Oregon Ducks

10 numbers to know: Oregon vs. Colorado

10 numbers to know: Oregon vs. Colorado

The Ducks have redemption on the mind in their upcoming game against Colorado on Friday night in Oregon Coach Mario Cristobal’s 20th game as head coach. No. 13 Oregon (4-1, 2-0 Pac-12) is looking to win its seventh of the last eight matchups against Colorado (3-2,1-1) at 7 p.m. Friday October 11 at Autzen Stadium.

Here are 10 stats and numbers you need to know to be the fan-dropping knowledge at the tailgate:

REDEMPTION ON THE MIND

The last time the two teams met on the field, Colorado came into Autzen and shocked the Ducks with a 41-38 victory in 2016. The Ducks haven’t forgotten that defeat. It was the first-career start for Colorado quarterback Steven Montez, who is still the Buffalo’s starting quarterback. Montez had a record-setting day in the game, throwing for 333 yards and two touchdowns and rushing for 135 yards and another score to become the first player in CU history to have 300 yards passing and 100 yards rushing in the same game.

DOMINATING DUCK DEFENSE

Oregon's defense is yielding just 9.8 points per game, best in the Pac-12 and sixth in the nation. UO has held its last four opponents to single digits, the first Power 5 team to do so since Michigan in 2015. Oregon has allowed just one touchdown over its opponents' last 51 drives and has forced 17 three-and-outs over that span.  

BETTING LINE

The Ducks opened as 20.5-point favorites over Colorado. The over/under has been set at 57 total points.

[READ: Is Oregon's offense boring? Maybe. But here's why it doesn't matter]
THIBODEAUX TIME

Gus Cumberlander will miss the remainder of the season, according to Coach Mario Cristobal. True freshman Kayvon Thibodeaux is being called into the starting role. Thibodeaux is coming off his best performance yet as a Duck, which earned him Pac-12 Defensive Lineman of the Week honors. Against Cal he provided major highlights, recording his first sack and finishing the game with two. It’s time for the 6-foot-5, 242-pound defensive end to unleash his ability.

BUFFALOS VS. RANKED FOES

The No. 13 Ducks will be Colorado's third ranked opponent this season. The Buffaloes are 2-0 in those games, beating both No. 25 Nebraska and No. 24 Arizona State in September.

A WIN WOULD…

Improve Oregon to 3-0 in Pac-12 play for the first time since 2013.

HOLLAND DOES IT ALL

Safety Jevon Holland is Oregon’s second leading tackler, behind Troy Dye, with 24 tackles and three interceptions this season. He has eight career interceptions, the most by an active Oregon player. Holland is also averaging 24.4 yards per punt return, the highest in the nation.

DEPENDABLE, EXPLOSIVE BREELAND

Senior Jacob Breeland has caught 23 of his 28 targets this season. His five touchdown catches rank second in the nation among tight ends. Breeland has been one of Oregon’s main sources for explosive plays: Five of Oregon’s 34 plays of 20-plus yards were to Breeland, two of which were touchdowns. Currently, Breeland has 22 receptions of 20-plus yards in his career.

BURNED REDSHIRTS IN 2019 CLASS

Now that Oregon has played five games, there are eight Ducks from the 2019 class that have burned their redshirt eligibility. If you aren’t familiar with the new redshirt rule established in 2018 by the NCAA, college football players can play up to four games in a season and still redshirt without burning a year of eligibility.

True freshman who have played in all five games and can no longer redshirt: wide receiver Josh Delgado, linebacker Mase Funa, defensive end Kayvon Thibodeaux, cornerback Mykael Wright, defensive back DJ James, defensive back Jamal Hill, linebacker Ge’Mon Eaford and kicker Camden Lewis.

HERBERT MAKING HISTORY

In Oregon’s most recent win over Cal, quarterback Justin Herbert moved into second at Oregon in career passing yards with 8,411, behind only Marcus Mariota.
 The senior’s 15 touchdown passes in the last five games are the most over that span in school history.


Instant Analysis: No. 4 Oregon breaks the Corvallis curse, defeats No. 7 Oregon State for Civil War sweep

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USATI

Instant Analysis: No. 4 Oregon breaks the Corvallis curse, defeats No. 7 Oregon State for Civil War sweep

CORVALLIS - For the first time in the Kelly Graves, Sabrina Ionescu era at Oregon, the Ducks have won on the road in Corvallis. 

No. 4 Oregon (17-2, 7-1 Pac-12) completes the Civil War sweep over No. 7 Oregon State (16-4, 4-4 Pac-12) with a 66-57 win in front of a sold out crowd at Gill Coliseum.

