- Ted Miller, ESPN Staff Writer
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Some notes to get you through the hours until Saturday. Many thanks to ESPN Stats & Information.
ESPN College GameDay will be on site for the Oregon-Stanford game and will be staged from Memorial Quadrangle area of campus.
ESPN Radio's College GameDay set also will be on hand, hosted by Ryen Russillo and analysts Brad Edwards and Trevor Matich, as well as notorious media gadfly "Stanford" Steve Coughlin, who is best known for hounding the innocent and beloved Pac-12 blog on Twitter.
Oregon is averaging one point every 30.8 seconds of possession, best in FBS and more than twice the rate of the average FBS team (66.0 seconds per point).
Oregon averages more points in the first half than 87 FBS teams average in a game. The Ducks’ average halftime lead is 25.8 points, which is more than seven points better than any other FBS team. Oregon generally milks its lead, averaging 7.1 more seconds of possession per play in the second half compared to the first.
Oregon is the only team in FBS that has not trailed after the first quarter. The Ducks are averaging 19.0 points per game and are outscoring their opponents by 154 points in the first 15 minutes. Stanford has allowed 13 total first-quarter points in 10 games this season, fourth fewest in FBS.
Stanford is holding opponents to an FBS-best 58.6 rushing yards per game and has not allowed an opponent to rush for more than 150 yards this season. Oregon has rushed for at least 180 yards in every game it’s played this season and has averaged 285.3 rush yards per game in three games against Stanford under Chip Kelly.
Stanford has held its opponents to no gain or negative yardage on 38.0 percent of their rushes, the highest percentage in FBS this season. Opponents of the Cardinal have averaged 0.8 yards before contact. Oregon, on the other hand, gains positive yards on 80.2 percent of its rushes and is averaging 3.9 yards before contact.
Oregon leads the FBS in offensive touchdown drives that lasted one minute or less (21), two minutes or less (40), and three plays or fewer (18) this season. Stanford is one of five teams that have not allowed a touchdown in less than a minute against an FBS opponent this season and is the only team in FBS that has not allowed a touchdown in three plays or fewer.
Oregon is the only team in FBS to have at least two touchdown drives in two minutes or less in all of its games this season. The Ducks have scored 14 touchdowns in two minutes or less in three games against Stanford since Chip Kelly took over in 2009, including five such touchdowns in each of the last two games against the Cardinal. Those are the only two games in the last eight seasons in which Stanford has allowed five or more such touchdown drives.
Oregon QB Marcus Mariota is completing 58.5 percent of his passes thrown 10 yards or longer this season. That is an increase of 12.1 percentage points from Oregon’s starter last season, Darron Thomas. The key for Mariota has been play action. He has 16 pass touchdowns on 10-yard throws, 13 of which have come after a run fake.
USC WR Marqise Lee has 663 receiving yards and five touchdowns in his last three games. For the season, Lee has seven 100-yard receiving games, which leads the Pac-12 and is tied for the most in FBS. He has 792 yards after the catch, the most of any player from an AQ school.
USC QB Matt Barkley’s completion percentage has dropped by 10.6 percentage points when opponents blitz this season compared to last. Yet, that could change with UCLA on the schedule this week. Last season, Barkley completed all 15 of his passes, including four touchdowns, when the Bruins sent five or more rushers on a play.
UCLA RB Johnathan Franklin is averaging 127.0 yards per game, sixth most in FBS and 4.1 more yards per game than USC’s combination of Silas Redd and Curtis McNeal. One key to Franklin’s success is he has been hard to bring down. Franklin has gained 514 yards after contact this season, second most in the Pac-12.
Franklin is averaging 8 yards per rush outside the tackles this season. He has gained 42.3 percent of his rush yards outside the tackles, despite running in the direction on only a third of his attempts. He has 12 runs that gained at least 20 yards this season, with nine coming outside the tackles.
California leads the series with Oregon State 34-29, including a 23-6 win last year. But before that, the Beavers had won four in a row and 10 of 12 .
Both Cal and Oregon State will start their backup QBs. Sean Mannion, the Beavers former starters, will replace Cody Vaz, who is out with an ankle injury. Allan Bridgford will replace Zach Maynard, who is likely out with a knee injury.
Cal ranks 90th in the nation in scoring with 23.82 ppg, and it has yielded 3.64 sacks per game, which ranks 118th.
Arizona State leads the series with Washington State 24-12-2, but it lost 37-27 in Pullman last year, which ended a seven-game winning streak in the matchup.
The Cougars are 103rd in the nation in scoring offense (20.7 ppg) in their first year running Mike Leach's "Air Raid" offense.
The Sun Devils have lost four in a row but would become bowl eligible with a win. The Cougars have lost seven in a row since a 2-1 start, though three of those defeats came by eight points or fewer.
Utah leads the series with Arizona 20-15-2 and has won three in a row, including a 34-21 win last year. T
The Wildcats official injury report listed QB Matt Scott, who sat out this past Saturday against Colorado with a concussion, as probable. Junior college transfer B.J. Denker made his first start against the Buffs, completing 12 of 14 passes for 136 yards, also running nine times for 44 yards.
The Utes must win their final two games to become bowl eligible for the 10th consecutive season.
Washington leads the series with Colorado 6-5-1 and has won three in a row, including a 52-24 win last year.
The Huskies have won three in a row, while Colorado has lost six in a row by at least 25 points since it beat Washington State on Sept. 22.
The Buffaloes are 120th or last in the nation (no, there aren't 124 FBS teams, so stop incorrectly saying that in the comments section) in scoring defense, yielding 47.20 points per game. They are 115th in scoring offense, getting 17.60 ppg.