Saturday, October 02, 2010

Oregon Destroys Stanford, USC Loses To Washington : The New Pac-10

Oregon destroys Stanford 52 to 31, USC loses to Washington 32 to 31, welcome to the new Pac-10, the last year we can effectively call it that.

The Stanford Oregon game was one The Cardinal would like to have back. While Oregon would roll up 626 yards of total offense, their inability to hold on to the ball, coupled with Stanford's early ability to score on turnovers, saw the Ducks in a 21 to 3 hole they had to climb out of.

In the post-Super Bowl XL era, where New Orleans Saints Coach Sean Peyton called for an onsides kick to start the second half of the NFL Championship against the Indy Colts, coaches should know to look for the use of the kick when they're behind and to establish a sudden change.

From that view, Oregon's Chip Kelly out-coached Cardinal Coach Jim Harbaugh, who's team was surprised by the call. Kelly told Oregon Live it was planned.

The kick changed the game and the Ducks has a 49 to 10 scoring run afterward. Well, that and Stanford failing to score twice in the red zone in the 4th quarter. And yes, there was the hit on Stanford Wide Receiver Chris Owusu by Oregon's Jason Lewis, who went strutting around the sidelines in a very classless way afterward. A behavior that made you just hate Oregon after all.

Call it swagger. I call it dirty. Even at its best USC was never like that.

USC Falls To Washington

For the second straight year, USC lost to Washington, meaning that Huskies Coach Steve Sarkisian has The Trojans number, and that USC's looking at quickly posting two losses as Stanford, which it also lost to in 2009 comes to town next week. And the Cardinal's not going to like losing to Oregon the way it did.

Now, USC officially looks beatable. It's no wonder Pete Carroll headed for the relative shelter of Seattle and the Seattle Seahawks. For the always positive Carroll, this year would have been a test like no other.

Now, the headache falls to Lane Kiffin. Can he deal with it? We'll see.

Cal v. UCLA

On the note of headaches, we have Cal hosting the suddenly hot UCLA Bruins and their "Pistol" offense next Saturday. This space wonders if Cal will learn to take away the inside running of that offense, force their corners, and funnel plays to the outside. In other words, don't try to defense every aspect of the offense; take one part of it away.

We'll see.

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