Saturday, October 31, 2009
• Rob Moseley recounts some thoughts from Chip Kelly after practice yesterday.
"You want to compete. Our best practices are our competition days. This is what it’s all about. You want to compete, you want to play against good teams, and obviously USC is an outstanding football program. We’ll find out what we’ve got. They do a lot of really good things, and we’re going to get tested. But I think our guys are excited to take the test."
• George Schroeder has a very good story on "Gameday's Gamer", Lee Corso. Corso suffered a mild stroke last May, and while his role has diminished, it wouldn't be the same without him.
Corso insists Eugene is among his favorite stops, that Oregon fans made a gigantic impression two years ago, twice gathering in predawn chill and roaring for two hours.
“It’s the greatest scene that I’ve ever seen in College GameDay,” Corso says. “That early in the morning, that many people. That makes it special.”
But what’s special is that Corso’s still doing it. Come Saturday morning, we’ll all watch to see the mascot worn by everyone’s favorite talking head.
• Bob Rickert reports that the game today will be attended by at least eight recruits, see a complete list here.
• John Hunt thinks that the crowd could play a factor today in his story, "Oregon-USC: Special place, special teams could make the difference."
"You know, the noise is one aspect, but you can feel the intensity of their crowd," (Pete)Carroll said.
• I am going to end the post today with my favorite article from yesterday. Wade Evanson at eDuck Sports has this piece titled, "Game Day: Hello Hollywood." He thinks it is long overdue for USC to be dethroned. Here are a few of my favorite lines.
Because these guys need to go down.
What I am is tired. Tired of hearing about and watching one of college football’s most storied programs wallow in its own poo. Tired of hearing everyone with a microphone and media outlet fawn over Coach Carroll. And utterly exhausted from words and expressions used to describe USC quarterback Matt Barkley, which are normally reserved for pre-teen females at their first Justin Timberlake concert.
Matt Barkley is dying to lose a game for USC. I can appreciate his talent, along with his potential, but ignorance and naiveté at such a level dangerously tempts fate and weeps for a karma kickback.
That’s right, I said it. I’m a big believer in Karma and SC’s is way overdue. Between Pete Carroll’s bravado, Matt Leinart’s arrogance, and Reggie Bush’s…well…alleged preferred rental agreement, it’s time the bank of righteousness forecloses on the property in the West Adams District of South Los Angeles.
Don’t you agree?
I'm right there with you Wade, totally. Read his complete story here.
Oregon 24 - USC 13
November 2nd, 2009
Bro...I’m so glad you could come to Eugene this weekend. I must say, I’ve been quite impressed with you all year. I realize you haven’t played perfectly...but what can anyone expect when you’re a true freshman. You must be sick of hearing that...true freshman. I mean after all, you’re the quarterback for USC, and whether or not you’re a freshman, that is an accomplishment all by itself. Plus, you have beat Cal, Notre Dame, and Ohio State...even though none of those teams are very good. And just because you’re a freshman doesn’t mean that you don’t understand how it is in big-time football, does it? Well...there was that one thing...
Why did you not respect Autzen? Were you trying to get all my buddies riled up? Well, as you know by now, it worked. If I were you, I would have kept my mouth quiet. If I was you, I wouldn’t have given those fans any more ammunition. Especially against USC. Especially on Halloween. And Gameday was in town. And it was a night game. Man, why did you talk all that smack? I know they pack a lot of people into every stadium you play, but why didn’t you listen to those that came before you. 127. Remember that number? I’m thinking it was louder last night. Guess you’re just a freshman though...what can anyone expect?
You have to admit it though...that was pretty loud, especially in the end zones. I’m not trying to rub it in dawg...but whoa. My guess is that those three false starts on that last drive must have been pretty frustrating. Maybe you could have made the play calls louder...that would have been smart. Had you already lost your voice trying to yell out play calls by the end of the game? I bet that’s what happened.
Anyway bro...not to be a nag, but there is something on my mind. It’s like this; if you had invited me to your house, and I puked all over your carpet, I would have cleaned that up yo. I know you must have been hurtin’ bad to barf like that, but you seemed stable after the game...stable enough to grab a rag and do a little dirty work. Anyway, I just think it would have been nice if you would have cleaned your puke off of me. I mean jeez, there was even some blood mixed into that nasty concoction. Just as a common courtesy, next time, consider being a better guest.
Good news is this Matt...since you’ll be missing the rest of the games this year with that concussion, I’m thinking you’ll still be playing in a few years when you guys come back. Maybe when you ralph all over me in a few years you can make up for your faux pas by staying after the game, and putting a little elbow grease into the clean-up. I’m gonna let it go until then...like I said, I don’t want to be a nag.
Alright Matt...I gotta go now. Good luck with the rehab, and I’ll look forward to seeing you soon!
If you liked Dave's piece be sure to leave a comment at his website.
