Well Duck fans, we’ve finally arrived. After a month long hiatus from Duck football, we all get to watch our team return to the field tomorrow as they face the Texas Longhorns in the 2013 Alamo Bowl.
If you’re like me, the break from Oregon football has allowed me to catch up the other important things in life like Christmas, family time, and you know. . .sleeping. So as much as I hate to admit it, I fell a little out of the loop. Don’t worry, I’m back just in time to inspire you us all to get back in the game!
Dueling Coach Farewells
Perhaps the biggest story line coming into this game is that each team will have a coach ending their tenure at the Alamo Bowl. Texas wins the battle of the hype with tomorrow’s farewell to Head Coach, Mac Brown, but Oregon will also be sending off a beloved veteran of their own in Defensive Coordinator, Nick Aliotti. In a game that many Duck fans may have considered a little lack-luster, these coaching announcements have added a little pizazz as each team now has even more to play for. There’s little doubt each will be full of emotion and determination, hoping to send their leaders off on a winning note. Will the emotion from a lopsided crowd in favor of Texas in addition to playing a final game for Mac be enough to give the Longhorns an edge, or will a Duck defense that has struggled against the run lately find that extra fire to get the job done? Tune in to find out. #TeamAliotti
A Nearly 100% Marcus Mariota
Oregon Offensive Coordinator, Scott Frost, has now admitted Mariota has been struggling through a partially torn MCL. Can anyone say warrior? I suppose that wasn’t too much of a surprise to most, but it does validate what most thought might be causing that painfully cold November rain.
With several weeks to recoup, it appears Mariota may be on the upswing, especially after flaunting a brace-free knee during practice this week. Oh how we’ve missed our flawless Hawailian flock leader. If Mariota truly is even close to 100%, Mac brown may be leaving the Alamo on a sour note.
DAT’s Last Game. . .Maybe
For months, many have speculated this might be De’Anthony Thomas’ last season as a Duck as he is expected to enter the NFL Draft. No one but DAT knows for sure what the decision will be, but if I was a betting woman, I’d say this will be the last time the Black Mamba strikes for Oregon. I’d also bet that will mean we’ll see quite a show from him tomorrow as he looks to further his draft stock. What better stage than an Oregon vs. Texas showdown?
Josh Huff Revenge
At this point, most have probably heard our super-stud receiver, Josh Huff, was indeed snubbed by his home state University, The University of Texas. Yes, I know, it was definitely their loss and I have a sneaky suspicion Huff will gladly look to prove that tomorrow. If ever there was inspiration for him to step up his already-stellar game, this would be it. Watch for leaps, hurdles and oh yeah…touchdowns too. Get ready to eat your hearts out Longhorns.
If the above four reasons fail to perk your interest, just remember This. Is. Texas. Longhorn Football may not currently be living up to it’s historic football dynasty association, but make no mistake, this is big boy football and those big boys will definitely bring their A game, just like every other opponent the Ducks have played this season. Get ready for an amped up battle between speed and well . . . BIG.
Whether you’re in San Antonio, Eugene or any other city, find your Duck gear and throw up your O’s. It’s almost game day!
follow me on Twitter @UOgridirongirl