Duck Stops Here is a fan blog devoted to opinions, commentary and analysis of Duck football. The opinions expressed are entirely mine. We welcome reader feedback, positive or critical. You can reach me by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
@DryDuckin SB That WAS a great game, a classic.
14 hours, 37 minutes ago on Conversation @ http://duckstopshere.com/uncategorized/unbreak-my-heart-marcus-mariotas-surprise-january-decision-meant-the-world-to-the-ducks.html
@zduckfan @DryDuckin SB I live in Beaverton, by the way, and usually watch games at home. No way I'd be happy if they lost 66-0.
@Mik Moc Tod 9445 passing yards, 95 TDs, 12 interceptions. Over 2064 yards rushing, 23 more TDs. 33-4 as a starter. Two-time all-conference player, school leader in every major passing category. Has a 185.2 passer rating as a junior, 171.5 for his career. 6' 4" tall, runs a 4.5 40 and delivers bottles of water and energy bars to homeless people at the crossroads near the training facility. The young men who are competing to replace him are good athletes, but Mariota is a once-in-a-lifetime player. Fortunately for Duck fans, Royce Freeman is only a freshman.
14 hours, 40 minutes ago on Conversation @ http://duckstopshere.com/uncategorized/unbreak-my-heart-marcus-mariotas-surprise-january-decision-meant-the-world-to-the-ducks.html
@Ducko30 @zduckfan The Ducks have had success and a high-output offense with a variety of styles and skillsets at quarterback since adopting the spread: Clemens, Dixon, Masoli, Thomas and Mariota. The next qb is likely to be effective also, simply because of the weapons around him. It isn't likely they'll be as singularly brilliant as Marcus Mariota, but they can win.
14 hours, 49 minutes ago on Conversation @ http://duckstopshere.com/uncategorized/unbreak-my-heart-marcus-mariotas-surprise-january-decision-meant-the-world-to-the-ducks.html
@zduckfan I really don't think Oregon fans will ever say that about Mariota. Scott Frost said a couple of weeks ago that his gifted quarterback had learned everything he could at the college level and it was time for him to move on--if his own offensive coordinator is saying that, I don't think there's much chance of him staying. I'd put it at 0.0008%.
14 hours, 53 minutes ago on Conversation @ http://duckstopshere.com/uncategorized/unbreak-my-heart-marcus-mariotas-surprise-january-decision-meant-the-world-to-the-ducks.html
@zduckfan @SonomaDuck Waller is an Elite 11 quarterback and an exceptional dual threat. He's a better runner than Mahalak but a less finished passer. Very interested to see how that dual plays out.
14 hours, 56 minutes ago on Conversation @ http://duckstopshere.com/uncategorized/unbreak-my-heart-marcus-mariotas-surprise-january-decision-meant-the-world-to-the-ducks.html
@SonomaDuck And Darron Thomas took over as a redshirt sophomore with zero career starts, Jeremiah Masoli as a zero-star junior college transfer. Dennis Dixon had 14 td passes and 14 interception in 2006 before blossoming under Chip Kelly.
14 hours, 57 minutes ago on Conversation @ http://duckstopshere.com/uncategorized/unbreak-my-heart-marcus-mariotas-surprise-january-decision-meant-the-world-to-the-ducks.html
@Ducko30 Very thoughtful post, and a great way to begin the discussion, D30.
1 day, 17 hours ago on Conversation @ http://duckstopshere.com/uncategorized/reevaluating-mark-helfrich.html
@DryDuckin SB The Beavers will enter the game with a lot of emotion, and a fast, furious Oregon start can counter that. They've lost five of six, but it's very likely the Ducks will get the OSU that beat #6 Arizona State rather than the one that lost to Cal and Washington State.
2 days, 14 hours ago on Conversation @ http://duckstopshere.com/
@Ducko30 As John McKay used to say, the ball isn't heavy. They could give Freeman 25-30 carries; he has the frame to withstand them. Trouble is, they have to play UCLA or the winner of ASU-Arizona a week from Friday.
With Keanon Lowe, Charles Nelson, Devon Allen and Dwayne Stanford on board to handle receiving duties, I'd install Byron Marshall back at running back to spell The Imperial Locomotive. Marshall's versatility gives the Ducks an edge while Tyner heals. Absolutely right about pinning their ears back.
