What IS an Oregon Ducks Fan?

FishDuck Staff Editorials 36 Comments

What is an Oregon Ducks fan?

That depends on who you ask. To some, Oregon fans are rabid, crazy fanatics that bleed green (and black, and grey, and a different green, and highlighter yellow, chrome and sometimes pink and even less often, blue) and “yell-O”, right? To others, they’re rabid fans that claim greatness but whose number of national championships matches the shape of their logo, which critics love to say is a big fat zero.

Oregon fans are the most loyal fans that there are, right? Oregon fans stick with their team through thick and thin, right? That is of course unless they’re losing, then they’re some of the most disgruntled, obnoxious and fair-weather fans that exist.

When you live in Duck country, the bond between Ducks fan is as palpable as the smoke and pollen that enshrouds our valley. When fans pass each other they go out of their way to make themselves known to anyone with an Oregon license plate, or to flash the “O” to someone wearing a Ducks hat, shirt or even a sticker in their window. They’re loyal to one another, and they know it bonds them like no other.

What do others think of Duck fans though, and how do Ducks fans compare to fans of other universities?

Kevin Cline

The sights and the sounds of Autzen can be impressive…

I’ve been to other parts of the country, and outside of the Pac-12 region most other fans I’ve met actually like the Ducks as a team. I lived in the middle of SEC/ACC country for two years, and I was pleasantly surprised at how well-liked the Ducks were. But no one really knew much about the fans themselves. It’s known that Autzen is one of the loudest stadiums in the country, but with very few exceptions no one really understood the fans beyond the tales of ear-piercing noise coming from such a small stadium.

While living within roughly four hours of Alabama, Auburn, Mississippi State, LSU, Florida, and FSU, I was able to see some pretty passionate fanbases who had less than polite things to say about one another. One thing that they all were though is very loyal, win or, God forbid, lose. In general they didn’t think too highly of other conferences, especially from the SEC fans, but outside of their world, believe it or not, there was just a little ribbing to me with my constant Oregon hat invading their territory.

There is a question that keeps running through my head though. Would they think the same thing if they were here and saw us in person, if they were to ever show up at Autzen? Would they still respect Oregon fans afterwards, or would the fans make enemies of them like what happened with a former Oregon player?

Let’s face it, there is one thing we can’t argue with, and that’s the fact that there has only been a single school west of the Mississippi to win the college football national championship since the vacated USC win in 2004, and that was Texas in 2005. There has only been one school, Ohio State, in that time period that didn’t fall within that four-hour radius. The simple reality is we just aren’t there. No one but them actually is.

Kevin Cline

For some fans … is it about an event or loyalty?

Sure, Oregon is knocking on the door, but so far we’re 0-2 when playing for it all. The fans, well there are a lot who think we are there, that we belong in that same elite conversation. We talk the talk but so far we do it without walking the walk. That is a reality.

Where the difference lies, though, is that when Oregon is winning, the fans are on board. We think that this is the year we shut the naysayers up…and then comes the 4-8 season and fans stop talking, stop supporting, stop being fans. The support is suddenly for no one…not for the school administrators, coaches or even the players. Heck, they even stop flying the Oregon colors for periods of time. All too often it seems Ducks fans fall off the bandwagon.

Enter 2020. Can we still be Oregon, the program knocking on the door of the elite with some of the loudest, most dedicated fans in the nation, or are we going to be the whiny, ‘why can’t we play like everyone else’ fans that only support the Ducks when they’re on the field and winning?

So I ask again, what is an Oregon Ducks fan?

Dumpster Fire
Eugene, Oregon
Top Photo by Kevin Cline

Phil Anderson, the FishDuck.com Volunteer editor for this article, is a trial lawyer in Bend Oregon.



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Charles Fischer, Mr. FishDuck

Pac-12 Recruiting Commentary by Rivals Experts:

“Let’s face it, the Ducks are killing everyone in the Pac-12 in recruiting under Cristobal and he’s building an SEC-style roster that should dominate the conference for years to come. They are recruiting on a level with Alabama, Clemson and Ohio State.”

Full article here…

thanks for the link. waiting on news from today’s meeting of the pac-12 powers that be. could be like waiting for godet or the cable guy?


