So the rest of the season starts right now and it starts with USC's homecoming game against Oregon. Oregon has had some ups and downs this year as the look to take a victory from SC. Oregon is coming off a win against UW but that win was less than impressive to Coach Bellotti's standards.
RB Jonathan Stewart ran for 159 yards and 2 TD's on 25 carries. QB Dennis Dixon went 14 for 25 for 109 yards 0 TD and 2 INT. This team can play though they had a rough day against Cal and were then tripped up by WSU. They had a gift handed to them in the Oklahoma game but they made the most of that gift.
Oregon has a number of players from the Southern California area, 31 in fact, and these players will get a chance to play in front of some their hometown fans.
And it has been a long time coming. Oregon has not played at the Los Angeles Coliseum since 2000 -- before Pete Carroll became coach. Nobody on this roster has played there, at least not in a Ducks uniform.
Those 31 players will see plenty of familiar faces, to be sure, but the Coliseum will be just as different and perhaps as intimidating for them as it would be for anyone.
That's a lot of motivation to pull off a win. Oregon has had their chances in the past but this will probably be their best chance as SC continues to work on its game.
SC's defense needs to continue to get pressure on the QB and work to contain the UO ground game. They also need to be consistent on special teams and not allow any kick or punt returns to be turned into big plays as Patrick Chung did by returning a punt 59 yards for a TD. Dixon can also run the ball so the front seven needs to get pressure on him so that they can keep him from getting to the outside. I know it sounds like a broken record but the keeping to the basics wins you games.
SC's offense needs to have the same type game that they had early in the season. JDB needs to put the ball up and let his receivers do their magic. Chauncey Washington needs to continue to pound the ball up the middle. He has shown that he can drag defenders with for a few extra yards so expect to see a little more of him provided he can hang on to the ball. As for Gable and Moody, the sooner they adopt the same "pound the ball" attitude instead of cutback and juke the sooner they will be even more effective out of the backfield.
Now for the real big question what uniform combination will the Ducks come out of the tunnel wearing?