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FishDuck Article

Believe it, Duck Fans: USC Is for Real

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On 2/8/2022 at 10:48 AM, Duck1984 said:

USC is loading up on proven college football players from the transfer portal, including one of Oregon’s all time leading rushers, and the top rated QB who already has a win over the Ducks.

 

USC will be closely watched by the national media, which elevates the PAC.

 

USC will likely battle Utah and UCLA to represent the South in the league championship game.  The attention will elevate all three programs for future recruiting.

 

USC coaching will be competitive and possibly superior to staffs at Oregon and Utah.

 

USC football attendance will likely explode based on the prospect of a national title run in the next two years.

 

USC will get top celebrity NIL involvement to buy the best players.  
 

Go Ducks!

 

All true. Best we accept it now and then enjoy the upcoming big-time rivalry with USC. 

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On 2/8/2022 at 10:54 AM, cartm25 said:

My rebuttal is I'd rather the Ducks be like Clemson dominating the ACC rather than a team like Ole Miss, a fun/entertaining/good team with a puncher's chance, constantly getting pushed back in place by powerful Alabama.

 

I guess what I'm trying to convey is a complete paradigm shift where we don't "need" USC to be strong/powerful because Oregon IS the dominate, flagship program. Let's be honest, every conference is top heavy and dominated by one, or two teams at the most: SEC = Bama (some might argue GA, but until this year Smart had never beat Saban) ; BIG10 = Ohio State ; BIG12 = Oklahoma ; ACC = Clemson ; P12 = "OREGON IS THE CLOSEST, BUT NO ONE HAS TAKEN OVER THE CONFERENCE YET SO THIS IS WHY I DON'T WANT A POWERFUL USC NOW . . . OR EVER".

 

I promise that Saban/Day/OK Coach/Sweeny are not thinking, "Man! I wish another team in our conference would get really good and make it harder for us to make it to the CFP. Would be good for us and the conference." IF Riley returns USC to dominance, he will not wish for a stronger Oregon. He will try to crush Oregon in recruiting and on the field every step of the way.

 

There is a power void in the P12 waiting to be filled. MC couldn't fill it with the Ducks, and now USC is as poised as ever to return to power. The College Football Playoff is the goal and the "lack of USC" was never preventing the Ducks from getting there, just head-scratching losses to the likes of Stanford, Cal, OSU, etc.

 

The only thing missing in the P12 is NOT a conference full of good teams that cannibalize each other. It's missing a team that stands above the rest (i.e. undefeated or no more than one-loss team). I want that to be UO, not USC. 

Which makes it all the more painful that Oregon couldn't maintain being at the top of the Pac-12 in the 2010's while USC was down. But, overall, we're stronger now, we know we can recruit at a high level and have a great staff to hopefully get most out its players, unlike what we saw with MC. 

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On 2/8/2022 at 10:58 AM, DUCati855 said:

100% agree with this.

 

I also found it hilarious when one of the Duck coach said "We are not building a 7 on 7 team" when discussing recruiting day commits. That was a great dig on USC.

We can't count on them not ever getting that talent, maybe they'll be a little thin on the lines for a year or two. 

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On 2/8/2022 at 11:00 AM, Krsmqn said:

Darren, you're still a Duck fan, right? 😁

 

Kidding aside, great article. I agree 💯. The USC program has too much pride to let other "lowly" teams (like Oregon, Utah) be the head of the Pac. It was only a matter of time, like you said. 

 

Good! 

 

Good for the Pac, and good for Oregon. I want USC to be at their best when we beat them. It's the catalyst we need to unsure we get the credit, and recognition needed to be considered a serious playoff contender, year in and year out. 

 

USC will beat Oregon some years, and Oregon will beat USC other years. But if both programs are at their best, along with 2-3 other strong Pac-12 teams, then perhaps the Pac-12 will repair it's once proud status as one of the best conferences in CFB. 

 

So much lies ahead. I cannot wait to see it all unfold. 

 

Go Ducks! 

The PAc-12 had been down for several years now, so it can really only get better, this is going to happen sooner or later, so it'll push the Ducks to up their game. 

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On 2/8/2022 at 12:01 PM, OhioDuck said:

I think there is no doubt that USC will be better. Crowning them as the kings of the PAC12 without playing a single game yet under Riley is premature. We'll see what the product on the field is. 

 

I think that it will take more than Riley coming to SC to keep some of the recruits who have gotten away.

