October 6, 2009

Inside the Numbers: Ohio State

MADISON, Wis. - At 2-0 in league play, both Ohio State and Wisconsin will vie for conference positioning as the Big Ten race heats up when they play this Saturday afternoon in the Horseshoe.

Early on in the week, BadgerBlitz.com takes a look inside the numbers of both the Buckeyes and the Badgers as they prepare for their big match up this weekend.

58.3: Through five games, Ohio State quarterback Terrelle Pryor has a 58.3 completion percentage. That number is lower than Wisconsin quarterback Scott Tolzien's 65.6 completion percentage through the same number of games.

154.7: Staying with the quarterbacks, Tolzien has a 154.7 pass efficiency rating. That number is good for tops in the Big Ten and 18th nationally. Sticking with the quarterback comparison, Pryor's pass efficiency rating is at 135.4, nearly 20 points less than that of Tolzien.

55: If you take Ohio State's top two rushers not named Pryor, they combine for 55 yards less than (5527) that of John Clay. Through five games, the Badger sophomore has rushed for 582 yards and has scored 7 touchdowns. His 116.4 yards per game ranks fifth nationally.

37.6: Over its past three games, Ohio State has limited opposing teams to only 13, 82 and 18 yards rushing. That equates to 37.6 yards per game. Entering the game, UW ranks first in the Big Ten with 217.2 rushing yards per game. Something will surely have to give in this week's contest.

32: In each of his past two games, Clay has rushed 32 times. In the second half against Minnesota, the Badger sophomore racked up 26 carries.

231.8: Pryor is accountable for nearly 232 yards of total offense on average per game. He throws for 172.2 yards per game and chips in nearly 60 yards per game on the ground. In fact, his 298 rushing yards to this point in the season is the best among Buckeyes.

8: Defensively, Ohio State has forced eight interceptions. To make the number even more interesting, a different Buckeye player has hauled every one of those interceptions in. Wisconsin also has eight interceptions on the year, but six players have made up for those picks. Senior Chris Maragos leads the Badgers with three interceptions on the year.

98: Wisconsin's starting linebacker trio of Mike Taylor, Culmer St. Jean and Jaevery McFadden are the three leading tacklers on the Badger roster. Combined, the three players have 98 total tackles. Taylor, a freshman, is the leading tackler on the team with 35.

54: On the season, senior O'Brien Schofield has 11 tackles-for-loss. With those tackles, he has backed opponents up a combined 54 yards. He also has 4.5 sacks, one pass breakup and two forced fumbles.

6.0: Ohio State's leading running back is Brandon Saine. On the season, he has rushed for 294 yards on only 49 carries. His six yards per carry is the best average on the team for players with at least 25 rushing attempts.

20.6: So far on the season, the Badger secondary has been tested by some of the Big Ten's best players. Two weeks ago against Blair White, UW shut him down and limited to only one-catch for eight yards. Last week against Minnesota, the unit was not quite as effective with Eric Decker as the Gopher senior racked up 140 yards on eight catches.

Now, entering the game against Ohio State, the Badgers will yet again be tested by Dane Sanzenbacher. While Sanzenbacher is not usually discussed as being on the level of the White's, Decker's and Arrelious Benn's of the league, he is a big play threat as his 20.6-yard per reception average suggests.

11.8: With two shut-outs in their record book already in 2009, the Ohio State defense is allowing only 11.8 points per game. Meanwhile, the Badger offense, one of the most balanced in the country, is averaging 35 points per game.

56.3: One of the reason's the Badger offense is capable of scoring so many points is the fact that offense is picking up 56.3 percent of its third down chances. That is leading the Big Ten and good for third in the country.

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