Aggies hold numerous top NCAA numbers

Oct. 12, 2017

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DAVIS, Calif. - Having already matched last year’s win total with five games still remaining, UC Davis football will take advantage of its bye this weekend to help prepare for a strong start to the second half of its season, which begins on Oct. 21 at Northern Arizona.

Through the first six games of the year, Aggie fans have witnessed an exciting style of football that has turned Aggie Stadium into the place to be when UC Davis hosts an event. That style is a key reason why the team is ranked among the top programs in the nation in numerous categories, in all three facets of the game.

The Aggies’ defense has done a great job not only frustrating other teams, but creating additional possessions by forcing opponents to convert on third down at a .329 percentage — which ranks the team No. 30 in the nation. On the other side of the ball, the Aggies’ are No. 11 with their .468 third down conversion clip.

And when UC Davis has possession, it has done a phenomenal job moving the ball downfield, racking up yardage and adding points to the scoreboard at a program-record rate diring its Big Sky era.

No FCS team has recorded more first downs this season than UC Davis (147), opportunities that have led to 178 points through its first six games. At their current pace, the Aggies will score more points this year than any of its previous seasons as a Big Sky school — a realistic possibility since UC Davis is No. 5 and No. 9 in the country in passing offense (351.5 yards per game) and total offense (483.0 ypg).

Two of the top players in Division I football compete for UC Davis, and the numbers do not lie. Among all receivers at the FCS and FBS levels, no wide receiver has more total yards to his credit than junior Keelan Doss (840 yards). On the other end of the Big Sky’s top offensive duo is sophomore quarterback Jake Maier, whose 2,052 total passing yards rank him No. 5 in the country, among all D-I signal callers.

Doss’ name is also found among the country’s elite in another five categories, a list that includes: receptions per game (No. 1, 9.3), receiving yards per game (No. 2, 145), all-purpose yards (No. 8, 149.17/gm.), receiving touchdowns (No. 14, 5) and total touchdowns, where he is tied for No. 36 alongside C.J. Spencer with five.

Joining Doss on the NCAA’s list of top receivers is sophomore Wesley Preece, who is ranked No. 27 in receiving TDs (4), No. 46 in total receiving yards (375) and No. 70 in receiving yards per game (62.5).

Spearheading the Aggies’ offense is Maier, whose name is found on another four top-five lists. The second-year quarterback is No. 5 in completion percentage (.699), completions per game (26.67), passing yards per game (342.0) and total offense (340.5 ypg). In addition to his 160.9 passer rating, the 13th-highest figure, his 14 passing TDs ranks him No. 14 nationwide.

UC Davis’ defense and special teams are also nationally ranked in numerous categories. Led by senior linebacker Ryan Bua, whose three fumble recoveries is the No. 1 total in the nation, junior defensive back Vincent White holds two national rankings: he is No. 15 in passes defended (1.5/gm.) and No. 44 in forced fumbles (0.33/gm.).

Completing the Aggies’ nationally ranked trio is senior defensive back Darryl Graham, who leads the nation in punt return touchdowns when he found the back of the end zone at Portland State after junior defensive back Ryan Parenteau blocked the first of two Vikings punts that afternoon.

Parenteau’s blocked punt total also doubles as a league-high figure.

UC Davis will return to action on Oct. 21 at Northern Arizona, kickoff in Flagstaff is set for 4 p.m. 

The team will return to Aggie Stadium the following Saturday when Cal Poly visits campus for this year’s Battle for the Golden Horseshoe. This matchup, which is part of that weekend's Hall of Fame and Homecoming festivities, will begin at 4 p.m.

Providing a small-town community feel while providing a world-class academic experience, UC Davis is home to more than 37,000 students and centrally located between San Francisco, Lake Tahoe, and the Napa Valley.

The No. 6-ranked public university in the nation, according to the Wall Street Journal, offers nearly 100 graduate programs and more than 100 academic majors across four colleges and six professional schools, ranking among the world and nation's best in numerous disciplines, including veterinary science, agriculture, and plant and animal programs.

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