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College Football's 13 Most Important Stats from Week 2

CJ Verdell, Oregon Ducks Football

CJ Verdell's big day on the ground fueled Oregon's stunning upset of Ohio State in Columbus

The second week of the 2021 college football season is in the books. As expected, the two days of games produced plenty of surprises, big moments and interesting stats across the country. To help recap the games and why some of the games played out the way they did, Athlon Sports rounded up some of the most important numbers to know from Week 2.

College Football's 13 Most Important Stats from Week 2

7.1: Oregon’s Average Yards Per Carry Against Ohio State
The Ducks dominated the line of scrimmage in Saturday’s win against Ohio State. Oregon’s ground game totaled 269 yards over 38 attempts, including 161 by CJ Verdell. As a team, Oregon averaged 7.1 yards per carry and 6.9 yards per play versus the Buckeyes.

1: Amount of Regular-Season Losses by Ohio State Under Ryan Day
Saturday’s defeat to Oregon was the first by Ohio State in the regular season under coach Ryan Day. The other two defeats by the Buckeyes under Day occurred in the Fiesta Bowl against Clemson (playoff game) and this past season's national championship game versus Alabama.

3: Defensive Touchdowns by Iowa in First Two Games of 2021
Iowa’s defense has thoroughly dominated its first two opponents this season. The Hawkeyes are allowing just 4.3 yards per play and the defense is a big reason why this team is 2-0 after playing quality opponents in Iowa State and Indiana. Also, Iowa’s defense has tallied three touchdowns through two games – more than five FBS offenses so far in 2021.

38.8: Yards Per Play for Florida QB Anthony Richardson Against USF
Is there a quarterback controversy looming in Gainesville? Richardson averaged 38.1 yards per play over seven touches in Florida’s win over USF. Over two games in 2021, Richardson is averaging 21.2 yards per play.

9: BYU Snaps Nine-Game Losing Streak to Utah
The Cougars’ nine-game losing streak to rival Utah ended on Saturday night with a 26-17 victory. BYU emerged with the victory by winning the battle up front by rushing for 219 yards (compared to 193 for the Utes), having an edge on third downs, and in the turnover margin. Also, quarterback Jaren Hall (241 total yards and three overall scores) delivered a clutch performance for the Cougars.

333: Rushing Yards for Arkansas Against Texas
The Razorbacks owned the line of scrimmage in Saturday night’s win over Texas. Arkansas pounded the Longhorns for 333 rushing yards, with five players accounting for 40-plus yards on the ground. Additionally, the Razorbacks’ defense dominated Texas’ offensive line, accumulating three sacks and 11 tackles for a loss.

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300+: Michigan Has Eclipsed 300-Plus Rushing Yards in First Two Games of 2021
The Wolverines have found a winning formula so far in 2021 by rushing for more than 300 yards in each of the first two contests. Michigan’s offense pounded Washington’s defense for 343 rushing yards in Saturday’s 31-10 victory, while quarterback Cade McNamara completed only seven passes for 44 yards. This is the first time since 2017 the Wolverines have rushed for 300-plus yards in back-to-back games.

197: Rushing Yards for Notre Dame So Far in 2021
The Fighting Irish have just 197 rushing yards through two games in 2021. The offense eclipsed that total in eight individual contests last year.

4: Teams Added to the Big 12
The Big 12 responded to the departure of Oklahoma and Texas leaving by officially adding four teams to the league late last week. UCF, Cincinnati and Houston will join from the American Athletic Conference likely in 2023 or ’24, while BYU is slated to join prior to the ’23 season.

2: Games in a Row Michigan State Has Scored on the First Offensive Snap
It’s hard to envision this streak continuing all year, but Michigan State has now scored a 75-yard touchdown on the opening offensive snap in back-to-back games to start the 2021 season.

7.1: Stanford’s Per Play Total Against USC
While this may seem like a mundane statistic, consider this: Stanford punted or had a turnover on eight of nine drives against Kansas State and averaged just 4.5 yards a snap. A week later, the Cardinal torched USC for 7.1 yards per snap in a 42-28 upset.

8: Wins by FCS Teams Over FBS Programs in 2021
This number climbed by two from the first week after Jacksonville State stunned Florida State and Duquesne knocked off Ohio.

8: Completions by Texas A&M’s Zach Calzada in the Fourth Quarter
Texas A&Ms offense suffered a setback when Haynes King was injured early in Saturday’s game versus Colorado. Although backup Zach Calzada got off to a slow start (10 completions through first three quarters), he finished the game strong with eight completions for 118 yards and the game-winning score in the fourth quarter.

Podcast: Recapping Week 2 + All of the Numbers to Know in College Football