Well, we're a mere 22 days away from kickoff, and fall camp is in full swing. So far, things look to be going very well. Both lines are very encouraging, which is a testament to abilities of Coaches Azzinaro and Greatwood. The expected stars (Thurmond, Tukuafu, Masoli, Blount, Holland, all linebackers) have looked as they should. Overall, it is a far cry from last year, when we had all sorts of questions regarding QB play (even before Costa's injury).
- As you no doubt heard, two Ducks made the regional cover of Sports Illustrated's college football preview issues. And Coach Kelly will hopefully put to rest any jinx nonsense, stating, "You jinx yourself if you talk about that."
- Yesterday was the first competition day for the practicing Ducks, and the offense WON THE DAY, coming back form a late hole with a series of completions from both Masoli and Costa to a number of different receivers. Even Kelly was surprised by the comeback. In injury news, Jeff Maehl, Tyrece Gaines and Diante Jackson are still hampered by knee injuries.
- Also from the Register Guard, Adam Jude has a piece on a key position that needs replacement--rover, or as it has been known for years, "Chung." Looking to fill the postition is Talmadge Jackson III, following by Marvin Johnson. While Jackson has not played one bit of safety during his entire life, he's holding down the number one spot for the moment, though is being pushed hard, and will likely go to the last week of the offseason. However, Jackson has transitioned well, and is very smooth at the position, which could bode well for Oregon's passing defense this season.
- eDuck has a recap of the 5th day of practice. A good emphasis was put on special teams, and the young kickers had a taste of a live rush, and it's noted that P Jackson Rice did very well. Meanwhile LaMichael James continues to be "lightning in a bottle" with his speed and agility, either running or receiving the ball, and the linebackers have been simply astounding. This article also has some more injury information, though it sounds like nothing should be a major concern at this point.
- Watch out Boise State, Ed Dickson busted out the third person! He also said that Boise State "rubs him the wrong way," and though he doesn't care one bit what they're up to right now, they will get his full effort on Sept. 3rd. This seems to line up with the attitude that Kelly has instilled in the program, having the team always focus on the current task. Right now, it's time for fall camp. When it's time to worry about Boise, the team will. However, this article is more than just Dickson and Boise State, and talks a lot about Dickson's role in the program and how he's mentoring the younger players on the team, just as he was by Dante Rosario.
- Ted Miller runs through Oregon's best case/worst case. Unfortunately, our best case ends with USC winning the national title, though having the Pac-10 beat the SEC in two BCS bowls would be pretty sweet. The worst case ends with an Emerald Bowl win, and...well, let's just call it some unoriginal situations that Mill concocted.
- For some more realistic bowl projections, ESPN has started theirs, which are a weekly feature during the season. Mark Schlabach has Oregon in the Sun Bowl vs. Kansas, while Bruce Feldman has Oregon in the Holiday Bowl against Nebraska.
As always, leave any links or thoughts below. GO DUCKS!