Sunday, October 30, 2011

Yep, I Called It

                                                    We do have a QB controversy!
      Bryan Bennett put a charge in a sluggish offense when he entered the game at the half on Saturday.   The Cougar defense had to honor his ability to carry the ball and not just key on the running back.   Recently, when Thomas runs the "option" he looks to give to the running back over 90% of the time (unofficial statistic).   Bennett has more of a 60% "give" ratio, making it a true option.    Now, I know that Thomas is still a little gimpy, which makes his running the ball a bit of a gamble, but it limits our offense too much.   Or, is Bennett just better at the option?   Anyway, big props to Daddy Duck, Chip Kelly, for making the change at halftime.  Keep your "options" open...

     Holy Crikees, are our wide receivers ever going to catch the first ball thrown to them?   Sometimes they look like they have the hands of a small dog.   Perhaps their concentration on blocking (and they block better than any other corps of receiver in the nation) needs to carry over to concentrating on catching the ball. 

     After a win like that I don't have a truly deserving Duck candidate to bestow a Winged Zed - if I did it would be another one to Bryan Bennett.  
     This weeks honors goes to an NFL'er!   Former Ontario H.S. Tiger and Oregon Duck, A.J. Feeley wins this prestigious award for quaterbacking the St. Louis Rams to their first win of the season.
Congrats big guy and, if you're smart, keep handing the ball off to 
Steven Jackson!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

1's vs 2's


  That's what it looked like when the Ducks trounced the Buffs in Colorado. Our Varsity against their JV's.   In many ways we have to feel badly for CU, having gone through decades of that kind of play here at Oregon.  But, the rebuilding will take time and hopefully, coach Embree can bring that program back to where it once was. 


  Do we have a QB controversy??   Watching Bryan Bennett from last week to this, he shows some tools that are lacking in Darron Thomas.

1) Bennet's passing accuracy gets better with each pass, Thomas' tendency has been to throw behind the receiver.
2) Bennet has break away speed when he runs the ball.  Thomas has so-so speed.
 3) Bennet put on 20 pounds of muscle over the summer.  Thomas is still slightly built.
Do I really think there is a controversy?  No, but Kelly has the option of replacing Thomas any time he struggles.

  Now I would like to offer the networks something to think about.   After watching the last couple of game broadcasts, I'd like to offer my services as a commentator.  Today's game had the announcing duo swearing that Daron Thomas was in at the same time as Bryan Bennett.   Hey guys, check the roster, you mistook De'Anthony Thomas for Daron Thomas.   If you would just watch the game instead of trying to make up story lines, you'd make your viewers happy.    Although I have a face for radio, I would be glad to give it a go.  Call me.....

Sunday, October 16, 2011

2 for 4

In batting that's pretty darn good, but with my teams - not so much.  

Hanging by the tips of their claws, the Tigers couldn't hold on.  Texas took the ALCS and rightfully so.  The Rangers have my respect, those boys can flat out hit.   Good luck to them in the World Series.

0 for 1


It took until overtime, but the Red Wings finally put away a resurging Minnesota Wild.

1 for 2


The Ducks, despite losses of key players, "Won The Day" and sent the Devils back to Hades.

2 for 3


The Lions looked like they had a Monday Night Football hangover - dropping balls, not finishing routes, missing open receivers, allowing runs up the middle, you name it.   A bit of a tank job, I hope they learn from this and are ready for Atlanta next week - and how about a little more Megatron.

2 for 4

A side note, the lack of class displayed by 49'ers coach Jim Harbaugh is reminiscent of his days in the Pac.   The post game slap-handshake he gave to Lion's coach Jim Schwartz looked more like a celebration of a high school kid than that of an NFL coach.  Schartzy took umbrage at this gesture and the skirmish was on.   Anybody remember the "what's your deal" incident between Harbaugh and Pete Carrol?   Apparently, Harbaugh did not learn from that chapter.  Sooner or later Harbaugh will get his, just please let me be watching.  

Another side note, this weekend, I watched all 3 Detroit teams on TV.  This is the the first time 3 teams from the Motor City have been on the tube since, well, never.   I'm telling you Detroit is the new great sports town.

