There is a reason the Oregon Ducks are able to bring in some of the best athletes in the country year after year to restock their program; it's the offense the team runs. Seldom will opposing defenses see a standard shotgun formation or I-Form under center. Instead, they see receivers running all over the field, tight ends lining up along the sidelines, and quarterbacks in the slot-formation.
It's not even close to being standard, safe, or boring, and as Greg Hansen of the Arizona Daily Star tells us, the offense is 'sexy' and puts people in the stands:
Arizona couldn't sell 8,000 seats last week to watch the nation's most acclaimed college quarterback and a top-10 team on a 15-1 streak. That's because Stanford is smart, not sexy.
But when UA director of athletics Greg Byrne left work Thursday, the Wildcats were 300 tickets shy of a sellout for Saturday's Oregon game. That's because the Ducks aren't just sexy, they're sizzling. They're a Tom Cruise-Cameron Diaz, driving-a-motorcycle-off-a-cliff movie.
All hollywood-to-football-field references aside, there is no denying Oregon runs a wild and wacky offense. Though as Hansen tell us, they do it in a way not everyone expects:
When you buy a ticket to watch Oregon play football, you think you'll see (a) triple-reverses with a fullback throwing a 73-yard pass to a tight end; (b) fake punts, onside kicks and other football chicanery; and (c) an NCAA record for most passing yards, total yards and yards after the catch.
But do you know what Oregon does more (and better) than anyone in the Pac-12? This will come as a shock: It runs the football.
And they run the football well. The Ducks have led the conference in rushing the last four seasons and they are doing so once again. Oregon currently ranks sixth in the nation in rushing -- although two of their three games came against poor competition -- and they excel at making the correct reads to find the holes in the defense.
After being gashed by Stepfan Taylor (Stanford) and Joseph Randle (Oklahoma State) in the last two weeks, Arizona has to slow down the Ducks rushing attack if they hope to have any chance at pulling the upset on Saturday evening. It will be a tall task for the 'Cats young defense, but they might just be able to do it.
A Near Sellout:
As briefly mentioned above, the game will be sold out by the time of kickoff, but those looking for seats will need to act quickly. Athletic director Greg Byrne tweeted earlier today just 300 single-seat tickets remain. Also, if you will be in attendance for the game, be sure to check out Arizona Stadium's plan for the nationally televised event.
For more UA coverage, check out AZ Desert Swarm.