It’s halftime in Tucson and Arizona leads Oregon 28-9. Say What? Oregon was favored by at least 2 touchdowns and all the signs, including a very less-than-packed stadium, pointed to an expected Oregon win. Obviously, there’s a whole of game left, but things just aren’t going Oregon’s way. So what’s going on?
Arizona came to play.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Every team that plays Oregon this season will bring it’s A game. Most have given the Ducks a run for their money, or at least held their own for the first half of the game, before losing momentum in the second half, allowing the Ducks to rally for the win. The score is a bit more lop-sided than the Ducks would like to see at half time, but they are a second half team and momentum should shift soon. Keep the faith.
Oregon Defense is struggling.
It doesn’t take a football analyst to see Oregon is having a tough times defending both the pass and the rush, allowing the Wildcats plenty of opportunity to lick their paws. Arizona has clearly studied some film and are outplaying both the line and the secondary. Here’s what the cats need to worry about though: Nick Aliotti halftime adjustments.
Oregon Offense is Struggling.
Mariota has been able to complete some passes through the air, but most have been fairly short. Additionally, the run game isn’t as solid as it could be. With neither game being solid, and Mariota not being 100%,the Ducks’ typical up-tempo offense isn’t up-tempoing (yep, I made that word up).
The important “STATS”.
Statistically, Oregon and Arizona’s rush and pass yards are pretty close. What isn’t close is the third down conversions (making a first down on the 3rd try) and Penalties (Oregon has 4, costing them 30 total yards while Arizona has 1, costing them just 5). Basically, Arizona has been able to keep the ball moving, while Oregon hasn’t. Oregon has also shot themselves in the foot in crucial times equaling missed scoring opportunities.
Don’t give up hope. Mariota and Co. generally find a way. And even if they don’t, just remember if we made it through a Stanford loss, we can make it through this.