Friday, October 30, 2009
• Predictions are trickling in and those picking the Ducks are Rob Mosley (29-27), Ted Miller (27-24) and Jon Wilner.
• Ted Miller has his weekly "What to watch in the Pac-10" story posted and of course has our game listed on top.
1. Matt Barkley thinks Autzen Stadium is going to be a barrel of monkeys: Matt Barkley told the LA Times that he's looks forward to playing in Autzen Stadium -- "the energy is going to be awesome and it's going to be a cool atmosphere, especially on Halloween night," he said. Hmm. You know, maybe all this talk about how intimidating and loud Autzen Stadium is a bollocks. This whole, really cool "blackout" thing is just a rumor, after all. Hey, wear yellow! That will be scary. Oregon fans aren't really loud. They're very nice, actually. Cuddly even.
Very nice Ted, the old Jedi mind trick, classic.
• Here's a must read from Scott Reid of the OC Register, "For USC, Autzen is a nightmare."
Here are some of my favorite lines.
"Per square yard, the loudest stadium in the history of the planet," longtime ABC sportscaster Keith Jackson called Autzen.
For Ducks fans Saturday's game has been nothing less than all consuming. In Eugene, the only thing that could possibly be bigger than the Trojans and Ducks would be the Grateful Dead returning to Autzen. With Jerry Garcia.
"No crowd usually gets to me," said California tailback Jahvid Best. "Oregon's the only one that stands out in my mind that got to me."
"Honestly, any other away game I don't really even hear the crowd," Cal's Best said. "Oregon's the only place where it just really got on my nerves."
"The biggest mistake people made going in there was trying to instigate the crowd and say bring it on, because they brought it on and usually it was followed by three illegal procedure penalties (for opponents) after that," said California coach Jeff Tedford, a former Duck assistant.
• Here is another good piece on the "House of Loud', by Bob Rickert.
There's no question that Matt Barkley is a smart guy. He's a graduate of Mater Dei High and a USC student. You don't walk those halls without some kind of smarts. But if he was a little smarter, he wouldn't keep talking about the crowd at Autzen Stadium. Saying, "I don't think it will be that big of a deal." Not a big deal? Really?
What I don't think Barkley understands is that, his center may not even be able to hear him. Forget the wide receivers. His center. What he doesn't understand is that it will be the loudest place he ever plays.
You tell him Bob.
• Ken Goe takes an irreverent look at the upcoming game in his two minute drill. Here is a sample:
Some things the University of Spoiled Children might keep in mind while visiting our little corner of the backwoods.
1. You think the on-campus graveyard is there by accident?
7. Those racked guns in the pick-ups? They're real.
8. So are the chain-saws.
10. But if you want tasteless, watch the USC sideline. Will Ferrell always is good for something.
• We'll wrap today with a little humor from Nick at Off the Pond. He remembers 10 years ago when he was a freshman at the U of O and the game (Oregon vs USC) that made him the Duck fan he is today.
Oregon football is fun.
My immersion took only a full game and three overtimes. The intoxication that had me at hello involved a roller coaster of sinking feelings and utter joy that would eventually be capped by complete euphoria. On that night, the leg of a backup kicker gave Oregon a 33-30 win and, me, an addiction.
I won't spoil the ending of the story but it is worth your time to read.
Thursday, October 29, 2009
Good news on the injury front. OL Mark Asper suited up and had a good workout.
“It hurts now (foot), it hurt then, it’s probably going to hurt on Saturday,” Asper said with a knowing smile.
Sounds like Asper doesn't want to miss out on all the fun.
• Ted Miller describes this version of the Duck defense and Gang Green 2 and wonders why they are so good.
It's a no-name crew that has been riddled by injuries -- Willie Glasper, who replaced Thurmond, also was lost for the year to a knee injury -- yet here Oregon is, ranked 19th in the nation in both total defense and scoring defense.
• ESPN's Ivan Maisel traces the history of how Autzen went from having no home field advantage for the Ducks, to the current House of Horrors for visiting teams.
Long before Autzen Stadium became known for its lack of hospitality, long before visiting teams contracted case after case of the false starts, long before ranked teams from Wisconsin and Michigan and Oklahoma learned the loud way that Autzen is the toughest place to play on the West Coast, it wasn't like this. It wasn't like this at all.
Worth your time to read the complete article.
• Carson York has another entry in his journal this week. He reflects on last weeks victory over Washington.
• Sports writers across the country are noticing the "no name" defense of the Ducks, including SI's Stewart Mandel.
It's hardly surprising to see Florida, Texas, Penn State, Alabama and TCU sitting in the top five nationally in total defense. We've come to expect it from those programs. Iowa's best teams have also usually been of the blue-collar variety.
But Oregon? Seriously? Where did this come from?
Complete article is here.
• Rob Moseley has been updating his "fan guide" for Saturday and has a couple of new entries.
