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Stats that matter: New Mexico at Texas

9/4/2012

Number are said to rarely lie. It’s with that thought in mind that each week HornsNation, with a healthy assist from the ESPN Stats and Info crew, will dig into the numbers and pull three stats that could play a significant role in the outcome in Texas’ game. On game No. 2 against New Mexico:

No. 1: 75 percent scoring on drives featuring explosive plays

Texas had 108 offensive explosive plays in 2011 -- a run for 10 or more yards or a pass of 20 or more. Eighty-one of those plays directly contributed to a Longhorn score. That means if Texas rips off a run for 10 or more or a pass of 20 or more it is highly likely (75 percent chance) Texas will score on that drive.

Taking that test slighty further, Texas scored five touchdowns against Wyoming. Only one of those drives did not feature an explosive play. But that touchdown drive was started by an explosive play, the 19-yard interception return by Kenny Vaccaro.

On the four other touchdown drives Texas had six explosive runs by Joe Bergeron and Malcolm Brown.

Two drives that featured explosives plays -- an 18-yard rush by Jaxon Shipley and a 13-yard run by D.J. Monroe -- did not end in a score. Both times a field goal was missed at the end of the drive.

No. 2: 35-0

That is Texas’ record when it outrushes its opponent by more than 200 yards in a game during Mack Brown' tenure. Last week Texas had 211 more rushing yards than Wyoming. This week New Mexico brings in an option attack that rolled up 327 rushing yards in its opener.

If the numbers stay the same on both sides of the ball, Texas might have a slightly more difficult time than most expect. The Longhorns are 21-31 under Brown in games in which they have been outrushed by their opponent.

No. 3: 40.6 points allowed per game

From 2009-11, no team in FBS gave up more points than the Lobos. In fact, the Lobos were the only team in FBS to give up an average of 40-plus points per game over that time span.

Last season most of the points were given up on the ground. New Mexico allowed 46 rushing touchdowns. That’s eight more than any other team in FBS.