Go ahead and knock on wood Ducks fans, but something just feels right.
The Ducks have arrived at “The Granddaddy of Them All” and are set to compete against the reigning National Champions on the big Inaugural College Football Playoff stage. This is big. One more win and the Ducks are once again, Natty bound.
For Duck fans (and sportswriters), the stage is perfectly set.
Fair or unfair, if this were a fairytale, Florida State might as well be the wicked step-mother to Oregon’s Cinderalla. Florida State brings to town it’s controversial, yet successful, Heisman recipient quarterback, Jameis Winston. With his colorful and often times disrespectful, off-the-field antics, he is in many ways the player much of the football world loves to dislike. Meanwhile, Marcus Mariota, Oregon’s first ever Heisman winner and college football golden boy, serves as America’s newest quarterback heart-throb. From his weekly volunteering at the local Boys and Girls Club to giving his daily post-practice snack to the homeless, Mariota has won the heart of college football. His only possible perceived “downfall” ? He might be a little too nice. Oh, and he got a speeding ticket. Once.
At least for this moment, it seems a nation of college football fans would like nothing more than to see Mariota and Co. find the glass slipper and silence the wicked step-mother.
And in Duck Territory that glass slipper is so close fans can taste it.
In what should be a week full of anxiety, questions and “what if” scenarios, it seems confidence in an Oregon victory is at an all-time high. And why shouldn’t it be? These Ducks have battled through adversity all season long and emerged victorious. Set aside one loss, things have just fallen into place for the Ducks. When the fight seemed to be over after that miserable Wildcat defeat, their Hawaiian-born leader carried them to safety on his back. In his own moments of struggle, his bodyguards and the “D-boyz” won the day.
These Ducks have been tediously focused on one game at a time and they’ve steadily matured and improved throughout the season. This isn’t a team that has gotten lucky. They’ve simply been disciplined, covered for each other, and bought into the Oregon system. Quite frankly, they’ve shown the nation what a true football team should look like- both inside and out.
So yes, this time, this season, something just feels right. It feels as if that fairytale ending and Oregon’s glass slipper is just two page turns away.