Know the Enemy 2022: Oregon Ducks Football
A dear friend answers our questions
We asked our friends over at the Quack 12 Podcast to answer some questions about the Huskies for us. Adam Chimeo graciously answered the call to be our interviewee!
Halfway through the season is when coaches and fans know what the team is. What is the 2022 Oregon football team?
The 2022 Oregon Ducks are a talented team led by transfer QB Bo Nix and a veteran offensive line that has kept the pocket clean as a whistle. A slew of running backs - most notably Bucky Irving, transfer running back from Minnesota - have been able to pick up good yards against every team we've played so far. OC Kenny Dillingham has revitalized this offense with dynamic playcalling that stacks well upon itself. That has allowed the Ducks' defense (the clear weak side of the field) to come into their own even while giving up a troubling amount of yardage and points.
If you were to play Georgia now, instead of at the beginning of the season, what do you think the final score would be? And as a follow-up, what's your prediction for a postseason bowl for the Ducks this season? Rose Bowl? Playoffs?
I think if we play them now, the score is flipped and we walk away with an easy 46-point win. Just kidding. I think Georgia still has the clear talent advantage, and if we're still playing at the "neutral" site in Atlanta then I believe we still lose by at least two touchdowns.
Still, Bo Nix and the Oregon offense have understandably improved greatly since that week one game with a new QB, OC, and head coach. I bet Oregon's offense would put up a much better showing than Nix's two-interception, zero-touchdown performance, unfortunately, I don't think this 2022 Duck defense will ever be ready for this Georgia team.
What do you expect the Lanning Ducks to look like in 1, 3, 5 years stylistically, same? Different? What are the program aspirations for 1, 3, 5 years from now?
As of right now, the recruiting has basically matched that of Mario Cristobal, so hopefully the talent level wont drop off. However, we have no idea how Lanning will be managing a roster, as opposed to just star chasing, because he's a brand new coach. And perhaps more importantly, we'll need to see how Lanning deals with replacing the inevitable staff turnover.
If everything went according to plan, Lanning should be able to replace outgoing talent with 4 and 5 stars, and outgoing assistants with exciting hires.
What were your expectations for Bo Nix coming into this season and how he's met or not met some of said expectation?
As a Duck fan, I was very concerned about us bringing in another transfer quarterback into the program. The floor was as low as one could imagine, especially if you were to talk to Auburn fans who watched Nix play for his life behind a bad o-line with the entire offense on his back. Luckily, we've gotten the best of Bo in Pac-12 play, thanks in large part to an o-line that has allowed just one sack thus far. Bo appears to be playing at his ceiling on a regular basis, here's hoping Cal doesn't change that.
Why do so many Oregon fans wear costumes to the game, well before Halloween? I've seen Batman Jokers and all sorts of other characters in the stands at Autzen
Even before weed was legalized in Eugene, it was basically legal.
Which player on offense should Cal fans know about?
The obvious answer is Bo Nix, as he has been playing mistake-free football and has looked like a legit Heisman contender, but the real player to watch out for is Bucky Irving, Oregon's transfer running back who has been blowing up opposing d-lines.
Which player on defense should Cal fans know about?
Oregon's pass-rush hasn't been as effective since the departure of Kayvon Thibodeaux, that being said, if Brandon Dorlus is able to get to Plummer then the Ducks are probably walking away with this thing.
Who’s one under-the-radar or X-factor player who could swing this game for you?
Kris Hutson has elite speed and has threatened deep touchdown receptions throughout his short career, I could imagine a distracted Cal defense letting him slip by for a couple scores. Also, every Duck tight end is a real threat in the red zone!
What does Oregon need to do to win the game?
Avoid turning over the ball while remaining aggressive on offense. Throwing to run could serve us well, as Cal has been able to prevent the big run this season, but Oregon could also pick up small chunks on the ground all the way to the end zone.
Cal's offense has struggled against not-bad defenses, so limiting the rare big play from Cal's offense could go a long way towards building a lead on the Golden Bears.
What does Cal need to do to win the game?
Shut down the run game. A seemingly simple task, but even Georgia wasn't necessarily able to accomplish it (not that they cared when they were up big.) The only thing that could rattle Bo, in my opinion, is if the safety net that is the run game was ripped away from him. Then, if the Oregon O stalls, the Duck D could crumble with the game on their shoulders.
How do you see the game going?
I see the Ducks winning big (sorry, write4Cal!) and using the second half of the game as bench practice. I think the Ducks score on almost every drive of the first half and muster under 25 points for the whole game.
Also, there are more Duck fans than Golden Bear fans in the stands.
Whom do you most want to punch in the face?
Kanye. But if we're talking Cal, then every ex-Duck on the Cal coaching staff for being a traitor.