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10 Key Stats from Week 1 College Football Games

Scoring feats, streaks, successful debuts, and rare occurrences all contributed to a memorable weekend on the college gridiron.
Billy Napier, Florida Gators Football

Billy Napier wasn't just victorious in his debut as Florida's head coach, he also stayed undefeated when his team was leading at the half as the Gators upset No. 7 Utah in the Swamp in thrilling fashion. 

Week 1 of the college football season isn't over quite yet (Clemson vs. Georgia Tech is Monday night), but the 82 games that have been played have not disappointed.

It's impossible to encapsulate the past four days' worth of action with just 10 stats but here are some numbers, feats and accomplishments that have stood out, for better or worse.

2007: The last time Navy had lost to an FCS team before Delaware's 14-7 upset in Annapolis. Coincidentally, that loss back in 2007 also came courtesy of the Blue Hens. Delaware's only two victories over an FBS team in the last 16 seasons have come at Navy's expense. Prior to Saturday's loss, the Midshipmen had won 11 in a row over FCS programs, including three wins over the Blue Hens (2009, '11, '13).

62: Total points scored in the fourth quarter of the North Carolina-Appalachian State game on Saturday, one shy of the FBS record. The Tar Heels entered the final frame up 41-21 only to watch the host Mountaineers score six touchdowns and have an opportunity to potentially win the game on a two-point conversion with 28 seconds left and send the game on another attempt with nine seconds remaining. North Carolina survived 63-61 in the first game since 2019 where both teams scored more than 60 points.

55-0: The score of No. 1 Alabama's victory over Utah State. It marked the first time in 34 years that the Crimson Tide opened the season with a shutout (37-0 vs. Temple on Sept. 10, 1998). Additionally, the 55-point margin of victory is the largest in a season opener in Nick Saban's tenure, which is now in its 16th season.

35-0: Bill Napier's record as head coach when leading at halftime following Florida's 29-26 upset of No. 7 Utah. Entering this game as the underdog, the Gators scored a touchdown late in the second half to take a slim 14-13 lead into the half. The teams traded scores and the lead in the second half with Florida going back ahead 29-26 following quarterback Anthony Richardson's third touchdown run. But the outcome wasn't decided until linebacker Amari Burney picked off Utes quarterback Cameron Rising in the end zone with 17 seconds left to make Napier's Gators debut a successful one.

19-11: Record of first-year head coaches in Week 1. Among those victorious were the aforementioned Napier (over Utah), USC's Lincoln Riley (over USC), Miami's Mario Cristobal (over Bethune-Cookman), Akron's Joe Moorhead (in overtime over St. Francis), and Jim Mora Jr. (UConn over Central Connecticut). Those who came up short in their debuts for their new schools included LSU's Brian Kelly (24-23 loss on Sunday to Florida State), Notre Dame's Marcus Freeman (21-10 loss to Ohio State), Dan Lanning (49-3 loss to Georgia), and Virginia Tech's Brent Pry (20-17 loss to Old Dominion on Friday night). There also was one matchup of first-year head coaches in Week 1 with Duke's Mike Elko getting the better of Stan Drayton and Temple, winning 30-0 on Friday night.

16: Touchdowns surrendered by Hawaii in its first two games, both played at home. The Rainbow Warriors gave up nine to Vanderbilt in a 63-10 loss in Week 0 and then seven on Saturday night in a 49-17 defeat courtesy of WKU. Half of these scores have been on the ground, five through the air, and there have been three defensive scores as well. Hawaii's 56 points per game allowed aren't the worst in the country (124th), but the four teams behind them have played just once. The Rainbow Warriors also have given up the same number of touchdowns in their first two games that national champion Georgia surrendered all of last season, in 15 games.

0-11: Arizona's record in road games before beating San Diego State 38-20. The Wildcats hadn't won a road game since defeating Colorado 35-30 back on Oct. 5, 2019, and it also was their first victory in a season opener since a 62-24 win over Northern Arizona in 2017. This was Arizona's first season-opening win over an FBS opponent since taking down UTSA 42-32 in 2015.

4th-and-goal: Down 7-0 in the first quarter on the road against Boston College, Rutgers had 1st-and-goal from the 10-yard line… and then proceeded to punt six plays later. After gaining two yards on the first play, the Scarlet Knights went backward thanks to an offensive pass interference penalty, a holding call and, after an incompletion, a false start. On 3rd-and-goal from the 38, Rutgers quarterback Gavin Wimsatt was sacked for a loss of five yards. The Knights were also flagged for holding, but the penalty was declined. That made it 4th-and-goal from the 43 where Adam Korsak pinned the Eagles at the 3-yard line with a 40-yard punt. Rutgers intercepted Phil Jurkovec to end that drive and five plays, 61 yards later, the Knights got their first touchdown of the season on a 28-yard run by Aron Cruickshank. Rutgers would go on to rally from a nine-point deficit halfway through the third quarter to defeat Boston College 22-21.

4-3: Points scored by Iowa's defense compared to the offense in the Hawkeyes' 7-3 win over South Dakota State. The defense contributed a pair of safeties while all the offense could muster on its 16 drives was a 46-yard field goal near the end of the first quarter. For the game, Iowa outgained the FCS Jackrabbits 166-120, held them to six first downs, and 3-for-16 on third down. But the offense struggled to move the ball, producing a total of 10 first downs, averaging just 4.4 yards per pass attempt and 1.6 per carry, turned the ball over twice, and Aaron Blom missed a 40-yard field goal earlier in the first quarter before connecting on his second attempt.

3: USC returned three interceptions for touchdowns in a 66-14 rout of Rice in head coach Lincoln Riley's debut. The three pick-sixes tied both the school and Pac-12 single-game record. The other time the Trojans accomplished this feat was back on Nov. 11, 1982 at Arizona. In that game, one of the TDs was an intercepted fumble returned for a score which was categorized as an interception back then. Additionally USC's 52-point margin of victory was the largest since defeating San Jose State 56-3 on Sept. 5, 2009.