Preview of the Match: No. 6 Oregon vs. Arizona State in the Desert

Preview of the Match: No. 6 Oregon vs. Arizona State in the Desert
Preview of the Match: No. 6 Oregon vs. Arizona State in the Desert

This Saturday at 1 p.m. PT on FOX, the No. 6 Oregon Ducks (9-1, 6-1 Pac-12) will take on the Arizona State Sun Devils (3-7, 2-5 Pac-12) in the desert, where they will need to summon their college football playoff demons.

The last time Oregon visited Tempe with playoff hopes was in 2019, when the Sun Devils, led by current LSU Heisman candidate Jayden Daniels, defeated No. 5 Oregon, which was led by Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert, 31-28.

This time around, however, is not like 2019 the Ducks are playing Arizona State in their final road game of the season with nine wins and hopes of making the college football playoffs.

Oregon is coming off a dominant 36-27 win over USC and last year’s Heisman Caleb Williams. Bo Nix’s third Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Week performance, throwing for 412 yards and 4 touchdowns, made him the new betting favorite to win the Heisman.

A big part of Nix’s development and revival as one of the best quarterbacks in college football has been Arizona State’s head coach Kenny Dillingham. Dillingham recruited Nix to Auburn and was his quarterbacks coach when he was the SEC Freshman of the Year in 2019.

“He moved to Oregon because of our relationship,” Dillingham said. “That’s how good of a relationship that we have. He trusted me, his family trusted me … when nobody thought he could throw.”

Nix threw for 3,593 yards, 29 touchdowns and completed 71.9% of his passes with Dillingham as his offensive coordinator last year.

And he attributes Dillingham to the success he’s been having this season, as Nix has already thrown for 29 touchdowns, while completing passes at a six percent higher rate than last season and can even surpass last year’s total yards if he has another 400-plus passing game.

That was huge,” Nix said. “It allowed me to play free and how we’ve operated this year and I think its helped us a lot this year and I think just getting into the right plays.

Our system right now has been as good as I’ve ever been a part of and Coach [Will] Stein does a good job of putting us in situations with great answers.”

Oregon enters Saturday’s contest as the best-scoring offense in the country averaging 46.3 points per game and the second-best total offense averaging 540 yards per game. While Oregon’s defense is ranked 18th in the country in total defense, allowing 309.4 yards per game.

Arizona State is coming off their second Pac-12 win of the season beating UCLA 17-7.

The Sun Devils put up 250 total yards and controlled the clock for almost 37 minutes, running plays that they haven’t all season against the Bruins

Kenny and I are similar,” Lanning remarked. When you have a variety of individuals, you want to find the best way to use them and try to come up with something that your rival hasn’t thought of yet.

He was obviously able to capture several shots on film that other teams weren’t ready for.

I also anticipate that he will give us a portion of that. We must be able to make adjustments in-game and have a solid plan for what he will do when he goes out there.

The Ducks will try to win their eleventh game of the year and go further in their pursuit of a spot in the NCAA football playoffs.



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