The Ratings Percentage Index the RPI you either love it, hate it, or even love to hate it.

The RPI power rankings take into account a team’s record, the record of the opponent’s your team plays, AND the records of your opponent’s opponents throughout the season.

That will make your head spin.

Winterset fans were all excited the first week of the season when the Huskies, ranked No. 2 in some Class 3-A polls, and among the top three in the  BCMoore Class 3-A RPI rankings, beat top-ranked Norwalk at Norwalk.

Winterset finished third in the state Class 3-A tourney last season, and hopes are high for this year, and the Huskies are picked to at least win a share of the RRC conference title.

The Winterset boys’ sole loss has been to Carroll. Carroll, at 5-0, is ranked No. 4 in the modified RPI ratings in Class 3-A behind Davenport Assumption, Norwalk and Mount Vernon. Marion is No. 5 and rounding out the top ten are CR Xavier, DC-Grimes, Pella, Algona and Winterset. Carroll is ranked No. 59 of 64 teams by Strength of Schedule.

Now, six games into the 2019-2020 season, Winterset has slipped to No. 10 in the Modified RPI rankings, and the top 20 in strength of schedule.

Opponent’s opponents

Winterset has played Creston (W, 66-39), Boone (W, 65-56), Norwalk (W, 58-57), ADM of Adel (W, 71-69) and Carroll (L, 59-50).

Now those opponent’s have played:

Creston has played Winterset, Atlantic, Bondurant-Farrar, CB St. Albert, Atlantic, Gallatin (Mo), Shenandoah, Glenwood and Clarinda.

Boone has lost to Gilbert, Roland-Story, Ballard of Huxley, Carlisle, DC-Grimes and the Huskies.

Norwalk is 4-2, having beaten Ballard (79-52), Indianola (90-69), Pella Christian (79-62) and CB Lewis Central (65-51) and lost to both Winterset (58-57) and Pella (80-74).

ADM of Adel is 4-4, having fallen to Pella Christian, Ballard, Winterset and Pella, and won games against Gilbert, Carlisle, Perry and North Polk.

Carroll, now 5-0, has beaten Carroll Keumper, Perry, Bondurant-Farrar, Denison-Schleswig, and the Huskies.

And Atlantic has played eight games and is 3-5 on the season. Atlantic’s wins have been against Clarinda, Carroll Kuemper and Shenandoah, while the Trojan’s losses have come to Creston, Glenwood, Creston, CB Lewis Central and Winterset.

Winterset’s next game, a home game against Perry on Friday, adds another layer of teams to consider, as will continue all season.

Suffice it to say, unless you are good with a spreadsheet, and know how to calculate the victories against your opponents, and weighting your opponent’s opponents victories and losses, you might as well howl at the moon, for all the good that will do you.

It’s an interesting exercise, and face it, RPIs are what gave us the college football bowl game match-ups and playoffs.

You either love it, or hate it.

One could delve into the weightings. It’s one of those things where you think you know what’s going on, and five minutes later are nothing but a blithering idiot, forgetting everything you thought you knew. That’s where I come in (without a computer and a spreadsheet).

So, without further ado, here are the modified RPI ratings (which factor your opponents) as well as the Strength of schedule RPI ratings (factoring in your opponents’ opponents).

Modified RPI Ratings

Class 3-A (64 teams): by conference/opponents: 1. Davenport Assumption 6-0; 2. Norwalk 4-2; 3. Mt. Vernon 6-0; 4. Carroll 5-0; 5. Marion 5-1; 6. CR Xavier 2-2; 7. DC-Grimes 6-0; 8. Pella 4-2; 9. Algona 6-0; 10. Winterset 5-1.

 Also: 12. Harlan 6-0; 14. Gilbert 5-2; 18. RRC-ADM (Adel) 3-3; 26. RRC-Ballard (Huxley) 3-3; 43. Creston 5-3; 45. North Polk 3-3; 47. RRC-Bondurant-Farrar 2-3; 53. RRC-Carlisle 0-4; 59. RRC-Boone 0-4; 63. Clarke (Osceola) 0-5; 64. RRC-Perry 0-3. 

Note: Gilbert and North Polk will become part of the RRC next season.

Strength of Schedule RPI

Class 3-A (Strength of Schedule): 1. CR Xavier 106.91; 2. Dubuque Wahlert 106.79; 3. LeMars 98.24; 4. Norwalk 95.12; 5. Davenport Assumption 94.86; 6. South Tama 94.44; 7. RRC-Carlisle 45.00; 8. RRC-Boone 91.96; 9. Clear Creek/Amana 91.60; 10. Maquoketa 91.50.

 Also: 12. RRC-Ballard (Huxley) 90.58; 16. RRC-Bondurant-Farrar 89.01; 17. Pella 88.77; 18. RRC-Winterset 88.57; 27. RRC-Perry 86.29; 30. DC-Grimes 86.10; 45. RRC-ADM (Adel) 81.69; 49. North Polk 79.98; 50. Creston 79.71; 55. Gilbert 77.25; 59. RRC-Carroll 73.46; 62. Clarke (Osceola) 71.72; 63. Harlan 71.60.

Now, if you know better than me and I have explained it incorrectly, DON’T call me. Well, you can, but please don’t I won’t a have a clue as to what either of us are talking about. There, I’ve forgotten already.

Following are the Class 2-A and Class 1-A RPI calculations through this week.

Modified RPI Rankings

 Class 2-A (96 teams): 1. North Linn 6-0; 2. Woodward-Granger 6-1; 3. Boyden-Hull 3-1; 4. Van Meter 5-0; 5. Beckman (Dyersville) 7-0; 6. Unity Christian 3-1; 7. West Sioux 8-0; 8. Monticello 7-1; 9. DM Christian 5-2; 10. Panorama (Panora) 4-1.

 Also: 12. Pella Christian 4-2; 24. Pleasantville 3-2; 40.  PCM (Monroe) 4-3; 41. AC/GC 1-4; 57. Woodward Academy 1-3; 61. Colfax-Mingo 2-1; 77. I-35 (Truro) 0-6; 96. WCV (Stuart) 1-4.

Class 1-A (147 teams): 1. South O’Brien 5-2; 2. Algona Garrigan 6-1; 3. Madrid 6-1; 4. West Fork (Sheffield) 4-0; 5. Remsen-St. Mary’s 5-0; 6. Lake Mills 5-1; 7. Easton Valley 7-0; 8. George-Little Rock 4-3; 9. Martensdale-SM 5-1; 10. Montezuma 6-0.

 Also: 12. Earlham 1-4; 21. CAM (Anita) 6-0; 24. Nodaway Valley 4-2; 47. Ankeny Christian 4-1; 50. Mount Ayr 3-0; 66. Ogden 1-3; 69. Bedford 2-1; 90. Murrary 5-2; 112. SW Valley (Corning) 2-4; 129. East Union 1-3; 130. Wayne (Corydon) 3-3; 145. Orient-Macksburg 0-5.

Mind blown? Good.

Reporter at the Winterset Madisonian. He has also been the managing editor at the Madisonian.