24/7 is reporting games will commence on Nov 6th!!!???


Schedules TBD


Heather Dinnich on ESPN: The Pac-12 will resume on Nov.6 with a 7 game schedule, more details around, 5:00. Basketball season set to begin, Thanksgiving weekend, did not specify M, W or both.


Pac-12 UPDATE: From Jon Wilner Twitter: https://twitter.com/wilnerhotline

The Pac-12 CEO meeting is scheduled to begin at 3:00, media zoom call to discuss the vote at 5.

Also, this is interesting, from Ralph D. Russo, even if the Pac-12 champ doesn’t qualify for the CFP, it is guaranteed a spot in an NY6 Bowl; $4 Million. Also, each P5 conference gets $ 66 M from the CFP annually regardless of the teams selected.

Santa Rosa Duck

An Oregon Duck fan is one who is escaping the smoke and spending time in Santa Fe, NM. While eating in outdoor cafes we have been noticed three times by other fans who noticed that my standard poodle Cosmo is wearing an Oregon Duck collar.


Out of state fan here. so to me this is an oregon duck fan.

The University and it’s Athletics is a year round event(Excluding 2020, covid). It starts at the beginning of fall practice and runs to the end of spring football. Most football games are watched with family and smoked queso. We shout and watch from the comfort of our warm couch, that is except for about every other year when we make the trek to the holy land to “Shout” as we are enthralled in our religious ceremony of ducks football.

While basketball is less followed we still take the chances when not occupied by children to watch and enjoy as the ducks defeat their opponents.

Moreover we most commonly wear coats of many colors(Green, Yellow, gray, black, highlighter, forest green, dark green, apple green and maybe pink) most if not all represent our allegiance with a large O.

What it inevitably boils down to for me is watching and discussing football with my dad. I started nearly 20 years ago and we continue it to this day now with a place of my own(that isn’t a small apartment) we take turns hosting the game. We smoke food and relax. we shout at the tv. almost every year we get each other something ducks related for christmas and we always attend when they play in rice eccles stadium.

Everything else is just icing on the cake. Making bets with the VP of my work and getting free lunch or getting asked if I am a duck fan while marching around town in my oregon sweater.

also sorry for the religious innuendo, it is still Utah.


Only fans under 50 are like that


Agreed on the FishDuck community. The only thing I’d change is the date I decided to join it…I wish I’d’ve done it much sooner.

Charles Fischer, Mr. FishDuck

I have had season tickets for 34 years and have not witnessed what that player had, but for an occasional lout sitting in someone’s seats for a game.

Oregon has very classy fans, and I have proof; look at the wonderful people in this community!

Oregon has fans that truly are culls and I have proof; I can show you all the people that I’ve blacklisted/banned in the past!

All schools have all-type fans, and unbelievably….I’ve met and enjoyed talking with some classy Husky fans….


I’ll drag this response out simply so I can call it typing practice, but I have a one-word response…



it might be on a micro scale of the fan base but one thing I’ve noticed over the past couple years is when a player announces decommiting from Oregon or just picking another school most of the comments from duck fans are along the lines of “sorry to lose you but best of luck with your college career” Stay classy Oregon


As a Duck fan since the 60’s, for me the relationship has been about the players giving their all on the field, win or lose. Young men and women (track, basketball, volleyball, etc.) giving their all against (what used to be) better teams,

I have alway liked the team colors (a Packer fan because of that), the Duck as a mascot, and the campus and facilities.

In the 60’s and 70’s, it certainly wasn’t winning that kept me a fan, I think it was the excitement of a big play here and there. Track and field was really the lone consistently bright light where we were always a force to be reckoned with.

It is certainly easier to be a fan of our Beloved Ducks in the last few decades! The Ducks have Not just become competitive, they have begun to dominate! Oregon is now attracting players who are truly among the best in the nation, and it is translating into excellence on the playing surface. Look where we were when the pandemic hit!

PAC 12 champions in football, men’s basketball and women’s basketball, with the baseball, softball, and track and field teams making some serious noise! What a time to be a Duck fan!

However, I do agree that their are some ugly, trash talking fans out there. I have seen it, and it saddens me. I put it as part of the “all kinds of people to make a world.” Not my cup of tea, but as long as they are not hurting anyone, I’ll live with it.

