I am not much of a gambler. But, back in August I hit the local Indian Casino and put down a few bucks on Oregon winning over nine regular season games for this season. Of course, with their record currently at 9-2, the Ducks have to beat the Beavers for me to win my bet. More than me winning my bet though, to me a tenth win is a difference between a “good” season and an “ok” season.
Going 10-2 for top-tier programs like Alabama, Ohio State, and Clemson is the acceptable minimum. 9-3 represents a serious back-slide that might be tolerated now and again but certainly cannot be a consistent overall record, and of course, 8-4 is essentially a lost season.
Now, the Ducks have not yet gotten to the same level as the aforementioned programs, but Oregon has reached a status in which a certain number of wins is expected. For the Ducks, I see 12-0 as perfect/outstanding, 11-1 as great, 10-2 good, 9-3 ok, 8-4 below average, and 7 wins or less as an “F.”
Have I set my standards for the Ducks too high? Perhaps. But, for the Ducks to get to that next level as a program, the administration, coaches, and fans have to set the bar high. To get outstanding results one has to set aggressive goals.
Going into this season I saw the Ducks as a ten or eleven-win team. They have the most talent in the Pac-12 and received an upgrade at the coaching position, so to me, it only made sense that the Ducks would have a 10-plus win season. Georgia was going to be a major obstacle and then I figured one slip-up in the Pac-12 because it is just so hard to go undefeated with a nine-conference game schedule. I did not fear BYU at home or Utah for that matter, though they could have easily lost to the Utes. But, dang, the Ducks just had to lose to the Huskies.
While the Beavers have taken great strides, the Ducks are the better team and should win. I expect them to win because that is what good teams do, they win games they are supposed to win. Bo Nix should have regained some mobility so the Oregon offense should put up more points than last week but probably will not reach the magical 40-point mark. This means the Ducks’ defense is going to have to show up and make some stops like they did last week against Utah.
How do you define the success or failure of an Oregon season? And how is the game formerly known as the Civil War going to shake down?
Top photo credit: Eugene Johnson
Darren Perkins is a sales professional and 1997 Oregon graduate. After finishing school, he escaped the rain and moved to sunny Southern California where he studied screenwriting for two years at UCLA. Darren grew up in Eugene and in 1980, at the tender age of five, he attended his first Oregon football game. His lasting memory from that experience was an enthusiastic Don Essig announcing to the crowd: “Reggie Ogburn, completes a pass to… Reggie Ogburn.” Captivated by such a thrilling play, Darren’s been hooked on Oregon football ever since. Currently living in Spokane, Darren enjoys flaunting his yellow and green superiority complex over friends and family in Cougar country.
FishDuck Going to Articles on Monday and Tuesday Only…
Our off-season schedule begins, and we move from publishing articles seven days a week to Mondays and Tuesdays only. Same great group of writers, and we will have an article on other days on occasion.
The Our Beloved Ducks Forum (OBD) is where we we discuss the article above and many more topics, as it is so much easier in a message board format over there. At the free OBD forum we will be posting Oregon Sports article links, the daily Press Releases from the Athletic Department and the news coming out every day.
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