10 things to know when Oregon and Ohio State play for the national championship – USA TODAY
1. Good news: Oregon has the reigning Heisman Trophy winner …
… the bad news? Since 1936, just 10 quarterbacks have won the Heisman and the national championship. The better news for Oregon fans is that three of those seven have come in the last six years, including Jameis Winston, who claimed both titles last year.
2. Oregon has so many jerseys
While they will only be wearing one uniform scheme during the national championship, Oregon has enough uniform combinations to not only wear a different scheme each quarter, but until the year 3344. The Ducks have 17,280 possible uniform combinations meaning that Nike needs to chill out a little.
3. Ohio State’s backup quarterback is Stephen Collier
This is important to know considering the Buckeyes are on their third quarterback this year. After Braxton Miller and J.T. Barrett with injuries, Cardale Jones was asked to carry the load in the Big Ten conference championship and in the Sugar Bowl against No. 1 Alabama.
Jones threw for four touchdowns and 500 yards in those two games.
4. Ezekiel Elliott is playing out of his mind
The man wearing the midriff uniform for Ohio State has run for six touchdowns and 571 yards in the Buckeyes’ last three games. Contrast Elliott’s last three games with his first 11, where he averaged 96 yards per game and 0.72 touchdowns, it would appear Elliott is peaking when his team needs him the most.
Oregon has never won a national championship, while Ohio State can lay claim to seven. The Buckeyes are also a perfect 8-0 against the Ducks, with the last win coming in 2010 in the Rose Bowl.
6. Marcus Mariota is possibly having the best season in history
Mariota has thrown a Pac-12 record 56 touchdowns this season, along with just six turnovers. He has 4,852 total offensive yards this year – a school record – and could become the first player in FBS history to have 50 more touchdowns than turnovers in a season.
He also earned 788 first-place Heisman Trophy votes, which is third-most in the history of voting.
7. Oregon’s offense makes you forget they play insane defense
The Ducks have been known for an explosive offense ever since Chip Kelly came to the program. But the Ducks’ defense was huge against Florida State in the Rose Bowl and key to the season’s success. The defense has allowed 22.3 points per game this season, 27th lowest in the FBS, and has allowed 20 points or fewer in five of its last six games.
Turnovers have also come fast an furious for the ducks in the home stretch. Through the first eight games of the year, Oregon forced 14 turnovers. In the Ducks’ last six games? Sixteen turnovers.
8. Urban Meyer’s wife set her hair on fire
Not really important to the game, but worth remembering that Urban Meyer’s wife Shelley set her hair on fire last month celebrating her 50th birthday.
9. Ohio State has the longest active winning streak in FBS
Since dropping their one loss of the season to Virginia Tech, Ohio State has won 12-consecutive games. Coach Urban Meyer also has a little bit of history on the line. Should the Buckeyes win, Meyer will join Nick Saban as the only FBS coaches to win national titles at multiple schools.
10. This is the first time this has happened!
One true champion! One true champion!