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1978 Year Summary

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National Champions: Alabama (AP, FWAA, NFF), Southern California (UPI)

Heisman Memorial Trophy: Billy Sims (Oklahoma)
FWAA Coach of the Year Award: Joe Paterno (Penn State)

AP Preseason #1: Alabama ▪ AP Final #1: Alabama

Conference Summary

Sorted by SRS
Overall Bowls SRS Polls
Rk Conference Schs G W L T Pct G W L T Pct SRS SOS Pre Final Champion
1 Southwest Conference 9 103 53 48 2 .524 4 2 1 1 .625 11.34 10.69 3 4 Houston
2 Pacific-10 Conference 10 115 63 49 3 .561 4 3 0 1 .875 11.19 8.82 3 3 Southern California
3 Big Eight Conference 8 92 50 42 0 .543 4 2 2 0 .500 9.46 8.44 3 3 Nebraska
Oklahoma
4 Southeastern Conference 10 113 60 49 4 .549 3 1 2 0 .333 8.82 7.54 3 2 Alabama
5 Big Ten Conference 10 113 51 55 7 .482 3 1 2 0 .333 4.79 5.81 2 3 Michigan
Michigan State
6 Atlantic Coast Conference 7 80 41 39 0 .513 3 2 1 0 .667 4.32 4.69 2 3 Clemson
7 Independent 33 370 189 176 5 .518 7 3 4 0 .429 -0.20 -0.60 4 2
8 Western Athletic Conference 7 82 39 43 0 .476 1 0 1 0 .000 -1.49 -1.32 0 0 Brigham Young
9 Southern Conference 7 77 37 39 1 .487 0 0 0 0 -6.41 -6.45 0 0 Chattanooga
Furman
10 Southland Conference 6 66 30 35 1 .462 1 0 1 0 .000 -6.52 -6.04 0 0 Louisiana Tech
11 Missouri Valley Conference 7 77 36 41 0 .468 0 0 0 0 -7.88 -6.22 0 0 New Mexico State
12 Pacific Coast Athletic Association 6 69 31 38 0 .449 0 0 0 0 -9.54 -7.59 0 0 San Jose State
Utah State
13 Ivy Group 8 72 33 31 8 .514 0 0 0 0 -10.08 -10.08 0 0 Dartmouth
14 Mid-American Conference 10 109 55 53 1 .509 0 0 0 0 -10.65 -10.64 0 0 Ball State

AP Poll Summary

School Conf Pre 9/11 9/18 9/25 10/2 10/9 10/16 10/23 10/30 11/6 11/13 11/20 11/27 12/4 Final
Alabama SEC 1 1 1 7 8 7 4 3 3 3 3 2 2 2 1
Southern California Pac-10 9 8 7 3 2 2 7 6 6 5 5 3 3 3 2
Oklahoma Big 8 4 3 3 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 4 4 4 4 3
Penn State Ind 3 5 3 5 5 3 2 2 2 2 1 1 1 1 4
Michigan Big Ten 6 4 5 4 3 5 9 8 8 7 7 6 5 5 5
Clemson ACC 18             20 16 15 12 10 7 7 6
Notre Dame Ind 5 15 14       20 19 15 14 10 8 10 10 7
Nebraska Big 8 10 12 12 12 10 8 5 4 4 4 2 7 6 6 8
Texas SWC 8 7 6 6 6 12 8 7 7 6 9 9 14 14 9
Houston SWC           17 11 11 10 8 6 5 9 9 10
Arkansas SWC 2 2 2 2 4 3 3 9 17 16 13 11 8 8 11
Michigan State Big Ten                 18 17 16 14 12 12 12
Purdue Big Ten             19 17 14 12 15 18 17 17 13
UCLA Pac-10 12 9 8 18 16 14 10 10 9 9 14 17 15 15 14
Missouri Big 8   11 17 14   19 13 13       19 18 18 15
Georgia SEC       19     18 16 13 11 8 12 11 11 16
Stanford Pac-10       20 17 18                 17
North Carolina State ACC         20                   18
Texas A&M SWC 16 10 9 8 7 6 12               19
Maryland ACC   20 18 15 12 10 6 5 5 13 11 13 13 13 20
School Conf Pre 9/11 9/18 9/25 10/2 10/9 10/16 10/23 10/30 11/6 11/13 11/20 11/27 12/4 Final
Arizona State Pac-10             14 12              
Auburn SEC         19                    
Colorado Big 8     19 16 13 13                  
Florida State Ind 17 16 13 10 18 15                  
Georgia Tech Ind                     20        
Iowa State Big 8 20 19 20 17 15 20           20 19 19  
Kentucky SEC 15 17                          
Louisiana State SEC 13 13 10 11 11 11 16 14 12 10 17        
Navy Ind             17 18 11 18          
North Carolina ACC 19                            
Ohio State Big Ten 7 6 16 13 14 16         19 16 20 20  
Pittsburgh Ind 14 14 11 9 9 9 15 15 19 20 18 15 16 16  
Washington Pac-10 11 18 15           20 19          

