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Bowl teams that rely on the run

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Cheers and Jeers,Sports,College,Kevin Dunleavy

Passing isn't the only path to success in college football. Georgia Tech media relations head Dean Buchan points out that of the 21 college football teams that rank 100th or worse in passing offense, nine are bowl bound and a 10th (Ohio State) went undefeated. Here are five who successfully bucked the trend:

5. Kent State » In the wide-open Mid-American Conference, the Golden Flashes (11-2) depended heavily on their Thunder and Lightning backfield: 260-pound Trayion Durham (1,248 yards rushing) and 164-pound Dri Archer (1,352 yards rushing).

4. Northwestern » With prolific quarterback Dan Persa, the Wildcats (9-3) used to throw caution to the wind, but Pat Fitzgerald has rebuilt the offense around running back Venric Mark (1,310 yards rushing) and quarterback Kain Colter, who has more rushes (158) than passes (134).

3. Wisconsin » The Badgers (8-5) hoped for balance with Maryland transfer Danny O'Brien, but he failed to live up to the standard of Russell Wilson. Wisconsin still made it to the Rose Bowl despite ranking 111th in passing offense.

2. Florida » Balance? Schmalance! Quarterback Jeff Driskel completed 64.8 percent of his throws, but Will Muschamp has ordered up nearly twice as many rushes (509) as passes (259). Sugar Bowl-bound Florida (11-1) ranks 114th in passing offense (143.9 ypg).

1. Ohio State » Braxton Miller was a dual-threat Heisman candidate, but coach Urban Meyer employed his legs more than his arm. The Buckeyes (12-0) rank 101st in passing offense (181.5 ypg).

- Kevin Dunleavy

kdunleavy@washingtonexaminer.com

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