I confess, I too, have yelled at the TV after the third or fourth run, run, pass, punt series, but it is seldom the player’s fault. We fans are watching a game. Played by kids. We have to expect mistakes and miscues to happen. Remember DAT’s fumbles against LSU? Given time, he more than made up for it!

For me, Duck fandom is about hoping for the best, supporting the teams through wins and losses, and about loving our beloved Ducks for all the excitement they bring to our lives! Nuff Said!


Ah, the Good old days. Oregon’s track meets used to be broadcast on the radio, nothin’ better than hearing Wendy Ray calling the 100 meter relay! For the most part, fans today would not believe what Autzen was like in the 70’s.

You could show up late, and after the game, I remember going down and walking on the field, and by the way, I miss the hump that Autzen used to have around the 50 yard line. I remember one awful cold and stormy day when me and my dad and some other hearty souls sat and watched Reuben Mayes, a Cougar, set a rushing record, there were some spicy words uttered.


You’ve got me by a few years, but from what I can tell our attitude is pretty similar regarding the U of O (not just football). I always want to see Ducks in the winner category when sports writers write their post-competition reviews. I’ve had some really good experiences at every U of O facility there is…old and new…with the exception of “The Jane”…but that will change hopefully this upcoming season.

As for the team colors, I totally forgot about the time they wore Orange…I can’t believe I missed putting that in the article. On the other hand, maybe because Orange is one of the Beav’s colors I might have had selective memory loss on that one. Not gonna lie though, I did like those uniforms…


As far as the Canzano drunk fans article, that is an anomaly. I had season tickets for 30 years and never saw this type of behavior. I did see a drunk fan on the walk to the game once, he was belligerent, but his buddies took care of him. I would say this is classic garbagecanzano writing. Feed his base on how bad Oregon fans are.

Duck fans to me come in two categories. The old fans are underdogs at heart. They have lived through a time where Oregon fought hard no matter what and the outcome, often, wasn’t what we wanted. There were games where Oregon rose up, beat the elite team, and the taste of that was like no other. Much like the catch, sweet and memorable! Telltale sign of an underdog fan is they have the program roll up in one hand, so they can check on each player, and they are on the edge of the seat the whole game.

The more recent fan is expectant of winning. These fans are more interested in just winning and not the process as much. They are great fans, but their enthusiasm is often left the for the big game and the larger moments. Telltale sign of a more recent fan is that they are missing after halftime. They will return if it gets close, but the social aspect of being at an Oregon game is more important than the every play experience.


We had our fair share of obnoxious fans during the Kelly and Helfrich years while we were winning. You must have tailgated in the paved section of the parking lot at Autzen…lol

I think rude fan behavior is probably correlated with how good the team is with the exception of two teams. The puppies and the rodents can be obnoxious now matter how good they are…Whoops, is that being rude?


You seem to be describing the “woke” generation of today, not just Duck fans. I’ll leave it at that.

I like your “underdogs at heart” statement though, because at times it still feels like that for me when we’re going up against someone other than Portland State…say like Ohio State. The difference, for me anyway, is that 20 years ago I knew the outcome of the game months in advance. Now, I know we stand more than just a chance, and so do they.


I would say we use to be on the same footing as OSU, WSU and CAL and now we are expected to win, not just against the Portland States.

Also if you thought you knew the outcome of the games months in advance 20 years ago, 2000, and 2001 must have blown you away.


As an Oregon grad, I am a Duck, and a huge fan. A true fan wears their team gear on game day to places like puppy stadium knowing full well that your seats are not in the visitors section. Not a welcome sight to the opposing fans.

Having traveled to most of the PAC 12 stadiums to watch Duck football most fans are pretty tolerant. However, there are obnoxious fans out there that seem to get louder with every beer they swill down. Nothing screams lack of intelligence louder than someone yelling obscenities at someone for wearing opposing team gear. For those offenders that I have encountered I say the same thing to them each time…Enjoy the game.

Go Ducks!!


I do think that in general most fans are respectable. Yes, the law of averages kicks in but even with some of the negative things that are said they tend to be from generally good people who are reacting instead of responding. Couple that with passion and yeah, things can go south in a hurry.


