Are the Beavers Poised to Pass the Ducks on Offense?

Charles Fischer, Mr. FishDuck Editorials 80 Comments

I have noted a ton of respect for Coach Jonathan Smith and the emerging offense at Oregon State among those who comment on this site. I also give Coach Smith kudos for what he accomplished as Washington’s offensive coordinator. After licking our wounds from last year’s game with the Beavers, and considering the underperforming Oregon offense, is it time to ponder whether the Beavers are about to pass the Ducks in scoring in the near future? Is one school declining while the other is ascending on offense?

It feels that way to me as the Ducks could not stop Oregon State at the clutch times in 2020, and the Beavers almost pulled off an upset in Eugene in 2019. Are they are nipping at our heels?

I love the balance on offense the Beavers have achieved, and frankly I admire the recruiting they have done at running back. This year they have a Pac-12 transfer star in quarterback Sam Noyer joining them along with returning a full offensive line that was already doing well. Fleet wide receivers and gamers at tight end round out an impressive offense as I checked out last year’s games of OSU. My review left an unsettling feeling…

Tom Corno

Too much of that last November…

It is an interesting ponder-point for us to discuss today, because it comes more from our feelings as opposed to facts. When checking the scoring output–I was surprised at the truth over the last three years…

2018: OSU 26.10 UO 34.80
2019: OSU 31.20 UO 35.40
2020: OSU 28.90 UO 31.30

As much as we were frustrated with the rivalry game–it was the high point of scoring for the Beavers this last year. Another question would be … “does the 41 points planted on Oregon say more about the Beavers or the Ducks in that game?”

As I’ve discussed many times and written about here, the Ducks must increase their scoring to the 45 point-per-game average the “Playoff-3” achieved in the last three years if we seriously want to make a run at a National Championship. If Joe Moorhead is allowed to fully implement his system and Oregon starts scoring scads of points–perhaps this discussion is rendered moot?

Kevin Cline

Jonathan Smith will be scoring more points in the future?

It is hard to count Coach Smith out; do you think the Beavers will pass the Ducks on offense?

“Oh, how we love to ponder about Our Beloved Ducks!”

Charles Fischer   (Mr. FishDuck)
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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MaiTaiDuck

All great points. As we’ve discussed before this is or should be Oregon’s coming out party if it all goes the way we want it. Joe should run his own offense W/O Mario’s hands on it. I also would hope this team will be very hungry to right the ship and erase last years illusionary season. I’m quite confident Sir Charles that you and all of us faithful will be very happy when the fall season is done.

OSU should stay about this clip and maybe a little better but not a whole lot. I agree I remember watching them in the Fiesta Bowl and hammered Notre Lame. That team was on a trajectory of huge accomplishments. Smith was under center and was very affective with in that offense. Don’t remember who won the NATTY that year but I thought both Oregon and the Beav’s were good enough to do that.

Ducktail

The 2000 Beavers had a good offense, but their defense was elite. The speed of their linebackers and defensive ends is what caught opponents off-guard.

Smith is trying to replicate that, but it hasn’t worked so far because they don’t have a solid nose tackle.

joeevan

Thank you, Charles, for exploring the factors in the Ducks lackluster matchup with the Beavers last season. There were miscues on both sides of the ball for the Ducks, but kudos to the Beavers for the progress they demonstrated on the field.

it looks as though the Ducks have more options at receiver for the upcoming season, and Anthony Brown seems poised to connect with all of the talent at WR.

Some writers are suggesting that Seven McGee has the quicks that we haven’t seen since DAT, and even freshman DB Darren Barkins was clocked a laser-fast 4.3 40 at camp.

We can only guess how the current roster and coaching changes will play out, but it looks as though the Beavers may have their hands full vs the Ducks this time around.

Go, Ducks……

TrevorW

I’m impressed with Jonathan Smith. He was handed an empty cupboard and has slowly but surely found scraps and is making a meal out of it. Their win last year defines my concern for Oregon. Jonathan outcoached Oregon. His team came ready to play. Oregon did not. Game started right 3-0 Oregon scores on 1-2 Oregon State,

Then the very first play for Oregon State, there was that flaw I mentioned in another post… the D-lineman focused on “patty cake”, failed to break free and close the gap… boom a 75 yard TD run. Complete break down of defense.

