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Golden Nuggets: Oregon at Cal--A Classic Trap Game for the Ducks

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The Oregon-USC game will have Pac-12 and possibly national championship implications. It is clearly the most important game for both teams. The Ducks' second most important game, however, is a trip to Memorial Stadium, a place where they have struggled against the Bears over the years.

So, let's do this: Where is Oregon's second most important game? Figuring that out requires a couple of things. First, it has to be on the road, which eliminates Washington and Stanford. The Ducks have lost just six games under Chip Kelly, and only one was in Autzen Stadium. Second, it has to be a team that has given the Ducks some trouble and has the potential to do that again. For extra credit, it would help if this road game against a team that gives the Ducks some trouble could be played immediately after the Ducks game at USC.

Well, lookie here: At California on Nov. 10.

Oregon has lost three of its last four games in Berkeley. It's lone victory -- a 15-13 thriller in 2010 -- was the lone nailbiter in the Ducks unbeaten regular season. Cal also has the size and athleticism on defense to give the Ducks offense some trouble.

And, of course, there's that beloved sportswriter construct: "The Letdown Game." That's when a team wins a huge, emotional showdown only to show up flat the following weekend and faceplant. What I really cherish about that cliché is the thought of bringing it up to Kelly in advance of the game. He loves stuff like that.

After the jump Jorge Gutierrez continues to work out for his suitors and softball books a ticket to the Super Regional.






  • profiles Becca Lundquist, who was certain she was going to help the Bears win a national championship after transferring from UC Davis when it dropped its rowing program.

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