It's no secret around here that I'm a fan of offense. Sure, defense has its merit, and good defense is fun to watch. But give me three shootouts on my TV every Saturday, and I'm a happy camper. And fortunately, I happened to attend college during Oregon's ascent to college football's offensive elite. And while watching Oregon play teams like Tennessee or Virginia is lots of fun (for me, and not in any way Tennessee or Virginia), I think football is at its best when there's a team just as talented lining up on the other side. And with Oregon on its bye week this week, it gives me plenty of time to think about all the wonderful offensive matchups that could befall Oregon in, dare I say it, the BCS championship game?
First, a couple fun games we DEFINITELY get to play this year:
- Cal - Freshman Jared Goff leads the nation in passing yards; in true Sonny Dykes fashion, the Golden Bears are staunchly against playing any defense of any kind, featuring one of the worst secondaries in the Pac-12. That strategy tends not to work against Oregon. The Ducks can, and probably should, put up 59+ for the fourth straight game, Goff could, and probably will, throw 60-70 passes, and after all the points and passes, the 7:30 game should end around 1 AM, just in time to make last call at The Cooler.
- @Washington - The Huskies have arguably the most impressive win thus far this season under their belt with that season-opening 38-6 whupping of Boise State. Imitation is the most sincere form of flattery, so the Ducks should be tickled pink with Barkin' Sark's decision to take Washington uptempo. Keith Price is off to a great start, and "Bishop Sankey or De'Anthony Thomas?" could be the new "Chris Polk or LaMichael James?". This being the last game before Oregon's unbeaten streak vs. the Huskies hits a decade, the Ducks will get Washington's best shot.
- UCLA - Oregon dropped 59 straight points on Tennessee last Saturday. UCLA went into Lincoln and put up 38 straight points against Nebraska in a 41-21 win. Sure, Nebraska's defense gave up 600 yards of offense to Wyoming, so scoring 41 points was an expectation rather than a surprise. But the Bruins are fast and talented, and Brett Hundley is one of the best quarterbacks in the country. If Jordon James can be a capable replacement for Johnathan Franklin, UCLA is a BCS-caliber team.
- Oregon State - Remember 65-38? I remember 65-38. That was fun, wasn't it? Well Oregon State's defense is terrible, so that could happen again. And don't you want to live in a world where every five years, Oregon hangs 60+ on the Beavers?
- Baylor - We may as well get a sneak peek of what's in store for Oregon after Mark Helfrich takes the New York Giants job, Scott Frost leaves to coach Nebraska, and Oregon hires Art Briles. Not that I'm actively and passionately advocating for this or anything. /applies glitter glue to "Big Balls Briles" sign.
- Texas A&M - Johnny Manziel and Marcus Mariota go to Panera bread. JFF snorts a line of Splenda, throws a scone between the middle-aged barista's cleavage, and pees in the bathroom sink. Mariota nervously paws at his blueberry muffin, wondering why he ever agreed to this in the first place. Somewhere on the other side of town, Mike Evans picks up his dry cleaning while Ifo Ekpre-Olomu watches from an unmarked van, learning everything he can.
- Clemson - Tajh Boyd took a long look at Oregon before deciding to head to Clemson. If there's one quarterback I might consider taking over Marcus Mariota to run the Oregon offense, it's Boyd. Plus, Sammy Watkins vs. Ifo and T-Mitch? Come on.
- Florida State - Jameis Winston's 2013 season thus far? 40-45, 570 yards, 6 TDs/1 INT. He's got a ton of targets to throw to; maybe this is the year the Seminoles DON'T lose to NC State or Maryland at home for no good reason. Hey, anything's possible.
- Georgia - Todd Gurley and Keith Marshall vs. Mariota, Momba, and crew? That game could see 1000 rushing yards. Plus, a very real chance The Duck ends up fighting UGA, which ends poorly because UGA is an actual dog with actual teeth, whereas The Duck is a man wearing a fuzzy suit with a limited field of vision and an awful smell.