Off Topic: apparently Herbie will be in line for a couple more starts for the Chargers. Apparently Tyrod Taylor was given a pregame painkiller injection to his ribs, that inadvertently made a small puncture into his lung. Dr. David Chao on Outkick, opines that this injury may need several weeks to close fully & safely.


Will this be Taylor’s Wally Pip moment? Regardless, will be fun to see what Justin can do with a full week of prep and a game plan tailored to his skill set and comfort zone.


I actually just read about Herbie’s start this coming Sunday and the reasoning behind it. It’s good for him, but ya gotta feel for Taylor somewhat too.


Begs the question if the Dr that gave Taylor the injection was secretly a Chief’s fan or not, at least check with his bookie and see where his money was.


All fan bases have their share of boorish, ignorant, louts. It’s called humanity. Anyone who’s gone to an away game in the last couple decades has likely been exposed to this.

I know a couple folks who went to the LSU game at Jerry World and were appalled at the number of rude, classless, Tiger fans they encountered while tailgating in the parking lot. However, they also noted that the majority of LSU fans they interacted with inside the stadium were pleasant to delightful.

Similar post game accounts were common after UO’s trip Tennessee, and are abundant in post game commentaries from venues like UW, Arizona, or USC. I lived in San Diego for almost 20 years and attended at least a dozen Holiday and Poinsettia Bowl games while I was there, and the only outlier from this same pattern was one Poinsettia Bowl game of Utah vs Navy where every soul we ran into was affable to delightful, with most just thrilled to be in sunny San Diego in December watching their favorite team.

It’s unfortunate that the player from the Canzano story ran in to a cluster of rude, classless types. However, it is also telling that:

A) Cazano is who ran the story – in 2013, and updated in 2019 to get a little more mileage; duh – and
B) the player is question glossed over his enjoyable pregame experience to focus entirely on his fan experience in the end zone; and
C) apparently this particular player during his time in Eugene had minimal positive interactions with other students during his X years on campus, and didn’t partake in or embrace any team outreach programs like the Spring Game food drive, or visits to senior centers or local public schools or he wouldn’t have gone off on his “poor me, Spartacus” rant.


100% accurate…every team has their share of “bad” fans. I don’t think most of us like to admit it, especially when talking to fans of other teams, but they sure like to remind us…as do we to them.

Jon Joseph

If tomorrow the Pac-12 powers-that-be cannot figure out a way to play ball this fall you bet I am going to whine.

Spot on regarding the passion of SEC fans and the BCS and Playoff success of the top SEC teams. The entire conference rolls with the success of the Tide, LSU, Auburn, once, and oh-so-close, Georgia. And Urban Meyer had it cooking at Florida before ‘transferring, via the ESPN portal to Ohio State. Ducks fans are painfully aware that Urban won a playoff title at Ohio State.

‘It just means more,’ sans Vandy, across the SEC footprint and at most places in the B1G. For the most part, fans of the ACC and B12 are also more passionate about the game than Pac-12 fans.

Oregon, UW, Utah and CU fans show up. SC fans show up to support a winner. .

Can Oregon take a title playing in the Pac-12? Mario is obviously, doing a Pete Carroll-like recruiting job, but will it translate to a title? Does Oregon have the resources to compete against the Bama’s and Ohio State’s? Does the Oregon leadership give a whip about sports?

The Ducks fans are terrific. But playing in the Pac-12, no team gets a mulligan. 1L and Oregon and every Pac-12 school, is on playoff life support.

Great take. Thank you.


I’m right there with ya. In my lean towards the direction of optimism I “know” we’ll see the Ducks on the field this year, but in the event they aren’t, I’m not going to be happy at all.

And I concur…Ducks fans ARE terrific!

As far as winning it all, I definitely see that happening sooner rather than later.

Jon Joseph

Come 2023 with a ‘manageable’ OOC slate, at Texas Tech instead of at Ohio State and ‘at’ Georgia, I do see a path to the final 4. 1 problem is the 9 game conference schedule. As you most likely know, since the Pac-10 went to the Pac-12 no team has run the conference game table.

