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Ole Miss's Fumbles Were The Most Damaging Plays This Week

After last week's tough loss to LSU, Ole Miss once again trailed a ranked division opponent in the fourth quarter. Ole Miss put together some promising drives, but two fumbles prevented the Rebels from retaking the lead and resulted in two of the costliest plays of the week, according to data from fantasy sports app Pivit.

Pivit tracked in-game Win Probability for all college football games involving ranked teams this weekend. Their Win Probability is similar to Brian Burke's and accounts for time remaining, down, distance, and score. But Pivit's model places more emphasis on team strength, adjusting for the wild variation among college football teams.


About midway through the fourth quarter, Ole Miss was deep in Auburn territory and appeared in position to retake the lead. But as quarterback Bo Wallace stretched for a first down, the ball was knocked out of his hands and Auburn recovered. The play lowered Ole Miss' Win Probability 28 percentage points from 51 percent to 23 percent.

Later, with about 90 second remaining, Wallace threw a pass to receiver Laquon Treadwell, in what appeared to be a likely game-winning touchdown. But Treadwell broke his leg on the play and fumbled just before reaching the end zone. Auburn recovered the fumble and was able to run the clock out, handing Ole Miss their second consecutive heartbreaking loss. The play lowered Ole Miss' Win Probability 32 percentage points from 33 percent to 1 percent.

Duke had two of the most positive plays of the week in their double overtime win against Pittsburgh. DeVon Edwards's kickoff return gave Duke a 38-31 lead in the beginning of the fourth quarter and raised Win Probability 28 percentage points from 47 percent to 75 percent. Anthony Boone's overtime touchdown run put pressure on Pitt as the Panthers had to score their own touchdown just to keep the game going. Boone's run raised Win Probability 26 percentage points from 55 percent to 81 percent.

Below are the most and least helpful plays of the week.

Play Team WPA Qtr Time Down Distance Yd Line
Jameis Winston pass to Ermon Lane for 47 yard touchdown FSU 0.34 4 12:58 3 10 47
James Conner rush for 14 yard touchdown PITT 0.32 OT 1 n/a 1 10 14
Zane Gonzalez 36 yard field goal ASU 0.30 OT 1 n/a 4 4 19
DeVon Edwards kickoff return for 99 yard touchdown DUKE 0.28 4 13:22 n/a n/a n/a
Anthony Boone rush for 12 yard touchdown DUKE 0.26 OT 1 n/a 1 10 12
Play Team WPA Qtr Time Down Distance Yd Line
Andy Phillips 35 yard field goal attempt is no good UTAH -0.48 OT 1 n/a 4 3 18
Chris Blewitt 26 yard field goal attempt is no good PITT -0.43 4 0:02 2 7 8
Bo Wallace pass to Laquon Treadwell for 19 yards, fumble, recovered by AUB-Cassanova McKinzy MISS -0.32 4 1:39 3 3 20
Bo Wallace rush for no gain, fumble, recovered by AUB-Kris Frost MISS -0.28 4 7:01 2 1 6
Taylor Kelly rush for -8 yards ASU -0.20 4 0:40 3 10 43


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