Oregon Ducks (@IamMSilvestre)
Fans of the Oregon Ducks, including myself, have been fortunate enough in recent years to have the opportunity to watch a series of dominant performances. In my opinion, Oregon has a perfect foundation to be a national powerhouse, and produce multiple titles. The only thing the team needs to complete the transition is a BCS championship.
Oregon football has a rich history. Cal Young helped found the Ducks’ football team in 1894, the son of pioneers who helped settle Eugene, Oregon. In their first official game, the Ducks won in a blowout, 44-2. During last Saturday’s blowout of similar proportions, I couldn’t help but wonder when the Ducks will win their first national championship, after 119 years of being in the crowded heap of losers.
What makes the championship so coveted is its elusiveness, as Oregon has been close to a title on multiple occasions. The Ducks have made a number of bowl appearances ending seasons of jaw-dropping statistics. Stats would have indicated that Oregon would win the BCS championship game they played against Auburn in 2011, as Oregon averaged 49.3 points per game that season while Auburn averaged 46.25 points per game, but, unfortunately, the Ducks’ hopes were dashed once again in a losing effort, 22-19. If the goal is to win a national championship, good numbers cannot take the place of the big “W”.
In order to assess any real prospects the Ducks have of climbing their football Everest, we need to look at the competition. Preliminary BCS predictions from Fox Sports place only Alabama and Stanford ahead of Oregon, with Ohio State directly behind. Alabama has a strong quarterback in AJ McCarron, an accurate passer with 5 touchdowns and 1 interception so far this season. McCarron’s season passing total, at 444 yards, is still 12 less yards than Mariota, Oregon’s quarterback, had against Tennessee alone. Of course, Alabama has played Texas A+M and Virginia Tech, two talented schools, while the Ducks have been pitted against poorer teams. None of the schools ranked comparably to the Ducks have any players who can stack up to the numbers Oregon players have been putting up, both on the ground, and through the air.
There is no doubt that Oregon has an exceptional football team. New head coach Mark Helfrich appears to be focused and driven during interviews. The Ducks have never had a more talented roster than they have this year. All the numbers point to a victory over the first ranked team. After more than a century of waiting, the Oregon Duck may have a chance to take the National Championship home to Eugene.
Cal Young: http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=6563668