"Torture numbers, and they'll confess to anything." --Gregg Easterbrook
"Statistics are human beings with the tears wiped off." --Paul Brodeur
Here are a few statistics I've cherry-picked from the Northwestern game notes and the Penn State game notes in advance of Saturday's big game.
1962: The last year that Northwestern started a season 6-0. The Wildcats were ranked No. 1 that year.
9: Number of NU road wins out of its last 14 road Big Ten games
5: Consecutive wins by Penn State over Northwestern. The last time the Wildcats won was a 14-7 victory in 2004 at Happy Valley.
33.8: Average points Northwestern scores per game
13.6: Average points given up by Penn State per game, second in the Big Ten and 14th nationally
76-9: Penn State's scoring margin in first halves of its five games
+7: Penn State's turnover margin, tops in the Big Ten
+2: NU's turnover magin
255.8: NU rushing yards per game, second in the Big Ten and ninth nationally
129.8: Rushing yards per game allowed by PSU's defense
133.8: PSU rushing yards per game
90.0: Rushing yards per game allowed by NU's defense, tops in the Big Ten and 13th nationally
2-of-8: Penn State's field goal accuracy
62%: Penn State's red zone scoring percentage
92%: NU's red zone scoring percentage, tops in the Big Ten
61.5%: Penn State opponents' red zone scoring percentage, lowest in the Big Ten
106,572: Official capacity of Beaver Stadium
45: Career victories of Pat Fitzgerald, four shy of the NU record of 49 set by Lynn "Pappy" Waldorf