Year Leaders

Read more about our data coverage. ▪ An asterisk (*) after a player's name indicates bowl stats are included.

Pass Completions

1. Steve Dils (STAN) 247
2. Mike Ford (SMETH) 224
3. Ed Luther (SJST) 205
  Mark Halda (SDGST) 205
5. Jack Thompson (WAST) 175
6. Paul McGaffigan (LBS) 169
  Ed Smith (MIST) 169
  David Spriggs (NMST) 169
9. Rich Campbell (CA) 164
10. Dave Marler (MSST) 163

Pass Attempts

1. Steve Dils (STAN) 391
2. Mike Ford (SMETH) 389
3. Ed Luther (SJST) 386
4. Mark Halda (SDGST) 358
5. Jack Thompson (WAST) 348
6. Mike Pusey (WCAR) 331
7. David Spriggs (NMST) 317
8. Bruce Parker (PAC) 310
9. Kevin Strasser (NWEST) 307
10. Paul McGaffigan (LBS) 300

Pass Completion Percentage

1. Steve Dils (STAN) 63.2
2. Buddy Teevens (DART) 60.3
3. Phil Bradley (MO) 60.2
4. David Henderson (FURM) 59.9
5. Jordan Case (NTX) 58.7
6. Tom Sorley* (NE) 58.5
7. Wally Woodham (FLST) 58.0
8. Ed Smith (MIST) 57.9
9. Mike Ford (SMETH) 57.6
10. Mark Halda (SDGST) 57.3

Passing Yards

1. Mike Ford (SMETH) 3007
2. Steve Dils (STAN) 2943
3. David Spriggs (NMST) 2558
4. Dave Marler (MSST) 2422
5. Jack Thompson (WAST) 2333
6. Rich Campbell (CA) 2287
7. Ed Luther (SJST) 2275
8. Mark Halda (SDGST) 2262
9. Ed Smith (MIST) 2226
10. Paul McGaffigan (LBS) 2165

Passing Yards Per Attempt

1. David Henderson (FURM) 9.3
2. Dave Rader (TLS) 9.1
3. Larry Brown (HARV) 8.8
4. Tom Sorley* (NE) 8.7
5. Dave Marler (MSST) 8.4
6. Paul McDonald* (SCA) 8.3
7. Steve Brown (APPST) 8.2
8. Pat O'Brien (YALE) 8.1
9. Steve Fuller* (CLEM) 8.1
10. David Spriggs (NMST) 8.1

Adjusted Passing Yards Per Attempt

1. Dave Rader (TLS) 9.2
2. David Henderson (FURM) 9.1
3. Paul McDonald* (SCA) 8.6
4. Steve Brown (APPST) 8.4
5. Larry Brown (HARV) 8.2
6. Tom Sorley* (NE) 8.1
7. Steve Fuller* (CLEM) 7.9
8. Ed Smith (MIST) 7.8
9. Jordan Case (NTX) 7.5
10. Wally Woodham (FLST) 7.0

