In each of the last three years, the Oregon Ducks have been one of the NCAA leaders in total offense and scoring offense, and with most of the offense returning this year, that trend doesn’t seem to be changing. Yahoo! Sports Radio’s John Harris joined Chad on the MSP Tuesday to discuss what makes Oregon’s offense one of the best attacks in all of college football.
Harris insists that he is enamored by both Chip Kelly and the Oregon offense. People often credit Oregon and its head coach for the creativity of the offense. Harris maintains that aside from a few trick plays here and there, the offense really isn’t all that creative or complex, it is just run with total precision.
Harris says his biggest marvel at the offense comes by way of the team’s execution on inside runs. People talk about how if players like Huff, Barner or De’Anthony Thomas, get to the outside they are gone. However, He insists that it’s their inside runs that often go for 20-plus yards per carry.
He draws on the examples of Thomas’ performance in the Rose Bowl versus Wisconsin and LaMichael James’ performances in 2010 and 2011 to make that claim. In each of those games, the Ducks were able to exploit their competition by creating favorable matchups in numbers that created great opportunities.
The key component for the Ducks offense is of course the QB. Because the Ducks have a QB with speed, it means there is always the threat of the run, which means there is one less linebacker or defensive end used to defend the running backs. Matchups that would normally be one running back to two linebackers become one running back to one linebacker. Simple math tells us that’s a favorable matchup for the Ducks.
Harris asserts that these matchups were exploited perfectly in the games versus Stanford and Wisconsin. They didn’t make any spectacular adjustments; they just put themselves in one on matchups with specific plays and alignments. And with the great athletes that Oregon has, they are going to win those matchups more times than they will lose them. In essence, more favorable matchups will yield more first downs, which will yield more touchdowns, which will yield more wins.
Take a listen as Harris breaks down the Ducks offense and gives a tip for how teams may attempt to stop them. And if you would like to see the full breakdown, you can take a look at the article here