ESPN's College Gameday will broadcast (7am-9am) from the Casanova Center parking lot which runs parallel to Martin Luther King Blvd. The BCS Trophy will be Eugene this weekend. It will be displayed Friday at two Fred Meyer locations—from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. at the River Road location, and from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. on West 11th Ave.—and will be at Autzen Stadium for Saturday’s game.
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
The report focuses on injuries and who will replace Mark Asper on the O line.
Chip Kelly expressed confidence that Darrion Weems or Nick Cody could step in to the starting lineup if needed. Weems seemed to get most of the reps after Asper was hurt at Washington last week, and Kelly said he didn’t notice a drop-off.
• Ted Miller takes a quick look at the USC - Oregon game.
The Ducks defense has allowed only three TDs in four conference games... The Trojans rank last in the conference in turnover margin (minus-3). The have forced only nine turnovers on the season... Oregon ranks third in turnover margin (plus-5). The Ducks have forced 19 turnovers, tied for the most in the conference... USC is tied for No. 1 in the nation with 29 sacks.... Oregon ranks 10th with 22...
• Mike Tokito covered Pete Carroll's weekly news conference held yesterday and some of the USC players are sharing their memories of Autzen Stadium with teammates.
The USC players who played in that game well remember the roaring crowd at Autzen, one of the loudest stadiums in college football. They've been passing that knowledge on to the teammate who will be making their first foray into Eugene.
"I've heard it's just loud, that it gets crazy up there," sophomore defensive tackle Armond Armstead said. "And I've heard it's small, that it's compact, tight."
You boys haven't heard anything yet!
• Ken Goe closes today's post with his thoughts on Halloween night.
Expect it to be wet, windy and wild on Saturday night in Autzen Stadium when Oregon and USC square off for supremacy in the Pac-10.
The Ducks will have a lot going for them -- crowd, weather, momentum and what figures to be a crazy Halloween night atmosphere. If the UO defense can hold up against USC's punishing running backs, and if the rebuilt secondary isn't hurt too badly by USC receivers Ronald Johnson and Damian Williams, I like Oregon's chances.
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
The Ducks went to Washington and pounded a team that beat USC. But that's not the only reason Oregon moved up. It looked like a better team on Saturday. Now, will that be the case Halloween night in Autzen Stadium?
Ted also looks at the injuries that struck USC and Oregon. Most notably, Josh Kadu of the the Ducks will be out until at least Thanksgiving and USC won't have the services of TE Anthony McCoy.
• Rob Moseley reports on yesterday's practice.
It was a spirited workout with a new soundtrack of hip-hop tunes, and the energy level felt very high. Chip Kelly and a couple of his players said it might have been Oregon’s best Monday practice of the season.
Moseley also confirmed that the Stanford game will be televised by FSN on Nov. 7 at 12:30pm.
• Andy Mac has his Week 9 Football Release posted. Click here to learn everything you need to know about the match-up with USC.
Andy also reports that Chip Kelly was named one of 20 coaches on the Bryant College Football Coach of the Year watch list.
• Steve Summers at Scout.com looks at the preparation USC coach Pete Carroll is taking.
Carroll believes that his team has to first adapt the tempo to what the Ducks play. Carroll claims that the Trojans have been working on defending the spread since last spring and thinks the multiplicity of the spread is challenging and the ability to spread the ball all over the field makes what Oregon does a "really cool offense." He also thinks Oregon does a very good job at it too.
• Wade Evanson of Scout.com wonders what are we looking at in this Oregon team.
I’m not there yet, but I’m close. I’m close to calling this team special. I’m close to getting excited. And I’m dangerously close to thinking big, because this team impresses and overcomes every week.
“You’re going to have to go the distance against us,” Chip Kelly said. “We’re going to compete.”
And that’s what COULD make this team great, COULD make this team a conference champion, and COULD make you, I, and everyone else who buried them the night of September 3rd eat a lot of crow…and I’m hungry.
• Lots of folks are talking about a "blackout" on Saturday night and it looks like the Duck store is obliging. You might want to be prepared for a little liquid sunshine as well. Although, as you know, it never rains at Autzen Stadium.
Monday, October 26, 2009
1. USC's defense can be had. (Totally agree with Ted here.)
2. Jeremiah Masoli is okay and he's good.
Miller also gave out his helmet stickers.
Jeremiah Masoli, QB, Oregon: Masoli, playing for the first time since he hurt his knee on Oct. 3, accounted for three touchdowns in the Ducks' 43-19 win at Washington. He completed 14 of 22 passes for 157 yards with a touchdown and no interceptions. He also ran 11 times for 54 yards and two scores.
• Ken Goe looks ahead to the collision course as USC comes to town.
But I love the way Oregon plays with a ruthless, cold-blooded confidence.
