Previewing the Oregon Ducks

Author: Noah Clark

Oregon has been one of most exciting teams to watch this year, and going into 2020, fans can expect big things from the Ducks. But before going into 2020, they must take care of a Badger team that like the Ducks, has been rolling through the last half of the season with ease. Not to mention they are coming off a big upset against a high-powered Utah team to win the Pac 12. Lead by Mario Cristobal, this Oregon offense has been an offense that on average has scored 35 points per game, and that’s not all. Along with the Ducks offense comes a quarterback in Justin Herbert, who has been one of the countries best passers this year. With 32 passing TDS, 3,333 passing yards and five interceptions, Herbert will be a guy that the Ducks offense will lean to heavily as Wisconsin’s defense will be a tough matchup. Not only is Herbert a great passer but he is one heck of a runner, and along with the passing stats Herbert has ten rushing TDS in his career but hasn’t had one this year. Be sure to look for Herbert to use his legs when he is in a jam. The Ducks offense has been good, but not as good as the OU defense, Oregon’s defense has been as physical as you would want them to be. They have held teams to under 105 rush yards and under 220 passing yards per game. The star for this Ducks team is a true freshman named Kayvon Thibodeaux. Thibodeaux has been a star this year, with 23 solo tackles, 11 assisted tackles and 9 sacks. Not bad for a freshman. Along with Thibodeaux, the Ducks have other stars on defense like Troy Dye. Dye has led the team in tackles for all four years he has been in Eugene. This year he is leading the team again with 75 tackles, 46 solo, 29 assisted and also has 2.5 sacks. Expect these two stars to be a problem against the Badgers.

Oregon Head Coach Mario Cristobal has done a great job turning this program around. In his second year, Cristobal has produced one of the best offenses in the Pac-12. Cristobal who replaced Wille Taggert, has led the team to an impressive 11-2 mark and a Pac-12 Championship win over Utah. He is now looking to close out this season on a high note with a matchup against Wisconsin in the Rose Bowl. Going into the Rose Bowl, both Cristobal and Herbert had praise for the Badgers defense and talked about how they are going to game plan against them. “Yeah, they’re a big, physical and athletic team. They’re well-coached and they’re about as good as it gets if not the best as it gets. We’ve been watching a lot of film and seeing what we can do, and hopefully we’ll play pretty good football.” said Herbert. Coach Cristobal also talked at media day about Wisconsin’s Defensive Line and how Oregon’s Offensive Line has been preparing for the Badgers. “I feel the same way about them. I’ll watch them on tape, and we haven’t seen a better offensive line than what they have shown. And they’re the same way, they’re physical. They finish blocks. They’re cohesive. They don’t run by guys. Typically, you see line stunts and movements and sometimes you’ll be able to catch teams just running by a guy and letting a guy go, and Wisconsin does. And they count you up and angle you up. They fit you and finish blocks, and they play with great effort and great finish. And they’re complemented with great tight ends, great running backs and great quarterbacks.” With talent on both sides of the football, the Oregon Ducks will present quite the challenge for the Badgers on New Years Day.