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Williams Named ACC Offensive Back of the Week

Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Third time this season.

OFFENSIVE BACK – Marquise Williams, North Carolina, Jr., QB, 6-2, 220, Charlotte, N.C.

Williams accounted for four touchdowns in UNC’s 40-35 victory over Pitt, completing 23 of 40 attempts for 276 yards and one touchdown and rushing 19 times for 122 yards and three scores.  Williams completed a school-record 16 consecutive passes during one stretch. Williams scored on runs of 23, 2 yards and 45 yards.  He extended his UNC career record for rushing touchdowns by a quarterback to 19, including a team-best 10 this season. Williams’ 628 yards rushing this season are also a UNC record for a quarterback.

Let's delve into Williams' numbers a bit against his ACC counterparts.

Category Stat ACC Rank
Total offense per game 312.5 2nd
Total offense per play 6.47 8th
Passing yards per game 250.2 2nd
Passing yards per play 7.3 5th
Rushing yards per game 62.3 7th
Rushing yards per play 4.42 22nd
Touchdowns(rush/rec) 11 3rd
Passing touchdowns 18 T-3rd
Completion percentage 63.2% 2nd
QB Rating 137.3 4th

Williams is second in the ACC in total offense per game behind 2013 Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston of FSU. He has thrown 18 touchdown passes this season, rushed for 10 more and caught a touchdown pass. Williams is solidly top five in several categories with a notable exception on yards per carry rushing. Williams is 22nd but only because as a quarterback, sacks count against rushing yards. For example, Williams had 94 yards rushing against Virginia but netted only 49 despite having a 52-yard touchdown run. In the loss to Miami, Williams 42 yards ended up being just nine after six sacks. Games like that have hurt Williams overall rushing numbers and pushes his average down. Still, based on yards per game, Williams is 7th in the ACC.

What the stats don't show is Williams' toughness. UNC's offensive line woes are well documented as the Tar Heels have given up 21 sacks in 10 games this season tied for ninth in the ACC. Williams' mobility and strength has kept that number down with his escapes being one part moving the offense and one part self preservation.

Williams has also been very good on game winning drives this season. UNC has scored the go ahead touchdown with four minutes or less in four of the five wins. Williams play has been a huge reason for that with his most glaring error to date on a crucial drive being the flip pass interception against Notre Dame. In all the other instances, Williams has excelled with the game on the line delivering UNC to the doorstep of bowl eligibility with two games left.