Friday, October 24, 2014

Good Luck Ducks, Week 9: California Bound

The valley's gonna cure your every ill.

Oregon travels south to the Bay Area for their first ever visit to Levi's Stadium, home of the San Francisco 49ers as well as a college football team known as the California Golden Bears. While it's nowhere near the Berkeley campus, and there's a World Series game going in town, well... someone's bound to be around to watch this game, right? I mean, it's Friday night! Friday night football! Oh, er, I thought this night was usually reserved for the high school kids.

Last week's shellacking of the Huskies at the hands of the Ducks (11 straight) set right a lot of concerns about this Ducks team and put them back in the conversation for people that like to speculate on the sorts of things that won't be decided until December. Unfortunately, it ultimately comes down to this whole four team "playoff" selection committee. I'm not sure these guys will actually get anything right, and I'm afraid I'll actually be missing the days of the BCS reign of terror. Yikes.

After a 1-11 season that saw the Bears barely eke out a single win over the Portland State Vikings, clearly on par with one of the worst all-time seasons by any Pac-12 school ever, Cal has turned things around in a really weird way. They just barely beat conference doormats Washington State and Colorado in a myriad of Hail Marys and other desperate late game pass attempts. They kept things close against a surprising Arizona team and an underachieving UCLA team. And they, uh, beat Northwestern. They have the ability to score a lot, and Oregon's defense is still a work in progress. Given the advances that the Ducks have made since their first loss of the season a few weeks ago, however, I don't expect this to be too hotly contested.

Cal did not make this one interesting last year.

Game time is 7:00 PDT with national TV coverage on Fox Sports 1. Go Ducks!

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