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October 26, 2006

Amazing stats: Running away

No matter how much you hear about spread offenses and space-age passing games, many coaches boil down winning to one thing: Running the football.

Running accomplishes a lot of things. It helps a team control the clock. It puts an offense in safer down-and-distance situations. It allows the defense to rest.

Who would you say are a couple of the nation's most surprising teams at this point? Certainly Rutgers owes its 7-0 start to the ground game. How about Boise State and its 8-0 start? The Broncos are in the top 10 in the country in rushing. So are unexpected top 25 teams Arkansas and Texas A&M.

With that said, we ran through the NCAA statistics and ground out this information for you:

Winning percentage of teams in the top 10 in the NCAA in rushing offense, including four undefeated teams and no teams with losing records (61-11)
Winning percentage of teams in the top 10 in the NCAA in passing offense, including two teams with losing records (46-29)

Rutgers RB Ray Rice.

Wisconsin RB P.J. Hill.
Division I-A teams, including No. 11 Notre Dame, that don't have as many rushing yards the entire season as Wisconsin redshirt freshman running back P.J. Hill has in his past four games (714)
Touchdowns by Boise State running back Ian Johnson this season
Touchdowns by No. 18 Boston College this season

Touchdowns of 50 or more yards rushing and receiving by Clemson true freshman running back C.J. Spiller
Touchdowns of 50 or more yards this season by the offense of No. 2 Michigan
Touchdowns of 50 or more yards this season by the defense of No. 2 Michigan

Clemson RB C.J. Spiller.

349 Rushing yards in the past two games by West Virginia quarterback Pat White, who ranks fourth in the Big East in rushing
346 Rushing yards in the past four games by Syracuse, last in the Big East in rushing

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