Oregon recovers, comes back for another TD, Then an exchange of 3 and outs. Oregon State trapped in their own goal line braks for 36 yard run, then a 30 yard pass, then a FG. Game is 14-10.

Ducks come back, they score 21-10

Then Oregon gets WORSE on defense. They play zone. Oregon State’s WR runs into the zone and nobody moves, they just let him catch the ball between players. WTH? Beavers get a FG. 21-13

Then Shough starts throwing a couple errant passes. The offense switches to run game only. they do get a FG. 24-13

*** HALF TIME ***

Oregon does stop the Beaver’s first drive. Oregon O was run only and went no where. Ended on a lame screen play for 2 yards on 3rd and 11.

The Beavers get the ball and big play after big play later… TD. The fail on 2 point attempt. 24-19

Oregon does drive down the field and… TD. 31-19, 3/4s through the 3rd quarter.

The Beavers play a run game and keep breaking through. They eat up the 3rd quarter and start the 4th 15 yards out on 2nd down. Looks like Oregon stopped them. 4th and 3. The Beavers go for it and get. it. 31-26.

Very first play, Shough throws a bad, well underthrown pass and its intercepted at the 33 yard line. Beavers go for it on first play and catch the ball at the 2 yard line, Next play, a clearly not ready defense allows the 2 yard run.

The pattern here is clear. Oregon is playing safe. Players are not playing their positions or closing their gaps or defensing their zones. The Beavers are taking risks and they paying off one big play after another,

Very next play Beavers go for 2 and get it. 31-34.

11:23 left on the clock, Oregon has the ball, Oregon responds, gets down to 4 yard line. Two plays later, Oregon is in. 38-34
8:18 left on clock.

Oregon keeps letting sideline passes go for 8 yards, Beavers get to 31 yard line. Oregon has then at 4th and 7, then they let the QB break free for a long run to the 16 yard line.

Oregon hold them back, turn over on downs. 2:09 left on clock. Oregon responds with no use of clock, three and out, and has a short punt to 47 yard line.

Beavers keep getting plays and work their way to 1 yard line with 40 seconds left, 2nd and goal. Oregon stops the run, 3rd and goal 36 seconds left.

Oregon goes offsides. Beavers punch it in. 33 seconds left. Missed kick 38-40

Shough throws to deep passes, two bad throws. Oregon tries pitching ball around, send it straight to Beavers. Game over.

IMHO: Jonathan started figuring out there were a couple of Oregon players that weren’t playing hard, they were lazy, they were weak links. In that second half he started targeting those weak links and it kept working. Oregon, was playing safe and in some respects it was still working. Then Shough just stopped being able to throw the ball with accuracy. Bad stance, bad angles, and bad throws. With the game on the line and a QB who couldn’t throw, Oregon did go for it.

In my opinion, Oregon failed to see the weak link players and adjust (just pull them aside and get their head straight, could have worked). If not, replace them. Neither happened. Additionally, while Jonathan went for Oregon’s weak links. Oregon was trying to make the plays that weren’t working suddenly work. Oregon went safe in the second half, didn’t fix the defensive issues and watched as Jonathan exploited them. Conversely, Oregon didn’t seem to look for the Beaver’s weak links. Instead, they just played calculated safe ball and when they did go for it, with the same pass where Shough was just off his game.

A few tweaks on defense would have won the game. Better clock management would have won the game. If Shough wasn’t throwing so badly, they would have won the game.

After all that pain of replaying that, I don’t see a chance in hell Oregon repeats that performance next year. I predict at least a 21 point win and two more TDs. seriously. That just won’t happen again and Oregon is now loaded where they need to be.

criticalduck

Noah had quite a few in all the games last year.

oregon111

Yes! He and ISM did not do a CONSISTANT job last season. But in all fairness to Noah, he really should have been worked into the system gradually, and not been counted on to be the go-to guy from the start. Noah did have a lot of really good plays too.

Santa Rosa Duck

Phil Steele pre season picks just came out. He has UW at No.9, USC No.13, Utah No.15 and our Oregon DUCKS…….No.19.

Jon Joseph

Saw that. Down on the Ducks versus every other poll I’ve seen and way high on the Huskies.

UW is Steele’s #1 surprise team of 2021.

