Oregon head football coach Chip Kelly is considered one of the best offensive minds in college football. The Ducks have won at least ten games in the last four seasons and most, if not all, credit should be given to their ability to score points. The formula has been the same since Kelly took over the program: speed. Whether it be the speed at which the Ducks call plays on offense or the speed at which players like LaGarettee Blount, LaMichael James, and De’Anthony Thomas have run through opposing defenses, teams have tried and failed to keep up with Oregon. Kelly’s teams have consistently been ranked in the top ten as of late, but one achievement has eluded the Ducks–a BCS bowl victory. Last year they lost to Auburn in the national championship game and the year prior they lost to Ohio State in the Rose Bowl. While both games were competitive (they lost by a combined total of 12 points in those two games) the fact of the matter is that the Ducks have ended their season with a loss in two consecutive seasons. Assuming Oregon beats UCLA in the Pac-12 championship game this Friday–a safe bet considering that the Ducks are favored by 30.5 points–they would face the winner of the Big Ten championship game in the Rose Bowl. ESPN’s Ted Miller had this to say:
At this point, I would pick the Ducks to beat either Wisconsin or Michigan State in the Rose Bowl (I suspect they’d pound the Spartans; Wisconsin would be a much tougher test). And Oregon needs a victory in a BCS bowl game to earn national validation.
For the full article, click here.
An Oregon win in a BCS game would not only earn the Ducks national validation, it would earn the Pac-12 conference much respect. Even the narcissistic fans of the SEC would not be able to ignore Oregon as a legitimate powerhouse if they were to win the Rose Bowl. A victory could also make a difference in how the Ducks would be ranked in next season’s preseason poll. Given the nature of college football and the BCS ranking system, a preseason ranking in the top five as opposed to the top twelve could make a huge difference.