Today, you have to figure that a 1L Clemson, 1L Ohio State or another 1L B1G champ, 1L SEC champ, are in. field. Had Oregon won at ASU last season, the 4th spot would have come down to 1L Oklahoma and 1L Ducks. Arguably, Oregon had the better L, vs Auburn instead of at K State. But OK would have had 3 top 25 wins, 1 over TX and 2 against Baylor compared to Oregon’s 2 top 25 wins, SC and Utah. It would have been interesting.

Also, never forget that the CFB Playoff is the ESPN/Dr Pepper Playoff. ESPN has a vested interest in the ACC, SEC and also, the Longhorn Network. Like the Pac-12, ESPN and FOX share the B12 broadcast rights. At the very least an appearance of bias exists.

It is tough to get respect when you do not beat the 5th best SEC team, lose 2 games to Notre Dame, and have but 3 team win 8 or more games.


Ya know, the “ESPN/ Dr. Pepper Invitational” gets great numbers, and the Sooners are perfect as the comic relief so they wouldn’t be in any hurry to change the cast. But Oregon has been there, so they could go with, “returning guest star”, that’s worked, and of course they love, “The Duck”.


Honestly, I really like the Ohio State and Auburn scheduling. Sometimes when people don’t take you seriously you just have to punch them in the mouth and say hello (no, not literally…don’t actually punch people)…and that’s what the past couple years have seemed like. Sure, we may lose, but people do take notice and for the long-term, that matters too.

Mike West

My dear friend Jon,

Ohio State this year would have displayed what the Ducks really were. I doubt the PAC12 conference was going to challenge the Ducks. So enter CFP with ease was my initial call, win or lose to the Ohio State.

I have a tough time being brief, but I’ll try to lay this out concisely. Playoffs shouldn’t be attendance awards. They should be what they are now…an introduction to what it takes to beat the very best teams in the nation. A display of elite talent, coaching and performance. We don’t see that in the PAC12 anymore. Besides, bearing up Texas Tech early isn’t the same as making Ohio State play their very best game to beat you.

I no longer believe PAC12 competition alone will warrant a CFP berth unless the conference champ blows out every conference opponent. Like 20 point plus victories every single game. Think Pete Carroll’s USC. Elite teams don’t give mediocre teams any shot of an upset. They stomp them into the ground. We don’t get the luxury of an Alabama mulligan. We don’t have that kind of reputation. Nor have we earned it.


“I am Duck Fan!” cue, “Spartacus”, or maybe, “Life Of Brian”? In either case, Go Ducks! Like you said, we Duck fans come in all shapes & sizes, colors and shades, if you prick us, do we not bleed…yellow, green, black, occasionally with pink trim?

It is always fun when I’m out walking and I get a nice loud, “Go Ducks” from other fans as we pass by. I have no ide what it is about them we might have in common, but we are united in our love for all things Ducks, and can probably name the rotation of both basketball teams. But knowledge like that isn’t how a fan is measured. I have one friend who couldn’t identify the Ducks secondary from last season, but I can’t think of another fan that wants his Ducks to win, and hurts more when they lose, than he does.

Through circumstances they couldn’t help, my cousins are fans of, “the purple things up north”, I could have been, but escaped in the early 60’s. They are every bit as insufferable as you can imagine. But, “12 straight” still resonates, the last 25 years. They have to go back, pretty much to leather helmets, for, Bow down” to rise above a whimper.

The former player, whoever he is, sounded a little whiny himself. The decorum he described would have been offensive…in his grandmother’s living room. But at a football game? Methinks he protest too much. Those remarks he heard are present in every stadium in the land, well maybe not all, but his reaction to them tells me he is still to close to the players yet to fully understand the fans environment.

Autzen, The Matt, PK Park and The Jane are empty now, but the spirit is still present, just waiting for the games and the fans to come back. Go Ducks!!!


Sorry about your cousins, bro! hehe

You’re definitely onto something with “…but his reaction to them tells me he is still [too] close to the players yet to fully understand the fans environment.” There’s a huge difference between fans and players…huge. There is a reason the origin of the word “fan” is fanatic.


Thanks for catching the missing, “o”. I did push-ups in penance.


HA! it’s one of my flaws…