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November 16, 2010

Inside the stats: Ducks lose ground

Each week during the season, we look at some statistics involving individuals and/or teams that we find intriguing. Here is this week's version:

1. We're going to keep a weekly eye on Oregon as it continues to put up potentially record-setting offensive numbers. Last week's 15-13 victory over California may have ended any chance at setting certain records. The Ducks are averaging 50.7 points per game, and the NCAA record is 56.0 by Army in 1944 (the NCAA began keeping records in 1937). Oregon has scored 67 touchdowns in its 10 games, which is 6.7 per game. Over a 13-game schedule, that would be 87 TDs for the season; the record is 96 by Oklahoma in 2008, when the Sooners played 14 games. The per-game record is 7.0, by the 1983 Nebraska squad. Of note: Neither the '83 Nebraska nor the '08 Oklahoma teams won the national title.

2. Thirteen teams put up at least 500 yards of offense this past weekend, making it 180 times it has happened this season. Two of the teams that reached that plateau this past weekend played each other. Tulane beat Rice 54-49, with Rice gaining 542 yards and Tulane finishing with 512. Florida International was the only team this weekend to gain at least 600 yards, finishing with 668 in its big victory over Troy. It was the 39th 600-yard game of the season.

3. On the other side of the ball, Nebraska held Kansas to 87 yards in the Huskers' 20-3 win. It was the fourth time this season a team had been held below 100 yards in a game. Colorado had eight sacks against Iowa State; that ties the single-game high this season, as seven other teams also have come up with eight sacks. Finally, Boston College LB Luke Kuechly had 21 tackles in the Eagles' win over Duke; that ties the single-game high this season. Memphis LB Jamon Hughes and Notre Dame LB Manti Te'o also reached that number, but in losses.

4. Oregon is tied for first nationally with 29 forced turnovers. Of the other unbeaten teams, TCU is tied for 39th with 19, Boise State is tied for 50th with 18 and Auburn is tied for 70th with 16. Oregon is plus-11 in turnover margin, TCU is plus-8, Boise is plus-5 and Auburn is plus-3. The team with the worst turnover margin is Middle Tennessee, at minus-20. Texas is next-worse, at minus-12.

5. Auburn QB Cameron Newton and Oregon RB LaMichael James are tied for the national lead with 17 rushing touchdowns. Oklahoma State RB Kendall Hunter is next with 16. East Carolina's Dominique Davis leads the nation in TD passes with 31. Oklahoma's Landry Jones and Oklahoma State's Brandon Weeden are tied for second with 27.

6. There were 25 3,000-yard passers in each of the past two seasons, and there are 27 quarterbacks on a pace to throw for 3,000 last season. There were 53 1,000-yard rushers last season and 54 in 2008; there are 48 players on a pace to rush for 1,000 this season. Finally, there were 29 1,000-yard receivers last season and 33 in 2008; there are 24 players on a pace to reach that plateau this season.



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