College Football action on Saturday afternoon and a pair of teams from the Pac-12 will square off as the Oregon Ducks pay a visit to Husky Stadium in Seattle, Washington to rumble with the Washington Huskies. The Ducks won last year's meeting by a score of 30-27 at home.
The Ducks come in ranked 12th in the AP Poll at 5-1 on the year, while the Huskies enter this contest at 5-2 on the year and ranked 23rd in the land.
The Oregon Ducks have had a strong season so far as they come in at 5-1 overall, including a perfect 3-0 in the Pac-12. they are the only undefeated team in Pac-12 play so far. Their lone loss came to Auburn to start the year and since then they have won five games in a row, including last week's 45-3 win over Colorado. The defense has led them so far as they have allowed no more than seven points in each of their last five games. Oregon is now 3rd in the nation in points allowed, giving up just 8.7 ppg. Can their defense keep them perfect in league play? We shall see.
The Washington Huskies are off to a solid 5-2 start overall, but they are just 2-2 in league play. If they want any chance of winning the Pac-12 north, then they must win this game, but something has looked off with the Huskies this year so far. Their offense has been very good out of the league, but they came into last week's game with Arizona having averaged just 20.0 ppg in their three league games up until that point. Well, the offense got on track last week as they dropped 51 points in a 51-27 win on the road. Can the Huskies be the team that breaks through against this tough Oregon Defense? Keep on reading to find out.
This Defense Is AWESOME!!!In the Chip Kelly years at Oregon, it was all about the fast-paced offense. They didn't give a damn if they allowed 35 ppg, as long as they scored 40 ppg. The Ducks have gone through some years of mediocrity since that time, but those days are over now. Oregon comes in at 5-1 on the year and ranked 12th in the nation in the latest AP poll. Oregon started their year wit a very tough 27-21 loss to Auburn, but they have since won their last five games in a row and they have been trouncing teams in the process. During their winning streak, the Ducks have outscored their foes 39-5 over that stretch. Yikes.
The offense has obviously been solid for the Ducks but I will be discussing that awesome defense first. The Ducks allowed 27 points in their first game, but they have allowed a total of 25 points over their last five games and now more than seven in any of those games. The Ducks are now 3rd in the nation in points allowed at 8.7 ppg and 8th in total yards allowed at 267.7 ypg. Last week, they faced a very good Colordao offense and totally shut them down in the 45-3 home win. The Ducks allowed that offense just 29 yards of total offense, including just 131 through the air. Steven Montex had no answer for this defense and now Jacob Eason must try and crack the 8th ranked pass defense in the nation. Washington is 64th in the nation in passing, but Eason is a solid talent and will be a test for this stout Oregon defense.
On to the offense. The Ducks do possess a strong one and they are led by Justin Herbert, who many feel will be the top pick in next year's NFL draft. Herbert threw for 261 yards with two TDs and no INTs last week against the Buffaloes. He has now thrown for 1602 yards with an astonishing 17/1 TDP- INT ratio. Herbert did face a horrible pass defense last week and will be facing one that is 63rd in the nation on the year. The Ducks are 26th in the nation in passing, but they can also run the ball as they rank 56th in that category. That is above average and the Ducks will look to their ground game to produce enough to keep a solid Washington pass rush off of Herbert's ass. The Ducks are a perfect 3-0 in the Pac-12 and a win in this game will make it tough for the rest of the Pac-12 North to catch them.
Huskies Are Looking To Stay In The RaceThe Washington Huskies were picked by many to win the NFC North this year, but so far, they are off to a 2-2 start in league play and in 2nd place in the division. That makes this game against the Ducks, who are 3-0 in league play, a must-win game for the Huskies. If they lose this game, then the Ducks will probably run away with the division. Their losses this year have been rather bad as the Huskies fell at home as 13.5 point favorites to California in their 2nd game of the season and then a few weeks ago, they lost at Stanford by a score of 23-13. The offense averaged just 20 ppg through their first three conference games but last week, they exploded for 51 points in a 51-27 win over Arizona. The bad news here is that the Wildcat defense is nothing like the Huskies will face in this one.
The Ducks have allowed just 5 ppg over their last five games and they have allowed just 5.2 ppg in their three conference games. The Ducks are 8th in the nation against the pass and 23rdt against the run, so they are strong in both aspects. Jacob Eason will have to have a strong game in this one. He has thrown for 1692 yards with 13 TDs and just three INTs on the year. He will need help from a ground game that finally got rolling last week as they piled up 207 yards rushing against the Wildcats. Sean McGrew had 106 yards rushing in the contest, while Salvon Ahmed had 95 yards and scored three TDs. That pair will be called on to help loosen up the Oregon defense so that Eason can hit some big plays down the field.
"He’s doing a nice job," said Washington head coach Chris Petersen about Eason from a media session on Monday. "But like he said afterwards, he’s more on the reserve side. When that ball is in your hand naturally a lot of guys are going to be looking to you and your voice. The number one way to lead is to lead through example. Play good and do your job which he’s been doing. But it’s also nice when he starts kind of speaking out a little bit and bringing something to the table there. Then game management is always something. We’re always changing certain things. I do think he’s an accurate thrower. He showed that. But there’s always going to be a few throws where it’s like ‘wish that was a little more accurate’.”
The defense for the Huskies is normally a stout one, but it has been rather average this year so far. Washington has allowed just 19.6 ppg, but they are 63rd in the nation against the pass and 57th against the run. Oregon is a team that will not only get their fair share of yards but they also know how to put the ball in the endzone. The Huskies allowed just 360 yards of total offense against Arizona last week and they will need that defense to step up here or the Huskies will be staring down the barrel of a tough conference loss. The Huskies have the Utes on deck, so this is a tough two-game stretch for them."
- 5-1 ATS in their last 6 meetings in Washington
- The favorite is 16-5 ATS the last 21 games in this series.
- 22-51-2 ATS in their last 75 games in October.
- 3-7 ATS in their last 10 games following an ATS win