How many of you out there circled the Oregon game as a win at the beginning of the year? How many of you are circling it as a win now?
If you watched the Ducks play WSU on Saturday you probably came away with the impression that they are pretty beatable. The vaunted Cougar offense shredded the Duck defense for 30 first downs and 468 yards. The mighty Lobster himself tossed the ball around for 337 yards.
The Cougars dominated the time of possession battle. They held on to the ball a staggering 40:26 in comparison to only 19:34 for the Ducks. Despite that the Ducks cruised to a 43-28 win in a game which was really never seriously in doubt. The Ducks really don't need a lot of time to go the distance.
Oregon is a big play team with the best overall team speed in the conference. They can attack you with that speed in so many different ways. Boseko Lokombo scored the first touchdown of the game on the return of a blocked punt. De Anthony "Black Mamba" Thomas ran a kickoff back 93 yards in the third quarter.
I'm not worried about the Washington offense going into this. The Huskies should be able to tally a decent number of points against Oregon. Chris Polk should be able to run the ball and Keith Price should have success passing it.
The key question this week is if the Husky defense will be able to stop the Duck offense enough to make a game out of it? I don't see Washington or anyone else winning a track meet against Oregon. If you want to beat them you need to find a way to slow them down a bit.
Kibbles and Bits
Seniors will be honored in Husky Stadium this weekend since it is the last true Husky home game of the season. The Apple Cup is being played downtown this year so construction crews can start tearing down the old stadium a month early.
The Ducks have won seven in a row against the Huskies which is a record for either team in this series. The games haven't been close either. Each Quacker win has been by twenty points or more.
Steve Sarkisian said he didn't want to comment on the officiating last weekend because he didn't want to say something stupid and get fined. Lane Kiffin who had an equal axe to grind with the zebras obviously doesn't care if he gets fined or not.
Kiffin said Sunday that he already had contacted Pac-12 Conference officials, including a phone call from the locker room to a person he declined to identify “to express what happened and how I was basically lied to.”
A day after saying there was no QB controversy in Eugene Chip Kelly told the media that he hasn't decided which QB will start against the Huskies in Seattle.
The Ducks open the week as a 16 1/2 point favorite over the Huskies.
Interesting...Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times didn't vote for Washington in the AP poll this week.
Will Chris Polk win the Pac 12 player of the week award or will it go to Stanford's Andrew Luck? Tough call because both of these guys played their butts off on Saturday.
Pac 12 Power Ratings
1. Stanford...After obliterating Washington from the face of the earth the Cards needed three overtimes to put away a USC team that is starting to jell and come together. Next up is Oregon State in Corn Valley.
2. Oregon...The Ducks were sluggish in the first half against Wazzu before picking up the place led by a controversial change at QB in the second half. Next up for the Webfoots is Washington in Seattle
3. Arizona State... The Devils had no trouble with Colorado...does anyone have trouble with the Buffs except WSU? This week they draw a suddenly resurgent UCLA squad in Pasadena.
4. USC...The Trojans came oh so close against Stanford in one of the most entertaining games of the Pac 12 season. This week they get to knock the crap out of Colorado.
5. Washington...Gutty win for the Huskies over Arizona qualifies them for a second consecutive bowl game. Up next is the finale for old Husky stadium and the Oregon Ducks.
6. Utah...The Utes surprised me this week by blowing the Beavers out of the game in the first half. This week they take on Arizona in Tucson.
7. UCLA...The Bruins not only get the win but they basically dominated the Bears in what we could have called the "Mailing it in Bowl". This was a big win for Neu a week after everyone declared him officially dead.
8. California...Jeff Tedford's seat got a lot hotter this week after losing to UCLA. If they lose to the Cougars this week it may get really hot...but he isn't going anywhere because there is no way that Cal could afford to pay him off.
9. Arizona...The Wildcats are going to win a few games before the end of the year. Next up is Utah at home in a game they have a pretty good shot at winning.
10. Oregon State...The Beavers stunk it up in Salt Lake. Stanford is coming to town this week and it won't be pretty.
11. Washington State...So did WSU play the Ducks tough or was Oregon relaxing before facing off against arch nemesis Washington? The Cougs have Cal on the road this week and it is the definition of a winnable game for Coach Wulff whose career still has a flicker of hope.
12. Colorado...Do you think these guys miss the Big 12? USC comes to Boulder this week....ouch!