I put in a lot of time last night writing the Inside The Numbers post for Oregon. The stats from GoDucks.com kind of were screwy, but I figured it'd be OK. Then, I accidentally hit publish and the site was screwed up. The html tables from GoDucks.com were killing our website!?! So, I had to delete it. All that work lost. Quintuple Le Sigh.
Nonetheless, I learned a lot in doing the research, so after the fold, I'll recap my thoughts and tell you guys about some Oregon players to keep an eye on. Because I don't feel like making a big thing out of this, it wont be shmancy. Ragnarok has helped put some of the information back in in a safer format. I'm sorry that this will be more cursory than originally perceived, but I just don't feel like doing it all over again.
Overall Team Statistics
Oregon Overall Team Statistics
(as of Oct 25, 2008) All games
|Points Per Game||41.5||24.9|
|Yards gained rushing||2441||1083|
|Yards lost rushing||211||257|
|Average Per Rush||6.0||2.8|
|Average Per Game||278.8||103.2|
|Average Per Pass||6.5||6.5|
|Average Per Catch||12.0||11.2|
|Average Per Game||196.1||263.4|
|Average Per Play||6.2||4.8|
|Average Per Game||474.9||366.6|
|KICK RETURNS: #-Yards||26-625||30-593|
|PUNT RETURNS: #-Yards||20-327||12-65|
|INT RETURNS: #-Yards||9-56||9-113|
|KICK RETURN AVERAGE||24.0||19.8|
|PUNT RETURN AVERAGE||16.4||5.4|
|INT RETURN AVERAGE||6.2||12.6|
|Average Per Game||58.6||68.9|
|Average Per Punt||41.5||37.9|
|Net punt average||36.4||30.9|
|TIME OF POSSESSION/Game||26:15||33:45|
|RED-ZONE SCORES||38-44 86%||27-29 93%|
|RED-ZONE TOUCHDOWNS||30-44 68%||16-29 55%|
|PAT-ATTEMPTS||38-40 95%||22-23 96%|
|Games/Avg Per Game||4/58570||4/59441|
|Neutral Site Games||0/0|
|Score by quarters||1st||2nd||3rd||4th||OT||Total|
First, if you look at the overall numbers, their run game and run D is MUCH MUCH MUCH better than pass game and pass D. They actually give up more pass yards than they have thrown for. But they have over double the rush yards than given up. Clearly, the strength of their team is in their running game.
This is especially true when you compare the running stats with the passing stats. They essentially have 3 RBs out there. LaGarrette Blount, Jeremiah Johnson, and Jeremiah Masoli (the ostensible QB). Masoli and Johnson are averaging 5.8 each a carry. Blount is even higher.
Compare that to the passing stats. Masoli has like a 118 rating, which is not great. 55% completion percentage and I think less than 6.5 per attempt. Arizona's 3rd wide out has over 30 receptions. No Oregon wide outs have over 30 receptions. Interestingly enough, Blount and Johnson have combined for about 5 receptions. Thought they would throw to their RBs more.
So, while Oregon does run the spread, it is wildly different than Tuitama and Co. out in Arizona. Tuitama and Co. are slinging the ball everywhere. Oregon is run, run, run, run, run. We have the LBs to stop them, I think. We shal see shall we not. The rain plays into their strength, but ours, too.
We were able to shut down Javon Ringer, so we'll see if we can shut down their rushing attack, it will be a large challenge. If we can and we force them to throw, it takes them out of their game and puts Cal in a great position to win. Easier said than done.
As for defense, it is sort of the opposite of ours. Their true strength is up front with Nick Reed and Will Tukuafu. They are killer DEs and have combined for 24 tackles for loss and 14 sacks. Sick!
3 out of their top 4 tackles guys are DBs, not LBs. Never the most prudent set up. Cal fans might remember Patrick Chung as the guy who got Patrick Chunged 2 years ago by Marshawn. That was 2 years ago, he is a LOT better now and has about 50 tackles. Jarius Byrd has been abused (ABUSED) by Tha1 the past few years. Im sure hes happy to see Tha1 in Eagle green. Byrd also has about 50 tackles. Their DBs are really strong. But if their DBs are making the tackles tomorrow, it bodes well for Cal.
Overall, this team seems pretty similar to ours. Concerns with the passing game, but strong, strong running game. Pretty solid defense that has had some unfortunate break downs. The rain appears to favor both teams, insomuch as we both have running games as our strength.
Final Thought: So, how do I think this game will go? Tough to tell. It is not going to be a blowout, especially with the rain. That is for sure. It might be lower scoring than most expect.
Last year with a much better Oregon O and a much worse Cal D, Oregon put up 24 in Oregon. If we can hold them to that amount, I feel like we have a good chance here. Lord knows we are going to have guys just sitting there spying on Masoli the entire time. If we can just execute tackling, I think we have a decent chance of being able to stymie their run game. It won't be easy, but if we can do that, I think we can force Masoli to throw throw throw. He certainly will not be as bad as Craft last week, but if we can get a few turn overs, we could make some hay.
Certainly, what helped last year was that we got 4 TOs and gave up none. Now, I doubt that two of their return guys are going to run into each other again, giving Jahvid Best an easy fumble recovery. However, with the conditions as they are, ball security will be key. Wet Ball Mechanics. I repeat. Wet Ball Mechanics. That will be key.
On offense, I have major concerns about our O-Line. They are beaten up bad now. So, that's why the D is going to be key. Their DBs were hyped coming into the season, but have been blow up some. Can Riley blow them up again? I don't know, but the conditons might make that a moot point. Plus, our WRs are going to have to improve on their catching skills here. So, I don't see us putting up 40+ like we did to years ago.
This is going to be a tight game. I predict whomever wins the turn over battle will get this one. May it be us. Again, sorry for the stream of consciousness post her, I am just frustrated with all that lost work. Anyway, what do you think?