Vegas Bowl coming up today, and I'm not sure what exactly to think about this game. Oregon clearly has better athletes. Problem is that they haven't been able to put it all together in quite a while now. They looked like they were going to pull out the Civil War, but then bad kicking cost them the game. Will we see the same Oregon team that came out in the fourth quarter of the Civil War? Or the mess that looked pathetically bad against Arizona?
Certainly, BYU comes into this game with the better resume. BYU won the Mountain West title. They are ranked #20 in the nation. They have #1 scoring offense (36.7) and the #2 scoring defense (15.2) in the MWC. They also haven't lost a game since September. In fact, few of those games have even been close. BYU is on a tear, and is probably the favorite to win this game. Lets break it all down:
If Brady Leaf plays the way he did in the Civil War, its more even than you think. If he plays like Dennis Dixon, or Dennis Dixon plays like Dennis Dixon, then oh, shit.
I'd go over the defensive breakdowns, but I find such a task tedious and boring. I don't care if one teams corners are taller than the other, and most defensive stats are misleading. Aaron Gipson led the nation in interceptions last season--was he really an elite cornerback?
The only stats I care about are scoring defense, and BYU is second in the MWC. Oregon couldn't stop my mother from getting 100 rushing yards.
Is a new kicker on the roster? Do we have a new kick coverage corps? No?
BYU has the advantage in every category, so here's why I pick Oregon to win.
Some say that Oregon doesn't care about this game. Some say that they were never really that good this season. But the thing is they WERE that good, and just melted under the pressure. Guess what, the pressure is gone. Duck fans have moved onto basketball season. Nobody will be terribly outraged if Oregon loses this game. And that is why they will win. They will be loose and relaxed. That team that beat Oklahoma and blew out Arizona State will find itself again. Nobody expects them to be world beaters.
Oregon's players are more talented than BYU's. With the pressure off, they will play like it. Ducks win this one, and I'm not sure that its really that close. With no pressure on them, the Ducks win their first bowl game since the '02 Fiesta.
We all know that the Duckies play better as the underdog.
PREDICTION: OREGON 35, BYU 25
--Dave Update [2006-12-22 0:17:27 by Dave]: I was obviously wearing green and yellow glasses making such a ridiculous prediction. What the hell was I thinking? Maybe I should start making common sense predictions instead of being such a homer. This was an utterly embarassing game tonight.