With Jeremiah Masoli triggering the Ducks' spread and the offensive line seemingly getting better by the snap, the Ducks are a difficult offense to handle. And USC's defense looked vulnerable Saturday night, when Oregon State put up 36 points.
• Rob Moseley reported that Oregon has moved up to #10 in the latest BCS poll and USC traded places with Boise St. moving up to #5. He also took part in the weekly con-call with Chip Kelly and when asked about USC Kelly said:
“It’s fun because it’s our next game,” Kelly said tonight on a teleconference with reporters. “We don’t look at this any different than we did Washington.”
• Moseley compares NCAA stats between Oregon and USC in his "setting the stage" story.
• One final article from Rob that will serve as your "fan guide" as ESPN comes to town. There are rumors that tailgaters might be in for an all day treat because the College GameDay show starts at 7am. Stay tuned for an official announcement.
Tailgaters should also have some candy on hand for the kids trick-or-treating through the parking lots.
Sunday, October 25, 2009
ESPN’s “College GameDay” will travel to Eugene this week to broadcast Saturday from outside Autzen Stadium, where Oregon will host USC on Halloween. ESPN blogger Ted Miller confirmed the network’s decision.
The prospect of facing the Trojans on Halloween night didn’t break Oregon’s focus, even after ESPN’s “College GameDay” crew booked rooms at a Eugene hotel for a potential broadcast next week. The Ducks (6-1 overall, 4-0 Pac-10) have been unshakable since returning from Boise State in early September, and that didn’t change Saturday.
“Everyone really stayed focused on getting ready for Washington this week,” UO defensive end Will Tukuafu said. “Now the word in the locker room is, we’ve got to get ready for ‘SC.”
• Adam Jude take a look at the very special, special teams play.
The topic is “special” performances, and Oregon had many of them in Saturday’s 43-19 victory over Washington at Husky Stadium.
“(Oregon) just destroyed us on special teams,” UW coach Steve Sarkisian said.
“We spend a lot of time on our special teams. It’s very, very important to us,” Kelly added.
“We felt going into this game we were going to have an advantage in special teams, and it showed. We felt like we had a chance to get a block, and we got one. It’s been a key for us all year long, and you look at all the games we’ve won down the stretch, it’s because of what we’ve been able to do on special teams.”
• Ken Goe wonder if the UO-UW rivalry is past its prime. Here are some quotes from the piece.
Oregon made it look easy Saturday at Husky Stadium.
The 12th-ranked Ducks not only pummeled Washington 43-19, they showed the gap between the football programs hasn't closed.
This Oregon team plays with an edge. The Ducks hit hard, sometimes late. They turned a relentless pass rush loose on Locker, sacking him four times. They intercepted him twice.
The UW defense couldn't handle the speed of the Oregon offense.
It's a state of affairs unlikely to change soon.
Not to disagree with Goe but it will never get old beating down the Dawgs.
• Ted Miller says now that the Ducks have taken care of the Huskies, it is time to look ahead to USC.
Then there's Aliotti's defense...The Ducks had four sacks and forced three turnovers, one of which concluded a first-half goal line stand.
"When this group gets flying, it kind of gets into a frenzy mode," Kelly said.
But Kelly and his players don't seem like the worrying sorts. Or the sorts who will allow USC, the seven-time Pac-10 champions, to get into their heads.
"They haven't had success too much in Oregon the past few years, so they'll definitely bring their A-game," said linebacker Casey Matthews, whose brother, Clay, starred for the Trojans last year.
Kelly said USC didn't come up when he talked to his players after beating Washington.
"This group is as focused a bunch of young men as I've ever been around," Kelly said. "They buy into everything we're talking about. And all we talk about is the next game."
And what about that next game?
Despite the blinders, Kelly knows it's going to be a circus.
"We've got a real, real big game coming up," Kelly said.
• Speaking of the next game, do you have something to wear for the Halloween Night Blackout? Here is cool story about a local entrepreneur who has designed and officially licensed with the U of O, a T-Shirt and Hoody that he is selling at this website. My picture on this post is the design.
|Postgame: Oregon 43, Washington 19|
Chip Kelly, LaMichael James, Jeremiah Masoli, David Paulson, Rory Cavaille and Will Tukuafu talk to reporters after the game yesterday afternoon.
Saturday, October 24, 2009
All of the naysayers and pundits can eat their words as the Oregon Ducks make it look all too easy as they decisively take care of business in Seattle to remain undefeated in the Pac-10.
Jeremiah Masoli looked about 90%, which was plenty, against a defense that looked helpless at times. Oregon's defense was outstanding and set the tone in the 1st quarter when the Huskies went for the TD on 4th and goal and Locker was intercepted in the endzone.
Looking forward to College Gameday coming to Eugene next week for the game of the year. Highlight video coming your way tomorrow. LaMichael James running for a TD in the photo.
