NCF Nation: Did-you-know-090910
September, 10, 2010
By Ted Miller | ESPN.com
Some quick notes to get you through the hours until Saturday.
- Five Pac-10 players accounted for at least three TDs last weekend: California's Shane Vereen, Oregon's Kenjon Barner (5 TDs), USC Ronald Johnson (4 TDs), Arizona State's Deantre Lewis and Arizona State's Cameron Marshall.
- Three Pac-10 QBs rank among the nation's top seven in passing efficiency: Stanford's Andrew Luck at No. 3, USC's Matt Barkley at No. 4 and California's Kevin Riley at No. 7.
- Seven different Arizona receivers caught at least three passes last week at Toledo.
- Arizona State kicker Thomas Weber is 3 for 3 from beyond 50 yards in his career after booting a 52-yard field goal vs. Portland State. He was one of three conference kickers to connect from beyond 50 yards (Washington's Erik Folk, 54 yards, and Washington State's Nico Grasu, 56 yards).
- Cal is 2-2 all-time with Colorado, but this is its first meeting since 1982.
- Oregon is one of eight teams nationally that produced shutouts last weekend.
- Ducks CB Cliff Harris returned two punts for TDs -- for 61 and 64 yards -- in the win over New Mexico. Two punt returns for TDs has only been accomplished twice before by Pac-10 players: USC's Mike Garrett in 1965 vs. Cal; UCLA's Sam Brown in 1954 vs.Stanford.
- Oregon State safety Lance Mitchell leads the conference in tackles after recording 18 vs. TCU. Fellow safety Suaesi Tuimaunei is tied for third with 14.
- UCLA leads its series with Stanford 45-32-3.
- UCLA kicker Kai Forbath tied two NCAA records after going 3 for 3 vs. Kansas State. His 27 games with at least two field goals ties Georgia's Kevin Butler and his 13 with at least three ties Arizona State's Luis Zendejas. Forbath has made 40 consecutive field goals inside of 50 yards. His 75 career field goals are just 12 short of the NCAA record of 87.
- USC has won 31 consecutive night games (USC-Oregon kicked off at 5 p.m. last year).
- Washington QB Jake Locker made his college debut as a redshirt freshman at Syracuse in 2007. The Huskies won 42-12.
- Dating back to the last part of the 1975 season, the Huskies have gone 35-14 when playing at home the game after a loss on the road.
- Washington State is trying to snap a 10-game losing streak Saturday vs. Montana State. The Cougars are 6-0 all-time vs. the Bobcats.
September, 10, 2010
By Brian Bennett | ESPN.com
Did you know ...
- Rutgers is the only team in the nation that has recorded at least one shutout in each of the past five seasons?
- Noel Devine needs 106 rushing yards to move into seventh place on the Big East all-time rushing list?
- Bilal Powell was the first Louisville back to rush for at least 100 yards in a season opener since Michael Bush in 2006?
- Pitt's past four losses have come by a total of 14 points?
- UConn kicker Dave Teggars is 64-for-64 on extra points in his career?
- Current Syracuse middle linebacker Derrell Smith was the Orange's leading rusher when the team last played Washington, in 2007?
September, 10, 2010
By David Ubben | ESPN.com
You guys seemed to enjoy these last week, so here's this week's version of a handful of tidbits to be mindful of as you watch Saturday's games across the conference.
Just the facts, ma'am.
Just the facts, ma'am.
- Last season, Landry Jones completed 31.1 percent (29-93) of his passes beyond 15 yards.
- Of that set of 93 passes, he threw two touchdowns and four interceptions (15-of-64) to receivers other than Ryan Broyles. When he threw to Broyles, he completed 14-of-29 passes for six touchdowns and one interception.
- Taylor Martinez's 127 rushing yards last week were the most ever by a freshman quarterback at Nebraska, and came on just seven carries.
- Nebraska and Idaho have never met.
- This is Oklahoma State running back Kendall Hunter's third career game against Troy. In the first two, he combined for 294 yards on 40 carries.
- Last week's 65-point output by the Cowboys was just the third time Oklahoma State has topped 60 points since 1988.
- Texas A&M receiver Jeff Fuller has 18 touchdown receptions entering this week's game against Louisiana Tech, one shy of the school record.
- Missouri receiver T.J. Moe was targeted 14 times in Saturday's win against Illinois. He finished with 13 receptions.
