Washington Huskies vs Oregon Ducks: Complete Game Preview
The rivalry continues with the Washington Huskies (3-1) facing off against the Oregon Ducks (5-0) at Autzen Stadium.
The game will be the second consecutive game against a team from Washington for the Ducks, and will be yet another indication of who is in the driver's seat for the Pac-12 North, and most likely the Pac-12 as a whole.
Who: Washington Huskies (3-1; O-1 A) at Oregon Ducks (5-0, 4-0 H)
When: Saturday, October 6, 2012 10:30 PM EDT
Where: Autzen Stadium in Eugene, OR
Radio: Sports USA with John Ahlers (pxp) and Gary Barnett (analyst). Oregon IMG with Jerry Allen (pxp) and Mike Jorgensen (analyst). Sirius 139, XM 194.
Oregon Offensive Depth Chart
Wide Receiver: Daryle Hawkins (Bralon Addison)
Left Tackle: Tyler Johnstone (Kyle Long)
Left Guard: Ryan Clanton (Mana Greig)
Center: Hroniss Grasu (Karrington Armstrong)
Right Guard: Nick Cody (Hamani Stevens)
Right Tackle: Jake Fisher (Everett Benyard III)
Tight End: Colt Lyerla/Koa Ka'ai (Pharaoh Brown/T.J. Daniel/Koa Ka'ai)
Wide Receiver: Josh Huff (Eric Dungy)
Wide Receiver: Keanon Lowe (B.J. Kelley)
Quarterback: Marcus Mariota (Bryan Bennett)
Running Back: Kenjon Barner (De'Anthony Thomas)
Washington Offensive Depth Chart
Wide Receiver: Kasen Williams (Cody Bruns)
Left Tackle: Micah Hatchie (Dexter Charles)
Left Guard: Dexter Charles (Siosifia Tufunga)
Center: Drew Schaefer (Siosifia Tufunga)
Right Guard: James Atoe OR Shane Brostek
Right Tackle: Mike Cristie OR Ben Riva
Tight End: Austin Seferian-Jenkins (Michael Hartvigson)
Wide Receiver: Jaydon Mickens OR Kevin Smith
Wide Receiver: DiAndre Campbell (Marvin Hall)
Quarterback: Keith Price (Derrick Brown)
Running Back: Bishop Dankey (Kendyl Taylor)
Oregon Defensive Depth Chart
Defensive End: Taylor Hart (Arik Armstead)
Defensive Tackle: Isaac Remington (DeForest Buckner)
Defensive Tackle: Wade Keliikipi (Ricky Heimuli)
Defensive End: Dion Jordan (Tony Washington)
Middle Linebacker: Kiko Alonso (Rahim Cassell)
Weakside Linebacker: Michael Clay (Derrick Malone)
Strong Linebacker: Boseko Lokombo (Tyson Coleman)
Cornerback: Terrance Mitchell (Dior Mathis)
Free Safety: Avery Patterson (Erick Dargan)
Strong Safety: Brian Jackson (Erick Dargan)
Cornerback: Ifo Edpre-Olomu (Troy Hill)
Washington Defensive Depth Chart
Defensive End: Talia Crichton (Pio Vatuvei)
Nose Tackle: Danny Shelton (Semisi Tokolahi)
Defensive End: Andrew Hudson (Josh Banks)
Outside Linebacker: Travis Feeney (Princeton Fuimaono)
Inside Linebacker: John Timu (Thomas Tutogi)
Outside Lincebacker: Princeton Fuimaono (Taz Stevenson)
Nickleback: Shaq Thompson (Nate Fellner)
Strong Safety: Will Shamburger OR Justin Glenn
Free Safety: Sean Parker (Anthony Gobern)
Cornerback: Desmond Trufant (Marcus Peters)
Cornerback: Tre Watson (Gregory Ducre)
What Happened to the Ducks Last Week?
In their first divisional and road game, Oregon won handily against Washington State in Seattle, but boy was it hard to watch at times.
The offensive line and secondary struggled, while Marcus Mariota threw two interceptions, bringing his confidence and poise down to an all-time low.
On the bright side, however, the defensive line sacked Connor Halliday seven times, and Kenjon Barner rushed for his second 190-yard effort of the season.
With the win, Oregon held onto the No. 2 ranking according to the AP Poll. But the Ducks are still far behind No. 1 Alabama, who are the unanimous No.1 team in the nation at this point.
What Happened to Washington Last Week?
Boy was last week exciting for the Huskies.
In their first Pac-12 contest of the season, Washington used a late rally engineered by quarterback Keith Price and solidified by Desmond Trufant and the rest of the defense, to knock off No. 8 Stanford, just two weeks off their upset against USC.
Washington couldn't be hotter right now, yet for some reason they were only placed at No. 23 in the polls.
Look for UW to have a chip on their shoulder coming into Autzen.
What Does This Game Mean for Both Teams?
For the Ducks, the timing could not be better.
Facing a ranked opponent fresh off an upset victory, at home, with the No. 1 team on bye, gives Oregon the perfect opportunity to possibly jump to No. 1 in the nation.
If the Ducks win like they did against Arizona, it will be very hard for the voters not to show Eugene some love.
If the Huskies win, that's two straight wins against Top 10 teams, including one on the road against the No. 2 team in the nation.
Could you imagine how far Steve Sarkisian and Co. would jump up the polls if that happened?
If the Huskies lose, they are just a game over .500 and will definitely drop out of the polls.
Washington has far more on the line this week than Oregon does.
Key Player for Oregon: Ifo Ekpre-Olomu
Only one quarterback in the Pac-12 has more experience than Keith Price.
Price is one of the most underrated players in the country, and could have a very solid performance against the Ducks.
Not if Ifo Ekpre-Olomu has anything to say about it.
The sophomore cornerback is ranked in the Top 15 in the nation in pass break-ups, and has two interceptions on the season, including one returned for a touchdown against Arizona.
He's going to be a difference maker this week.
Key Player for Washington: Desmond Trufant
The defense is getting some love this week.
Trufant is one of the major reasons why Washington was able to rally late in the game and upset Stanford last week.
Trufant has become one of the premier shut down corners in the nation and is going to have to find a way to shut down Oregon's potent offense if the Huskies want a chance of winning.
Oregon Will Win If...
...they can get a lot of points on the scoreboard.
Washington is a tough team no matter how good Oregon is, which means the Ducks can't get off to a slow start as they have in the past two weeks.
If the Ducks are up by three scores at halftime, it doesn't matter how good of a rally the Huskies get going, they'll be too far in the hole.
Washington Will Win If...
...they can force turnovers.
One can not simply stop Oregon's offense. (SEC teams not included in that statement.)
The only way to keep Oregon from victory is to take away possessions with turnovers, and actually do something with those turnovers by putting points up on the board.
If Washington can intercept Mariota, or continue to give De'Anthony Thomas fumble problems, then they have a shot at victory.
Oregon- 59, Washington- 23
Oregon's speed on offense is just going to be too much for the Huskies' defense to overcome.
Mariota will be back to the form we have come accustomed to seeing, and the backfield duo of Barner and Thomas will run wild over Washington.
Keith Price will have a solid outing, but the physicality of the Ducks front seven (funny to say Oregon is a physical team) will pressure him all night.
Stanford and Oregon State are the only opponents left standing in the way of Oregon making it to the Pac-12 Title Game.