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Three-point stance: Michigan's long drives

1.Michigan coach Rich Rodriguez told me Monday that the Wolverines already have six scoring drives of 90 yards or more this season, two more than they’ve had in any full season since 1974 (that’s as far as the statistics go). It sounds good, right? To Rodriguez, it’s another metric of how his defense isn’t stopping anyone. “Is that supposed to be a good thing? We’ve gotten more yards because we have to go 80 yards every time,” Rodriguez said. “I want a lot of 26-yard drives.”

2.No. 1 Alabama plays No. 19 South Carolina, the second of the Tide’s six SEC opponents that are idle before the teams play. Another top-ranked team may be at a scheduling disadvantage. No. 3 Oregon has three Pac-10 opponents -- USC, UCLA and No. 9 Arizona -- that have an off week before they play. Each of the Ducks’ three losses in 2009 came against teams that had at least one week to prepare for head coach Chip Kelly and his offense.

3.The streak of AP polls that ranked Texas ended this week at 162 straight votes, one poll short of 10 years. Put another way: the 25 head coaches in that last poll without the Longhorns, which was released on Oct. 15, 2000, included more current ESPN analysts (Mike Bellotti of Oregon, Dennis Franchione of TCU, Lou Holtz of South Carolina and Bob Davie of Notre Dame) than it did coaches still at the same school (Frank Beamer of Virginia Tech, Bob Stoops of Oklahoma and Bill Snyder of Kansas State).