• Nick Aliotti and Gary Campbell talk with the media after practice yesterday. Video courtesy of KEZI.
• Offensive coordinator Mark Helfrich gets lots of respect from the Oregon players, coaches, bosses and even outsiders.
For a coach whose contributions to the Ducks can seem somewhat murky — what exactly is the role of an offensive coordinator when Chip Kelly is head coach? — Helfrich sure seems to be recognized often by folks who matter, whether it’s his players, his bosses or his colleagues. Oregon’s quarterbacks say they love playing for Helfrich, the UO administration is so confident in him he has been tabbed as Kelly’s eventual successor and Helfrich’s colleagues recently voted him national quarterbacks coach of the year for the second time in three seasons.
• Former Ducks were seen making plays all over the NFL this last weekend including LaMichael James who had a big kickoff return for the 49er's.
James, Oregon's career rushing king, returned a kickoff 62 yards in the fourth quarter Sunday night at New England, setting up the 49ers' game-winning touchdown on the next play. James' return came just after the Patriots' completed a 28-point rally to tie the score.
• De'Anthony will be helping out on a local YMCA basketball team starting in mid January.
• De'Anthony Thomas says he's just getting started in this report.
"He blended in right away," UO running backs coach Gary Campbell said. "The moment he got here and got into the offense we could see he was going to do some special things."
Thomas is planning to showcase more of his big-play abilities on a big stage against Kansas State in the Fiesta Bowl.
"A lot of people say speed kills, and we got a lot of speed on this team," he said. "We're ready to just dominate."