The coaching search is getting fast and furious, and the Ducks are not pulling any punches and are going after just about every name imaginable.
- A big name that popped up over the weekend was Tom Izzo, as KEZI is claiming that Oregon is set to offer him a contract which would make him the richest coach in college basketball. However, KVAL is reporting that Izzo and Oregon have not talked, and that when (and if) contact happens, it will merely be a 'temperature check.' Unfortunately, I find the likelihood of Izzo leaving MSU to be almost nil (and Jay Jones at DSN agrees), but if there were any coach I could pick to come to Oregon, it would be Izzo. What I take from all this is that Oregon is going to throw the whole bank at a big coach that shows interest. If Izzo shows any interest, he would likely get the biggest contract offer in college basketball. I doubt this will lure him (he could get this offer from almost anywhere), but this definitely sends a message about the nature of this coaching search.
- With Mark Turgeon apparently out of the coaching search, the next realistic goal looks to be Jamie Dixon of Pittsburgh. But the main constant during all of this is uncertainty, as Kilkenny and possibly candidates negotiate with each other and their current schools. Tubby Smith has been particularly confusing, with reports that he's not a candidate, and also that he has been offered as coach of the Ducks.
- Oregon is looking to put a tumultuous offseason behind it as spring football starts tomorrow. Obviously, the main story will be the QB battle, as Nate Costa and Darron Thomas battle for Jeremiah Masoli's old job. It will be very interesting to see how the players respond to all the offseason chaos. Chip Kelly has shown the ability to channel adversity into hard work, so let's hope that's the case again.
- One former Duck that is trying to help during this time is Saul Patu. He had his share of troubles as a teen and as a Duck, but was able to grow up while he was a member of the football team. His story is one that players and fans can learn from.
- In proof that throwing down money for a good coach will lead to success, look no further than the Oregon baseball team. But the Ducks were rudely awakened to Pac-10 play when they visited Arizona, losing their first two games 3-9 and 4-8. In the final game of the series, they were down 5-8 entering the 9th inning before scoring 4 runs to win their first Pac-10 game 9-8. The Ducks were down to their final out, but four consecutive hits, capped off by a three run homer by Jack Marder gave the Ducks the lead, and then Scott McGough struck out two in the 9th to pick up the save. It wasn't the easiest weekend for the Ducks, but picking up the win in the final inning was huge.
- Ashton Eaton is getting a lot of attention after his world record in the heptathalon, and rightly so. It's also changing his career, and he could very well be headed to London in 2012. Eaton has the temperament to become a true star for a sport that can be often overlooked. Eaton has a lot of big things in store for him, and it will be very exciting to see him succeed in the future.
Go any other quack to share? Leave it below. GO DUCKS!