Steele has Oklahoma at#1. I’ll believe it when I see it.

Another insult to injury. CBS Sports compared the UW and Oregon CFB HC jobs and concluded that UW is the better gig.

criticalduck

This cracks me up!! UW hasn’t been relevant for over a decade and then had two winning pac seasons against a very down UO/USC and they are the best place to be?? Sounds like fuskies making the predictions! Is that FAT radio announcer from Seattle making this prediction? I would believe the Beavers were going to be the next best thing before the fuskies.

oregon111

The ‘Oregon brand’ really comes from what happens on the field. And yes, it declined a lot in 2020, and also quite a bit in 2019 by not closing out Auburn and then losing to Az St to kick the Ducks out of the playoff conversation.

If they knock off Ohio St — just watch what happens to ‘the brand’.

Right now, the Ducks are in limbo. The college football world is waiting to see what they can do with all this talent that they are bringing in from recruiting.

If it is all about Kayvon, and then he leaves and nobody else is ‘special’, then the brand will be dying. But if other guys step up and they at least play Ohio St tough and start blowing out pac12 teams, then the brand will be back.

oregon111

Regardless of what the offense does, the Ducks should have a great defense this year. And they have the best group of WRs they ever had, or at least the deepest. The 2020 season was a stinker. 2021 will build on what 2019 was doing.

Ducktail

UW is not a top 25 team. I believe they’ll get smacked by Michigan.

DanLduck

Charles, Oregon State may be poised to pass us by, but they won’t.
They are posers.
Actually I love what is happening in Corvallis, JS is developing a very competitive program, and that will wake up sleepy Ducks to compete each year.

Sometimes young people need help in being motivated. You may think it shouldn’t be necessary, but that’s the definition of youth.
I think too, Oregon needs to develop a more killer attitude. This has to come from the top, the coaches. No one likes a beat down, but Cristobal has to think that a 70 point win every week is expected or at least accepted. If you want players to play through the whistle every down, from start to finish, coaches have to lead by example.

We have not been a very good 2nd half scoring team under MC. That needs to change. To me, that has been the issue with scoring more, the 2nd half.

This will be a telling year for our beloved Ducks. A fully implemented offense.
An expected improvement on defense.
A kicker that looks ready to shine (52 yarder in the spring game!)
An emphasis on special teams by the entire coaching staff (ala MC)
Mouthwatering receiver corp
Proven RB’s with some exciting backups in Seven Mcgee and Sean Dollars
An offensive line that now has been battle tested and ready to take that step of improvement.
5 star linebackers that are scary, and finally, an experienced qb who is ready to show what he can do ( and very talented, quality backups ready to step in if he doesn’t)
Yeah, we can question a lot about this team because there is still much that needs answering, but in 2 months we will start to see the answers. Coach Mario has to improve each year, same as the players.
This is going to be the year it all starts to come together.
If we start playing better in the 2nd half, we will average over 40 a game.
I’m ready for it!

FishIceCream

I am fired up and ready to run out the tunnel after that halftime pep talk! I hope it plays out just like that.

FishIceCream

I think I’d fall back on the old scientific excuse – not enough data yet.

I don’t know if MC would have replaced Arroyo at some point, but the fact is he had to, and in my opinion got a definite upgrade as an OC. There were flashes of that last year.

Then last year, in addition to COVID issues as some have mentioned, you have a new AC putting in a new system for an offense replacing its entire starting O line, a few good receivers and tight ends, and a pretty decent QB.

Even without COVID, it would not be surprising to see some growing pains.

Of course Charles’ point is also why didn’t we score more in ’19-’20, when we had all that experience and talent.

I think the proof will be in this year. If the same issues with playcalling remain, it will signal trouble. I am going to predict we will see great improvement though, being a fan

That’s 3 years in Eugene but he has a lot more experience than that as a head coach.

FishIceCream

As I said, I do not consider last year a good sample point, so I will hold out hope!

I do think that your point about not having a firm offensive identity is spot on though – I am hoping that “the coach as a CEO who adapts good ideas that his hires bring in” is what we will see this year. We should be able to see it happen, if it does.

It seems to me that Saban is sort of the perfect example of that. Fingers crossed!

Duck Phan Phil

What can’t we recruit elite, 5 star running backs? The last bell cow RB commit was Helf /Gary Campbell recruit Royce Freeman, who I believe was actually a high 4 star?