Passing Touchdowns

1. Steve Dils (STAN) 22
2. Ed Smith (MIST) 20
3. Randy Gomez (UT) 19
  Paul McDonald* (SCA) 19
5. Bruce Parker (PAC) 17
  Mike Ford (SMETH) 17
  Jack Thompson (WAST) 17
  David Spriggs (NMST) 17
  Rick Leach* (MI) 17
10. Mike Wright (BGSU) 14
  Mark Halda (SDGST) 14
  Mark Herrmann (PUR) 14
  Jeff Duva (HI) 14
  Tom Sorley* (NE) 14
  Jimmy Jordan (FLST) 14
  Rich Campbell (CA) 14
  Mike Pusey (WCAR) 14
  Dave Rader (TLS) 14

Passing Interceptions

1. David Spriggs (NMST) 25
2. Ed Luther (SJST) 24
3. Mike Ford (SMETH) 23
  Oscar Ramirez (TXEP) 23
5. Art Schlichter* (OHST) 21
  Dutch Hoffman (WV) 21
7. Jack Thompson (WAST) 20
8. Rich Campbell (CA) 19
  Peter Colombo (HC) 19
  Steve Bayuk (TXX) 19

Passing Efficiency Rating

1. David Henderson (FURM) 152.5
2. Paul McDonald* (SCA) 150.6
3. Tom Sorley* (NE) 145.7
4. Dave Rader (TLS) 144.3
5. Larry Brown (HARV) 144.3
6. Steve Brown (APPST) 141.3
7. Ed Smith (MIST) 139.0
8. Steve Dils (STAN) 137.3
9. Phil Bradley (MO) 135.0
10. Wally Woodham (FLST) 133.0

Rush Attempts

1. Charles White* (SCA) 374
2. Jerome Persell (WMI) 309
3. Ted Brown (NCST) 302
4. Willie McClendon (GA) 287
5. Steve Atkins (MD) 283
6. Charles Alexander (LAST) 281
7. Obie Graves (CASTFU) 275
8. Joe Holland (CORN) 273
9. Bernard Jackson (NTX) 269
10. Eddie Lee Ivery (GATECH) 267

Rushing Yards

1. Charles White* (SCA) 1859
2. Obie Graves (CASTFU) 1789
3. Billy Sims (OK) 1762
4. Eddie Lee Ivery (GATECH) 1562
5. Bernard Jackson (NTX) 1453
6. Joe Holland (CORN) 1396
7. Nathan Poole (LOU) 1394
8. James Hadnot (TXTECH) 1369
9. Ted Brown (NCST) 1350
10. Jerome Persell (WMI) 1346

Rushing Yards Per Attempt

1. Kenny King (OK) 7.9
2. Billy Sims (OK) 7.6
3. Leon Walker (NVLV) 7.1
4. Tony Nathan (AL) 6.9
5. Steve Smith (MIST) 6.7
6. Nathan Poole (LOU) 6.6
7. Eddie Estes (APPST) 6.5
8. Obie Graves (CASTFU) 6.5
9. Major Ogilvie (AL) 6.5
10. Gwain Durden (CHAT) 6.4

Rushing Touchdowns

1. Billy Sims (OK) 20
2. Lester Brown* (CLEM) 17
3. Joe Cribbs (AUB) 16
  Joe Holland (CORN) 16
5. Nathan Poole (LOU) 15
6. Charles Alexander (LAST) 14
7. Willie Todd (CMI) 13
  Willie McClendon (GA) 13
  Art Schlichter* (OHST) 13
  James Mayberry (CO) 13
  Charles White* (SCA) 13

Receptions

1. Dave Petzke (NIL) 91
2. Emanuel Tolbert (SMETH) 62
  Gerald Harp (WCAR) 62
4. Rick Beasley (APPST) 60
  Vernon Henry (LBS) 60
6. Jerry Butler* (CLEM) 58
7. Cormac Carney (AF) 57
8. Jeff Groth (BGSU) 56
9. Ken Margerum (STAN) 53
10. Mike Chronister (BYU) 52

Receiving Yards

1. Dave Petzke (NIL) 1215
2. Gerald Harp (WCAR) 1145
3. Emanuel Tolbert (SMETH) 1041
4. Mardye McDole (MSST) 1035
5. Vernon Henry (LBS) 985
6. Rick Beasley (APPST) 971
7. Ken Margerum (STAN) 942
8. Jeff Evans (NMST) 926
9. Jerry Butler* (CLEM) 908
10. Jeff Groth (BGSU) 874

