First, a stats bomb!
|Yards Per Play Gained||#14||#4|
|Yards Per Play Allowed||#100||#80|
|3rd Down Conversions||#4||#1|
|3rd Down Conversions, Allowed||#31||#106|
|Red Zone TD %||#6||#2|
|Opponent Red Zone TD %||#10||#82|
|Starting QB, by Rating||#2||#1|
|Explosive Plays, Allowed||#35||#86|
Ignoring everything else, the plain and simple truth is that the Texas defense is a leaky sieve. SEC fans can now ridicule us for our preseason notions that Texas might play real defense this year.
Even accounting for strength of opponent, www.adjustedstats.com has the Texas pass defense at #84 in adjusted pass per play and #49 in adjusted run yards per play. That's better than being #100, but it's not championship level defense at any rate.
The Texas defense is giving up big yardage. Enormous yardage. Huge tracts of yardage. However, that does not make them as bad as WVU.
While WVU's defense might have the same propensity as Texas for avoiding tackles and getting lost during plays, WVU lacks the situational success that Texas has enjoyed.
Texas compliments awful yardage stats with good, but not great, indicators in Interceptions, 3rd Down %, and Opponent Red Zone TD %.
Potentially the windfall here is that if the Texas defense can focus either by defending a limited amount of space in the red zone or by having obvious pass/run downs, they can stop drives.
Since neither Texas' nor WVU's defense are responsible for Top 15 rankings in the AP poll, the offenses must be the ones making the noise. This couldn't be more true, as Texas clocks in at #14 in yards per play while WVU is a smoking #4.
Both teams are riding excellent QB play, with David Ash carrying a surprising #2 QB rating, only being edged out by Geno Smith of WVU who is sitting at #1.
Both teams are in the Top 5 in 3rd Down Conversions, and Top 10 in Red Zone TD %.
Well, basketball on grass is back in the Big 12 and Texas fans have a front row seat come Saturday. With both teams likely being able to score at will, the outcome of the game will rest solidly in turnovers and making defensive stands.
Since the Longhorns have at least shown a pulse in that area, the indicators are good for them. It's not clear yet how WVU expects to stop any Longhorn drive, but it's likely the Horns will be able to at least get Geno off the field once or twice.
Did I miss any relevant statistics?