- Baylor stopped a three-game home losing streak with last week's 34-7 win against Sam Houston State in front of a home crowd of 42,821, the third-largest for a season opener in school history.
- Colorado's ticket allotment (4,000) for Saturday's game at Cal sold out nearly a month before the game. The future Pac-10 members have about 23,000 alumni in California.
- Colorado's three interceptions last week were the first time the Buffaloes had recorded that many since 2007, against Nebraska.
- Last week was just the second time three running backs had rushed for over 200 yards in the same week. The last time was 1998.
- Kansas State's 313 rushing yards against UCLA last week were the most in a single game for the Wildcats since 2004. Daniel Thomas accounted for 234 of those.
- Texas is 31-3 in its past 34 games in the season's opening month. The only losses came to Kansas State in 2007, Ohio State in 2006 and Arkansas in 2003.
- Kansas and Georgia Tech haven't met since 1948, when Georgia Tech won 20-14, in the Jayhawks' first bowl game, the Orange Bowl.
- Iowa leads the all-time series with Iowa State 38-19. The Hawkeyes will be the second of Iowa State's eight opponents in 2010 who played in bowl games after the 2009 season.
- Georgia Tech has never played a game against Big 12 competition since the birth of the conference.
- Nebraska has allowed fewer than 20 points in nine consecutive games, dating back to last season. It is the nation's longest streak.
- Bobby Bowden's first-ever game against a ranked team came in 1976--against No. 4 Oklahoma. The Seminoles lost Bowden's third-ever, 24-9.
- Saturday is Jimbo Fisher's first game against a ranked team, and his second game as Florida State coach.
- Oklahoma is 0-6 in its last six games against teams who finished the season ranked in the final AP poll, dating back to a win over Missouri in the 2008 Big 12 championship. The Sooners were 0-5 against ranked teams last season.
September, 10, 2010
By Heather Dinich | ESPN.com
Here’s your daily dose of ACC fun facts to make you seem a little smarter at the water cooler today. (Thanks to sports information directors in the league for these tidbits). Did you know …
- The Yellow Jackets’ 372 yards rushing last Saturday were the third-most in college football in Week 1. Only Air Force (437 yards) and Wake Forest (415) rushed for more.
- Clemson Memorial Stadium was built in 1942, but it adopted the nickname “Death Valley” in the late 1940s. The name came from Presbyterian coach Lonnie McMillan, who called it “Death Val-ley” during preseason articles about the upcoming game. Bradley recalled that he referred to it that way because it was a tough place to play. No kidding - McMillan had a 1-12 record against Clemson in Death Valley, with the one win coming in 1943, 13-12. Ironically (or fittingly), McMillan still has lost more games at Clemson than any other visiting coach.
- Boston College had a total of 25 players that were either freshmen or sophomores on the two-deep last weekend - including 13 freshmen. Two freshmen earned starts against Weber State - receiver Jonathan Coleman and true freshman linebacker Kevin Pierre-Louis. Coleman led all receivers with 98 yards on three catches, and Pierre-Louis made six tackles (five solo) and had a tackle for a loss. This week, there are 23 freshmen or sophomores on the two-deep.
- In the David Cutcliffe era, the Blue Devils have scored 30 or more points in 10 games, yielding a 7-3 record. Two of the three defeats have come against Wake Forest, with the Demon Deacons winning in overtime, 33-30 in 2008, and 45-34 last year.
- Fathers of two Duke freshmen — Brandon Braxton and Braxton Deaver — played together at Wake Forest. Shannon Braxton lettered three seasons (1986-87-88) as a defensive end with the Demon Deacons before embarking on a 71-game career in the NFL, and Jay Deaver lettered four campaigns (1985-86-87-88) at Wake Forest as an offensive guard.
- UVA will be playing its first game in the state of California, and when USC played at UVA in 2008, it was the program’s first trip to Virginia.
- Remember that 22 players on the Cavaliers’ current roster faced USC in 2008, so there’s some familiarity there that should help overcome any sense of awe from playing in front of the largest crowd many of them will see in their college careers.
- Virginia Tech has not allowed a point in its past nine quarters against James Madison University.
