I was stunned to learn it had been 25 years already since “The Pick,” and it was the craziest moment that I’ve experienced as a season-ticket holder for 33 years at Autzen Stadium. Oregon had put on a valiant drive to take the lead in the late stages of the game and then Washington was mowing right through Oregon with a powerful run attack that appeared ready to score as the game ended. I recall how I was thinking about getting up and leaving, and even mentioned that to the Duck-Buddy who was with me. I mean, who wants to watch the end of another Husky win over Oregon?
When it happened — we all had the same bizarre set of emotions; the pure explosion of joy, but also the disbelief at what just happened, and almost half wondering if we could believe our own eyes! There has been so much progress to Oregon football since that time, and another strange sidebar to it all is realizing that the entire current football team and student body was not even alive when “The Pick” occurred.
That top picture summarized what Oregon has done since that 1994 season: a winning record in 23 of 25 seasons, 22 bowl appearances (Only 3 in the previous 30 seasons before 1994), two national championship game appearances, four Rose Bowls and eight top-10 finishes. One play helped to propel all of that?
Brian Libby is a professional writer, an Oregon Football historian, (One of his books sits on Mario Cristobal’s office coffee table) and he added some stats of his own to compare UO and UW since 1994 that are quite relevant:
Top-10 finishes since 1994: Oregon 8, Washington 2
Top-five finishes since 1994: Oregon 5, Washington 2
January bowl wins since 1994: Oregon 4, Washington 1
Conference titles since 1994: Oregon 4, Washington 3
Heisman Trophies since 1994: Oregon 1, Washington 0
National championship game appearances since 1994: Oregon 2, Washington 0
With such a reversal of the football pecking order in the Northwest, it is natural that the fans of Washington did not take it well. (Not that Oregon fans would pile it on or anything!) Their swirl of reactive emotions fueled a growing animosity toward anything associated with our Beloved Ducks … especially the fans.
How Husky Fans Feel About Oregon Fans …
Alex, at SeattleSportsnet.com explains what he regards is the worst of The 30 Reasons to Hate the University of Oregon …“The fans. Worst Fans in America. Hands down. From the iconic Pit Crew to the scum-of-the-earth alums that spew venomous taunts at opponents, there is little regard for human decency in and around the University of Oregon and no rhyme or reason for their behavior. Just bad breeding, I guess.”
On an Oregon Sports Forum recently — it was posted how on one Washington message board, the Husky fans were discussing (earlier this season) whether they should root for Oregon to beat Cal. Predictably, everybody was saying, “no way I’d root for Oregon.” A poster named “509Dawg” posted the following, as we must give credit where credit is due!
“I’d root for Jerry Sandusky before I’d root for Oregon, I’d rather have Rick Ashley on repeat than have Oregon win a game, I’d admit that Hanson was a great band before I’d admit that Oregon has a good football team, I’d rather have a thousand paper cuts on my face than witness an Oregon win, I would rather be part of a Satanic ritual that raises Adolf Hitler from the dead and revives German conquest in Europe than not throw eggs at a guy in an Oregon hat. I’d rather see Kevin Spacey pardoned, I’d rather spend every day of my life watching “Dancing with the Stars” than see Oregon have any success, and yah, ISIS compared to Duck fans are just better human beings.”
My friends, I have seen many carefully crafted insults against us Oregon fans before, but you have to admit what you read above is pretty entertaining! Husky fans are not well thought of by Duck fans, and yet it is a mystery to the pups as to why?
I dare anyone to listen to this wonderful song above and not laugh, or just try to keep from grinning! I’m glad to see that many of us do have fun with the rivalry …
What Is YOUR Game Analysis?
As a CPA and long-time editor/writer for the site, Mike Merrell, makes some thoughtful points about the recent history of the rivalry, and his assessment of this year’s game …
Coach Chris Petersen, whom many Duck fans lamented Oregon didn’t get as a head coach, is 2-3 against Oregon during the Ducks’ most dismal period this century, and 1-4 in bowl games as the butt-sniffers’ coach. Even with Oregon’s vanilla play calling and disappointing offensive performance in recent years — things could have been worse for the Ducks in the rivalry.
“I seriously believe they will have trouble sustaining drives, as they have struggled to sustain them against against good defenses. I don’t think they are ready for the speed of the game that Oregon brings. They’ve relied a lot on gifts, especially against USC and Arizona. I think Oregon is a terrible match-up for them, as Oregon plays a “careful” game without making a lot of mistakes. Long field position is not the dogs’ friend, and Oregon is very good at creating the long field. When you look at how the dogs offense struggled against Cal and Stanford — Oregon’s defense is lights out better than either. Home field advantage may prove a factor, but there’s a reason Oregon handled both Cal and Stanford and UW didn’t.”
Pre-Game Analysis from Mr. FishDuck
My biggest concern is the inexperience of the Duck coaching staff and the majority of the players — especially with Oregon being ranked highly and now favored going into this rivalry game. I did not think the Ducks were prepared at all for the environment that awaited them in Pullman last year, and they will not have faced anything in the past like Husky Stadium. Can they also handle all the new hype about them?
Washington has shown surprising weakness right in the center of their defensive line, which would normally bode well for the pounding attack that Cristobal likes to run with the Pistol formation. But the Huskies will be ready for that, and my belief is that if the offensive game plan is a good mix between the passing and running — then we can outscore them (considering the Ducks’ rugged defense). When the Husky linebackers moved to fill gaps faster against Arizona, Washington then became susceptible to the Tight End RPOs that Oregon implemented against Nevada.
Spencer Webb is not a great blocker yet, but he could certainly get open against the Huskies if they try to crash the run gaps. Do watch for the unbalanced line (above) with Calvin Throckmorton at tight end! They ran that formation for a touchdown against Colorado, and I thought it was great to have Hunter Kampmoyer, Calvin Throckmorton, and Penei Sewell side-by-side to blow open a hole.
I would not have this kind of confidence if we didn’t have an elite defense like we do right now. This defense will keep us in any game, and the curiosity component is just as high on that side of the ball to see if they can hold the Huskies down like they have other teams. I have a hard time believing the Huskies scoring more than 17 points on our defense, which sets a low-bar for the Oregon offense.
There is a lot of talent on that UW team; they have good coaches, and of course they will be fired up. But I am picking Oregon to win. Let’s discuss beating the damn Huskies before, during and after the game …
“Oh how we love to discuss our Beloved Ducks!”
Charles Fischer (FishDuck)
Eugene, Oregon Top Photo From Video
Charles Fischer has been an intense fan of the Ducks for over thirty six years and has written reports on football boards for over 20 years. Known as “FishDuck” on those boards, he is acknowledged for providing intense detail in his scrimmage reports and in his Xs and Os play analyses.
He and his wife Lois, a daughter, Christine reside in Eugene, Oregon, where he has been a Financial Advisor for 35 years serving clients in eleven different states. He does not profess to be a coach or analyst, but simply a “hack” that enjoys sharing what he has learned and invites others to correct or add to this body of Oregon Football! See More…
FishDuck….you are one WEIRD Dude.
I’ve heard that before. Often people do not like my contrarian view to some topics, but being a football critic is who I am.
I will call it as I see it whether positive or negative, and I will never create anything to simply generate a response; I believe in everything I write.
If we were all in agreement, then there are fewer opportunities to learn and I do love the debates we have in our protected environment. More discussion creates more learning, which makes us all better fans. Let’s make the most of it!