Saturday, October 2, 2021

Good Luck Ducks, Week 5: Cardinal Fever (and not the good kind)

The #3 Ducks hit the road to take on Stanford in an afternoon affair. 
We are four games into the season, and it feels like have fallen short of expectations in three of them. This isn't quite what you'd expect from a highly ranked college football team. At the same time, I'm not sure that it shows that Oregon has played down to the level of their competition as much as it's been a bit conservative at times against teams you'd expect that they'd outclass. I did think that they'd open things up a bit against Arizona, but that didn't really prove to be the case. An uncomfortably close game ended up looking like not much to be concerned about if you looked at the final box score, of course. (Five interceptions certainly helped.)

The Ducks are in Palo Alto today to take on the Stanford Cardinal. The Cardinal's record is an even 2-2, with wins over a flailing USC and perennial SEC doormat Vanderbilt along with losses to a couple of good teams (Kansas State and UCLA.) Stanford is led by quarterback Tanner McKee, who is off to an impressive run as a starter three games in. 

On the Oregon side, the Quack Attack saw the return of Kayvon Thibodeaux last week, albeit in limited doses. Thibodeaux was only in for a handful of plays, by design, apparently to get him acclimated to game action again without putting too much stress on his injured ankle. Let's hope he's a full go for this one. Anthony Brown Jr. did return as expected to start under center, but wasn't a huge factor in the game that was mainly dominated by an opportunistic Ducks secondary. I'm still interested in seeing what a "normal" games looks like for Brown.

Series History: Stanford owns a 49-34-1 edge, with the series being very competitive in recent years. They have split the ten games since David Shaw took over for Jim Harbaugh as Cardinal head coach.

Opponent Talk: The Tree-lovers are hoping that history repeats itself (like 2012 and 2013.)

In their last trip to Stanford Stadium, the defensive minded Ducks held the Cardinal to just 6 points.

Game time is 12:30 PM PDT on ABC. Go Ducks!

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