A Busy Month for the Oregon Football Program, and Fans

Confetti blasts overhead on the stage during the Pac-12 Championship Ceremony

It’s feeling a bit like 2011 around the Oregon football program these days. Obviously, fans and players will be hoping for a different outcome, but the excitement is comparable with a few interesting twists. First, the front-runner for the Heisman trophy wears an Oregon Duck uniform, and second, the upcoming Rose Bowl game will be the opener in the new playoff era of college football.

In preparation, let’s take a quick peek at the nuts and bolts of the upcoming Oregon football events:

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Civil War 2014 – What Should Make You Nervous?

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Photo credit: Ryan Kang/Emerald

Photo credit: Ryan Kang/Emerald

Reser Stadium, Corvallis, Oregon
Saturday, November 29th

Kickoff: 5:00 p.m.
Media: ABC
Weather: Mid 40’s, 50% chance of rain
Vegas Says: Oregon -20
Game Color: Green

The Civil War consistently occurs at one of the most hectic times of year with Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and most importantly rivalry week in college football. It’s just one of a stacked schedule of games, many of which can affect the playoff picture for the Ducks going forward. Luckily for the Ducks, though, they appear to control their own destiny behind their seemingly destined-for-greatness quarterback, Marcus Mariota. So what, if anything, should make the Ducks nervous headed into this rivalry matchup?

First, the history of the Civil War is the ultimate equalizer in even the most lopsided matchups. The overall record is Ducks 61, Beavers 46, with the scales tipping heavily in the last forty years or so. But all bets are off in a rivalry [...]
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Relief Nursery Book Drive: Give a Little, Get a Lot

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Give a Little, Give a Lot


This holiday season, The Duck Store is hosting a book drive to benefit the Eugene/Springfield Relief Nursery. For each book donated at any of our Eugene stores, individuals will receive one raffle ticket for a gift basket full of locally made items and gift certificates to local restaurants and attractions.

Relief Nursery is a non-profit child abuse and neglect prevention agency proven to strengthen high-risk families and keep young children safe.  The Relief Nursery mostly needs books for ages 0-6, and books that are in Spanish or are bilingual are preferred. *

Please bring books beginning this Friday, November 28. The last day to donate is Sunday, December 21, with a winner chosen on Monday, December 22. We ask that books be new or gently used — please do not bring books with bent pages, scribbles, or any other damage. *

Items included in the local basket (valued at $450) include:

Getting Bromantic: What if This is Marcus Mariota’s Final Game at Autzen?

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Oregon Ducks quarterback Marcus Mariota (8) looks for an open receiver during the first quarter. The No. 9 Oregon Ducks play the University of Washington Huskies at Autzen Stadium in Eugene, Ore. on October 18, 2014. (Taylor Wilder/Emerald)

Photo Credit: Taylor Wilder/Emerald

I’m not that guy. You know, the go-getter Duck fan in your group who paid for ESPN Insider, frequents rivals.com, and gets recruiting updates in the form of push notifications. He can identify the breakout player 18 months before he breaks out. That guy consumes football like he eats Cracker Jacks — knowledgeable and appreciative of the harmonic nature by which crunchy, sweet molasses covered popcorn combine with peanuts and the perfect hint of saltiness. For the rest of us, watching college football and eating Cracker Jacks is all about the surprise, and Marcus Mariota turned out to be one heck of a toy at the bottom of the box.

On the field Marcus has amassed 9,122 passing yards and 1,991 rushing for a total of 114 touchdowns. He has led the Ducks to an overall record of 31-4, including resounding victories over Kansas State in the Fiesta Bowl, and Texas in the Alamo Bowl. The school records for passing in attempts, completions, yards, touchdowns, efficiency, average yards per pass, average yards per completion, and yards per game all belong to Marcus Mariota. Without a doubt he has cemented himself as the most prolific quarterback in Oregon history, and deserves every drop of Heisman consideration that he has received during the 2014 college football season.

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#MoDucks in Movember

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moducks

Every October, we can count on seeing pink everywhere for Breast Cancer Awareness month. We’d like to see the country embrace Movember the same way. 1 in 2 men will be diagnosed with cancer in his lifetime. Movember encourages men to shave their facial hair at the beginning of November (it’s never too late to join!) and grow out their moustache all month long as a physical symbol of supporting men’s cancer awareness, rather than wearing a color or ribbon.

While Movember supports many men’s health programs, a major focus is on prostate and testicular cancer. 1 in 7 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during his lifetime — my great uncle lost his battle with prostate cancer and my grandpa is a survivor. According to the American Cancer Society, “prostate cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in American men, behind only lung cancer. About 1 man in 36 will die of prostate cancer.”

