It's been fun having great news on Friday morning the last few weeks. Sadly, there isn't much today.
- Oregon's tenuous hold on 4th place in the Pac-10 came crashing down in the second half against Cal last night. The Ducks help an 11-point lead at the half, but were outscored 47-26 in the second and fell 81-71. The Ducks were thoroughly dominated in the second, and were outplayed on offense and defense. They were outrebounded and turned the ball over more. Oregon's ball movement has been a key to their offensive success this season, and it pretty much ceased to exist as the Ducks failed to effectively attack the Cal zone.
- George Schroeder's piece this morning is on the second half's lack of effort. What the Ducks learned last night is that they can't take anything off. This team is fun to watch, but does not have the talent to coast against a more talented and well-coached team. And unless they play hard for the entire game, they won't be winning games against almost anyone. While he has some good points, I think that Schroeder's piece overreacts a lot. This loss doesn't undo the success that the Ducks have had over the past few weeks. If the Ducks don't make the postseason, then that's just fine. No matter what happens, this season has been a smashing success, and while performances like last night suck, they serve as a reminder of just how much this team has overachieved all season.
- While the men saw an end to their winning streak, the Oregon women broke their losing streak, beating Cal in Berkeley 60-46. The Ducks never trailed, and were able to keep their lead in this game, after dropping huge leads earlier this season.
- The first home game for the baseball season is supposed to this evening, but with weather concerns, George Horton is worried it won't happen. It'll be really cold, no matter when the game is played. The Oregonian has a preview of the series with St. Mary's.
- The Wall Street Journal has a piece looking at how many players each college football team is losing this season, and using the NFL Combine as a good way of measuring the loss of talent. With the Ducks having only 3 players in the combine, they are losing a much smaller amount of "talent" than other teams.
- Lastly, Ted Miller's been having some great pieces lately. On Wednesday, he looked at which Pac-10 teams had a lot of explosion plays, and which teams stopped them. But yesterday he looked at which teams had and stopped explosion plays in the running game. Not surprisingly, Oregon was very explosive in the running game, but was only middle of the pack in stopping explosion plays on the ground. But Miller concludes that may not be that important.
Got anything to help cheer up your fellow Ducks? Leave it in the comments. GO DUCKS!