Here are three quick takeaways from the game:

SECOND HALF DOMINANT DEFENSE 

The Ducks found themselves down at halftime, 37-34 to the Beavers. But in the third quarter, Graves went with a defensive lineup: Jaz Shelley, Taylor Chavez, Sabrina Ionescu, Satou Sabally and Ruthy Hebard. With these five on the floor, Oregon held a 12-0 run and held the Beavers scoreless for seven minutes in the fourth quarter.

SHAPR-SHOOTING TAYLOR CHAVEZ

In her second season in an Oregon uniform, sophomore Taylor Chavez has stepped up big in these past few games. Whether it’s on the defensive end or stepping back for a three-pointer, she has proven to be quite the spark of the bench. Chavez currently leads the Pac-12 conference in three-point percentage (47.2%) and finished today with eight points going 2-for-2 from downtown.

THE OREGON TRIO

The trio of seniors Ionescu, Ruthy Hebard and junior Satou Sabally combine for 48 points in the win.

Sabally was the And-1 queen. The 6-foot-4 junior forward kept Oregon in the game in the first half and recorded 13 points and five rebounds. She finished with 16 points, nine rebounds and four assists.

NEXT UP: Oregon hits the road for a weekend in the mountains first at Utah on Thursday night at 7 p.m. (PT)

Sabrina Ionescu honors Kobe Bryant and daughter Gianna with “Forever 24” on her game shoes

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Steve Tannen Twitter

Sabrina Ionescu honors Kobe Bryant and daughter Gianna with “Forever 24” on her game shoes

A small gesture but one that sends a powerful message today. 

As Oregon senior guard Sabrina Ionescu took the court ahead of part two of this Civil War series with red eyes and puffy cheeks, there was a small message hand-written on her shoes: “Forever 24.”

Host of Crunchtime/SportsTalk on CBS radio Steve Tannen snapped the picture.

Sabrina and Kobe have met several times in person. He attended Oregon’s game at USC last season. He critiqued her game on his show ‘Detail.’ She wrote about it in her letter to Duck Nation via the Players Tribune. To have one of the best to ever play the game critique your own is of the utmost respect and honor.

As always in the stands was Sabrina’s father, sporting a #20 Nike green jersey sitting two rows behind the Oregon bench at Gill Coliseum.

Before the game, here are his words and advice to his daughter during this tough time:

Of all the times you worked with him, of all the phone calls. You deserve to play for him and his legacy. Go out and do it today. Go out and play for Kobe — Ionescu’s father.

We couldn’t agree more.

Ducks, Beavers meet at half court and pray for Kobe Bryant

Ducks, Beavers meet at half court and pray for Kobe Bryant

Today is a day where the color of your jersey doesn’t matter. It is a day where we all mourn together and come together as one during this difficult, loss-for-words time.

Ahead of the second chapter of this Civil War weekend series between the No. 4 Oregon Ducks and No. 7 Oregon State Beavers, the two teams met up at half court to pray for Kobe Bryant.

The former Los Angeles Laker and five-time NBA Champion Kobe Bryant died Sunday in a fatal helicopter crash in the Los Angeles area that killed four others, according to NBC News. 

The news was first reported by TMZ. 

A call for a downed helicopter in Calabasas went out at 10:01 a.m. local time, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department. People who were out mountain biking in the area and reported the downed helicopter.

The news was first reported by TMZ.   

"Unfortunately there were no survivors," Los Angeles County Fire Captain Tony Imbrenda told reporters Sunday.

Kobe was 41. 

Justin Herbert pens emotional letter to Ducks fans

Justin Herbert pens emotional letter to Ducks fans

I'm not crying, you're crying!

As Oregon quarterback Justin Herbert moves on to the next chapter in his football career, the Eugene native is making sure to acknowledge everyone who got him to this point. 

Fresh off winning the Senior Bowl MVP, Herbert authored a letter in the Eugene Register Guard, the city's local newspaper. 

Here is a portion of the letter

Watching the Ducks play every home game from Section 12, barely a mile away from our home, are cherished childhood memories. My brothers and I would replay those games in our front yard, pretending to be Joey Harrington, Kellen Clemens and other Oregon greats. Receiving a scholarship to play at the University of Oregon was the fulfillment of a childhood dream.

Both a Pac-12 championship and Rose Bowl victory have provided us seniors with a fairytale ending to our careers at Oregon. Losses, injuries and coaching changes were challenges that many of us weren’t expecting when we first arrived on campus. I believe that these tough times brought our team together and changed the culture within our program.

As I move on from an incredible experience at the University of Oregon, I wanted to thank all the Duck fans and the Eugene community for your support of a hometown kid.