Any true Duck fan has seen the Kenny Wheaton video that has Jerry Allen's voice in place of the TV commentators who called the game. It's on YouTube and they play it at every home game.
Here is the original. Todd McKim and Ken Woody are doing the announcing. Not quite as exciting as Jerry Allen but thought you might like to see it.
• John Hunt & Jeff Smith have a gameday preview for your enjoyment and say it is likely that Jeremiah Masoli will start at QB.
After a surprisingly easy home win against California, the obligatory drubbing of Washington State and an important road win over punchless UCLA, the 12th-ranked Ducks (5-1, 3-0 Pacific-10 Conference) take on Jake Locker and Washington on Saturday, likely with their own quarterback, Jeremiah Masoli, back under center.
• Addicted to Quack has a hilarious party guide posted, you should check it out. According to Takimoto about 40 minutes before game time you should do this:
Go outside, and yell, "GOOOOOO!" at the top of your lungs. If you're lucky, someone will yell "DUUUUUUUCKS!" back. If they do, go take a drink in honor of the Juju boost you just received.
• Wade Evanson at Scouts.com wants you to know that it is okay to "hate the Dawgs" today, no matter that your mother probably told you not to use that word. Here are a few lines from his post:
Huskies don’t like you, and you shouldn’t like them.
This game isn’t about match ups, X’s and O’s, or All-Americans, it’s about history, pride, and bitterness which has no end. If you’re an Oregon fan, you don’t want to lose this game.
Hate away Ducks, your mother will understand.
Feeling a little under the weather today. Think I will take a shot and get my hate on, I'm sure I'll feel better.
Friday, October 23, 2009
Rob Moseley also noted that Kelly was optimistic that T.J. Ward would return.
• Ted Miller has his weekly "what to watch for in the Pac-10" story posted.
It's going to be nasty fun in Husky Stadium: Oregon has beaten Washington five consecutive times. And by at least 20 points each time. What was once the most bitter rivalry in the Pac-10 has become a mismatch, which has been galling for the Huskies because, historically, they've dominated the Ducks and still lead the series 58-38-5. Yet this one figures to be more competitive than any of the recent games. Washington has rejuvenated itself under Steve Sarkisian, and that rejuvenation has include renewed energy in Husky Stadium. It should be pretty intense. Just like the old days.
Miller also wonders where the hate went between the Ducks and Huskies and is hoping for a renaissance.
Part of the problem is this: Oregon has owned Washington of late, winning five consecutive games for the first time in the history of the rivalry, each by at least 20 points. The Oregon-Washington rivalry has faced some tough times in recent years. But here's a guess that's about to end.
• JConant at Addicted to Quack has a really good story called "Exploiting the Huskies Defense."
Here is how the article ends:
Emotions will be high on the Huskies sideline, and it's worth recognizing that the Dawgs have gained the most valuable skill of all this season: they believe they can win. That alone gives them a legit shot to win any game in Seattle. Expect a tight contest for at least a half, then expect Oregon's talent, speed, offensive scheme and adjustments to win out over emotion in the end.
• To close this post we have the predictions from the pundits.
Rob Moseley noted that Ted Miller of ESPN, Phil Steele and Jon Wilner are all going with the Huskies. Bruce Feldman of ESPN picked Oregon but said he was “tempted to pick an upset here.” Moseley himself has Oregon winning 48-17.
Personally, I think it will be a second half coming out party.
Oregon 56 - Mutts 24. That's right Husky fans, more tears.
Thursday, October 22, 2009
Did you hear? Oregon may be going for a blackout on Halloween night! And what would that represent to us, the fans? What does that represent to the players, who have come so far this season? What does it represent to Oregon football?
Love them or hate them, the Oregon uniforms mean something. To the fans, it means that you lose an extra few bucks every year because you want to stay up-to-date. But it means something more. For myself—I take great pride in our ugly uniforms. I want them to be the ugliest uniforms in the nation (and those grey unis are right there). I want everybody to notice the uniform, and forget about what’s behind that uniform—pain. What does a blackout on Halloween mean to me? It means that something big is going to happen. It means that the fans, and the team will come together, donned in black, to dethrone a USC team simply won’t be able to perform in the madhouse that will be Autzen Stadium.
What do I think wearing the black uniforms means to the players? I know what it means. It’s a sign. It’s a sign that they deserve something extraordinary. It’s a sign that they deserve something special. It’s the sprinkle on the ice cream. It’s like the perfect gown worn on Oscar night. In the preseason, the players fight for the black. They love it. It is our strongest color. This season, they’ve fought to wear those black uniforms. They’ve overcome so much, and given this special game, on a special night, who better to scare than an overwhelmed USC team?
For Oregon football, the black means even more. The black represents a new era, a new dynasty. Chip Kelly must have wondered what he got himself into after Boise. At least that’s what I was left to assume. But all signs point to something different. All signs point to Chip Kelly marching right along, not looking back, but looking forward. And with that attitude, he has taught the team to do the same. Never look back. Never question yourself. The fans have learned something too. Don’t give in too early, because we have a strong new leader. A man in black.
