Oregon Ducks

How No. 13 Oregon can and should beat Cal

How No. 13 Oregon can and should beat Cal

No. 13 Oregon is the only remaining team in the North Division without a loss and looking to stay atop of the North standings. The well-rested Ducks (3-1, 1-0 Pac-12) host California (4-1, 1-1) in their Pac-12 Conference home opener.

By the numbers, stats and gambling spread

Numbers to know: The Bears look to claim their fourth victory in the past five games vs. teams ranked in the top 15. 

Fun fact: Cal head coach Justin Wilcox played safety and cornerback at Oregon (1996-99). In 1999, he was named second-team All-Pac-10 and earned Pac-10 All-Academic honors.

Betting line: The Ducks opened as 14-point favorites over the Bears. The line has since shifted to -18 with a 46 total points over/under.

Players to keep an eye on

Cal has held 12 straight opponents under 25 points, which is the longest active streak in the country and tied for the longest since 2013. 

Evan Weaver is a tackling machine and on the short list of best defensive players in college football. He’s disruptive and involved in every play. The inside linebacker leads the nation in total tackles (78), total tackles per game (15.6), solo tackles (43) and solo tackles per game (8.6). Weaver has posted 10+ tackles in 12 straight games, the longest consecutive streak in the country.

Cal’s experienced secondary is nicknamed, the “Takers” after the 2010 movie. A group of six players have started 114 games in the defensive backfield since the start of 2017. They combine for 26 career interceptions, second most in the country and have allowed two passing touchdowns in five games this season.

Two Oregon receivers have been cleared to play on Saturday. Senior Brenden Schooler and freshman Mycah Pittman have the opportunity to impact and add needed depth to an already thriving Oregon passing offense.

Scouting report

Cal’s first defeat of the season came with a major blow. Starting quarterback Chase Garbers suffered a right shoulder injury during Cal’s 27-17 loss to Arizona State Friday night. Bears coach Justin Wilcox announced Monday night that the sophomore is out indefinitely.

Bears backup quarterback Devon Modster will be in command vs. Oregon. Modster transferred to Cal this past offseason after leaving the UCLA program in 2018, where he backed up Josh Rosen. Last Friday in relief, he completed just five of his 12 passes for 23 yards with one interception coming in the Arizona State end zone.

Key to an Oregon win

Cal’s limited offense is going to have a tough time scoring on Oregon’s stout defense. So, my key to the game is for the Ducks to…

Run the ball successfully

According to offensive coordinator Marcus Arroyo, Oregon’s offensive line and running backs to watched film together during the bye week and evaluated areas of improvement. In order to be successful the Ducks must show that they are back have fixed whatever had them “out of sync,” as Mario Cristobal put it last week.
The Ducks’ rushing attack is down in all categories from last season. Through four games, Oregon is averaging 154.75 rushing yards per game (75th nationally) with five touchdowns (81st nationally).

The offensive line must demonstrate better run blocking and CJ Verdell and Travis Dye must be explosive through their reads against a challenging Bears defense.

How and where to watch

Time: Saturday, Oct. 5, 5 p.m. (PT)

Where: Autzen Stadium, Eugene, Oregon

TV: FOX

Radio: KUGN-AM (590), KUJZ-FM (95.3), KZEL-FM (96.1)

More Ducks:

Former Oregon football star receiver Bralon Addison's advice to current Duck Bryan Addison

Oregon vs. California: 10 numbers to know

Official: What Oregon is getting with transfer receiver Devon Williams

How Brenden Schooler and Mycah Pittman's return boosts Oregon's passing attack

Oregon quarterback Cale Millen out for season

Oregon Coach Cristobal's ear-catching comments about penalties and turnovers

Oregon WBB’s Kelly Graves (virtually) throws out first pitch at Seattle Mariners game

Oregon WBB’s Kelly Graves (virtually) throws out first pitch at Seattle Mariners game

Seriously, is there anything Oregon women’s basketball head coach Kelly Graves can’t do?

The six-year Oregon head coach has starred in a Wendy’s commercial, has the occasional outing on the golf course, has plowed potato fields in Idaho, is highly successful in recruiting, has led his team to the program’s first ever Final Four appearance, and now he throws out the first pitch (virtually, of course) for a Seattle Mariners game.

However, it did look a tad high…

[Listen and download for free ‘Sports Uncovered: The uniform craze that revolutionized college football].

