What does Oregon get because of its troubles following a reduction a week at home against Stanford? : A road game against a much better variant of this Cardinal.
The Ducks play in No. 11 Utah Saturday in Salt Lake City, Utah, and on newspaper have zero chance to win, or perhaps remain close. So much so that the 14-point spread appears to be an insult to Utah by about ten points.
Oregon (3-7, 1-6 Pac-12) will roll into Utah (8-2, 5-2) with all the second-worst rushing defense in the Pac-12 in 255.4 yards allowed per game to confront the hottest rushing attack in the seminar.
“Same thing as last week, really,” Oregon defensive coordinator Brady Hoke said. “You have got to stop the run. There is no doubt about it”
Oregon hasn’t stopped the run . Not against UC Davis and Virginia in what seems like ions ago. Stanford’s Christian McCaffrey ran rampant last week, scoring three touchdowns as the Cardinal, owners of the worst crime in the conference, averaging 340 yards per game, place up 540 yards of total offense on the Ducks.
Utah, averaging 433.7 yards per game is much better on offense than Stanford thanks to the amazing performances of running back Joe Williams. He”retired” for four games to start the season just to be talked back into playing. Since his return, Williams has averaged 216 total yards and 156.5 yards rushing per game. He’s gained 939 racing yards on 7.0 yards per carry.
“He’s possibly the most explosive and also the fastest of any of the backs we’ve had here as far as a home run-type back that can extend the distance from anywhere on the field,” Utah head coach Kyle Whittingham told colleagues this week.
To make matters worse for Oregon, Williams runs behind a veteran offensive line.
“They’re bodily upfront,” Hoke said. “Quite senior-oriented offensive line together with three guys up there that have played a lot of football.”
The Ducks are the contrary with one senior starting on a young defense that has rotated through 14 defensive linemen this season.
“We had a fantastic week of training , same thing we did the week before,” Hoke said. “Our men have come out and struggled and been physical each time we go on the area.”
That intensity has not translated into powerful performances on game titles. Saturday will probably be no different.