Admittedly, other 5 stars Seastrunk amd Tyner didn’t perform to expectations. DAT and J Stew certainly did, but we are reaching back in time.

Who wouldn’t want to run behind our massively sized and massively talented O Line? And from what I hear Jim Mastro is considered an top level RB coach. And Moorhead certainly rang the bell with Saquon Barkley.

We had a dearth of WR talent, but IMO that’s been addressed in last couple recruiting cycles. Our RB room seems full of goods but not greats..? Why can’t we get the Najee Harrises and Derek Henrys etc?

Jon Joseph

I agree and I don’t get it. The way WRs are being brought in you would think Cristobal is going to run run a Leach-like spread or run and shoot O.

FishIceCream

Maybe it’s just a reaction to perceived needs and a little bad luck?

I think, as people even said in comments to this article, that receiver was perceived as a need, and the current administration is always going to go hard after linemen and quarterbacks.

Even if its subconsciously, maybe running backs were considered a secondary need, and thus did not get convinced like the others.

The whole recruiting process is sort of a mystery to me at this point, I have to admit.

Tandaian

Oregon States last 20 years record. I’m not really feeling Jonathan Smith being a great coach. Maybe, this year he will get the Beavers to their first winning season since 2013. It is year four for him, so he has mostly his guys. I know beating your rival gets you extra coaching points, but there is the rest of the schedule as well.
2020 2-5
2019 5-7
2018 2-10
2017 1-11
2016 4-8
2015 2-10
2014 5-7
2013 7-6
2012 9-4
2011 3-9
2010 5-7
2009 8-5
2008 9-4
2007 9-4
2006 10-4
2005 5-6
2004 7-5
2003 8-5
2002 8-5
2001 5-6
2000 11-1

Jon Joseph

2000 – What if Dennis Ericson had stayed and he did not ultimately put OSU on probation?

J Smith had one heck of a season in 2000.

Jon Sousa

Jonathan Smith is outperforming all expectations. One amazing thing to me, in the area of recruiting, is that he is bringing in former 4 stars through the transfer portal. This year he already has one 4 star committed out of high school. He is bringing in a ton of 3 stars and coaching them up.

They are a team on the rise.

Ducktail

They won’t get anywhere without defensive tackles because they won’t be able to stop the run. They can have a six-deep rotation of solid linebackers but it means little if they get blown off the ball every down (which is what happens).

The recipe for the Ducks to beat the Beavers is to run it down their throats. That’s it. Cristobal kept running slow-developing plays and that is a recipe for disaster against their linebacking core. Take advantage of their lack of size up front and run the ball on first and second down.

Haywarduck

Interesting stats to look at. The beavs won 42% of their game 10 years ago up to 5 years ago. They won 25% of their games the last 5 years. My bet is they win at least 42% going forward.

Both coaches Cristobal and Smith are an improvement from the coach they took over from. The question is are they better than the guy who took the program to their recent heights. Is Cristobal better than CK? Will Smith become a better coach than Riley?

Erickson was there until 2002. Erickson was a very good coach, but Riley is the one who built the program. I would give him the most credit, but Erickson had huge success. Erickson was never satisfied anywhere, I suppose neither was Riley. That is the other question, will Smith stick around?

Jon Sousa

I believe he will. But then, I´m a believing kind of guy.

Santa Rosa Duck

2021 is the year it will all come together for offense. Joe Moorhead unleashed! A seasoned offensive line. Multiple fine running backs. A great set of wide receivers. Top tight ends. The cherry on the top will be Anthony Brown will plenty of expertise, a field general with passing and running ability. I think he is going to surprise some of our posters.

All of this will be backed by a fine Tim DeRuyter defense.which we will expand on in another thread.

Jon Joseph

Fitting. Mr. T the fist player to do an NIL (NTF) deal with NIKE.

Meanwhile, a Miami booster and gym owner has committed $540,000 per annum, $500 a player a month, for every guy on the Miami roster. He only asks that they, if so inclined, pump up the gym on social media.

Response to you and Tandaian – The guy is a booster; his gym is not a booster.

Also from the rumor mill today. Nick Saban wants his boosters to ‘pay’ walk-ons and thus, be able to go over the 85 scholly limit.

