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Texas Football By The Numbers

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This week I'm foregoing the usual list of random numbers for a holistic look at the defense. Let's start with the basics: Texas' overall defensive numbers in 2007 and 2008.

Plays/Gm Yds/Gm Yds/Play Points/Gm Points/Play
2007 72.5 371 5.1 25.3 .340
2008 65.2 353 5.4 20.7 .317
'08 Delta -10% -5% +5% -18% -7%

Even before comparing the offenses each defense faced, we can see Texas under Will Muschamp has ceded a bit more yardage while cutting down on points allowed. But take a look after the jump at the drastic difference in offensive competency of Texas' opponents between 2007 and '08.

2007 Yds/Play Pts/Play 2008 Yds/Play Pts/Play
Ark St 5.4 .34 FAU 5.7 .32
TCU 4.9 .33 UTEP 5.8 .50
UCF 5.7 .49 Rice 6.4 .56
Rice 5.3 .42 Arkansas 5.3 .30
K State 5.8 .49 Colorado 4.5 .27
Oklahoma 6.4 .61 Oklahoma 7.0 .66
Iowa St 4.4 .24 Missouri 7.3 .64
Baylor 4.9 .25 Okla St. 7.2 .62
Nebraska 6.3 .45 Texas Tech 7.5 .63
Okla St. 6.5 .46 Baylor 5.8 .42
Texas Tech 6.8 .53
A&M 5.4 .38
Arizona St 5.3 .43
Averages 5.6 .42 Averages 6.3 .50

Texas' 2008 opponents-to-date are averaging a full 13 and 19 percent more yards and points per play, respectively. Though this data isn't perfectly controlled, it comports with what our eyeballs tell us is the case: this year's opposing offenses have been significantly more explosive than last year's.

Taking that into account, it's especially impressive that Muschamp's defense hasn't given much ground in terms of yardage allowed while the scoring defense has actually improved. All this, with two freshmen starting at safety. Not half bad, sir. Not half bad.