Receiving Yards Per Reception

1. Joe Burke (CHAT) 28.1
2. Holden Smith (CA) 24.7
3. Phil McConkey (NAVY) 24.2
4. Kevin House (SIL) 23.7
5. Spider Gaines (WA) 22.5
6. John Floyd (LAMON) 22.4
7. Godfrey Turner (TXTECH) 22.0
8. Kris Haines (NDAME) 21.8
9. Ralph Clayton* (MI) 21.8
10. Mardye McDole (MSST) 21.6

Receiving Touchdowns

1. Gerald Harp (WCAR) 11
  Emanuel Tolbert (SMETH) 11
  Dave Petzke (NIL) 11
4. Kevin Williams* (SCA) 10
5. Cris Collinsworth (FL) 9
  Ernest Gray (MEM) 9
  Ken Margerum (STAN) 9
  Charlie Murray (NTX) 9
9. Jeff Groth (BGSU) 8
  Ralph Clayton* (MI) 8
  Cormac Carney (AF) 8
  Joe Burke (CHAT) 8

Plays From Scrimmage

1. Charles White* (SCA) 396
2. Ted Brown (NCST) 319
3. Jerome Persell (WMI) 316
4. Charles Alexander (LAST) 309
5. Willie McClendon (GA) 291
6. Steve Atkins (MD) 289
7. Eddie Lee Ivery (GATECH) 287
8. Obie Graves (CASTFU) 285
9. Joe Holland (CORN) 283
10. Bernard Jackson (NTX) 276

Yards From Scrimmage

1. Charles White* (SCA) 2052
2. Obie Graves (CASTFU) 1892
3. Eddie Lee Ivery (GATECH) 1800
4. Billy Sims (OK) 1797
5. Ted Brown (NCST) 1547
6. Bernard Jackson (NTX) 1529
7. James Hadnot (TXTECH) 1521
8. Darrin Nelson (STAN) 1507
9. Jerome Persell (WMI) 1437
10. Charles Alexander (LAST) 1435

Touchdowns From Scrimmage

1. Billy Sims (OK) 20
2. Lester Brown* (CLEM) 17
3. Joe Cribbs (AUB) 16
  Joe Holland (CORN) 16
  Nathan Poole (LOU) 16
  Charles Alexander (LAST) 16
7. Charles White* (SCA) 14
  Scott McConnell (APPST) 14
9. Willie Todd (CMI) 13
  Willie McClendon (GA) 13
  James Mayberry (CO) 13
  Art Schlichter* (OHST) 13
  James Jones (MSST) 13
  Dexter Green* (IAST) 13
  Gerald Harp (WCAR) 13

Total Plays

1. Steve Dils (STAN) 481
2. David Spriggs (NMST) 465
3. Mike Ford (SMETH) 459
4. Rick Trocano* (PITT) 458
5. Oscar Ramirez (TXEP) 447
6. Mike Wright (BGSU) 440
7. Jack Thompson (WAST) 432
8. Brad Wright (NM) 423
9. Ed Luther (SJST) 419
10. Eric Hipple (UTST) 400

Total Yards

1. Mike Ford (SMETH) 2957
2. Steve Dils (STAN) 2871
3. David Spriggs (NMST) 2802
4. Brad Wright (NM) 2403
5. Dave Marler (MSST) 2391
6. Mike Wright (BGSU) 2382
7. Jack Thompson (WAST) 2264
8. Ed Smith (MIST) 2247
9. Rich Campbell (CA) 2207
10. Ed Luther (SJST) 2174

Total Touchdowns

1. Rick Leach* (MI) 29
2. Mike Wright (BGSU) 24
3. Tony Merendino (CHAT) 23
  Steve Dils (STAN) 23
5. Dave Rader (TLS) 21
  Mike Ford (SMETH) 21
  Ed Smith (MIST) 21
8. David Spriggs (NMST) 20
  Tom Sorley* (NE) 20
  Mark Malone (AZST) 20
  Billy Sims (OK) 20
  Jack Thompson (WAST) 20