Which Pac-12 Team Has the Best Chance to Beat Oregon?
There have been very few teams in the country that have been firing on all cylinders the way the Oregon Ducks have. The offense is as high-scoring as ever, averaging 51 points a contest, while the defense has been seriously underrated and has held six of the first seven opponents to under 30 points.
Due to the impressive play on both sides of the ball, the Ducks aren't only ranked fourth in the latest BCS rankings, but are also the favorites to win the Pac-12 and possibly reach the BCS National Championship.
However, before we jump the gun, Oregon still has five regular season games on the schedule, a few which could be a little trickier than expected. Three of the remaining five games happen to be against ranked teams that are also battling for position to reach a BCS bowl.
With the season quickly winding down, here are the odds each remaining team can knock off the Oregon Ducks in 2012.
5. Vs. Colorado
Date: October 27
Why Oregon Should Be Worried: If the entire starting roster catches the flu and is confined to bed rest. If a meteorite the size of a school bus fell on top of Autzen Stadium and forced the team to relocate at the last minute.
Why Oregon Will Win: Seriously, there is no chance the Ducks lose this game. Not only has Chip Kelly and company had extra time to prepare, but the Buffaloes are by far one of the worst teams in the country. The team can't score and allowed 69 points to Fresno State earlier in the year. This matchup will get ugly very quickly.
Odds Ducks Lose: 5%
4. At California
Date: November 10
Why Oregon Should Be Worried: Six of the last nine meetings have been decided by 10 points or less. Cal has a defense that has forced 17 turnovers and an offense led by quarterback Zach Maynard and receiver Keenan Allen that is capable of putting up points in a hurry. After all, the Golden Bears did take Ohio State down to the wire and knocked off UCLA earlier in the month.
Why Oregon Will Win: Although Cal has a lot of offensive potential, the offense is ranked 80th in the country in scoring. And while the defense has done a good job of forcing turnovers, the offense has coughed the ball up 16 times. The Ducks' defense should also be drooling over this game, as Cal has allowed 32 sacks on the year, which happens to be the most in college football.
Odds Ducks Lose: 15%
3. At Oregon State
Date: November 24
Why Oregon Should Be Worried: The Beavers have been the biggest surprise of the college football season. The defense is ranked 39th in the country, is allowing only 25 percent of opponents to convert on third down and has produced 12 interceptions. Let's also not forget that this is the Civil War and the Beavers will be looking to end a four-game losing streak to the Ducks.
Why Oregon Will Win: While the Beavers defense has been terrific, the unit hasn't quite faced an offense that is as fast or efficient as the Ducks. And while that will be a challenge, there may not be an offense that is as one dimensional as Oregon State's at the moment. The Beavers have absolutely no running game, which will make things difficult against a Ducks' defense that is the best we have seen in the Chip Kelly era.
Odds Ducks Lose: 30%
2. Vs. Stanford
Date: November 17
Why Oregon Should Be Worried: Stanford has shown to play tough teams close, as the Cardinal upset USC and took Notre Dame into overtime before losing on a controversial call. Stanford doesn't have the offensive weapons to win this game in a shootout, but it does have a defense that is physical and makes a bunch of plays in the backfield. Stepfan Taylor will also probably be the best running back this Oregon defense will face all season.
Why Oregon Will Win: Oregon was able to win the last two meetings against Stanford and that's when Andrew Luck was still playing. The defense of the Cardinals is physical and can make plays, but it isn't fast enough to keep up with the playmakers on the Ducks' offense. It's coming to the point that if you aren't a defense in the SEC, you almost have no shot at slowing down this unit.
Odds Ducks Lose: 35%
1. At USC
Date: November 3
Why Oregon Should Be Worried: If there is one team in the country that can keep up with Oregon scoring-wise, it is certainly the USC Trojans. With quarterback Matt Barkley and all of the weapons he has around him, stopping this team can be just as hard as game-planning for the Ducks. USC also has a defense that leads the Pac-12 with 22 forced turnovers and has only allowed nine touchdowns on 23 red zone trips.
Why Oregon Will Win: Despite all of the offensive firepower, the Trojans haven't been clicking the way the Ducks have throughout the year. There have been four games where they have turned the ball over at least two times and have allowed subpar opponents to hang around far too long. While Oregon seems to have developed an identity, USC seems to be struggling to find themselves seven games into the season.
Odds Ducks Lose: 50%