Will Oregon’s Offense Instantly Improve Under Dillingham?

Joshua Whitted Editorials

Mario Cristobal’s biggest flaw at Oregon was his inability to create an explosive offense. Determined to combine old school, smashmouth football with modern spread principles, Cristobal’s Ducks never fielded an offense that came close to the standard set by Chip Kelly and Mark Helfrich.

With fans starved for exciting plays and high-scoring games, new head coach Dan Lanning hired offensive coordinator Kenny Dillingham to open up the offense and bring entertaining football back to Eugene.

Most are confident that Oregon’s offense will eventually improve under the new regime, but will that improvement happen in year one?

Will Oregon’s offense instantly improve?

Cristobal’s offenses were never elite, but he did have some solid units in his four years with the Ducks. His most productive unit came in 2019, when Oregon scored 35 points per game and gained 433 yards per game — metrics that ranked 16th and 39th in the nation, respectively.

Do you think Dillingham’s offense can beat those marks right off the bat?

He has a couple of factors working in his favor. The Pac-12 is still among the weakest of the Power 5, so Oregon’s in-conference competition shouldn’t be too challenging. Also, the Ducks have a very deep and talented offense, with arguably the best offensive line in the conference, an ultra-talented wide receiver group, and a backfield full of blue-chip players and solid transfers.

It’s possible that in just his first year, Dillingham can produce a better offense than Cristobal was able to in four. But is it probable?

Will Oregon’s offense instantly improve in the first year post Cristobal?

Joshua Whitted 
Morgantown, West Virginia
Top Photo by Gary Breedlove

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