Both Graves and his assistant coach Jodie Berry, have spent time in the state of Washington and thus becoming Mariners fans.

Graves’ coaching career started at Big Bend CC in Moses Lake, Wash., where he accepted an assistant coaching position on the men’s team, but after the women’s coach left, he moved over to lead the women’s program instead.

Before Oregon, Graves hailed from Gonzaga University in Spokane, Washington. His first year with the Bulldogs, the team went 5-23, including 0-14 in WCC play. But by his third year at Gonzaga, the Bulldogs went 18-12 overall and went to the WNIT the following season.

During his tenure with the Bulldogs (2000-2014), Graves brought eight West Coast Conference Coach of the Year awards and a 382-162 (.696) Division I head coaching record to Eugene in 2014, with a 427-202 record overall before joining the Ducks.

The Oregon baseball team just hired Mark Wasikowski to take over the reigns, otherwise the athletic department should have taken a look at Graves with that wicked right arm…

Just kidding, we think he doing a fine job at Matthew Knight Arena.

[Listen to the full Talkin’ Ducks Podcast with host Jordan Kent and special guest Josh Jamieson, Director of Operations of Oregon men’s basketball].

Oregon Ducks players praise Mario Cristobal amid #WeAreUnited movement

Oregon Ducks players praise Mario Cristobal amid #WeAreUnited movement

Hundreds of Pac-12 college football players demanded their voices be heard Sunday morning when they released an open letter to their conference via the Player's Tribune titled "#WeAreUnited."

Inside, they made demands including the ability to receive payments, safety during the coronavirus pandemic, and greater racial justice policies. If the conference decides to not comply, then they threatened to sit out the 2020 college football season which the Pac-12 has slated to begin on September 26 during a pandemic.

[RELATED]: What Jevon Holland, Pac-12 CFB players are demanding or else they'll sit

“We’re not your entertainment, we’re human beings,” Oregon safety Jevon Holland, who was one of the twelve original organizers of the protest, told Sports Illustrated“Just like you would help your family, we want to help our mother, father, grandmother, everyone.

“We don’t know the long term risks. We have no idea how it’s going to affect our body regardless if we show symptoms or not. I refuse to put my health at risk for somebody else’s benefit.”

[Listen and download for free ‘Sports Uncovered: The uniform craze that revolutionized college football].

Fellow Ducks such as Penei Sewell, Thomas Graham Jr., Jordon Scott, Cyrus Habibi-Likio, Nick Pickett, Daewood Davis, and more have joined in tweeting out the #WeAreUnited graphics on Twitter.

High up on the list of concerns from the group of players is the Pac-12 conference's desire to play games this fall despite the United States undergoing its worst pandemic since 1918. 

Among the list of demands, the players want insurance selected by the players "for sports-related medical conditions, including COVID- 19 illness" that will last until six years after NCAA eligibility ends, the option to opt-out of the upcoming season without fear of losing athletic eligibility, scholarship, or a roster spot, all COVID-19 agreements that waive liability to be prohibited or voided, and safety standards approved by them that are enforced by a third party to "address COVID-19, as well as serious injury, abuse and death."

However, many Ducks players came out in support of head coach Mario Cristobal, who himself has stressed that safety is the top priority for the Oregon football program since the cancellation of the spring game back in March up to present day.

Holland sent out the initial tweet praising Cristobal and the Oregon coaching/medical staff for keeping its players safe.

Johnny Johnson III and Cyrus Habidi-Likio retweeted Holland's comments and adding additional support for the Ducks head coach and his staff.

Additionally, cornerback Verone Mckinley III echoed his teammates' sentiment.

Holland and Habidi-Likio also thanked Oregon athletic trainer Travis Halseth. 

It's easy to see why. 

In an appearance on Fox's Big Noon Kickoff earlier this week, Ducks head coach Mario Cristobal hinted that the Ducks haven't had a positive test yet for the coronavirus.

"We've been here now a total of seven and a half, coming up on eight weeks and our processes have been flawless. We don't publicly put our results out there but I think the best way to say [it] is that we have been flawless in our processes and our results."

As for those processes in place to keep the student-athletes of Oregon safe, Cristobal said he "can't imagine anyone having anything better out there but we're always researching. We're always digging. We're always looking for information good and bad out there. Anything that can affect us in a positive way. Anything that can help us enhance our processes."

