On Monday, ESPN.com writer David Hale fired out some tweets that were very depressing for Wake Forest fans, but also piqued my morbid curiosity. I then set out to find the results of each of our rushing attempts this season, sacks excluded, to determine the distribution of our rush yards gained.
Highest % of non-sack runs gaining 2 yds or less, P5 teams: #WF 60.1% PennSt 50.8% #VaTech 48.1% #Clemson 46.3%— David Hale (@DavidHaleESPN) October 20, 2014
Wake 34.6%, PSU 27.1%, Clemson 23.5%. RT @Robert_Reinhard: Do you have the numbers for 0 yards or less?— David Hale (@DavidHaleESPN) October 20, 2014
Disclaimer:My numbers are slightly off from David Hale's but the percentages are within 1% of each other and are certainly good enough for our purposes.
That's right, on nearly 35% of our rushing attempts, excluding sacks, we are at best getting back to the line of scrimmage. Nearly 21% of our rushing attempts go for negative yardage. 21%!
We are dead last nationally in rush yards/attempt (1.20), and this is 1.11 yards/carry worse than the 3rd to last team (Connecticut at 2.31). We are averaging 37 yards per contest on nearly 31 attempts per, and this includes games against ULM, Gardner-Webb and Army. We had 14 rush yards against Utah State BEFORE excluding sacks.
By my calculations, we have carried the ball 187 times this season for 480 yards, which is an average of 2.56 yards/carry. This average would still place us an embarrassing 125th nationally before excluding sacks. I cannot begin to express just how bad that truly is. Wake fans, if anyone tells you that our rushing attack isn't as bad as you think it is, then direct them to this article (tell them how much you love Blogger So Dear) and tell them that it is in fact that bad.
Clearly Wake Forest is the worst rushing team by a wide this season, but what about historically? I went back to 2005, which is the oldest year that Football Outsiders has the Rushing S&P+ statistic. As you can see, Wake Forest is currently the worst rushing offense over that time span. It's worth noting that this number should rise and even out a bit by the end of the year, but either way it's still going to be arguably the worst rushing attack over the past decade.
|2010||New Mexico State||70.7|
|2008||New Mexico State||62.3|