Fiesta Bowl 2013: High-Powered Offense Will Lead Oregon to Another BCS Bowl Win
Chip Kelly has achieved a lot at Oregon since becoming the school's head football coach in 2007, and if Thursday night's Fiesta Bowl game against Big 12 champion Kansas State is his final game with the Ducks, you can bet his players will do everything they can to ensure his career ends with a "W."
According to Mike Garafolo of USA Today (h/t Ian Rapoport of NFL.com), a few NFL teams have interest in Kelly for next season, so it's certainly possible that this could be his final game in college football for a while.
As for this matchup, the Wildcats will have a lot of trouble slowing down arguably the best offense in the entire nation.
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The Ducks offense ranks second among all Division 1 teams with 50.8 points scored per game and have America's second best running attack with an average of 323.3 rushing yards per game.
Oregon scored less than 40 points just once this season, and that was in there only loss to a talented Stanford team that won the Rose Bowl versus Wisconsin a few days ago.
Kansas State's defense isn't anywhere close to Stanford's and won't be able to prevent the Ducks from scoring 50-plus points in a game for the eighth time this year.
The Wildcats' defense did not play well against the top two offenses (based on PPG) it faced this season. Kansas State gave up 30 points and 504 yards to Oklahoma State (third highest scoring offense) in a 44-30 victory in early November.
When Kansas State played the Baylor Bears two weeks later, who rank fourth in the nation in scoring, its defense played terribly, allowing 52 points and an astounding 580 yards of offense in a 52-24 loss.
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Against the best offense they will play all year, the Wildcats are in big trouble in the Fiesta Bowl. Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota racked up over 3000 combined passing and rushing yards along with 34 total touchdowns and is one of the nation's most exciting players.
His athleticism is fantastic, and he will not find it challenging to score points and convert on third down versus the Kansas State defense.
The Wildcats tied for 33rd in the country in sacks this season and have not dominated the line of scrimmage this year. If they do not put pressure on Mariota, Kansas State will be unable to win.
Oregon's high-scoring offense will not be stopped in the Fiesta Bowl, and the Ducks will win easily to achieve the school's third BCS bowl victory since 2000.
Whether or not this is Kelly's final game with Oregon, the Ducks' remarkable 2012 season will have a happy ending on Thursday night.
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