Despite the processes appearing to be working perfectly, Cristobal and his staff are always trying to better it because the safety of his players is the top priority.

"It's as simple as that. Is it safe or is it not? If it is, then okay, let's try this. And if it's it not, then there's no point," said Cristobal.

On Friday, the Pac-12 unveiled a new, ten-game, conference only schedule for each team that will begin on September 26. 

[RELATED]: Oregon Ducks 2020 conference-only college football schedule revealed

Will it get played? We'll see. 

[Listen to the latest Talkin’ Ducks Podcast with host Jordan Kent]

What Jevon Holland, Pac-12 CFB players are demanding or else they'll sit

What Jevon Holland, Pac-12 CFB players are demanding or else they'll sit

A large group of Pac-12 football players has made demands to the conference in exchange for playing the 2020 college football season during a pandemic.

In an open letter titled "#WeAreUnited" in the Player's Tribune, the players make many demands including the ability to receive payments, safety during the coronavirus pandemic, and greater racial justice policies. 

"NCAA sports exploit college athletes physically, economically and academically, and also disproportionately harm Black college athletes," said the letter.

[Listen and download for free ‘Sports Uncovered: The uniform craze that revolutionized college football].

“We’re not your entertainment, we’re human beings,” Oregon safety Jevon Holland told Sports Illustrated. “Just like you would help your family, we want to help our mother, father, grandmother, everyone.

“We don’t know the long term risks. We have no idea how it’s going to affect our body regardless if we show symptoms or not. I refuse to put my health at risk for somebody else’s benefit.”

He later tweeted his support of the demands.

As did Oregon cornerback Thomas Graham Jr., defensive tackle Jordon Scott and reigning Outland Trophy winner Penei Sewell.

On Saturday, ESPN's Adam Rittenberg and Mark Schlabach reported hundreds of Pac-12 players had teamed up to make a list of demands to the conference. Schools represented include Oregon, Cal, Stanford, UCLA, and more.

Since the letter's release, players from many schools such as Oregon State's Jaydon Grant have joined in.

Here's what the players are demanding. 

COVID-19 Protections: The group demands the option to opt-out of the upcoming season without fear of losing athletic eligibility, scholarship, or a roster spot. They also want all COVID-19 agreements that waive liability to be prohibited or voided. 

Mandatory Safety Standards, Including COVID-19 Measures: Next, the players seek safety standards approved by them that are enforced by a third party to "address COVID-19, as well as serious injury, abuse and death."

Protect All Sports: They want to see no sports cut. To pay for them, they demand that Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott, administrators, and coaches take pay cuts, the schools end performance/academic bonuses, and end lavish facility expenditures and use some endowment funds to preserve all sports.

They specifically call out Stanford, who cut 11 varsity sports, and its $27.7 billion endowment fund. 

End Racial Injustice in College Sports and Society: The athletes want to use the platform of college athletics to benefit Black students. They seek to form a permanent civic-engagement task force comprised of players from each school, experts of their choice, and university/conference administrators to address outstanding issues such as racial injustice in college sports and in society.

Also, they demand that 2% of all conference revenue be funneled to a fund directed by players to "support financial aid for low-income Black students, community initiatives, and development programs for college athletes on each campus."

Last, the players want to form an annual "Pac-12 Black College Athlete Summit with guaranteed representation of at least three athletes of [their] choice from every school."

Guaranteed Medical Expense Coverage: Insurance selected by the players "for sports-related medical conditions, including COVID- 19 illness" that will last until six years after NCAA eligibility ends. 

Name, Image, and Likeness Rights & Representation: The group seeks "the freedom to secure representation, receive basic necessities from any third party, and earn money for use of our name, image, and likeness rights."

Fair Market Pay, Rights, & Freedoms: Players demand that 50% of each sport's total revenue be evenly distributed among the athletes in that sport.

Six-year scholarships that cover undergraduate and graduate degrees.

The elimination of any policies and practices that restrict freedom of speech, the ability to fully participate in charity work, and the freedom to participate in non-athletic activities. 

Each player gets to transfer one time without consequence and then can get additional punishment-free transfers if in cases of abuse or serious negligence.

The ability to go back to school and finish NCAA eligibility if they go undrafted and remains out of a professional league within seven days of the draft.

Due process rights. 

On Friday, the Pac-12 unveiled a new, ten-game, conference only schedule for each team that will begin on September 26. 

