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Sunday Takeaways: fun with football numbers

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Sunday Takeaways explores the memorable moments, oddities, trivia and trends from college football’s weekend.

Sometimes, the numbers alone speak volumes in college football.

After another stunning Saturday — one that provided more separation between the contenders and the pretenders — we offer the weekend’s most telling numbers.

TIDE ROLLING: Top-ranked Alabama has 18 straight wins after defeating Arkansas 49-30. The Crimson Tide now faces its SEC gauntlet of Tennessee, Texas A&M and LSU.

BUCKEYES, TOO: Ohio State registered its 22nd consecutive win against Indiana, beating the Hoosiers 38-17. The Buckeyes now go on to Wisconsin.

DOMINATION: Rutgers, the birthplace of college football, hasn’t seen anything like this.
Michigan’s 78-0 win at Rutgers was filled with eye-popping statistics. Michigan outgunned the Scarlet Knights 600-39. It had a 23-2 edge in first downs. It led in passing 119 yards to 5. It outrushed Rutgers 481 to 34. It converted 6-for-11 on third-down conversions, while Rutgers was 0-for-17.

Rutgers punted 16 times.

Its largest gain was 12 yards.

It was Michigan’s second biggest margin of victory since 1920 — you remember the 85-0 win against Chicago University in 1939, right? — and its largest Big Ten win since a 69-point triumph against Northwestern in 1975.

It was the most decisive loss for Rutgers since an 82-0 defeat at the hands of Princeton in 1888 — two weeks before Benjamin Harrison won the presidential election by prevailing in the Electoral College, even though incumbent Grover Cleveland had a plurality of the popular vote.

HANGING ON: Texas A&M remained unbeaten, but it did everything possible to try and end that streak. In a 45-38 double-overtime win against Tennessee, it surrendered 682 yards, blew a 21-point lead and shanked a 38-yard field-goal attempt at the end of regulation.

END OF CONSISTENCY: Stanford is sinking following a 42-16 loss against Washington State. For the first time in the six-season tenure of coach David Shaw, the Cardinal has lost games in consecutive weeks (the team had lost consecutive games, but not in back-to-back weeks).

PULLING RANK: Navy defeated its first Associated Press top-10 team in 32 years when it downed Houston 46-40. To celebrate, Navy officials announced there would be no school Tuesday (it was already closed for Monday’s Columbus Day holiday).

NOT SO STRONG: Texas allowed 672 yards in its 45-40 loss against Oklahoma. The Longhorns have given up at least 45 points in four of their five games.

PURPLE REIGN: Look out for Washington, which has scored 35 points in nine consecutive games after stomping Oregon 70-21. QB Jake Browning accounted for eight touchdowns. The Ducks, meanwhile, gave up 70 points for the first time since 1941 and are 11-9 since reaching the first College Football Playoff National Championship Game.

BULL RUN: Washington’s scoring spree is second only to the University of South Florida Bulls, who are putting up some stunning offensive numbers. In a 38-22 win against East Carolina, the Bulls hit the 35-point mark for the 10th straight game, the nation’s top ongoing streak. The Bulls also surpassed the 440-yard mark in total offense for the 10th straight game, while rolling up at least 200 yards rushing in their 11th straight game — all streaks that are the nation’s best.

FLYING LOW: Kansas put up a fight, but was defeated by TCU, 24-23. The Jayhawks, 0-12 last season, are 1-16 under coach David Beaty. The program has lost 14 consecutive games in the Big 12.

UNBEATEN: There are 11 unbeaten teams remaining in the Football Bowl Subdivision — Alabama (6-0), Baylor (5-0), Boise State (5-0), Clemson (6-0), Michigan (6-0), Nebraska (5-0), Ohio State (5-0), Texas A&M (6-0), Washington (6-0), West Virginia (4-0) and Western Michigan (6-0).

WINLESS: There are two winless teams remaining in the FBS — Miami-Ohio (0-6) and Rice (0-5).

Sunday Takeaways: fun with football numbers

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