Saturday, October 3, 2015

Good Luck Ducks, Week 5: Now What?

How will the Ducks respond to a historic loss?

At some point during last Saturday's debacle, I told my girlfriend that there was a good chance that this game marked the end of an era of Ducks football, as in the last time the school's football program would be relevant to the national sports discussion. I'm ashamed to say that I sounded like a sportswriter. My girlfriend, who could not care less about the Ducks except that she generally wants to be happy (or not mad), thought I was being overly dramatic. Of course, the final score would show Oregon losers by 42 points and countless numbers of articles the next day would echo my thought in the heat of the moment. All things must pass, nothing lasts forever, etc. The Ducks' goose is cooked.

Continuing with a theme from the previous week's post, I once again was incredibly wrong in my analysis. This time out, I predicted a low scoring game. It turned out that it was only Oregon that had trouble finding the end zone, something we haven't really been able to say since the fateful Blount Punch game of 2009. The defense had the consistency of Brie and the offense had the potency of Miller Lite. The quarterbacks were awful in different ways. Byron Marshall, who had barely been utilized this season aside from in the return game, went down with what seems to be a serious and possibly season ending leg injury.

Well, I've beaten up enough on the Ducks. Tonight they go on the road for the first time in conference play against Colorado, a team that has been awful since they joined the Pac-12. Despite the injury concerns, everything is lined up for a feel good, "back on track" type of game for a team that hasn't had a lot of those moments yet. The season may one-third over at this point, but Oregon can still make progress this week and tally a win. Clearly, nothing about last week changed my feelings that this was all leading up to a 6-6 season, but it doesn't have to be that way. The Utah loss could be an ugly footnote or the harbringer of doom. Let's hope it's not the latter.

In better times, Mariota's last home start in Eugene was a fun romp vs. the Colorado Buffaloes that I got to witness in person.

Game time is 7:00 PM with national coverage on ESPN. Go Ducks!

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