 

There is an accepted (which is a problem to me since I don't totally buy it) truth for many that the SEC is far and away the best football conference in the country. Then the B1G is next and that all others are way down the list.

 

It's not really power 5 in many people's view points, it's power 1 little brother and 3 little sisters. 

 

This will have to be overcome before USC, Oregon or anyone else in the PAC regularly keep the best of the best west coast recruits home. I hope it happens.

 

Now to USC becoming dominant in the PAC, there one big thing standing in the way of that. OREGON! USC has squandered most of a decade and allowed another dog to grow in power and take the Alpha dog position. They have work to do to take it back.

 

Though Oregon has faltered some with coaching changes, some wise and unwise hires, I think Lanning is going to prove to be a coach that takes Oregon beyond where we have been in the past. A healthy USC may have been able to take advantage, but USC was not healthy.

 

 

 

 

That's right! It is going to Oregon, so we gotta be prepared to beat a good USC for years to come. 

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On 2/8/2022 at 4:12 PM, Darren Perkins said:

Which makes it all the more painful that Oregon couldn't maintain being at the top of the Pac-12 in the 2010's while USC was down. But, overall, we're stronger now, we know we can recruit at a high level and have a great staff to hopefully get most out its players, unlike what we saw with MC. 

 

The ACC in 2021 finished with 4 teams in the top 25; Pac-12, 2.

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On 2/8/2022 at 5:16 PM, 1Ducker1 said:

A person can sure get into "things" in a big city like LA. 

As someone who went to college in Malibu, I can attest to that.  Of course, there were plenty of "things" to get into in 1987, when I was down there.  As well as in '67, '72, '78, '04, etc. when SC was winning national titles.  So I'm not sure how that's changed...

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On 2/8/2022 at 1:29 PM, Kurt Rambis said:

As someone who went to college in Malibu, I can attest to that.  Of course, there were plenty of "things" to get into in 1987, when I was down there.  As well as in '67, '72, '78, '04, etc. when SC was winning national titles.  So I'm not sure how that's changed...

Yeah, and it is college, if kids wanna' do a little rebellin', they will fnd a way whether in the bright lights of LA or a cornfield in Nebraska. I know at that age I never let location or environment get in the way of having a good time. ; )

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SC is heading towards “for real”. The Ducks are already there. We really need to utilize this head start.

 

Ducks going 10-2 or 11-1 compared to an 8/4 ish SC, could make all the difference in up coming recutting battles for those LA 5 and 4 1/2 stars.

 

if they appear to be even out of the gate like both going 9-3 ish, then SC could get the upper hand early and the LA well may go dry.

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I've been reading the posts haven't chimed in previously but I would agree that having a strong or reasonably strong USC in the conference is pretty important to the  PAC 12 as a whole.  There are so many kids right now that are leaving the PAC footprint to play in the Big 10 or the SEC.   The SEC had 52 Top 100 recruits in the 2022 cycle, the Big 10, 17 and the Pac 12, 7.   

 

That's not good for our conference.  Next year, USC will get theirs and we will get ours but  need the rest of the conference to step up.  If we can slow down that migration east the conference gets better and that leads us to more eyeballs on the PAC 12 which leads us to more money for TV rights etc.  which then entices more kids to want to stay on the west coast.  Its kind of circular.  🙂 

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On 2/8/2022 at 2:12 PM, Darren Perkins said:

we know we can recruit at a high level

How much of this do you think is a function of MC recruiting against Helton (i.e. when USC was down)?

 

With a strong USC, does the "Cali-flock" turn into "Cali-occasional duck", or "Cali-drip"?

 

I'm not trying to be pessimistic, but the pipeline of recruits from CA to OR was real, but also happened to coincide, IMO not coincidentally, with the time Helton was there. In other words, is the Duck's ability to recruit CA a bit of fools gold since our best recruiting years were when USC was at its lowest?

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On 2/8/2022 at 2:59 PM, Quackerbacker said:

I've been reading the posts haven't chimed in previously but I would agree that having a strong or reasonably strong USC in the conference is pretty important to the  PAC 12 as a whole.  There are so many kids right now that are leaving the PAC footprint to play in the Big 10 or the SEC.   The SEC had 52 Top 100 recruits in the 2022 cycle, the Big 10, 17 and the Pac 12, 7.   That's not good for our conference.  Next year, USC will get theirs and we will get ours but  need the rest of the conference to step up.  If we can slow down that migration east the conference gets better and that leads us to more eyeballs on the PAC 12 which leads us to more money for TV rights etc.  which then entices more kids to want to stay on the west coast.  Its kind of circular.  🙂 

Yeah, no doubt I think USC will keep more blue-chips in the PAc-12. I mentioned, for example, Stroud, a guy like that and others may have stayed home in socal if USC was any good. 

