Ducks numbers speak for themselves
- Jason Vondersmith
- Portland Tribune - Sports
• Statistics show there were 3 seasons to Oregon's long roller coaster ride
Are you like everybody else, and you haven't quite come to grips with the Oregon Ducks' season?
It's not easy to figure out if you simply look at Oregon's record, 8-4. Really, the Ducks had three seasons: a 4-0 start highlighted by the win over Michigan; a 1-4 stretch, including three monumental midseason losses; and a 3-0 finish culminating in last week's big win against Oregon State.
Chew on these statistics over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, as the Ducks take time off before beginning bowl game preparations:
66%: Percentage of snaps taken by sophomore quarterback Kellen Clemens, who finally got the keys to the car from coach Mike Bellotti after 10 games.
Clemens played on 24 of 27 drives against UCLA and OSU. Clemens started all 12 games, started the second half in eight and finished eight. Backup Jason Fife finished four games, all in mop-up duty.
20%: Percentage of time Fife ran the ball during his series. He finished second on the team with 225 yards rushing and five touchdowns Ñ including the memorable score emblazoned on the cover of Sports Illustrated.
44%: Completion percentage of Clemens and Fife in games that the Ducks lost, as opposed to 63 percent in wins. The Ducks also averaged only 2.9 yards per rush in losses.
34-24: UO's advantage in second-half points the last three games (all wins). Before then, they had been outscored 94-174 in the second half this season and outscored 70-219 in their previous eight Pacific-10 Conference games (not including Arizona and Stanford).
108: Combined receptions by Samie Parker and Demetrius Williams, for 1,774 yards and 13 scores. The other four receivers combined for 35 catches.
13-163-3: Catches-yards-TDs for tight end Tim Day and freshman fullback Dante Rosario in the final three games. Their threat, and Terrence Whitehead's versatility, took heat off receivers to make plays.
32/65: Sacks/tackles-for-loss in eight wins, as opposed to four sacks and 29 tackles-for-loss in four losses.
29.5: Combined tackles-for-loss by Igor Olshansky and Devan Long, who leads Oregon and ranks fourth in the Pac-10 with 10.5 sacks.
52.9%. Percentage of third-down conversions the defense allowed in four losses, as opposed to 28.9 percent in wins. The Ducks converted 40.8 percent of third downs in wins and 31.5 percent in losses. Oregon also led the Pac-10 in fourth-down conversions for (62.5 percent) and against (25 percent).
9: Number of turnovers, not including two blocked punts, against Washington State in a 55-16 debacle. The Ducks had a +8 turnover ratio in wins, and -13 in losses.
156-40: Margin by which Washington State, Arizona State and Washington outscored the Ducks in the worst three-game series of losses suffered by Oregon since 1977.
6.9: Average yards per pass attempt by opponents, compared with 8.0 last year. In 12 games, the Ducks have given up 578 fewer passing yards than last year, while allowing an average of 22 fewer rushing yards per game.
42-for-42: Extra-points made by Jared Siegel, who struggled on field goals, going 10 of 16. Siegel has made an Oregon-record 88 extra-point kicks in a row. Meanwhile, freshman punter Paul Martinez ranked last in the Pac-10 in average (34.9 yards)
23.6 and 10.3: Oregon's kickoff and punt return averages, ranking first and second in the Pac-10, respectively.
As a bonus, here are seven key situations that changed the course of Oregon's season:
28-0: Oregon's lead after the first quarter against Mississippi State, with Clemens and Fife gaining early confidence.
Keith Lewis' blocked punt against Michigan: Jordan Carey fell on the loose ball in the end zone with 6:55 left in the fourth quarter for the decisive points in the 31-27 win.
Trailing 38-2 at the half: Oh, boy, what a comedown against Washington State.
0-for-2: Arizona State picked off Clemens' first two passes, forcing him to the bench in a game in which the Ducks wanted him to take all the snaps.
Seven plays, no score: The Oregon defense found its identity by stopping Stanford on seven rushes at the UO 1- or 2-yard line.
The final 6:35: Trailing 17-7, the Ducks took the ball against Cal and went on to score twice with Clemens at the controls. The final score came with 47 seconds left after Williams' 19-yard catch-and-run play on fourth-and-two early in the drive.
It's winnin' time: Over an eight-quarter stretch in the final three games, Clemens hit 38 of 57 passes (67 percent) for seven touchdowns.