I’m not the least bit surprised that boosters will push the envelop to the point of tearing the envelop up.

And with the recent 9-0 Supreme Court ruling the NCAA is likely neutered when it comes to doing anything to control the misuse of NIL.

Add free transfers to the mix and how far away are we from a 32 team super league? Each team a farm club of an NFL team. A HS draft for kids who want to get paid.

Tandaian

I have no idea how this isn’t considered pay for play? I get the players will be advertising on the social media pages, but when you pay the whole team, it is exactly pay for play. I’m sure the first day of the month each player needs to do something for the gym and they collect their $500.

Jon Joseph

It certainly is stretching the intent behind NIL. I’m shocked!

UtahDuck

Few points to discuss.

  1. I really like smith as an offensive play caller. at this point he is the best in the conference. His work at UW was the reason they did so well during the 16-17 years
  2. I know you don’t agree with me but I just can’t take 2020 seriously. their were so many variables during the season that we just really don’t know what is real and what isn’t. list of variables
  3. players that missed games due to covid protocols
  4. key players opted out last moment
  5. coaching staff turnover(osu didn’t loss a single coach, vs oregon who had to reset at OC)
  6. Rivalry games bring out the best in players.(the problem is osu sees this as their main rivalry and oregon has made uw their main rival)

I’d put money that oregon wins by three scores this season.

Jon Joseph

By 9 points? I’m not taking the bet. But 21? I’m down.

Good point on the rivalry games. But what about no shows vs CAL and Iowa State? OSU, CAL and ISU also had to deal with COVID.

Jon Sousa

While everyone had to deal with COVID, COVID did not show up at each school in an equal way. Oregon never had to miss a game because of too much COVID on Oregon´s team, but how were they messed with each week to a lesser extent? Did other teams experience the same loss of star talent that Oregon did to drop outs? (Sewell, Breeze, Graham, Holland, etc.?) Utah’s point is that WE DON’T KNOW… and that is undeniably true.

UtahDuck

I can’t speak for Jon. I can give my opinion on what oregon offense production should look like in 2021.

It should be one touchdown higher than what we say in 2020. ~38 PPG. I would love to see a jump to 40 but I don’t know if that is possible in one year. I’m also not sold that brown can be anything more than serviceable. which Is why I don’t really expect more than 38 ppg.

Jon Joseph asked a great question. Our offense wasn’t ready for the two best defenses(CAL and ISU) we played in 2020. I attribute this to, having a new coordinator with inadequate time to install his offense, a key opt out from sewell, and players missing time due to covid(I understand these teams also had covid but we just don’t know the extent of how it affected teams). I just really struggle taking 2020 serious in general. As a whole we don’t know the effects covid had. the conference was wishy washy at best and some teams had an inherent advantage of having contiguous coaching staff throughout the year.

This doesn’t mean I like or am thrilled about cristobal’s on field coaching. I think Oregon has made some significant downgrades(frankly Helfrich was our best play caller, too bad he couldn’t recruit or control the team) during the last few years. I think oregon has gone way to conservative in games rather than keep piling points and I think that they have neglected to coach up QB’s(I mostly blame Arroyo, but last year wasn’t great either).

All in all I expect Oregon to increase by one td over 2020, maybe by 10 points to 40 if you exclude the Ohio State game from the count.

Jon Sousa

I think jumping up at least a touchdown per game average is my minimum expectation, agreeing here with Utah.

I think we need another year of good recruiting to have a fairly full cupboard (RB and DL are still needs that will be addressed). But, more than recruiting in the future, the great recruits that we have now need to be coached up and seasoned.

We still have the “youngest” team in America. Because of COVID, everyone who was a freshman or sophomore last year is still a freshman or sophomore this year, plus a whole batch of new freshmen coming in. It’s great to have all these guys on board but they need some coaching and some TIME to be stellar at this level.

Case in point: Sewell was a starter as a true freshman and he did GREAT. But he very often over shot his target, or over committed in one direction only to get juked out of his socks. I expect him to be much more controlled and on target this year. Unfortunately Flowe didn’t get very much playing time last year.

I will be surprised if the Ducks don’t improve at least a touchdown per game next season for three reasons: better defense giving the ball back to the offense quicker, better offensive coordinator/QB coach, and improved talent almost across the board.

