Stats & Info: Jeff Demps


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Florida and Ohio State meet in the TaxSlayer.com Gator Bowl on Monday afternoon. Both schools are trying to avoid snapping long streaks with their seventh loss of the season.
The Florida Gators and Ohio State Buckeyes wrap up disappointing seasons when they meet in the TaxSlayer.com Gator Bowl on Monday (ESPN2, 1 ET).

Don’t Take Offense
The big reason for each team’s rough season has been bad offense. Florida is 102nd in FBS in total offense and was held to zero or one offensive touchdowns in six of its 12 games this season.

Ohio State is 107th in the country in total offense, and the Buckeyes’ 3,837 yards gained this season were the second-fewest by any bowl-eligible team.

Stay Off-Center
There’s something to watch when each team has the ball that involves the center.

Florida running back Jeff Demps has gained nearly 83 percent of his rushing yards outside the tackles. He has 15 runs of 10 yards or more and only two of them have come up the middle.

For the Buckeyes, quarterback Braxton Miller has completed just 40 percent of his passes this season when he takes a snap from under center.

The good news for Ohio State is that when Miller does complete a pass from this formation, it tends to gain big yardage. Seven of his 17 completions after taking a snap under center have gone for at least 20 yards, with three resulting in touchdowns.

Miller has also had much better success as a passer when he gets away from the middle of the field. He hasn’t thrown an interception in 25 attempts from outside the pocket, and nearly doubles his yards-per-attempt average in those limited opportunities.

Numbers to Know
Florida has a turnover margin of minus-11, which is eight-worst in the FBS. The Gators have recovered just four fumbles this season -- only two teams have fewer fumble recoveries.

In terms of wins and losses, these are the worst Ohio State and Florida teams in a while. The Buckeyes have six losses for the first time since 1999, while it’s the first time for the Gators since 1987.

Florida has finished with a winning record every season since 1988. Officially, that’s the longest active streak in the nation due to Florida State’s vacated wins in the 2006 and 2007 seasons.

The loser of this game will finish with seven losses. Florida hasn’t lost that many games since finishing 0-10-1 in 1979. Ohio State’s last seven-loss season was way back in 1897, easily the longest active streak in the nation. Florida State is second on that list -- its last seven-loss season came in 1975.

AP Photo/Andy Manis
Wisconsin fans hope to "Jump Around" plenty of times Saturday night when the Badgers host Nebraska in the first Top 10 matchup in Madison since 1962.

This week’s Nickel Package:

1. When the seventh-ranked Wisconsin Badgers take on eighth-ranked Nebraska Cornhuskers on Saturday it will be the first Top 10 matchup that the Badgers have played in since 2004. That year, 10th-ranked Wisconsin won at fifth-ranked Purdue Boilermakers 20-17. However, you have to go back to 1962 for the last time the Badgers played in a Top 10 matchup at home. On Nov. 24 of that season, third-ranked Wisconsin beat fifth-ranked Minnesota Golden Gophers 14-9. That was one of two Top 10 matchups in Madison that season. The first one came two weeks earlier as the eighth-ranked Badgers upset top-ranked Northwestern Wildcats 37-6.

2. Over the last three-plus years, the Florida Gators' Jeff Demps-Chris Rainey backfield combination has used its speed to wreak havoc on most SEC defenses, but it has yet to crack the code on this weekend's opponent. In three previous games against the Alabama Crimson Tide, this tandem has generated 39.0 yards per game and 4.0 yards per offensive play. In their other 25 games against SEC competition, they've accounted for 106.4 yards per game and 6.6 yards per touch, including 44 plays that gained 15 yards or more. They are still looking for their first gain of 15-plus yards against the Crimson Tide.


AP Photo/Rod Aydelotte
Robert Griffin III has thrown more TDs than incomplate passes this season.



3. Baylor Bears quarterback Robert Griffin III has thrown more touchdowns (13) than incomplete passes (12) through the first three games of the season. No qualifying quarterback (at least 15 pass attempts per team game played) since 1990 has finished with a similar ratio. The closest was Michigan’s Elvis Grbac, who threw 24 touchdowns with 76 incomplete passes while completing two-thirds of his passes in 1991. Since 2004, no other qualifying quarterback even made it to the end of September with more touchdowns than incompletions. Colt McCoy came the closest, with 14 touchdowns and 20 incomplete passes in the first four games for the Texas Longhorns in 2008.

4. The Clemson-Virginia Tech game features two coaches on opposite ends of the spectrum. While Frank Beamer is the oldest coach in his conference, Dabo Swinney is the youngest. When Beamer made his Virginia Tech Hokies debut in 1987 (by coincidence – at home, against the Clemson Tigers), Swinney was still in high school. The last time Clemson beat Virginia Tech, in 1989, Swinney was a freshman on the Alabama football team. Beamer will coach his 300th game with Virginia Tech on Saturday; using an average of 13 games per season, Swinney would coach his 300th game with Clemson in the 2031 season.

5. The Texas A&M Aggies are less than a year away from joining the SEC, and they play an SEC opponent this weekend in the Arkansas Razorbacks. The Aggies haven’t beaten an SEC team in 16 years and are 0-6 against the conference since 1995 when they beat the LSU Tigers in their season opener. Of course, Texas A&M was an SWC member then. The longest active winless streak by a current AQ-conference team against the SEC is 12 by the Oregon State Beavers. The Beavers are 0-11-1 all-time versus SEC teams and have lost four in a row since tying the Tennessee Volunteers in 1978. The longest active losing streak is technically by the Ohio State Buckeyes, because of the vacated Sugar Bowl win over Arkansas. Take away that win, which the NCAA does, and the Buckeyes have lost eight straight to SEC teams since beating LSU in 1988.

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