@duckusuckers DUD--Jason Quick's article on the Long Branch and its place in Civil War lore was terrific. Social media and the cell phone camera make private moments like that impossible for Top Ten coaches, plus now they have a championship game to play in 6 days.
2 days, 15 hours ago on Conversation @ http://duckstopshere.com/
@BobUmber Tried to think of a prototypical stand-in-the-pocket statue quarterback, and he was the original in that category, or among them.
@DryDuckin SB @BobUmber Gabriel was 6-5, 220. Mannion is listed at 6-5, 227, but Gabriel played against 205-lb. linebackers and 220-lb. defensive ends.
@BobUmber 1 year older than you, to be exact, but not much wiser.
@atvinton You're right that both are fabulous players, ATV, but "passing efficiency" is not a stat to move the needle like a rushing record. It's too arcane, too stat-geek for the Heisman voter pool, which is prone to voting perception and the hot story. Not justifying that, just observing that is what often happens.
3 days, 17 hours ago on Conversation @ http://duckstopshere.com/uncategorized/mariota-is-oregons-all-time-greatest-but-gordon-is-going-to-steal-the-bronze-doorstop.html
@DryDuckin SB @Dale Newton @SonomaDuck That's a fair point--Oregon's defense has a more difficult challenge this week against strong-armed Sean Mannion and speedy wideouts Victor Bolden and Jordan Villamin, although the Beibs are beat up at tailback.
3 days, 17 hours ago on Conversation @ http://duckstopshere.com/uncategorized/pitch-perfect-mariota-curtain-call-caps-stellar-senior-day-as-ducks-rout-buffs-44-10.html
@totalDuck Wrist and shoulder injuries, aggravated in practice. Has missed Cal and Colorado but run hard in relief the rest of the way.
@maine_duckfan All three of those would make a perfect day, MDF. Fully expect Marcus, Ifo and Jake to go out on top. They're old hands at slapping down the Beavers, and not likely to overlook a rodent infestation with cherished goals so near to completion.
3 days, 17 hours ago on Conversation @ http://duckstopshere.com/uncategorized/civil-war-much-more-civil-30-years-after-the-toilet-bowl-but-still-flush-with-story-lines.html
@Ducko30 I used to love Mike Parker's old show, before The Fan took on an ESPN skin and turned him out to drive a cab. It was literate, funny and gracefully executed. Parker did some of his best work during Civil War week. He had a daughter to raise and feed, however, and when Jimmy Jones, fudged the books the Beaver job opened up. Like Rich Brooks, Parker switched sides for a head mike job. Now he just plays shrill straight man most of the time but does a dandy job with Beaver baseball, the only sport in Corvallis that's worth an exclamation anymore.
@duckusuckers The runner stepped out after a 9-yard gain, but the refs gave Christian Powell credit for a 39-yard run. Probably wanted the Buffs to feel better about themselves--great goal line stand by the defense.
4 days, 17 hours ago on Conversation @ http://duckstopshere.com/uncategorized/pitch-perfect-mariota-curtain-call-caps-stellar-senior-day-as-ducks-rout-buffs-44-10.html
@BRukus Tyrell Crosby started at right tackle. Yruretagoyena played, but Pierson did not. Ducks had 265 yards rushing and gave up two sacks, a good job, and they should be healthier for Oregon State.
4 days, 18 hours ago on Conversation @ http://duckstopshere.com/uncategorized/pitch-perfect-mariota-curtain-call-caps-stellar-senior-day-as-ducks-rout-buffs-44-10.html
@AnthonyJosephGomes Winston has 19 tds and 13 picks this year. He's not in the top five for the Heisman this time around, and shouldn't be.
4 days, 18 hours ago on Conversation @ http://duckstopshere.com/uncategorized/mariota-is-oregons-all-time-greatest-but-gordon-is-going-to-steal-the-bronze-doorstop.html
@ATLDuck Career excellence used to mean more in the Heisman race, but that was before the era of instant communication and 24 hr sports news. Marcus' main drawback is his steady, unspectacular excellence--Duck fans love him, but he's so smooth and consistent that his numbers don't jump off the page nationally. He distributes the ball and makes great decisions, not likely to throw for 500 yards and 6 touchdowns or beat someone with a fourth quarter drive. Most of Oregon's games are decided by the 3rd period.