Will it get played? We will see. 

[Listen to the latest Talkin’ Ducks Podcast with host Jordan Kent]

Oregon Ducks, Pac-12 players threatening to opt out of 2020 CFB season

Oregon Ducks, Pac-12 players threatening to opt out of 2020 CFB season

A group of Pac-12 football players, including players from Oregon, are organizing and threatening to opt out of the 2020 college football season unless the conference meets their demands in wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and racial justice movements in the United States, ESPN's Adam Rittenberg and Mark Schlabach report.

Among their demands are "safe play amid the pandemic, fighting racial injustice, securing economic rights and fair compensation, protecting all sports and obtaining long-term health insurance."

The chief concern for the players is reportedly fighting racial injustice. 

Earlier this summer, Ducks safety Jevon Holland lead the charge to rename Deady Hall at the University of Oregon, which was named after Matthew Deady, who was in favor of slavery in Oregon and was quoted saying Black people are just as much property as “horses, cattle and land.”

[RELATED]: Ducks safety Jevon Holland leads charge on renaming Deady Hall at Oregon

The group consists of players from multiple Pac-12 schools such as Cal, Oregon, Stanford, UCLA, and more. The group is speculated to be potentially hundreds of players one Pac-12 staff member told ESPN. 

[Listen and download for free ‘Sports Uncovered: The uniform craze that revolutionized college football].

The players also want non-student-athletes to not be brought back to campus and instead take classes online. 

That desire isn't unique to the Pac-12. Ole Miss linebacker MoMo Sanogo asked SEC officials in a conference call this week why students are being brought back and was told that if students don't return then the chances of a college football season are "close to zero."

The SEC officials also told its players that the spread of COVID-19 would occur because of non-student-athletes coming onto campus rather than football games being played. 

[RELATED]: SEC tells players COVID-19 cases 'on every single team' are unpreventable

When Sanogo asked about the SEC creating a bubble he was told that his mask would protect him, that he could be a role model for others, and "to sit at the back of classrooms and not engage in close conversations," the Washington Post reported. 

On Sunday, Pac-12 Football Unity, a conference-wide group of players, issued a "statement of unity" via the The Players Tribune demanding the conference take steps “to protect and benefit both scholarship and walk-on athletes.”

“NCAA sports has truly failed us, it doesn’t enforce any health and safety standards,” the release says. “We believe a football season under these conditions would be reckless and put us at needless risk. We will not play until there is real change that is acceptable to us.”

Prior to the release of the statement, the Pac-12 wrote: "We support our student-athletes using their voice and have regular communications with our student-athletes at many different levels on a range of topics. As we have clearly stated with respect to our fall competition plans, we are, and always will be, directed by medical experts, with the health, safety and well being of our student-athletes, coaches and staff always the first priority. We have made it clear that any student-athlete who chooses not to return to competition for health or safety reasons will have their scholarship protected."

On Friday, the Pac-12 unveiled a new, ten-game, conference only schedule for each team that will begin on September 26. 

[RELATED]: Oregon Ducks 2020 conference-only college football schedule revealed

In an appearance on Fox's Big Noon Kickoff earlier this week, Ducks head coach Mario Cristobal hinted that the Ducks haven't had a positive test yet for the coronavirus.

"We've been here now a total of seven and a half, coming up on eight weeks and our processes have been flawless. We don't publicly put our results out there but I think the best way to say [it] is that we have been flawless in our processes and our results."

As for those processes in place to keep the student-athletes of Oregon safe, Cristobal said he "can't imagine anyone having anything better out there but we're always researching. We're always digging. We're always looking for information good and bad out there. Anything that can affect us in a positive way. Anything that can help us enhance our processes."

Earlier this summer, Stanford cut 11 varsity sports from its athletic department due to the pandemic. 

[Listen to the latest Talkin’ Ducks Podcast with host Jordan Kent]

Sabrina Ionescu suffers Grade 3 ankle sprain, rookie season in doubt

Sabrina Ionescu suffers Grade 3 ankle sprain, rookie season in doubt

New York Liberty guard Sabrina Ionescu's rookie season may be over while it was just getting started.

The former Oregon Duck stepped on an opponent's foot and rolled her left ankle against the Atlanta Dream on Friday. She would need to be helped off the court by her teammates.

After heading to a local hospital to get it examined, the X-rays came back negative without a sign of a fracture.