HOWEVER, I expect them to improve even more (another 1/2 – 1 touchdown per game) the following two years for three reasons: The DC will be on his 2nd and 3rd year instead of his first, the OC will be on his 2nd and 3rd FULL year instead of his first, and our improved talent will be coached, bulked, experienced, and matured… along with new great talent coming up behind them.

Next year I want to win the Rose Bowl by more than a touchdown, but the Ducks might not get the opportunity because of being in the playoffs.

I hope this answers your question.

Jon Joseph

Great points Jon.

The youth of this team is why, if the competition is at all close, I’d like to see one of the younger QBs getting seasoning this year.

I think the younger guys have far more upside than does Brown.

Brown is a game manager and game managers no longer win championships.

Jon Sousa

I think I’m secretly (???????) hoping Robby Ashford gets the ball.

Jon Joseph

Fair enough.

But we will certainly know in 2021 if Oregon plays like it did at ASU in 2019.Like it did that season with a 1 point home win vs WAZZU. And many the other squeaker win over teams with lesser rosters; teams that did not have the NFL rookie of the year playing QB.

ptdduck

Jonathan Smith is doing more with his roster than MC. Smith is playing with one arm tied behind his back. This is a big year for the Oregon offense. The roster is loaded and tons of experience. No excuses if we can’t score 35-40 per game.

ptdduck

I agree we need to score more like the big boys but I’m not expecting it. I mentioned a few years ago that Oregon’s identity had shifted towards defense. Last year the D took a step backwards. If the D doesn’t improve dramatically, it’s going to be a frustrating season.

oregon111

The beavs have been doing well under coach Smith for what they can do. Oregon is the new USC – a team that tries to live up to their recruiting.

This year is Cristobal’s 4th as head coach. This is Moorhead’s second year. If we don’t see offense this year, we may never see it again under this administration.

By the end of this season, Cristobal will have been here as long as Chip Kelly was here as head coach. This is enough time for Cristobal to figure out what kind of an offense will score points.

Haywarduck

I have said this before, the beavs are more like the Oregon I grew up rooting for than Oregon is now. OSU is a the scrappy underdog with a very good coach. They recruit and develop student athletes well. They also play with a chip on their shoulder. This is why they are a threat, not necessarily because their offense will out reach ours overall.

Oregon is in this place between elite and dominant many programs get stuck in or rotate out of. We have the recruiting and the just about every piece to make the next step. It is our offense which is holding us back.

We have always had a dominant RB and the Pac-12 use to have many. I watched a brief bit of the old Cal Oregon game where Cal had JJ Arrington and Marshawn Lynch as a back-up. Oregon use to have a couple extremely good RB’s too, NFL level.

We use to always have, and develop a qb who was a threat to make it in the NFL. We fell into Justin, but before, and since we have needed transfers to compete. The question is, can we develop a real quality qb again? If one takes over this season this question will be answered.

The receivers is where the truly elite have dominated in the recent past. Oregon has been way behind in this department. Without a quality qb the lack of an elite wideout crushed our program last year. Even with a quality qb the weakness held us back. The question of do we finally have a dominant receiver will hopefully be answered in the next couple seasons.

All of this developing talent will hold us back until the RB, QB and WR’s become dominant. In the past we had the qb and rb, but little depth at WR. We need it all to get to the truly authoritative program in the Pac-12.

OSU feeds off programs like Oregon. Oregon needs to get to the dominant level or underdogs will each our lunch. OSU’s offense won’t exceed our offense, we have too many weapons going forward, but their effort, schemes will, and that will win games.

Mario has seen 4-5* talent rise up and be dominant at Miami and Alabama. I give him a better chance at creating that culture than most. The real question is can he get out of the way of his assistants, the main theme of the story.

I think there might be an element of Cristobal needing to be the adult in the room and less the most liked guy in the room. Cristobal needs to be the man in charge when things go wrong, missed blocks, taking plays off. I don’t see this aspect in the program right now. This leads to underperformance, losing games you should win.

The coach leads on this, and then the players know, expect everyone to make plays. Last year, and previous years under Cristobal it seemed there was acceptance of underperforming. Players need to respect and fear the coach, and then they respect and fear letting each other down. This edge is still needed! They need to be prepared to exceed expectations and held accountable to do it.