@zduckfan That hit was scary, crash-test dummy recoil. I was really shocked he stayed in the game.
@ATLDuck Good point about Perine's big day, which takes some of the momentum out of Gordon's Heisman push. The Wisconsin freight train had 31 carries for 200 yards Saturday, giving him 2109 for the year, 519 behind Sanders. He'll need a big day against Minnesota to set up a run at the record, a showdown with Ohio State and an opportunity to overtake MM in the final leg, and it seems like much less of a threat now. But man, that's a lot of rushing yards.
@zduckfan A delightful moment, Charlie Pape' just being a kid in a roomful of "adults" who take football far too seriously. You ought to write that story.
@zduckfan @Dale Newton This is a game thread, as far as you know :).
4 days, 18 hours ago on Conversation @ http://duckstopshere.com/uncategorized/a-senior-day-festivus-for-the-rest-of-us.html
@zduckfan @Dale Newton Stevens did a great job at center yesterday for the Ducks, the first he's played the position since 2008. Had a great block pulling on Royce Freeman's first touchdown run.
@DryDuckin SB Durant visited today along with cornerback Octavius Spencer, offensive linemen Shane Lemieux and Jake Hanson and safety Marquise Doherty. Durant is the kind of big, mobile hitter who'd be perfect pairing up with the improving Joe Walker in the middle of next year's defense.
@SonomaDuck Most encouraging sign with the defense is that they held Nelson Spruce, who came into the game with 99 receptions, to 2 catches for 16 yards. In fact the Buffs leading receiver on the day was a running back, with 4 catches for 26. Key to duplicating that effort against OSU is getting pressure on Mannion. He is a much different quarterback when he can't settle in the pocket.
4 days, 19 hours ago on Conversation @ http://duckstopshere.com/uncategorized/pitch-perfect-mariota-curtain-call-caps-stellar-senior-day-as-ducks-rout-buffs-44-10.html
@duckusuckers Good point about the personal fouls, and the growth in the Bruins, who are a much better team than they were in October. The worst part about the personal fouls is that they were all of the dumb drive-extender variety, facemask, roughing the passer, late hit.
@DryDuckin SB Florida State might be a much tougher team in the playoffs, only because they've just discovered a running game in Dalvin Cook.
@FunkyDucky Here's a link for anyone who hasn't seen it yet. Winston is not a great person or someone anybody could look up to.
@DrakeMallard I missed it--what did the side judge do?
I'm on assignment for the rest of the afternoon. Will have a game story tomorrow morning.
5 days, 16 hours ago on Conversation @ http://duckstopshere.com/uncategorized/a-senior-day-festivus-for-the-rest-of-us.html
Point is good, and Ducks lead 13-0 in the 1st quarter.
Mariota keeps for a 45-yard touchdown, which will make the ESPN highlight tonight.
PAC-12 refs are so inconsistent. Hill makes a nice breakup, but he has his arm wrapped around the receiver's back, no call. Kind of lucky.
Wheeler's punt fair caught at the 9, and the Ducks have a chance to get good field position IF they make a stop.
Mariota sacked, and the Ducks have to punt.
Ducks over midfield on a pair of Freeman runs. 3rd and 4.
Slant pass complete to Allen for a first down.
Gordon so far 14 carries for 39 yards as Wisconsin leads 16-3 at the half.
Joe Walker slices in for a sack on a rollout right, and that sets up a field goal attempt from 46, which misses. Big, heads-up play by Walker, and a good open-field tackle.
13-yard run, with spotty tackling, nets another CU first down.
Screen for a too-easy first down. Linebackers slow to react, a problem for Oregon throughout the year. Last in the PAC-12 defending 3rd down, 45.4% conversions. And the Buffs convert again on 3rd and long, another screen.
Gehrke stumbles on a keeper, down with no contact. 3rd and 7
Gehrke tosses a swing pass to Tony Jones for 7.
Good blocks by Brenner and Stevens on the touchdown play, a good sign for the restructured offensive line.
Freeman shakes off a tackle and steams into the end zone on the stretch play left, easy score, 6-0. Alie throws for two out of the spread formation but it's high and wide, point failed.