- Under coach Frank Beamer, the Hokies have played two games in a seven-day or less span six previous times like they will this week after playing Boise State on Monday night with JMU looming on Saturday. The only time Tech lost the second game in that span was in 1997 when the Hokies fell to Virginia six days after playing Pittsburgh with both games coming on the road.
- Between the last practice before last year’s season finale against North Carolina (Nov. 26, 2009) and the first practice of this year’s fall camp (Aug. 3, 2010), 250 days elapsed. That’s the amount of time that Wolfpack quarterback Russell Wilson DID NOT practice football. He missed spring practice. He missed seven-on-seven drills in the summer. He missed football workouts in the Murphy Center weight room. Instead, he was playing baseball for the Wolfpack squad in the spring and for the Colorado Rockies’ Tri-Cities Dust Devils in the summer. Didn’t matter. Wilson threw for four touchdowns and 306 yards against Western Carolina, and he completed 68 percent of his throws (21 of 31).
- Navy ran 32 plays in the red zone against Maryland, but was only able to come away with points twice in seven trips. Navy missed a 32-yard field goal on its first possession of the game, but went inside the Maryland 5-yard line on four trips without scoring. The Terps forced two fumbles, stopped a Navy drive at the end of the first half and had a goal-line stand in the final minute of the game to secure the win.
- Sophomore wide receiver Jheranie Boyd had a breakout game for UNC against LSU with six receptions for 221 yards and a touchdown. His 97-yard touchdown reception was the longest play from scrimmage in school history. He also had a 75-yard reception, and his 221 yards are seven more than he had all of 2009 (214). Through the first week of the season, Boyd led the nation in receiving yards per game (221) and all-purpose yards per game (287).
- Wake Forest redshirt freshman running back Josh Harris carried six times for 74 yards and two touchdowns in the 53-13 win against Presbyterian. It was the second-best ever debut by a Wake Forest running back. The top debut by a rookie back came in 2004 when Micah Andrews carried 17 times for 125 yards and three touchdowns in a win against North Carolina A&T
- Twenty-six players were drafted from the Miami team that played in the 2003 loss to Ohio State, including 12 first-round draft picks.
- Maryland is playing two in-state rivals for the first time since 1937. That year, they played St. John’s College of Annapolis (which doesn’t have football) and Western Maryland College (which is now McDaniel College).
September, 10, 2010
By Chris Low | ESPN.com
A little bit of this and a little bit of that as we gear up for Week 2 in the SEC:
- In the past 15 years, the No. 1 team in the AP poll is 26-0 at home against nationally ranked opponents, with an average victory margin of nearly 22 points. The last AP No. 1-ranked team to lose at home to a ranked opponent was Steve Spurrier’s Florida Gators, who dropped a 36-33 decision to No. 6 Auburn in 1994.
- Alabama is 8-4 against Penn State under Joe Paterno, including a 14-7 win in the 1979 Sugar Bowl, which decided the 1978 national championship. Penn State entered the game ranked No. 1 and Alabama No. 2. This is the first meeting since 1990.
- Penn State is 7-2 in its past nine games against SEC teams, dating back to a 9-0 victory against Alabama in 1990 in Tuscaloosa. Seven of the nine SEC teams were ranked in the Top 20.
- Even though this will be the first time Florida’s Urban Meyer and South Florida’s Skip Holtz have been on opposing sidelines as coaches, they were scheduled to meet in 2001. Meyer was then the head coach at Bowling Green, and Holtz was the offensive coordinator at South Carolina. The game was canceled because of the 911 terrorist attacks.
- Alabama won the national championship last season, but it was a struggle for the Crimson Tide when they reached the red zone. Alabama scored a touchdown on just 47.5 percent of its red-zone trips, ranking 108th out of 120 FBS teams. Quarterback Greg McElroy finished last season with a 35 percent red zone completion rate, the third worst completion percentage among FBS quarterbacks with at least 30 attempts.
- Since the start of the 2008 season, Alabama and Florida lead the nation with 27 wins each. Boise State and Texas are tied for third with 26.
- Alabama has gone 42 quarters (10-and-a-half games) without being penalized for offensive holding.
- Under first-year coordinator Todd Grantham, Georgia's defense forced three turnovers in the opener (three interceptions). That’s after the Bulldogs forced a total of 12 turnovers in 13 games all last season.
- Of the past nine meetings between Georgia and South Carolina, seven have been decided by a touchdown or less. And in five of those games, the winning team didn’t score more than 17 points.