Herbert goes on to thank all of his coaches, past and present, as well as the four years of teammates he shared the locker room with. 

"Last, but certainly not least, I want to thank my family. Your love and support have made me the man I am today, and I am so thankful to have had my family with me all the way. The highlight of my career was getting to share each Saturday with you."

The Sheldon High School graduate went on to pass for 10,541 yards and 95 touchdowns as Oregon's quarterback. He added 13 more rushing touchdowns and capped off his senior season as a Pac-12 and Rose Bowl Champion and was the Rose Bowl MVP. 

And he did it all in front of his hometown crowd and his family.

"Eugene has always been, and will forever remain, my home. Go Ducks!!"

You can read the whole article here.

What to expect in Part II of the Civil War

What to expect in Part II of the Civil War

Less than 48 hours later, here we are again. After taking round one of the Civil War weekend series, No. 4 Oregon and No. 7 Oregon State meet again but this time 45 minutes north up I-5 in Corvallis, Oregon.

After taking round one on Friday night 76-64 over the Beavers, the Ducks will now have the opportunity to not only go home with a Civil War series sweep, but also for the first time win in Corvallis during the Kelly Graves, Sabrina Ionescu era. The last time Oregon won in Corvallis dates back to the 2009-10 season.

On the other hand, the Beavers have the opportunity to continue their win-streak against the Ducks at home where Oregon State is 11-1 at Gill Coliseum this season.

Here are keys to the game for both Oregon and Oregon State in part two of the Civil War:

KEYS FOR AN OREGON VICTORY

The Ducks’ largest lead on Friday night got as high as 21 points with 7:53 left in the game. A comfortable lead with a lot of senior leadership starting with seniors Sabrina Ionescu and Ruthy Hebard. Unfortunately, that comfortable feeling didn’t last long and Oregon State would make a valiant comeback before running out of time. 

The trio of Ionescu, Hebard and Satou Sabally combined for 57 or Oregon’s 76 total points. Taylor Chavez continues to provide a spark off the bench and added nine points off a perfect 3-for-3 from three-point range (Chavez is leading the Pac-12 conference in three-point shooting percentage at 47.2%). 

If the Ducks are to win for the first time since 2009-10, the keys are continuing to put on-ball pressure on Oregon State guards Destiny Slocum, Mikayla Pivec and Aleah Goodman while containing 6-foot-4 freshman Taylor Jones down low. Hebard had that defensive assignment on Friday night and will need to make life difficult in the paint.

We're not really happy splitting wins with them. We're going to have to take that next step, and be an elite team on the road. — Sabrina Ionescu

KEYS FOR AN OREGON STATE VICTORY

The freshman forwards stepped up big time vs. Oregon on Friday night. Taylor Jones dropped 21 points and 6-foot-6 Kennedy Brown added 12 rebounds. Brown has a nice outside shot so don’t expect her to record zero points in today’s meeting. 

This one will rely on the upperclassmen. Senior guard Mikayla Pivec was held to eight points and five rebounds, an uncharacteristic night on the boards for the Pac-12 leader in rebounds at 9.6 per game. Senior Kat Tudor, who got her first start since coming off an ACL injury, looked rusty. The sharp-shooter had zero points going 0-for-7 from the field and 0-for-6 from downtown.

Junior Aleah Goodman provided a spark off the bench recording 11 points, three assists and two steals.

The Beavers proved that no lead is ever safe and if they are to continue the home win-streak against the Ducks, they have to stick to their game, dominate the paint, hit those outside shots while trying to contain the nation’s best player in Ionescu.

And I look back to Oregon...three years ago in particular and even [Sabrina Ionescu and Ruthy Hebard's] freshman year, the Civil War weekend is where they changed. They had to elevate to play against us and they did and they learned a lot about themselves and took their games to a new level...and that created momentum for them. Well, I think we're having to rise because both of these teams are so good, the margin of error is small and we're competitors. — Oregon State head coach Scott Rueck

GAME INFORMATION
WHO: No. 4 Oregon at No. 7 Oregon State

WHERE: Gill Coliseum, Corvallis, Oregon

TIME: 1 p.m. (PT)

TV: ESPN2

RADIO: Oregon Sports Network

Check out the Ducks retro green uniforms for Part II of the Civil War

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GoDucks

Check out the Ducks retro green uniforms for Part II of the Civil War

The No. 4 Oregon Ducks (16-2, 6-1 Pac-12) defeated their rival No. 7 Oregon State (16-3, 4-3 Pac-12) 76-64 in front of a soldout crowd of 12,362 at Matthew Knight Arena Friday night to take Round 1 of the Civil War series. 

