Oregon is off to a hot start, but are they a true national title contender? Photo: USA Today Sports
We’ve seen this movie before.
In each of the past three seasons, Oregon has jumped out to a blazing start in September, beating mediocre opponents to a pulp with ease. Every year, we fall in love with the Ducks for this, falling for the illusion that those 45-point (or more) blowouts mean they are national championship material.
It’s happening again this year.
Chip Kelly is gone, but Mark Helfrich has the Ducks moving ahead without skipping a beat. Through September, they’ve pasted Nicholls State (who won exactly one game in FCS play in 2012), Virginia (one of the three or four worst teams in the ACC), Tennessee (arguably the worst team in the SEC), and Cal (who sits firmly in the bottom half of the Pac-12).
Talk about a gauntlet.
Face it: Oregon has done nothing so far to prove it is one of the three best teams in the country. Alabama, Clemson and Georgia have.