However, now Ionescu has been diagnosed with a Grade 3 ankle sprain that will likely not require surgery per Holly Rowe.

She's expected to miss about a month according to Shams Charania of The Athletic. 

[Listen and download for free ‘Sports Uncovered: The uniform craze that revolutionized college football].

The Liberty will not say if they will shut her down for the remainder of the season. The WNBA regular season will end for the Liberty on September 12 against the Washington Mystics due to a truncated season in wake of the coronavirus pandemic. 

Harvard Women's Health Watch lists a Grade 3 ankle sprain as a "full tear or rupture" that will take "several months" to recover from. Symptoms include "Severe pain, swelling, tenderness, and bruising. Considerable instability and loss of function and range of motion. Unable to bear weight or walk." 

The former No. 1 overall pick was just finding her groove in the WNBA having scored 33 points, grabbed seven rebounds and dished out seven assists while shooting 60% from three-point range in her second game. 

[Listen to the latest Talkin’ Ducks Podcast with host Jordan Kent]

SEC tells players COVID-19 cases 'on every single team' are unpreventable

SEC tells players COVID-19 cases 'on every single team' are unpreventable

In an audio recording obtained by the Washington Post, an SEC official told college football players that there will be a positive case of COVID-19 on every team in the conference this season.

We can't be 100%. We're never going to be 100%. There are going to be outbreaks. We’re going to have positive cases on every single team in the SEC. That’s a given. And we can’t prevent it.

The SEC officially unveiled an all-conference, ten-game schedule on Thursday that will begin on September 26. 

[Listen and download for free ‘Sports Uncovered: The uniform craze that revolutionized college football].

The comment happened during a conference call hosted by them with members of the conference’s medical advisory board, and over a dozen SEC college football players. 

The call was supposed to give the players a chance to have questions answered about the upcoming season as a "confidential free exchange," per an SEC spokesman. 

One of the large talking points for SEC officials was that they are more worried about the spread of the virus off the field when students, who aren't taking as many precautions, spread it to players.

In response, Ole Miss linebacker MoMo Sanogo had a simple question: "Why have students been allowed to come back on campus if we're trying to have a football season?"

“It’s one of those things where if students don’t come back to campus, then the chances of having a football season are almost zero,” an official who did not identify himself said. While class sizes will be smaller with proper social distancing, he did admit that it's "not fair" to athletes. 

When Sanogo asked about the possibility of a bubble, a method that has worked wonders for the NBA, WNBA, MLS, NWSL, and NHL, he was told that his mask would protect him, that he could be a role model for others, and "to sit at the back of classrooms and not engage in close conversations," the Washington Post reported. 

Eventually, one player who was not identified asked “If we were your kids, would y’all let us play in this same football season with the same protocols and uncertainty?” He was told that one official has had his son play baseball for the last five to six weeks while other kids have played soccer during that same time frame. 

Soccer and baseball are two sports that by design have far less chances of spread than football. COVID-19 "mostly spread[s] by respiratory droplets released when people talk, cough, or sneeze," per the CDC. In football, players line up across from one another for nearly 40 seconds at a time breathing in each other's faces.

SEC spokesman Herb Vincent said the players found the call "productive" and that he will try to schedule another one.  

[Listen to the latest Talkin’ Ducks Podcast with host Jordan Kent]

Sabrina Ionescu helped off the court after ankle injury, X-rays negative

Sabrina Ionescu helped off the court after ankle injury, X-rays negative

Sabrina Ionescu was on a roll through her first two professional games in the WNBA.

The No. 1 overall pick in the 2020 WNBA draft by the New York Liberty was proving to the rest of the league why she was selected No. 1 overall. 

Game one stats vs. Seattle Storm: 12 points, six rebounds and four assists.

Game two stats vs. Dallas Wings: 33 points, seven rebounds and seven assists (hit 6-for-10 from three-point range).

And then, just like that, the injury bug struck in her third game as Ionescu was dribbling up the court and her left ankle rolled on her opponent’s foot. She was helped off the court in the second quarter and hasn't to the game.

If you are squeamish, we suggest you look away.

UPDATE: The X-rays on Ionescu's left ankle came back negative without a sign of a fracture per Shams Charania of The Athletic.

LeBron James, who has been a supporter of Ionescu’s since her days at Oregon, sent his well-wishes on social media:

We will update this article as we find out more on Ionescu’s status.