 Now for this week's 
Winged Zed

For stepping in and stepping up the Oregon offense,
this weeks Winged Zed goes to 
Bryan Bennett 
 The stats are not overwhelming, but his spark lit up the offense.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

I Don't Think So

  Really???   That's what I think when they start throwing Mike Bellotti's name around as the potential replacement for Mike Stoops.   I just don't believe in his returning to coach in the same conference with another team.   I am afraid I would have to boo at his return - if I can ever afford another ticket.  After much discussion, colleague and faithful reader, GC, proposed the hiring of former Oregon defensive back Justin Wilcox.   Why not, give the kid a shot.   His resume includes defensive coordinator at Boise State and currently at Tennessee.   A west coast guy, this might just be a perfect fit. 

  Speaking of affording another ticket.   RG columnist Bob Welch ran a story on the decline of noise at Autzen, "Duck Fans: Where's The 110 percent".   I can tell you where it went, it went when the U of O starting charging outrageous prices for game tickets!!!     The blue collar guy can't face the price tag, so you are stuck with too many of the blase' rich who are just sorta into football.   They like the party and being around the game, but can they identify a back up from just his jersey number?  Doubtful.  Will they scream their lungs out for 2+ hours?  Nope.
The loud fans are now at local establishments yelling with fans like themselves at banks of TV's or hosting game parties where they raise their own roofs at the sight of a 40 yard LaMike run.   Lower the prices and suddenly you get the excited, informed, loud fans of yesteryear.   But alas, not to be.   The business of big-time college athletics views attendance by the Average Joe as collateral damage as they pursue the big bucks.  Don't get me wrong, I never miss a game, and probably won't, but it will mostly be at home in front of my TV.

Geez Bob, get a clue.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Deep Thoughts and Questions To Ponder

OK, maybe not profoundly intellectual, but it took some time to think this stuff up.

Here goes.....

Why do ex-Mariners do so well after they leave Seattle?   In the 2011 baseball playoffs, eleven (by my count) ex-Mariners took to the diamond on six different teams.   Yep, eleven,  not just role players, but players who have made significant contributions to their team's success.  Additionally how about the entire Brewer team, they were originally the Seattle Pilots before moving to Milwaukee after just one year (1969).  This franchise needs a long look at themselves and figure out why success comes after a stop over in Seattle. 
For baseball geeks here is the list of those former Mariners in the 2011 playoffs;

Freddy Garcia - P, NY
Alex Rodriguez - 3B, NY
Casey Kotchman - 1B, Tampa Bay
Doug Fister - P - Detroit
Adrian Beltre - 3B, Texas
Cliff Lee - P, Philadelphia
Raul Ibanez - OF, Philadelphia
Yuniesky Betancourt - SS, Milwaukee
Arthur Rhodes - P, St. Louis
J.J. Putz - P, Arizona
Willie Bloomquist - SS, Arizona

What can the Detroit Lions do to improve?   They need help on the running game, why not trade Nick, "I Get Hurt In Training Camp", Fairley for under-used Panther running back Jonathan Stewart and the Panthers' first round draft pick in 2012.   That way Detroit gets a tough runner with speed, a draft pick to add to the offensive line, and Carolina gets to re-unite "Cheap Shot" Fairley with "Scam" Newton.   I am motivated to get this trade done so that I can fully boo the Panthers.  

Will the Thanksgiving Day game feature a battle of unbeatens?  After the showing on Monday Night Football, the Lions proved they are for real, defeating da Bears and running their record to 5 - 0.  This is the first time since 1956 they can boast such a record (I was 1 at the time and really don't remember that Lions team).   Only the Packers have a record to match the Lions and I can hardly wait for the Turkey Day contest between the two.  Can they both go undefeated until then?  What a story that would be, but somebody's got to flinch and hopefully it will be the Pack.

What will I do with out Mike Stoops to kick around?  I know you will find this hard to believe, but I will miss having him to poke fun at.  Say goodbye, Mikey.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Wins & Losses

Tough loss on Thursday, no not the game, we won that - 
the loss of LaMichael James.   

The kid has such a great attitude to go with his brilliant talent, it is hard to think of a couple of weeks (???) with out him.  But, we do have a stable of backs that can and will fill in.  

Kenjon Barner is a full time starter on any other team.

Frosh sensation, DeAnthony Thomas is a thrill waiting to happen.

Tra Carson showed flashes of how he broke LaMike's high school records in his minutes against Cal.

I think we will be OK.

Overwhelmingly, my pick for this week's Winged Zed
for the second week in a row belongs to
LaMichael James
239 yards rushing,
his 3rd game in a row over 200 yards, an Oregon record!