SDS does a weekly stat checker for all you stat rats. You know who you are. So here are six very interesting stats related to the week 11 matchups:
44.7 vs. 9.1
Texas A&M averages a gaudy 44.7 points per game and over 550 yards of total offense per game. Alabama only gives up 9.1 points per game and 229 yards per game of total offense. The Aggies have started fast in every game this season but had trouble finishing against LSU and Florida. This is the biggest marquee matchup in all of college football, as two Heisman hopefuls – AJ McCarron and Johnny Manziel – do work. Expect Alabama’s defense to follow the blueprint Florida and LSU laid out: keep Manziel in the pocket and keep the defensive linemen from getting up field too far. We’ll see if the Tide’s defense can corral Manziel.
112 vs. 115
Missouri’s offense is ranked 112th in the country after finishing 12th in 2011. Likewise, Tennessee’s defense is ranked 115th in the country under new defensive coordinator Sal Sunseri. Missouri’s offensive struggles can be attributed to both the SEC and a combination of injuries and attrition on offense. James Franklin hasn’t been himself the entire season and has been nicked up with a shoulder and knee injury, and the offensive line has been banged up this season as well. Tennessee’s defense did lose their best secondary player in Brian Randolph in week three, and they haven’t been able to compensate for his loss. Rather, it’s been getting progressively worse every week. Will Missouri’s offense be able to capitalize on a bad defense, or will Tennessee’s defense look good against a struggling Missouri offense? Something has to give, right?
3.22 vs. 2.22
Auburn is allowing an average of 3.22 sacks per game this season, the worst in the SEC. The Tigers have given up an SEC-high 29 sacks in nine games. However, as good as Georgia has been this season rushing the quarterback, the Dawgs are just averaging 2.22 sacks per game. Jarvis Jones is second in the SEC with 8.5 sacks and 15 tackles for loss, and the defense has been cranking ever since the Cocktail Party kicked off. I expect Jones and company to live in the Auburn backfield Saturday and take advantage of the worst offensive line in the SEC. The good news for the Tigers is freshman quarterback Jonathan Wallace is mobile and can elude pressure. The bad news is he may be running for his life on every play.
Mississippi State started 7-0 and jumped up to #11 in the BCS rankings. However, in their last two games against worthy competition, the Bulldogs have been outscored 76-20 against Alabama and Texas A&M. The defensive front has been getting pushed around, and LSU is as physical a team they will play all season in the trenches. The Bulldogs are clearly not the team we all thought through seven games, as this could have been the year they could have taken third in the West.
Florida leads the country in passing efficiency defense at 87.5. The Gators have allowed 1,679 yards through the air and only four touchdowns. Florida has picked off an SEC-high 15 passes, good for 6th in the country. Last year Florida finished -12 in turnover margin and only intercepted an SEC-low eight passes. The defensive secondary is one of the main reasons the Gators are sitting 8-1 and the #6 ranked team in the country. The Gators picked off Missouri’s James Franklin four times last week, and this could be the best secondary unit in the country.
30 vs. 12
South Carolina leads the SEC with 30 sacks because of that mountain of man in Jadeveon Clowney. As bad as Arkansas has been on offense, the offensive line hasn’t given up as many sacks as what you would think, with only 12 the entire season, good for third best in the SEC. Most of it is attributed to a veteran quarterback getting the ball out early before the defenders can sack him. Tyler Wilson has really taken some shots this season, even after his concussion. And South Carolina will look to disrupt the timing of the Arkansas passing game. The Hogs’ offensive line against the Gamecocks’ defensive line will be a tell-tale indication of how this game will play out.
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