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November 4, 2008
Inside the numbers: Big offense, big defense
Each week, we'll look at some statistics involving individuals and/or teams that we find intriguing.
1. When it comes to offenses, the Big 12 is the "Big Daddy." Five league teams are in the top nine in total offense and seven are in the top 20. Conference USA has four in the top 20, followed by the Big Ten, Mid-American and Pac-10 with two each and the Mountain West, Sun Belt and Western Athletic with one each. The ACC, Big East and SEC have none. The top ACC team is 37th, the top Big East team is 28th and the top SEC team is 23rd.
2. When it comes to defenses, the SEC is the "Big Daddy." But it's close. Three SEC teams are in the top 11 and five are in the top 20. The ACC has four in the top 20, followed by the Big Ten, Mountain West, Pac-10 and Western Athletic with two each and the Big East, Mid-American and independents with one each. The only league without a top-20 defense is the Big 12 – whose best ranks 54th.
3. Missouri's Chase Daniel and Texas' Colt McCoy remain on a pace to shatter an NCAA record. The NCAA record for single-season completion percentage is 73.6 by UCF's Daunte Culpepper in 1998. Daniel is completing 77.2 percent of his passes; McCoy is at 79 percent.
4. Northwestern QB Mike Kafka joins the 200-yard club. Kafka, who was starting for the Wildcats because of an injury to C.J. Bacher, ran for 217 yards in an upset of Minnesota. The fine folks at cfbstats.com did the research that shows Kafka is the fourth quarterback this season to rush for 200 yards; last season, no quarterback reached the plateau, and two did it in 2006. The others to reach the 200-yard mark this season: Nevada's Colin Kaepernick (240 yards) against UNLV; Navy's Ricky Dobbs (224) against SMU; and Baylor's Robert Griffin (217) against Washington State. Dobbs, who also is a backup, threw for zero yards that day.
Mike Huguenin is the college sports editor for Rivals.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.