[Listen and download for free ‘Sports Uncovered: The uniform craze that revolutionized college football].

[Listen to the full Talkin’ Ducks Podcast with host Jordan Kent and special guest Josh Jamieson, Director of Operations of Oregon men’s basketball].

Oregon Ducks 2020 conference-only college football schedule revealed

Oregon Ducks 2020 conference-only college football schedule revealed

The Pac-12 revealed its 10-game, all-conference schedule for each team Friday afternoon that will begin September 26, 2020 for the upcoming college football season.

Games that are unable to be played on their scheduled date can be made up in their bye weeks or in Week 12 (December 12), with the Pac-12 Football Championship Game now slated for December 18 or 19.

The Pac-12 Football Championship Game will be hosted by whoever has the best record in the conference. 

The Pac-12 and partners Allegiant Stadium and the Raiders, Las Vegas Convention & Visitors Authority (LVCVA) and MGM Resorts International agreed to commence hosting of the Championship Game at Allegiant Stadium in 2021 for its two-year run in Las Vegas in order to ensure a successful launch of the inaugural event.

Let's break down Oregon's slate.

Week 1 (9/26) — Colorado

Following a 45-3 stomping this past season, the Buffaloes will look for redemption by traveling to Autzen for the second-consecutive season. Oregon was going to travel to Boulder before the schedule got changed due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

Head coach Mel Tucker left to take the same position at Michigan State, so this will be the Colorado head coaching debut for Karl Dorrell.

Week 2 (10/3)— @ Washington State

The Ducks will look to end another road-losing streak in Pullman, where they have not won since 2014. Their 51-33 loss in 2016 got quarterback Dakota Prukop benched for Justin Herbert. Then the Ducks lost again in 2018, 34-20, in College Gameday's first-ever trip to Washington State.

With the departure of Mike Leach to Mississippi State, the Cougars will be transitioning to the run-and-shoot offense under new head coach Nick Rolovich, previously from Hawaii.

Week 3 (10/09) Friday — Arizona State

One home game many Ducks fans will have marked will be this revenge spot as the Sun Devils spoiled Oregon's college football playoff hopes last season by defeating them 31-28 in Tempe. Quarterback Jayden Daniels should improve on an impressive freshman season with some new weapons, including former Ducks WR commit Johnny Wilson. Herm Edwards got four different four-star wide receivers in the past recruiting class.

Week 4 (10/17) — @ Oregon State

The Ducks rivalry game against Oregon State will come earlier in the season due to trying to minimize travel early in the year. Beavers head coach Jonathan Smith has turned the program around to the point where Oregon State gave the Ducks a fight with their backup quarterback in Eugene this past season. Oregon State lost WR Isaiah Hodgins and QB Jake Luton to the 2020 NFL Draft, but Smith will tailor his offense to the strengths of their replacements. Competing to replace Luton will be Nebraska transfer Tristan Gebbia, who started against Oregon last season, and Chance Nolan, a dual-threat JUCO transfer.

Week 5 (10/24)— BYE

[Listen and download for free ‘Sports Uncovered: The uniform craze that revolutionized college football].

Week 6 (10/31)— Washington

Cristobal and the Ducks have won the last two games of the series against their largest rival, but the Huskies will be sporting a new offensive system in head coach Jimmy Lake's first season. It'll be Oregon's first look at a new-look Washington program that has said it'll be much more aggressive when it comes to recruiting, even if those results haven't panned out so far for UW. Since many recruits decide between UW and UO, this game can help swing those on the fence to becoming a Duck. 

This will also be the first visit from Washington since CJ Verdell's walk-off halfback dive in overtime.

Week 7 (11/7)— @ California

Under head coach Justin Wilcox, Cal will always have a fundamentally sound defense that makes it hard on opposing offenses. Last season, the Golden Bears shut out Oregon in the first half to lead 7-0 despite their starting quarterback, Chase Garbers, missing the game. Garbers will be back next season and if he can stay healthy, the Ducks are in for a fight. In the seven games Garbers started and finished this past season, Cal went 7-0.

This could be the hardest game on Oregon's schedule.

Week 8 (11/14)— USC

This might be the most important game on Oregon's schedule with Ohio State canceled this season. The Ducks and USC are neck-and-neck for the best recruiting class in the Pac-12 and just like the Washington game, this can help sway recruits. Plus, it happening later in the season means Oregon, if the conference allows, will host many recruits for this game to show them up close how much better Oregon is as a program than USC, who will return to Autzen Stadium for the first time since 2015 when a Vernon Adams Jr.-led Oregon defeated them 48-28.