Drake

Offensive schemes matter, Chip Kelly proved that at Oregon.

Most of our teams that “over achieved” were probably led by QB’s that went on to play in the NFL. We have had many good ones over the last 30 years.

I believe that Arroyo’s offense worked because he had an outstanding QB. A good QB can overcome many obstacles, a below average offensive scheme is one them.

On the other hand, an average QB requires a lot more support from really great players for the team to compete at a high level.

I guess my point is that I want to see a really good QB run Moorehead’s offense. Then we will know.

Jon Sousa

Mariota/Bennett

oregon111

When Oregon had good O linemen and great RBs, they had a good offense. The 2020 season was lacking in all positions except maybe for TE. Covid issues prevented Moorhead from putting in his new system the way he should have been able to.

criticalduck

The Beavers have always played tough during the rivalry games. Rivalry games are hard for most teams in any league. The Ducks, for the most part, appear to be looking ahead to the next game and discount the talent on the other side of the field. Like you have said before, Charles, our Ducks don’t seem to be in the game when they are the far superior team and should be rendering a serious beat down.

As Drake pointed out, the Beavers won’t be winning the Pac anytime soon but they have won two of the last three in Corvallis. Those were close games and the Ducks looked awful in both. Will the Beavers score more, on average, than the Ducks? Let’s hope not because that will be a sad day.

Jon Joseph

Charles, thanks for this interesting ponder point.

Smith appears to be doing more with less, and Mario doing less with Moorhead.

Mario has to let go of the offense and his desire to smash-mouth people in a day and age when smash-mouth will get you outscored.

Will he, can he, do this?

Smith was a baller when he played for the Beavers and he is a big time competitor as a coach.

Let’s see if the improvements to Resar Stadium help with OSU recruiting? As you so noted with the addition of Noyer among others, Smith is using ‘the waiver wire’ to his advantage.

I sincerely hope Mario becomes a CEO in 2021? One who knows that he must delegate to quality associates. It will be sad if Mario, a man of great character, cannot capitalize on the talent he has brought to Eugene.

BTW: It isn’t the Ducks in Columbus or UW in Ann Arbor but the Beavers at Purdue game, as far as conference depth top to bottom, is a great measuring stick for the B1G compared to the Pac-12 conference.

Drake

No.

I think the only reason Arroyo’s offense scored as much as it did is because he had such a talented QB. Moorehead didn’t have much time to install his new offense and had a QB (and defense for that matter) that melted at the first sign of pressure.

I will give respect to Jonathan Smith, but his team won’t be winning the PAC 12 anytime soon.

smith72

I can’t use Covid as an excuse for our woes last season! Every team in the Pac12 had the same time to practice. Oregon State and UO were both guided by the Oregon Health Authority and Gov. Brown.

Every game is a “championship” . Looking past anyone is never acceptable. Show up, give it your all, and respect everyone!

No excuses! Coaches, players, and fans!

Excuses do not put points on the scoreboard.

When a team with the superior roster struggles against teams with an inferior roster, that’s on the coaches, period.

As I have noted before, since his 1st season in Tuscaloosa, Saban has not lost to an unranked team. A Bama roster littered with 4 and 5* guys gets up for every game. For the most part, Bama destroys the lesser competition in a deep SEC conference.

Drake

We watched a QB struggle when faced with pressure under a new system. Who then decided to leave rather than compete for the job again. In my opinion he is not necessarily the “every game is a championship” type of guy. Not an excuse, just an observation.

EzDucksit

I was extremely disappointed in T Shough, the lack of ownership for poor performance falls on him. Take your lumps and lead by example, that is what your players expect. But Oregon has done a poor job in coaching up the youth and inexperienced on the team, to create competent depth. The Alabama’s, Clemson’s, the Ohio States have one thing in common, enough quality depth that their third string players could start for most FBS schools. There is NO let off from the coaches in the expectations of their players. Set the bar high because that is where Champions play.

ptdduck

I’m curious to see how Shough does at Texas Tech. I wouldn’t be surprised if he outperforms AB. The elephant in the room is how good are the coaches at developing talent and implementing a scheme?

Jon Sousa

We do have a new QB coach who seems to be pretty good at it. He really didn’t have enough time with Shough to make the difference he needed.