Jonathan Ferrey - Getty Images
No. 2 ranked Oregon defeats No. 23 Ranked Washington.
Well, the entertainment value of the game was minimal. The game started out with the feel of an upset with an interception on the first possession of the game for the Oregon Ducks thrown by Marcus Mariotta. Shaq Thompson made an athletic, diving grab off of a deflected throw to give the ball to the Huskies offense.
The subsequent drive instilled slight hope that the Huskies would be able to move the ball against Oregon as it was not a three-and-out. Then Washington forced a punt, and everything went downhill. Marvin Hall muffed a punt he should have fair caught, it was recovered by Oregon, and the game never got better.
Bishop Sankey had another good game, scoring two touchdowns on the ground, and averaging 4.3 yards per carry. He totaled over 100 yards rushing, a definite plus and true silver lining among the abysmal finish to the game. The Washington running game looked strong as a whole, and Sankey in particular looked solid, if unspectacular.
Keith Price was outplayed by Oregon's Redshirt Freshman Marcus Mariota. Part of it may have had to do with Washington focusing on the overall speed of Oregon's team. Oh, and the pace of the Ducks offense not allowing the Huskies to get set as a defense also has a small part.
What put Washington out of the game early was not the team speed of Oregon nor the offensive pace. It was unforced mental errors.The first was the non-fair catch my Marvin Hall, which led to Oregon's first touchdown of the game. One big mistake is all it takes to snowball against a team like Oregon.
If Austin Seferian-Jenkins wants to be the NFL tight end he is built to be, he will need to do better than two catches for 33 yards. Yes, his ankle was hurt in the second quarter with the game basically out of hand by the time he would have returned, but he still needs to have a better game receiving, even with teams keying on him.
Does Price not throw a very catchable ball? It seems his spiral is not tight, and his receivers tend to drop more than their fair share of passes directly into their chest. Kasen Williams had his weekly drop on a pass directly at his chest and Deandre Campbell had a ball bounce off of his chest into the arms of a defender. While he is a very skilled quarterback, if an entire receiving corps has a case of the dropsies, then at what point does one start to wonder if part of it is the fault of the quarterback.
Washington could just not handle the pace of the Oregen Ducks, plain and simple. Some comments in the game thread remarked about the refs moving faster, accommodating the fast pace of Oregon. Whether that is true or not, it may be something that the PAC-12 or the NCAA will have to look at. Nick Saban, the head coach of Alabama, certainly does not agree with allowing teams like Oregon to run rampant like they do.
My favorite part of Oregon Week? The Oregon cheerleaders. If I could give them a Rec, I would.
What are your instant reactions?