Oregon v USC is a game for the ages, and a game for the future. Get ready for the blackout Oregon fans...get ready for USC.
Whoa...crap...we play Washington this week. Who cares? Washington honks!
Chip Kelly called today’s practice “another really good Wednesday,” and while he’s most definitely the expert of the two of us, that was my assessment too. The offense and defense both looked very sharp.
Masoli was wearing a custom fit brace, which he will be required to wear if he starts on Saturday, and said "felt good" after practice.
• Ted Miller has his second half predictions posted for all of the Pac-10 teams. I won't hold my breath for the "best case scenario" national championship game but I like his bowl prediction. I could live with the Fiesta Bowl.
• Carson York continues his football journal, "Headed to Washington, destiny still in our hands."
Players need to put blinders on; thinking about those things (bowl games) can cause our focus to deviate from the task at hand. In order to maintain control over our future and allow fans to enjoy their heightening optimism we need to keep our focus on the next Saturday on the schedule.
• John Hunt and Jeff Smith talked with former player and first year intern on the coaching staff, Rashad Bauman, about the rivalry with Washington.
"It's U-Dub, man!" Bauman said, bouncing his shoulders up and down. "This Oregon-Washington rivalry is something real special. To me, it's probably the biggest game and our biggest rival.
I like your fire Rashad, win the day. Be sure to read the complete story here.
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
“The way we’re practicing right now, these last two practices we were flying around,” tight end Ed Dickson said. “Everybody’s moving fast. ... We needed that (bye) week.”
Masoli was in full pads and had tape on his right knee but no brace. He continues to prepare with the first-string offense for Saturday’s game at Washington.
• Ted Miller did a mid-season review on all the Pac-10 teams yesterday and while he said the Ducks got off to a slow start he also noted that they may be "one of the best teams in college football."
He also game MVP honors to Ed Dickson on offense and Kenny Rowe on defense.
• Rob Moseley has a feature story on the rivalry aspect of the upcoming game and says things have changed since the heated games earlier in the decade.
“It’s a new era in the rivalry,” said UO quarterback Jeremiah Masoli, who made his debut against UW last season. “Maybe this game will set it off.”
Not only have Oregon’s fifth-year seniors never lost to the Huskies, Washington is just 14-41 since 2005. But that includes a 3-4 mark this season, which seems to have the Ducks’ attention.
• John Hunt says that he has a reliable source on what unis Oregon will be wearing on Saturday.
The Ducks will go black and white at Husky Stadium: Black helmets, white jerseys with gray numbers and black pants.
• Nick at Off the Pond has a fun story at his blog titled, "For a Week, Let’s Make Believe There’s Still a Rivalry." Here's a sample:
Of course, at the moment, the Huskies are still trying to get their first winning season since 2002. They’re still trying to prove they’re anything more than a glorified bye week.
Good stuff Nick.
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
“Every day it gets better and stronger,” Masoli said, adding that he gets about an hour per day of treatment from the athletic training staff.
T.J. Ward, although 50% than last Monday, is still practicing with the second squad.
On a side note, Moseley also reported that the USC game will not be moved back to 7pm on the 31st, keeping the original 5pm start.
• Ted Miller has Oregon as #2 on his Pac-10 power rankings this week and warns not to overlook the Huskies.
• Steve Summers at Scout.com says that Coach Kelly is impressed with Jake Locker and the revamped Washington Huskies.
"I think the world of Jake Locker," said Kelly during his weekly media conference. "I think he's a tremendous football player. He scares us more than anybody we've played against."
• The week 8 Oregon football release has been posted at GoDucks.com, check it out for all you need to know about the upcoming game.
Mike Tokito at the Oregonian has posted his version as well.
Monday, October 19, 2009
It is hard to believe it has been 15 years since Kenny Wheaton intercepted Damon Huard and ran it back 96 yards for a touchdown. Learn what it took to put this video together by watching the complete video (explanation and the end of the video.) It was definitely a labor of love.
• Think you have a lot going on in your typical work day? Try Chip Kelly's on for size in this story by George Schroeder. Very good read.
• The first BCS poll came out yesterday and Oregon debuted at number eleven. The Ducks moved up to twelfth in the AP and fourteenth in the coaches poll.
Sunday, October 18, 2009
The Washington coaching staff completely mismanaged (and lost IMO) the game against Arizona St. when they left too much time on the clock at the end of the game which allowed ASU to score on a 50 yard pass play.
USC is vulnerable this year. Barkley was impressive but I think our defense will pose a problem for him. Their tight end is HUGE. With Masoli in the lineup I think our offense will give them fits.
