21 7 38 21
@Michigan 23 21 10 15 33 36
Ohio State 7 24 7 9 14 33
@Virginia 0 30 7 17 7 47
Illinois 13 7 14 7 27 14
@NU 28 17 0 12 28 29

 

And the further breakdown:

2009 (4-4/1-3)
Total PF/PA: 189/212 (-23)
First half record: 6-2
Second half record: 2-6
First half PF/PA: 124/130 (-6)
Second half PF/PA: 65/82 (-17)
Record in games with halftime lead: 4-2
Record in games with halftime deficit: 0-2
Record in games with halftime tie: n/a
Percentage of points scored in first half: 65.6
Percentage of points allowed in first half: 61.3

 

This season shows a similar point distribution to 2008, at least on offense.  IU scores nearly two thirds of its points in the first half.  On the other hand, the disparity between first half and the second half is pretty similar.  IU is close to even in both halves.  Still, and for the first time in the Lynch era, there is a significant disparity between the overall record and the first half/second half records.  IU has led at halftime in 6 of 8 games, but has blown two of the halftime leads and has been outscored in the second half in 6 of 8 games.  So, while the complete lack of competitiveness demonstrated in the second half in 2008 hasn't yet manifested itself (well, it did last week, but not as much overall), for the first time, the second half performance has had a major impact on the W/L record.  A few other notes from this data:

  • Under Bill Lynch, IU is 0-12 when trailing at the half.
  • Under Bill Lynch, IU has blown 3 halftime leads.
  • IU has failed to score in the second half of 7 of the last 18 games.
  • IU has failed to score in the second half in 8 of Bill Lynch's 33 games at IU.
I'm not sure what all of this means for the big picture.  I'll try to find some data on the college football world in general.  But overall, the notion of IU's second half struggles is not imagined. 
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