The Trojans shocked everyone this offseason by keeping head coach Clay Helton despite him holding the 12th ranked recruiting class....in the Pac-12, but he has seemingly turned it around in the 2021 class. Plus, the Trojans can always put up a fight given all the talent on their roster.

Cristobal will want to dominate the Trojans to show current LA-based recruits that Oregon, not USC, is the place to play on the West Coast. Don't be surprised if this is a massive recruiting weekend for the program. 

Week 9 (11/20) Friday — @ Arizona

The Ducks will travel to Tucson, Arizona to play the Wildcats which has always been a house of horrors for them. Their last victory in Tucson was a 56-31 victory back in 2011 when the Ducks won the conference and went to the Rose Bowl. Since then, they have lost 42-13 in 2013 and 44-14 in 2018. Both losses had Arizona unranked and Oregon nationally ranked, and the latter loss came in head coach Mario Cristobal's first season.

Week 10 (11/28)— Stanford

The 2020 Stanford team will look a lot different than this past season as 14 different Cardinals have entered the transfer portal, including starting quarterback KJ Costello. If David Shaw can get some of those players to return this could be a trap game but the Ducks should take care of business despite Stanford always being dangerous.

Week 11 (12/5)— @ Utah

The Pac-12 added a tenth conference game to each schedule and for Oregon, it sets up a rematch of the 2019 Pac-12 Championship Game, where the Ducks defeated the No. 5 Utah Utes 37-15, dooming their hopes of making the first college football playoff in program history. Despite graduating many of their best players, expect Utah to be seeking revenge. 

[Listen to the latest Talkin Ducks Podcast with host Jordan Kent]

Pac-12 unveils 10-game CFB schedule, Oregon-OSU set for Oct. 17

Pac-12 unveils 10-game CFB schedule, Oregon-OSU set for Oct. 17

Just weeks after the Pac-12 Conference announced all games would be played in-conference due to the coronavirus pandemic, the conference has revealed its plan to move forward with the 2020 season.  

In a meeting on Friday, Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott said the conference will move to a shortened, 10-game schedule with the first games taking place on Sept. 26. 

[RELATED: Pac-12 postpones its virtual media days ahead of 2020 season]

[Listen and download for free ‘Sports Uncovered: The uniform craze that revolutionized college football].

The ACC and SEC announced they would begin their seasons on Sept. 7 and Sept. 26 respectively. 

ACC members, which include Notre Dame on a one-year basis, are scheduled to play 10 conference games in addition to one non-conference opponent. The SEC, on the other hand, will play a conference-only slate of 10 games. 

With the Pac-12 schedule now unveiled, we now know a few of the conference’s marquee matchups. As Pete Thamel previously reported, USC vs. UCLA, ASU vs Arizona, and Washington vs Stanford are planned for Week 1, kicking off the season with some high-intensity football. 

Oregon will open up the season against Colorado, despite the Utah Utes previously being a rumored first opponent for the Ducks. The last time the Ducks and Buffaloes met, Oregon held Colorado to one-score when it put on a complete offensive performance in the 45-3 victory. 

We also know that the Oregon-Oregon State rivarly game, previously known as the Civil War, will take place on October 17. 

The Ducks will conclude the regular season on Dec. 5 vs. Utah with a rematch of last season's conference championship game. Last year, Oregon crushed Utah's hopes of making the College Football Playoff for the first time in program history by running all over the nation's best rushing defense en route to a 37-15 victory.

Oregon State will host Cal to begin the 2020 campaign. The Beavers and Bears last met on Nov. 19 when Oregon State held onto a 14-point lead to beat California 21-17. 

The Pac-12 Football Championship Game will be a home-hosted game to be held on either Dec. 18 or 19. The plan is for the championship game to be played in Las Vegas starting 2021.

Scott also said Pac-12 training camps for football can open Aug. 17. Several Pac-12 schools, including USC, UCLA and California, are currently operating under restrictions set by local authorities to slow the spread of coronavirus that would prevent football teams from practicing.

Last month Gov. Kate Brown signed off on athletes returning to Oregon and Oregon State campuses for voluntary workouts but has currently advised against having any large gatherings in the state through September.

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