To support Movember The Duck Store has created this Mo Ducks shirt, with $2 from the sale [...]
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Oregon Visits Utah, Gets Back To Front Running Ways

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Photo: Taylor Wilder/Emerald

Photo: Taylor Wilder/Emerald

Kickoff: 7:00 p.m.
Media: ESPN
Weather: Mid 40’s, dry
Vegas Says: Oregon -8
Game Color: Green

In this spread-offense era, the Ducks have mastered the art of blowing out their opponents whilst amassing gaudy stats on the offensive side of the football. In a phrase, they’re up there with the nation’s best “front runners.”

The scariest moments during this era have come when a defense is able to keep the Ducks from running up the score, and ultimately forcing them into a close game — “deep water,” as the Stanford Cardinal coined it a few years ago. For a team that is accustomed to coasting through the finish line, a close game can be a swift and shaky shock to the system, but these games can be expected over the course of a college football season. This year there was Michigan State for three quarters, Washington State, Arizona (ugh…), and to some degree UCLA; every other contest has been a merciless blowout, including the three most recent.

Having handed Stanford their Pac-12 North walking papers, a big win over #17 Utah would be just what the Ducks need to reestablish themselves as one of the nations most dominant contenders for the inaugural college football playoff. The Utes present the perfect challenge, and opportunity, for the Ducks to show that they’ve turned the corner at this juncture in the season. Kyle Whittingham has his guys playing some of the best defense in the Pac-12, only allowing an average of 21 points per game this season, and never more than 30. Their record is a more-than-respectable 6-2, with their two losses coming against two pass-happy programs — Washington State and Arizona State — by a combined 4 points.

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No longer Puddles or Donald, the Duck has a long history

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The Oregon Ducks Mascot

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Over the past few years, there has been much debate among fans about the University of Oregon’s mascot’s name. Donald, Puddles and The Duck are all thrown into the conversation, and while all are true for a point in time, The Duck has been the official name since 2010. Here is a brief history of Oregon’s loveable mascot.

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Oregon Hosts Stanford: Why it’s time for the Ducks to end Cardinal dominance

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Oregon Ducks tight end Pharaoh Brown (85) and wide receiver Darren Carrington (87) celebrate Brown's touchdown in the fourth quarter. The No. 2 Oregon Ducks play the California Golden Bears at Levi Stadium in Santa Clara, California on October 24, 2014. (Taylor Wilder/Emerald)

Photo Credit: Taylor Wilder/Emerald

Autzen Stadium
Saturday, November 1st

Kickoff: 4:30 p.m.
Media: Fox
Weather: Mid 50’s at Kickoff, 40% chance of rain
Vegas Says: Oregon -12.5
Game Color: Black

As usual, there’s a lot on the line in this installment of the growing rivalry between Oregon and Stanford. It’s been several years since there was anything less than national title hopes on the line for at least one of these teams (this year the Ducks fill that role), and the Pac-12 North is pretty much always up for grabs until this game has played out.

The story will be the same this year as it has been the last several years of Stanford’s dominance — bigger and stronger against smaller and faster — and I can’t imagine the game plan changing drastically for either team. Stanford will stack the box on offense and defense as they attempt to take away Oregon’s running game, and eat up oodles of clock with their own. Oregon will be looking to break through Stanford’s human wall for a few first downs, in order to tire out the big fellas, before they’re able to bounce a few outside for the big plays. If you’re watching at home you’ll probably hear the Fox commentators use the phrase, “get to the corner,” a million times, and it’ll either be regarding Oregon’s success in making the turn or Stanford yet again preventing the Oregon speedsters from getting there.

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Oregon Hosts Washington: A Rivalry, Despite Recent History

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Autzen Stadium
Saturday, October 18th

Kickoff: 5 p.m.
Media: Fox Sports 1
Weather: It never rains at Autzen Stadium… But you might get wet.
Vegas Says: Oregon -20.5
Game Color: Green

It’s been a decade of dominance for the Ducks against the rival Washington Huskies, and 20 years since the famed “Pick” by Kenny Wheaton. Since that play in 1994, the Ducks have won 15 of the last 19 matchups.

Interestingly, the heavy hand of the Ducks has been so overwhelming that the validity of the word “rival” has been a major topic of discussion among writers and analysts in the week leading up to the game. On Monday, Jon Canzano released a piece in the Oregonian suggesting that you would consider Oregon vs Washington a rivalry “Only if you’ve been in a coma,” while Addicted To Quack wishes you a happy “I hate Washington Week.”

Since there are clearly differing opinions on the matter, let me tell you where I stand: LET’S. GO. DUCKS!

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The Civil War Rivalry by Kerry Eggers

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The Civil War Rivalry between Oregon and Oregon State

Five-time winner of the Oregon Sportswriter of the Year Award Kerry Eggers tells a comprehensive account of one of the most memorable rivalries in college football in his book, The Civil War Rivalry: Oregon vs. Oregon State. Packed with history, heart and commitment, The Civil War Rivalry travels through the excursions of the heavily dedicated players, coaches and fans that have been rooted in the annual civil war battle since its 894 beginnings.

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