We should move up in the polls without even playing. #7 Ohio St. lost to Purdue (who we beat) 26-18. #4 Virginia Tech lost, have no idea how far they will drop. My first time watching Tebow, not impressed, Florida drops out of the top spot.
• Speaking of the polls, George Schroeder has posted his ballot for the Harris poll and here is John Hunt's.
They both keep Oregon at number ten.
• Time to prepare for the Dawgs, stay tuned for more updates as practice resumes tomorrow.
Saturday, October 17, 2009
Quarterback Jeremiah Masoli resumed practice with Oregon’s first-team offense Friday morning, wearing full pads for the first time since suffering a right knee injury in the victory over Washington State two week ago.
Masoli wore a knee brace and seemed to be running at about half speed most of the time.
“He’s moving around pretty good, setting his feet,” coach Chip Kelly said. “We’ll make some decisions next week, but he’s back in the mix. He took all the reps he was supposed to take today.”
T.J. Ward, also in full pads, will be a late week decision sometime just before the Washington game.
• Jeff Smith takes a look at what it took for placekicker, Morgan Flint, to overcome not only being a walk-on with the team but also a heart condition that was discovered in his junior year in high school. Good story so check it out if you have the time.
• Nick Daschel at Buster Sports ponders who is the best one-loss team in the country?
The best one-loss team between Oregon, USC and Virginia Tech? All have merit, though I’ve been saying for three weeks that the Ducks will win the Pac-10, which means on Oct. 31 they’ll make the Trojans a two-loss team.
Daschel goes on in the article to conclude that VT has the better chance for a BCS spot based on their #4 ranking but the Rose Bowl isn't such a bad consolation prize.
Friday, October 16, 2009
The Pac-10 is about good defenses and good ground games. Five teams rank among the top 21 in the nation in total defense: 3. Arizona State ... 221.8 yards per game 6. USC ... 238.6 16. Oregon ... 280.83 17. Arizona ... 281.8 21. UCLA ... 285.6 And five running backs rank among the top 25: 4. Toby Gerhart, Stanford ... 124.33 yards per game 9. Jacquizz Rodgers, Oregon State ... 116.17 19. Jahvid Best, California ... 102.80 23. LaMichael James, Oregon ... 96.83 25. Joe McKnight, USC ... 94.60
• With Oregon taking the week off and most of the coaches on recruiting trips their isn't much football news.
While things are slow around campus Bob Rickert and John Hunt each take a look at the recruiting trail.
Rickert has a story on Hroniss Grasu, Nick Rowland, Micah Hatchie, Ryan Clanton and Roszell Gayden.
Hunt looks closer to home and has news about Gabe King, Curtis White and Tyson Coleman.
• Over at OregonGridiron.com Chip Kelly has a new post on why Oregon is so special.
Kelly finds it admirable that the team collected 35,380 pounds of supplies including water, rice, flour, clothes, canned goods, tents and over 20 wheel chairs for the relief effort to aid Samoa after the recent tsunami.
Well done guys.
Thursday, October 15, 2009
“It’s still a day-to-day thing,” Masoli said when asked how it feels. “It feels a little stiff in the morning, just because it’s in the morning and I’m waking up from night, but besides that it’s regular.”
Masoli said he’s not cutting from side to side on the joint, and is limited to straight ahead movements. He looked sharp throwing the ball today, but he didn’t offer a guess as to his availability when the Ducks play at Washington on Oct. 24 following a bye this weekend.
“I think it’s still a little too early to be speculating about Washington,” Masoli said. “We’ll see how it goes though. It’s real early.”
One other bit of news in this post, the Oct. 31 game against USC has the chance of being pushed back to 7pm at the request of ABC/ESPN. Personally I would prefer the earlier time. It is cold enough in late Oct. without adding another 2 hours and we would receive more East coast coverage.
• If your interested in the speculation on bowl projections click here to see what the pundits think. Way too early to be playing this guessing game in my opinion but hey, these are the folks that get paid so they have to write something.
• Addicted to Quack contributor JConant has a great piece on, "Young Ducks Emerge As New Stars." Very good read so check it out.
• Nick at Off the Pond has a fun Mid-Season Report at his blog, be sure to read it if you have a few minutes.
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Oregon is the only FBS team with the highest scoring offense (39.3 points) and lowest scoring defense (6.3) in its conference. It is the only FBS team leading its conference in total offense (447 yards) and total defense (192).
It's enough to render a defensive coordinator speechless.
"It's been so good for six weeks, you're waiting for like ... well, it's been so good, it's mind-boggling what these kids have done,'' Aliotti said. "I'm at a loss for words.''
Keep it up guys, the road gets tougher in the coming weeks.
• Hunt also looks at some dominating numbers as we have reached the half-way point of the season.
Here are the top dozen BCS teams so far in terms of blowing out conference competition:
Team PF PA (conference games)
Ohio State 31.3-9.0
Virginia Tech 37.7-15.7
Texas Tech 45.0-24.0
West Virginia 34.0-13.0
Pretty heady company.
