Analysis College football | Oregon Season 2021
Oregon Will Win Pac-12 North
MyBookie doesn’t currently have odds active to win individual divisions in college football conferences but Oregon will be the betting favorite to win the North as it is already the overall +240 favorite to win the Pac-12 title game. Barring major injury or COVID issues, I do believe the Ducks are the best team in the North.
The Associated Press Preseason Top 25 was released on Monday and Oregon was ranked 12th. It marks the third straight season under head coach Mario Cristobal that Oregon has opened in the top 15 of the coaches poll. The Ducks are the highest ranked team in the Pac-12, with USC two spots behind at No. 14 and Washington coming in at No. 21. Utah, Arizona State, UCLA, Stanford and California also received votes.
Ten members of the Oregon football team received preseason all-Pac-12 honors in a vote of the conference’s media. Defensive end Kayvon Thibodeaux was the lone unanimous first-team all-conference selection, and he was joined on the first team by center Alex Forsyth and cornerback Mykael Wright.
Thibodeaux could be the first overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft. He was once the No. 1-ranked overall high school recruit.
The Ducks will have a rematch with USC in the Pac-12 title game. Oregon won it last year, 31-24, in an upset. It was the school’s sixth Pac-12 championship in 12 years and its record fourth championship game victory.
Anthony Brown Will Eventually Lose QB Job
Boston College transfer Anthony Brown will open the season as the Oregon starting QB, but we think it’s only a matter of time before freshman Jay Butterfield or fellow freshman Ty Thompson takes the reins.
Brown appeared in Oregon’s final two games of the pandemic-shortened 2020 season, helping the Ducks defeat USC to secure a second straight Pac-12 title before seeing extended action in the Fiesta Bowl against Iowa State. He finished the year 15-of-23 passing for 164 yards and two touchdowns while rushing seven times for 40 yards and a pair of scores.
Brown had to sit out the majority of last season as Tyler Shough originally beat him out for the job, even though Brown was dealt a short hand by not having much of fall camp to prepare for year one of Joe Moorhead’s offense. Shough transferred this offseason to Texas Tech. When Brown enrolled at Boston College in 2016, none of Oregon’s other quarterbacks even had a drivers’ license yet.
Butterfield redshirted in 2020 but was the nation’s No. 5 pro-style QB recruit in 2020 according to 247Sports. “
I feel like my game is definitely a little different from the other guys,” he said of Oregon’s current QB room. “They’re a little faster and more athletic and I’m more of the sit back in the pocket, maybe take the couple yards if I can get them. But I’m looking to sit in the pocket and try to find the open receiver.”
His last name may be familiar to longtime Oregon fans as Jay’s father, Mark Butterfield, played at Stanford from 1992-1995, throwing for 2,533 passing yards, 19 touchdown passes and 9 interceptions on a 58.3% completion rate as a senior.
Thompson was a five-star recruit and No. 9 player in the country by Rivals. He became the first five-star quarterback ever to sign with Oregon.
Oregon Will Lose Week 2 … Maybe Not Again
While it’s very possible the Ducks run the table in the Pac-12, they are not winning on Sept. 11 at No. 4 Ohio State – but one loss isn’t necessarily a playoff killer as long as it’s competitive. The teams were supposed to player last year but it was canceled as leagues only played in-conference games.
The Buckeyes haven’t lost a regular-season game under head coach Ryan Day. They really haven’t even been challenged. He’s officially 23-2 overall with his only losses coming to Clemson and Alabama in bowl season. The last time Ohio State played Oregon, the Buckeyes beat the Ducks for the 2014 National Championship.
Ohio State is 9-0 all-time against Oregon since 1958, the biggest win coming in 1967, a 30-0 win. The two schools are already scheduled to play each other again in 2032 and 2033.
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