Now, for Round 2, Oregon is going to be rocking some fresh threads.

The new green alternate uniforms rock the vintage university logo from 1994-1998 on the shorts.

The women's team wore the white retro jerseys earlier in the month.

Now, it's time to break out the green!

And people on social media are ready to shell out some coin for these new uniforms. 

Round 2 of the Civil War tips off at 1pm on Sunday.

Justin Herbert named MVP of the Senior Bowl

Justin Herbert named MVP of the Senior Bowl

After impressing all week for NFL coaches at the practices ahead of the Senior Bowl, Justin Herbert capped it off with a great showing in the game itself.

So good he was named the MVP of the event.

Herbert played only the first quarter completing 9-of-13 balls for 83 yards and a touchdown pass.

One of his incompletions wasn't even his fault.

He spoke after winning the award on what he wanted to show the NFL while in Mobile, Alabama.

I wanted to be myself. I wanted to come compete and I wanted to have fun. This is an opportunity I've said so many times that not a lot of people get to go through. I love the game of football and I love being here, it's been a blast.

The quarterback from Eugene, OR showed NFL coaches why he's such a coveted prospect ahead of the NFL Draft that will almost assuredly be selected in the first ten picks. His prototypical quarterback 6-foot-6 frame intrigues scouts, but his pinpoint accuracy and athleticism astounds them.

[RELATED: Who won the Senior Bowl? Justin Herbert]

He also used the week to quiet concerns from scouts that he's not a great leader, but they could have just done that by talking to anyone in the Oregon program, including tight end Spencer Webb.

The play from this week impressed many, including Matt Miller of Bleacher Report.

Herbert's former offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach of three seasons was not surprised to see Herbert excelling after college. 

 

Who won the Senior Bowl? Justin Herbert...

Who won the Senior Bowl? Justin Herbert...

After finishing up his senior season as Pac-12 Champion and Rose Bowl MVP, it was time for Justin Herbert to prepare for the next step.

So far, he has been passing with flying colors.

As the Oregon QB goes through the draft process, the expected first-round selection will be scrutinized from every aspect. He is, afterall, playing the most important position on the field, which also happens to be the hardest position to scout. 

At the Reese's Senior Bowl, Herbert got the draft process off to an amazing start.

All week at practice, Herbet has impressed everyone watching; including Cincinnati Bengals offensive coordinator Brian Callahan.

He’s very talented physically. He’s got prototypical size and athletic ability. He has a really, really strong arm. On top of that, he’s extremely intelligent and he’s very conscientious. He gathers information, he can process it and he can call it. He went under center for the first time, probably, in his career and he answered that bell with flying colors. Every day I continue to be impressed with the things we ask him to do and he answers really well.

The Bengals do own the first overall selection in the upcoming 2020 NFL Draft.

However, he wasn't the only one impressed by Herbert in practice. The former Oregon Duck was named the MVP of Senior Bowl practices.

But how did he play in the game? 

Quite well actually.

Herbert finished the first quarter with 83 yards on 9-of-13 passing and a touchdown.

 

It wasn't all great though. The Eugene native probably had flashbacks to his junior season with this drop. 

After his performance, anyone watching came away impressed by how Herbert looked. 

Duck alumn Geoff Schwartz has been on the Justin Herbert train for years and feels vindicated.

Next up, Justin Herbert will attend the NFL Combine that'll take place between February 23rd and March 2nd. It's unclear if he'll choose to throw or just have his measurables taken and take part in some drills. 

With the celebration over, the Ducks are back in the weight room

With the celebration over, the Ducks are back in the weight room

No rest for the weary!

The defending Pac-12 and Rose Bowl Champions are already preparing to defend their crown and build off an impressive season.

Strength and conditioning coordinator Aaron Feld already has the Ducks in the weight room for Oregon's offseason training program ahead of the 2020 season. Feld has said in the past that the offseason is his season.

The players themselves are taking these workouts seriously, giving their all.

However, the program definitely works. In Feld's first season following his offseason training program, the Ducks were clearly more physically dominant. For three quarters they blew Stanford off the line and ran a dive play on third-and-five to walk off against Washington. 

Last season, they won the Pac-12 conference rushing for 239 yards against the nation's top rushing defense heading into the game. Feld uses the hashtag #TAKETHEPAC and the Ducks did just that this season. One game later, they beat a Wisconsin team known for their physicality.

Once coach Feld came from Georgia to Eugene, he began using the #FLEXFRIDAY hashtag to let the players show off their gains on social media. 

Here are some from this week's #FLEXFRIDAY.

And here are some of my favorites from the last two seasons.

Keep flexin'!