2014 BCS Championship: FSU, Auburn score points aplenty in different ways
Judging by the statistics, the BCS national championship game between Auburn and Florida State offers something for everyone.
For fans who like offense, they'll get to see an FSU team that's second nationally in scoring at 53 points a game and sixth in total offense at 529.4 yards. Auburn is 11th in both scoring and offense, at 40.2 points and 505.3 yards.
Fans who hanker for an explosive running back will be treated to Auburn's Tre Mason, who's coming off his 304-yard outing against Missouri in the Southeastern Conference championship game. Mason is averaging just under 125 yards to rank 10th, and the Nick Marshall-quarterbacked Tigers lead the nation at 335.7.
You want defense? Mason will be going against a Seminoles unit that's giving up a tad under 117 yards rushing, has surrendered fewer than 100 on the ground in three straight games and has allowed a nation-low five rushing touchdowns.
If you like lots of balls in the air, the Seminoles will oblige. Heisman Trophy favorite Jameis Winston is completing 68 percent of his passes for 294 yards a game, and his 38 touchdowns are second most in the FBS.
Auburn's weakness is stopping the pass. Missouri was the fourth opponent to throw for more than 300 yards against Auburn. Auburn is 102nd against the pass, allowing 259 yards.
MAGIC MASON: The 304 rushing yards by Auburn's Mason was the fifth most in SEC history and 3 shy of the Auburn record of 307 by Curtis Kuykendall against Miami in 1944. Mason's 46 carries were the most in SEC title-game history and second most in conference history behind the 47 by Georgia's Herschel Walker against Florida in 1981.
BUCKEYES BLANKED: Big Ten champion Michigan State ended Ohio State's 15-game streak of scoring in the first quarter. The last time the Buckeyes were scoreless after 15 minutes was last season against Penn State. Ohio State has outscored opponents 220-55 this season.
EVERY WHICH WAY: Oklahoma scored touchdowns against Oklahoma State on offense, defense and special teams in its 34-23 win. It was the first time that happened for the Sooners since their 2006 game against Baylor. OU also scored its first touchdown off a fake field goal since 2002 against Missouri.
PICK-SIX TWICE IN A ROW: Back-to-back interception returns for touchdowns in the fourth quarter paved the way to West Chester's 28-7 win over Shepherd in the NCAA Division II playoffs. Al-Hajj Shabazz ran the first one back 76 yards, and Brandon Pepper stepped in front of Jeff Ziemba's next pass and returned it 35 yards for a 28-7 lead. Guess what happened on Shepherd's next play? Ziemba threw another interception to Pepper. No touchdown this time, but it but finished off the game.
AROUND THE COUNTRY: Stanford, in its Pac-12 championship game win over Arizona State, failed to force a turnover for the first time in 37 games. The Sun Devils forced at least one for the 26th straight game. ... Auburn and Missouri combined for 1,211 yards of total offense, breaking the SEC title-game record of 938 set by Auburn and South Carolina in 2010. ... Michigan State held Ohio State to 374 yards of total offense, a season low for the Buckeyes. ... Andre Williams of Boston College holds an insurmountable lead in the national rushing race. The Eagles were idle, so his average remains 175.2 yards a game. Ka'Deem Carey of Arizona ran for 157 yards against Stanford, 1 better than his season average. ... Unbeaten Northwest Missouri State set a school playoff record with seven rushing touchdowns in a 59-21 win over St. Cloud State in the Division II quarterfinals.