Saturday, September 26, 2009

Good Luck Ducks, Week 4: Retros

The rumor started before the season even began, if not before. It looked like it might be another case of internet silliness, but the Ducks have proven time and time again that silliness will never get in the way of a good uniform story. The word is that the Ducks will wear retro uniforms ("throwbacks", if you will) in their conference opener today.

After a confidence building yet disturbing win over Utah last week, the focus will hopefully be on the California Golden Bears rather than the uniforms. One needs to look no further than last season's frustrating loss where Oregon was severely outplayed by Cal in a controversial underwater football game. I'm a fan of instant replay in small doses, but I never thought playing in the middle of a lake was good for the game. You could also go back to the 2007 game in Eugene, but if you were to even mention said game I imagine it would feel roughly the same as if you were trying to put a cigarette out in my eye. Let's just say that the name Cameron Colvin will probably make me a little nauseous for the rest of my life.

So you have the close games, the fact that the opposing head coach used to be the offensive coordinator (always more popular than the head coach in good times and the coaching scapegoat in bad times) and the #6 national ranking. Oh, and then there's that whole "disturbing" part I mentioned. Oregon QB Jeremiah Masoli completed exactly 4 passes last week, barely more than the number of times he fumbled the ball. In fact, if you look at statistics over the course of many generations of football since the forward pass came to fancy, I think you would be hard-pressed to find many games where the winning team's combined total of lost fumbles and sacks taken outnumbered the amount of passes completed. Oregon overcame that last week. I hope they can take something positive out of that game. In fact, we're already at Week 4 of the season and I still don't know what to make of this team. The game could easily get ugly and out of hand for the Ducks, but this could also be the game that silences the critics and stomps on other [insert tired cliches] and makes me a happy Duck.

Today's game is on ABC at 12:30 PDT. I believe it's regional coverage, so it is probably also available on ESPN Gameplan and if it's not on the ABC in your area.

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