• Bob Rickert posted his story on Oregon landing their first recruit for 2011, Tyson Coleman of Lake Oswego, Oregon. Coleman is 6' 2", 200lbs., and plays linebacker but could play on either side of the ball with his physical abilities.
I really like to see these in state recruits.
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Ducks defense is carrying the team, but Oregon needs to get healthy in order to continue its push toward the elite.
• Dan Greenspan at Scout.com has his own version of things we learned this last weekend and he has two spots for Oregon.
-It’s a two-team race in the Pac-10...the race for the Roses, barring complete and utter insanity, is down to the Trojans and Ducks.
The conference game of the year is officially USC and Oregon's clash on Halloween night.
-LaMichael James can make some room on his mantle
He and Matt Barkley will most assuredly be named the conference’s freshmen of the year.
In five games without LeGarrette Blount, James has totaled 559 yards rushing, four touchdowns and is averaging 6.2 yards per carry.
• Redshirt freshman Kenjon Barner was named Pac-10 special teams player of the week after his spectacular performance agaisnt UCLA.
• Rob Moseley takes a close look at the polls and wonders how the Ducks stack up.
And while the human polls all have Oregon in the mid-teens, the computer rankings used to compile the BCS standings see the Ducks in a more favorable light. Oregon is No. 6 according to both the Massey Ratings and Jeff Sagarin, is seventh according to Richard Billingsley and is rated No. 9 by Anderson and Hester and the Colley Matrix.
Click through for all the links to those polls.
• There are a couple of interesting quotes in this feature story by Rob Moseley.
Masoli didn’t suit up at UCLA but said his injured right knee was feeling “way better” a week after it was hurt against Washington State.
“There’s been a lot of improvement, especially my range of motion and squatting down all the way,” Masoli said. “It feels a lot better.”
“We’ll kind of catch our breath and get healthy this week, and then we’ve got to go on the road again,” Kelly said. “… To be great in this league, you’ve got to win on the road. That’s what it’s all about.”
Get healthy indeed.
Monday, October 12, 2009
No reason to doubt the Ducks' D any longer: Oregon has surrendered 19 points in its first three Pac-10 games, but 10 of those points aren't attributable to an opposing offense's success. So that means conference foes are scoring three points a game against the Ducks. Oregon had five sacks and two interceptions -- one of which was returned for a TD -- in its win over UCLA, despite being down three starters in the secondary.
• Speaking of stats, Rob Moseley looks at how the Ducks compare nationally in team stats. More proof that the "D" is for real.
16) Oregon, 280.83 ypg
22) Oregon, 16.33 ppg
17) Oregon, 163.67 ypg
PASS EFFICIENCY DEFENSE
9) Oregon, 91.34 rating
• Moseley also takes a look at the latest polls where Oregon stayed the same in the AP (13th) and moved up in the coaches poll to 16th.
• Coach Kelly held his Sunday afternoon teleconference and said the work will continue to improve during the bye week.
“We need to improve on everything,” Kelly said. “We need to improve on our blocking and finishing our blocks at the second level; we need route-running; we need blocking downfield from the receiver spot; we need to continue to work on our running in terms of developing a feel and a sense of where our blocking schemes are taking ‘em and following their blocks; we need to work on center-quarterback exchange.
“On defense, we need to work on getting off of blocks and just tackling in the open field. Your work’s never done, especially with as young a team as we have. We need to continue to develop in every facet of the game.”
Just keep winning guys and getting healthy.
Sunday, October 11, 2009
• Ted Miller also has this story on the defense and asks who bought Nick Aliotti before the season started? Seems there would be no recession for you if you did.
Oregon whipped UCLA 24-10, despite playing with its backup quarterback and an injury-riddled secondary, and the result was mostly about the Ducks' dominant defense, which has surrendered just 19 points in three Pac-10 games.
• Giving more kudos to this special group is Marty Martindale at Scouts.com.
Duck fans should rally around this group because this isn’t the first time they stuffed a talented team this season. The Oregon defense basically won the Utah game and held an explosive Cal offense to a measly three points.
The legend of Gang Green seems so long ago and just maybe Nick Aliotti should start considering new nicknames for the 2009 bunch.
• And what does Chip Kelly think about this no-name group? According to this John Hunt article, quite a bit.
"I think people are starting to jump on the bandwagon," Oregon coach Chip Kelly said. "They're as good a defense as I've seen in a long time."
• Steve Summers at Scout.com gives his game recap in his story, "Four Minutes of Lightning."
Coach Kelly continued his praise of this Duck group.
“We feed off each other,” remarked Kelly of his squad. “It’s a great team. These guys have great chemistry and a great attitude right now (and) they are a great bunch of guys to be around."
Good stuff indeed.