The Washington Football team has had a fairly successful season so far, buoyed by a strong defense. Will the offense roar against the Oregon Ducks today?
The Washington Huskies defense is among the best in the NCAA this year. But the offense? Well, to be honest, this offense can score points. And we learned last week that this offense can run the ball. But the team lost wide receiver Chico McClatcher for the season this year, and has yet to truly replace his pass catching ability on the field.
That places the burden upon wide receiver Dante Pettis, and that simplifies defensive strategies facing these Huskies. Some have tried to step up, but have themselves fallen to injury: Drew Sample, Hunter Bryant are two players who come to mind.
Ducks flying north
This week, the defense planning to stop Washington is that of the Oregon Ducks. That is nearly the same Oregon team which surrendered 70 points to Washington a year ago.
In the past year, they haven’t forgotten. This Washington football team cannot afford to forget either. Not at home, not against Oregon.
College football differs from the professional version in that it has more emotions in the outcome. A bad team, with the right mind-set and emotion, can snatch a game from a more talented opponent. That emotional battery needs to be charged for the Washington Huskies.
Both teams need this win, which team wants it more?
There is no doubt that the Oregon defense arrives with payback on their minds. That is their emotional fuel. But the Washington team has plenty of incentive too. Despite a 7-1 record and a nationally recognized defense, the Huskies are ranked 12th in the CFP rankings. That ranking system results in a collegiate invite to the NCAA playoffs. Since the national media focused so heavily upon the now 7-2 USC Trojans, the disappointing season has plummeted the entire Pac-12 as a result.
And that should upset the Washington Huskies, who did play in the NCAA playoffs a year ago.
Questions, answers, and statements
Still, in the throes of the wins, there remain questions about the Washington Huskies offense. Can the offense win the battle of time of possession? Will the offense rely upon its running game for the remainder of the season? Can Jake Browning recapture the magic of last season in the remaining four games, arguably the toughest part of the schedule?
Oregon shows up today to prove last season was a fluke. They need to send a statement to their fans and prospective recruits that they can go toe to toe with the Washington Huskies. But Washington needs to prove that the offense can win the clock, and the game. The offense must prove that it can run the ball and pass the ball. This offense must prove that despite injuries to left tackle Trey Adams, wide receiver Chico McClatcher, and tight end Hunter Bryant, that they can score at will against a very motivated opponent.
Two teams want to send a message. Which team roars loudest? Ducks quack, Huskies howl. I believe the Huskies will howl louder in this one.