Thursday, October 6, 2011

Good Luck Ducks, Week 6: Injury Fakers

Oh Cal, we meet again. Forget the little brother/big brother thing that Oregon supposedly has with Oregon State. The Golden Bears are like the smirking sibling that's always trying to get one over on the Ducks. Last year it was fake injuries and an incredibly stubborn defensive strategy that had the Ducks completely dizzy for all but the last 9 minutes of the game, resulting in a squeaker of a 2 point win for Oregon. Three seasons ago, torrential rains and ridiculously awful field conditions waterlogged an otherwise impressive Oregon team. Go back to 2007, and you see the lone black mark on Dennis Dixon's stellar (but short) senior campaign, stuffed by a game-ending goal line fumble by Cameron Colvin.

Cal is coached by former Ducks Offensive Coordinator Jeff Tedford, who was the most prominent in his position during the Mike Bellotti era. He knows, or at least knew, a lot of things that Oregon football is all about. And to be honest, they are the most likable of the four California based Pac-12 teams. They're a little flashy, a little yellow, and boast prominent recent alums like DeSean Jackson and Aaron Rodgers.

Oregon can't let those good feelings distract them from their goal, and that's still a solid pounding of a lesser conference foe. The Ducks have given up a ton of yards this season and are starting to attract some notice for it, even though their offense in some ways seems even more ridiculous this year than the past few. And Cal's game planning has worked in the past, better than a lot of other teams that they face on a regular basis. This is not a game to be taken lightly, not that Chip Kelly's "Win The Day" philosophy allows for any game to be treated differently than another.

Above footage from a 1996 clash between Cal and Oregon at Autzen Stadium (where it never rains) in 1996. I thought I'd go a little old-school since the Ducks are reportedly going to wear some such Nike "throwbacks" tonight.

Game time is 6:00 PDT with national coverage on ESPN. Thursday Night Football? Go Ducks!

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