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SEC Championship Game: Alabama Crimson Tide vs. Missouri Tigers -- Mutual Opponents in 2014

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Alabama and Missouri have four mutual opponents in 2014. Both teams are 4-0 in the games, but let's take a look at how the games shook out...

Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Thanks to conference expansion, there are now fewer common opponents between teams from the SEC East and the SEC West than there used to be. But let's see what the numbers from Alabama and Missouri's shared opponents might tell us about Saturday's SEC Championship Game.

Alabama

Florida September 20 Tuscaloosa 42-21
Arkansas October 11 Fayetteville 14-13
Texas A&M October 18 Tuscaloosa 59-0
Tennessee October 25 Knoxville 34-20

Missouri

Florida October 18 Gainesville 42-13
Texas A&M November 15 College Station 34-27
Tennessee November 22 Knoxville 29-21
Arkansas November 28 Columbia 21-14

On the surface, Alabama's results (with the exception of Arkansas) appear the more impressive wins. The Tide's win over Texas A&M is arguably the most lopsided SEC match-up of 2014 (non-Vanderbilt category) and the Florida win was deceiving in the final score, as the Gators never really competed while the Tide rolled up 645 offensive yards.

Missouri's most dominating win of the four games is their Florida win in which the Tigers offense accumulated a whopping 121 total yards and 20 passing yards, yet still won by 29 points. The win came after the Tigers lost two of their previous three games, and started their six-game winning streak to end the regular season.

Beyond the score lines and recaps, what can be gleaned from the statistics of the games?

Statistical Comparion of Mutual Opponents


Alabama Average Missouri Average Advantage
Scoring Margin 23.75 12.75 Alabama
Total Offense 492.5 384.75 Alabama
Total Defense 272.5 297.75 Alabama
Turnover Margin 0.25 1.5 Mizzou
Time of Possession 32:45:00 32:11:00 Alabama
Yards Per Play 6.69 4.99 Alabama
Opponent Yards Per Play 3.96 4.49 Alabama
Pass Yards Per Attempt 10.44 6.14 Alabama
Pass Completion Percentage 60.87% 52.80% Alabama
Passing TD per game 3.25 1 Alabama
Opponent Pass Yards per Attempt 5.05 5.51 Alabama
Opponent Pass Completion Percentage 51.85% 57.04% Alabama
Opponent Pass TDs 1 2 Alabama
Rush Yards Per Attempt 4.53 4.65 Mizzou
Rush TDs 2 1.75 Alabama
Opponent Rush Yards per Attempt 3.07 3.34 Alabama
Opponent Rush TDs 0.5 0.25 Mizzou
Total First Downs 22.75 21 Alabama
Third Down Conversion Percentage 59.02% 49.30% Alabama
Opponent Third Down Conversion Percentage 37.50% 35.48% Mizzou
Penalty Yards 40 78 Alabama
Sacks 3 3.75 Mizzou
Sacks Given Up 1.25 1.5 Alabama
Redzone Points Per Attempt 5.62 5.15 Alabama
Redzone Scoring Percentage 84.62% 92.31% Mizzou
Redzone TD Scoring Percentage 76.92% 61.54% Alabama
Opponent Redzone Points per Attempt 4.13 5.13 Alabama
Opponent Redzone Scoring Percentage 75.00% 87.50% Alabama
Opponent Redzone TD Scoring Percentage 50.00% 62.50% Alabama
Kickoff Return Yards per Attempt 20.5 42.75 Mizzou
Opponent Kickoff Return Yards per Attempt 20.5 24.8 Alabama
Punt Return Yards per Attempt 8.22 11.33 Mizzou
Opponent Punt Return Yards per Attempt 4.67 8.57 Alabama
Punting Yards per Attempt 45.11 41.47 Alabama
Field Goal Percentage 33.33% 70.00% Mizzou

All Stats via http://myteamsbetter.com

Alabama and Missouri both put up similar defensive efforts in these four match-ups, as the defenses yielded a difference of 15 yards per game. Despite posting over a turnover more per game, Missouri's defense gave up more than five points per game greater than Alabama's defense.

The more astounding difference in the statistics comes between the offenses of the two teams. The Florida and Texas A&M games represented arguably the high points of the Lane Kiffin offense for Alabama, but over the four compared games, the Alabama offense averaged over 6.5 yards per play (compared to Missouri's 4.99)! The rushing averages of Alabama and Missouri are similar, with Missouri averaging a marginally higher rush yards per play, but the striking difference is in passing offense.

Alabama's 10.44 yards per pass attempt for these games would rank first nationally if it applied to the whole season, and compares to Alabama's 8.02 yards per attempt in their other games (which would rank 26th nationally for the whole season).

So what stands out in the comparison of mutual opponents? Any trends from these games that differ from expectations?