Category: Oregon Ducks

Seth Russell

Coaches Poll: Top spots shuffled as Baylor is bumped to No. 2; Ohio State still No. 1


The top four teams in the coache spoll remain unchanged this week, although the order has been switched up. No. 1 Ohio State remains on top, but No. 2 Baylor moved up two spots following a demolishing of Kansas while No. 3 TCU and No. 4 Michigan State each dropped a spot following closer-than-expected road tests at Kansas State and Rutgers, respectively.

The Buckeyes received 47 first-place votes in the coaches poll. Baylor picked up eight first-place votes, TCU received five and Michigan State, No. 5 LSU and No. 7 Utah each received one. No. 6 Clemson, despite not receiving any first-place consideration, managed to stay one spot ahead of the Utes following a late Saturday night victory over No. 23 Cal (Bears dropped just one spot despite having more turnovers than any top 25 team should have any given week).

Georgia and USC fell out of the top 25 this week following losses. The Bulldogs fell from No. 16 after their second striaght loss (first to Alabama and then at Tennessee), and the Trojans were dumped after being upset at home by Washington on Thursday night after being ranked No. 17. With Georgia and USC out, that made room for No. 24 Duke and No. 25 Toledo at the bottom of this week’s poll. Undefetaed Houston and Temple are each on the doorstep.

No team had a bigger fall within the top 25 this week than Oklahoma. The Sooners fell 10 spots down to No. 19 after being upset in the Red River Rivalry by Texas. No. 14 Michigan rocketed up seven spots following its latest shutout victory, which dropped Northwestern down to No. 21 (five spots behind No. 16 Stanford, whose only loss came in Evanston).

In the eyes of the coache spoll voters, No. 9 Alabama is the best one-loss team in the country, with a home loss to No. 12 Ole Miss. You coudl make the argument that distinction belongs to No. 14 Michigan, whose only loss was on the road on a Thursday night at No. 7 Utah.

Here is this week’s coaches poll, with first-place votes noted)

  1. Ohio State (47)
  2. Baylor (8)
  3. TCU (5)
  4. Michigan State (1)
  5. LSU (1)
  6. Clemson
  7. Utah (1)
  8. Florida State
  9. Alabama
  10. Texas A&M
  11. Florida
  12. Ole Miss
  13. Notre Dame
  14. Michigan
  15. Oklahoma State
  16. Stanford
  17. Iowa
  18. UCLA
  19. Oklahoma
  20. Boise State
  21. Northwestern
  22. Memphis
  23. California
  24. Duke
  25. Toledo

Oregon in danger of joining Texas in not-so-flattering company


This is what it has come to for the once-mighty Oregon Ducks. A season after having the Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback and an undefeated run fall one win shy of the first national championship in school history, Oregon was reduced to having to tie lowly Washington State in double overtime just for a chance to move into a third overtime on its home field. The final play was picked off and Oregon slumped to 3-3. Things may not get much easier for Oregon either, and the Ducks all of a sudden could join some rather unfortunate company as a result.

Since the dawn of the BCS Championship Game, the Texas Longhorns are the only school to have played for a national championship one season and completely miss the postseason the next. Texas played Alabama at the end of the 2009 season in the Rose Bowl for the BCS national championship and then missed the postseason in 2010 with a 5-7 record. Right now, Oregon is staring down a similar fate even with an expanded national championship and postseason playing field. No, head coach Mark Helfrich is not on any sort of hot seat, and this is hardly a suggestion that Oregon has lost a seat at the grown-ups table. This is merely a down year, as even the best college football programs are known to have from time to time.

Here’s the situation for Oregon. The Ducks need to win three more games just to become bowl eligible. Sounds simple enough, right? Well actually…

Considering how Oregon has been playing, are there three games in there you expect Oregon to win? Arizona State is known to come up small in a big game at home (UCLA last year, USC this year), but going to Tempe can be tricky. Cal, despite sloppy play at Utah, has shown to be a dangerous team. Stanford may be the best team in the Pac-12 right now and has a history of flexing some muscle against the Ducks. USC may be a toss-up game because Steve Sarkisian cannot win a big game, and you never know what to expect in The Civil War and Oregon State is due for a win (last win was in 2007).

Oregon has not missed the postseason since 2004 and has gone to a bowl game all but that one season since 1997. If Oregon does not get things fixed on defense, these Ducks could be staying home for the winter.

Mike Leach discusses presidential candidates, political correctness, pizza and says WSU has better facilities than Oregon

Mike Leach

wherever and whenever Washington State head coach Mike Leach opens his mouth, we will be listening. In a recent radio interview with John Canzano, Leach shared his thoughts on the presidential races heating up, the need to remove political correctness and the superior athletics facilities at Washington State compared to what is offered at Oregon.

Leach offered his take on the current status of the GOP race, saying if Donald Trump continues to rise that some other candidates will soon back out and others will “kiss the ring and hope for cabinet positions.”

I think honestly the single biggest issue in this election and country for quite some time is you have to eradicate political correctness. Unless it’s eradicated, you know, we can’t move forward.”

On the topic of football, Leach was asked what has held Washington State back from becoming a winning program. Leach reflected on the steps the program has taken to improve the program, which has seen improvements with facilities that have helped through recruiting, although Leach said it’s been tough because acquiring the talent has been a slow process. He was quite proud of Washington State’s facilities though.

“We have the best facilities in America, certainly within the conference, including Oregon,” Leach said. “We’ve had those for a year that helped accelerate the recruiting effort.”

Given a chance to back peddle from that statement, Leach, as you might expect, did not rescind or amend his previous comments.

You can listen to the full interview here. It is a good listen. He also wants to know where the best pizza place in Portland, Oregon is. You will learn he likes New York style pizza.