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Thursday, June 12, 2014
Returning offensive production

By Ted Miller

Phil Steele is taking his statical preseason tour through college football, and today's inquiry is what percentage of offensive production is returning across the country.

This is an area where the Pac-12 does pretty well, though welcoming back 10 starting quarterbacks is offset by the departure of five of the top six leaders in rushing yards as well as the top- three receivers.

Connor Halliday
Washington State has just about all of its offensive production returning in 2014, led by quarterback Connor Halliday.
Here's how Steele stacks things up (number to the left is national rank):
3. Washington State, 94.36%
15. UCLA, 84.22%
22. California, 80.19%
25. USC, 78.95%
29. Oregon, 77.63%
31. Utah, 76.83%
32. Oregon State, 76.65%
43. Stanford, 73.11%
46. Arizona State, 72.27%
68. Colorado, 65.81%
115. Washington, 34.18%
124. Arizona, 23.61%

Having nine teams in the top 50 bodes well for Pac-12 offenses this fall.

The Cougars do well here because just about all of their offensive production -- read: passing game -- is returning. The bottom two, Washington and Arizona, are not only replacing their QBs, they are replacing the top two running backs in the conference in 2013.

Further, in most cases you can easily point to where teams take their biggest hit: UCLA (WR Shaq Evans), USC (WR Marqise Lee), Oregon (WR Josh Huff), Oregon State (WR Brandin Cooks), Stanford (RB Tyler Gaffney), Arizona State (RB Marion Grice), Colorado (WR Paul Richardson).

Obviously, as our mutual funds tell us, past performance does not necessarily predict future results.