Saturday, November 7, 2015

Good Luck Ducks, Week 10: Different Directions

After a 3OT thriller, a defensively challenged Ducks team hosts struggling Cal.

Before the bye week, Oregon cut it close with the Washington Huskies, but I don't think anyone was prepared for the late night Thursday stunner last week against Arizona State. Oregon allowed a school record 7 million yards (or something like that, I don't really want to look it up.) After some back-and-forth craziness for four periods and a couple of extras, the Ducks scored a controversial TD in the third OT. And then they failed to complete the mandatory 2 point conversion, which looked like certain doom for a cream cheese soft defense. But lo and behold, Arrion Springs made a game-saving interception in the end zone on ASU's attempt to win, and the entire Duck fanbase breathed a huge sigh of relief and promptly passed out from exhaustion.

So here we are, with the Ducks at 5-3 with 4 games remaining in their schedule and a chance to put together a still successful 8-to-10 win season. Cal, on the other hand, started hot only to lose their last 3 straight. They have the same overall record as the Ducks, but have 3 conference losses to Oregon's 2. Jared Goff, anticipated to be the top QB selected in the next NFL draft, leads the Golden Bears, who have not won in this series since 2008. The last time Cal won at Autzen Stadium was in 2007, when DeSean Jackson was still on the team. It's been awhile, but it's nothing like the Washington series at this point.

Oregon is still searching for answers defensively, and facing one of the nation's top QBs could be their biggest test yet. This game may not be pretty. It's yet another late one. #Pac12AfterDark as they say. Wet weather conditions may slow down both offenses, but that could play in Oregon's favor as they could ride the ground game and Royce Freeman in particular. It's tough to know what to expect out of this one, but I expect it to be entertaining at the least.

Back in 2009, Oregon got some serious revenge against their rivals to the south (and former offense coordinator) in one of my all-time favorite Duck games.

Game time is 7:30 PST with national coverage on ESPN2. Go Ducks!

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