Oregon Football: 5 Ducks Who Will Keep the Team Elite in 2012
This past football season the Oregon Ducks lost a lot of the key pieces to the success of their football team over the past few years. The good news is that they have a bench that is deep enough to replace the big losses (Darron Thomas, LaMichael James).
The depth on their bench will enable them to remain one of the elite teams in college football for the 2012 season.
Now that Darron Thomas has left the University of Oregon, Bryan Bennett is expected to be the next starting quarterback for Oregon next season.
When Thomas was hurt last season the fans were able to grab a small taste of what Bennett brings to the team: more speed.
Not only did Bennett pass for 369 yards in his very limited playing time, but he rushed for another 200 yards, averaging 8.7 yards per attempt.
His run-first mentality and great speed will be huge in keeping the Ducks an elite team in 2012.
De’Anthony Thomas/Kenjon Barner
Another big hole that the Ducks will desperately need to fill is the one that LaMichael James used to blast through on the field.
With the combination of De’Anthony Thomas and Kenjon Barner, the Ducks should be able to make up the 1,805 rushing yards James had and then some.
The modified running game that Thomas brings to the table will enable yards on the ground and air to come easily.
Josh Huff will need to turn it on this year and become one of the top receivers on the Ducks squad and in the Pac-12 to help the passing game.
In order for the Ducks running game to be most effective, especially against the better defenses of the Pac-12, Bennett and Huff will need to hook up for some big plays. Last year Huff caught a total of 31 passes for 431 yards. He will need to improve on that to become elite.
The offense will more than likely be fine, but the Duck defense will need to step up big time in order for Oregon to pull out some of the big wins.
People like Troy Hill will need to study their books. If Hill can lock down on his men, Oregon will have no problem remaining an elite team and beating the big names of college football.