- Georgia coach Mark Richt is 33-6 (.846) in true road games and actually has a better record on the road than he does at home or at neutral sites. He’s 47-11 (.810) at home and 10-11 (.476) at neutral sites.
- Knocking off nationally ranked teams has been a struggle for Steve Spurrier at South Carolina. He was 2-1 against ranked foes during his first season in Columbia in 2005, but has gone just 5-14 since.
- Oregon’s trip to Knoxville marks the fifth straight year that Tennessee has a played a Pac-10 team in September. The Vols, though, are just 1-3 in those games and have lost the past three – one to California and two to UCLA. Prior to that, Tennessee hadn’t played a Pac-10 team since 1997.
- Tennessee is just 1-7 against nationally ranked teams the past two seasons. The lone win came last season against No. 21 South Carolina. In four games against nationally ranked teams a year ago, the Vols gave up an average of 233 yards per game on the ground to go along with 12 touchdowns.
- Arkansas linebacker Anthony Leon had a team-leading eight tackles, including four for loss, in the Hogs’ opener. Included were two sacks. Not bad for a guy who was playing safety a month ago and spent all of last season at safety.
- Vanderbilt has scored a total of 28 points in its past five games against LSU. The Commodores didn’t score more than 16 points in any of their eight SEC games last season.
September, 10, 2010
By Andrea Adelson | ESPN.com
Now for a bit of Did You Know? going into Week 2:
- When Memphis visits East Carolina on Saturday, it will mark the first time since 2003 that two first-year coaches are facing each other in Conference USA play. Larry Porter dropped his opener last week when Memphis lost to Mississippi State, while Ruffin McNeill saw his cardiac Pirates pull off a 51-49 win over Tulsa on a Hail Mary.
- TCU coach Gary Patterson had the quote of the week when discussing his team’s upcoming game against Tennessee Tech: “We don’t want to be the Ole Miss of this week,” he said. Tennessee Tech and Jacksonville State, which upset the Rebels last week, play in the same conference. Incidentally, Patterson got his first paying job as a coach at Tennessee Tech in 1983.
- The Western Michigan football team stepped up in a big way to help a student-run organization that provides free rides home for members of the community Thursday-Saturday late nights. Drive Safe Kalamazoo realized it had no funding for this weekend because of a clerical error. Each member of the football team decided to donate $1 from per diem they received during a day of training camp to help close the gap. The organization ended up getting enough money to be funded for this weekend, and the football team’s donation paid for one car in the seven-car fleet.
- When Arkansas State plays Louisiana-Lafayette on Saturday, it begins a three-game stretch against conference opponents. The last time Arkansas State opened its season against conference opponents in three of its first four games was in 1995 as a member of the Big West.
- Army plays Hawaii Saturday and several of its coaches have ties to the Warriors. Head coach Rich Ellerson lettered four years at Hawaii as a center and linebacker and graduated in 1977. He served as a graduate assistant there in 1977 and later as a defensive assistant from 1981-83 and defensive coordinator from 1987-91. Co-defensive coordinator Chris Smeland coached at Hawaii from 1991-94.
- Things don’t get much easier for San Jose State this week. After losing to No. 1 Alabama, the Spartans play at No. 11 Wisconsin on Saturday. This is the second straight year the team is opening the season against two ranked opponents. San Jose State hasn’t beaten a ranked opponent since defeating No. 9 TCU 27-24 in 2000.
- Utah State quarterback Diondre Borel needs 69 passing yards against Idaho State to reach 5,000 for his career.
- Four FBS quarterbacks threw five touchdown passes in Week 1 -- three are from Conference USA: Houston's Case Keenum had five in the first half against Texas State before sitting out the second half; East Carolina’s Dominique Davis threw five in his first start for the Pirates against Tulsa; in the same game, Tulsa QB G.J. Kinne also had five.
- Utah has a chance to set the Mountain West record for consecutive home wins. The Utes have won 18 straight, tied with BYU, which set the mark from Sept. 9, 2006, to Nov. 8, 2008. Utah hosts UNLV this weekend. The current home winning streak began Sept. 15, 2007 with a 44-6 victory over UCLA. The 18-game streak is the third-longest active home winning streak in the country behind Oklahoma (31) and Boise State (26).