Oregon football could have a difficult road ahead for the next season, but it is possible for them to be in the fight for their first conference title since 2001.
Citing last season, Oregon proved that they can upset big teams such as Michigan (Okay, possibly a bad example because of the Appalachian State incident, but it counts in my book), and USC at home.
Unfortunately they were plagued with injuries to Heisman Trophy contenders Dennis Dixon and Jonathon Stewart, who may have led them to the National Game if they had not been injured.
Hoping that injuries skip the Ducks in the coming season, the green and yellow soldiers should be able to contend if they win key road games at Purdue, USC, Cal, and, of course, the civil war.
In order for the Ducks' offense to match their defense, Steve Greatwood needs to be able to use the underclassmen quarterbacks effectively. This may end up being a repeat of the season when Dennis Dixon and Brady Leaf were alternating sets of downs.
Many devoted fans disagreed with this type of offense, but with three young men running the offense, this may be the most effective way of keeping defenses on their toes.
At the running back position, Jeremiah Johnson is returning from a season with an injury that placed him on the bench. Hopefully, he will be able to come off his bad luck, tear up the turf, shred records and move the Ducks to the top of the conference.
Defense in the Pac 10 is extremely vital, especially with huge offensive powers like USC. The majority of Oregon's defense, which was very strong, returns from last season.
Nick Aliotti runs a tight ship on defense, which should put more pressure on the opposing teams defense. This could help the young quarterbacks.
In the end it should be a great season for the Oregon Ducks, who have a young offense, a strong defense and a great coaching staff.
A new scoreboard on the west side of Autzen can't hurt either, we might even get new uniforms too from Uncle Phil, who knows? The Pac 10 title is up for grabs and Oregon should stay focused and keep their eye on the prize.