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     Good take Darren. At some point, sleeping giants do  awake.  Riley, riding in like the cavalry to the rescue, undoubtedly has the full attention of those seeking to emerge from this slumber.

 

     With in those spheres he controls - recruiting, scheme, coaching - I don’t doubt his chance for success is as good as anyone out there, minus Saban.  But, it’s not what he can see, but what he can’t that could be his problem.

 

     Without any experience of west coast/California culture, It’ll be interesting to see how quickly he can recognize and respond to the the social layers that can and will affect his team.

 

     Imo, the most successful Trojan coaches over the past 60 years were either California natives, or had been immersed in west coast realities long enough to know the warning signs when someone or something was falling off the rails.

 

     Pete Carroll is a SF native, and John Robinson moved to the Bay Area at the age of nine. John McKay had 4 years as a player and 9 as an assistant coach at Oregon, and one as an assistant before taking over the reins at USC.

 

     No doubt Riley is savvy; you don’t achieve what he has without it. But Muleshoe, Lubbock,, Greenville, and Norman are not going to prepare you for what he’ll have to deal with in LA.

 

      

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On 2/8/2022 at 4:41 PM, Washington Waddler said:

John Robinson moved to the Bay Area at the age of nine. John McKay had 4 years as a player and 9 as an assistant coach at Oregon

It is fun when I remind a USC buddy that aside from Carroll, the best coaches at USC are Ducks. Robinson and McKay both played and coached at Oregon before going to USC. 

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As I previously noted, Lincoln Riley and his Oklahoma Sooners lost all three College Football Playoff semifinal games that they appeared in. Riley's defenses weren't exactly stellar in those games. The Sooners surrendered a combined total of 162 points in those games--that's an incredible 54 points per game. 

 

Georgia pasted the Sooners with 54 points the first time Riley showed up at the CFP, Alabama hung 45 on Boomer Sooner the following year, and LSU absolutely blasted Oklahoma with a 63-spot the third year. 

 

Be that as it may, Riley was a successful coach at Oklahoma and he'll likely experience success at USC. However, unlike Dan Lanning, Riley's resume indicates that he's not exactly a defensive genius. What's more, Riley will be under greater pressure at USC. He'll face intense scrutiny from the media and USC alumni. 

 

Riley has garnered most of the off-season headlines, which is to be expected, since USC is in the heart of Los Angeles, the second largest city in the nation. But put my money on Lanning, his defense, his coaching staff, and our beloved Ducks. I hardly consider myself a sunshine pumper--I've been highly critical of Ducks coaches and teams in the past--but I predict a great run is in the making. We'll be ready for Riley and USC. 

 

 

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Riley has Alex Grinch as DC, and that is all he needs on the defensive side.  Grinch is GOOD, and add that to a high scoring offense?

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Mr. FishDuck

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Time will tell.

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On 2/8/2022 at 5:44 PM, Charles Fischer said:

Grinch is GOOD, and add that to a high scoring offense?

Alex Grinch was the defensive coordinator for Lincoln Riley and Oklahoma in 2019, 2020, and 2021. NCAA defensive statistics rank the Sooners 78th, 20th, and 55th, respectively, during those three seasons. In Grinch's most important game at Oklahoma, his defense gave up 63 points to LSU.

 

Riley obviously trusts Grinch; they have an established working relationship, but I believe that competent teams will find ways to put up points on USC. 

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On 2/8/2022 at 6:41 PM, Axel said:

Alex Grinch was the defensive coordinator for Lincoln Riley and Oklahoma in 2019, 2020, and 2021. NCAA defensive statistics rank the Sooners 78th, 20th, and 55th, respectively, during those three seasons. In Grinch's most important game at Oklahoma, his defense gave up 63 points to LSU.

 

Riley obviously trusts Grinch; they have an established working relationship, but I believe that competent teams will find ways to put up points on USC. 

I recall Grinch as the DC at WSU that beat us so many years in a row...  (Before he went to Ohio State and then to Oklahoma)  I would have thought he would do better than the stats you quote at a place that is easier to recruit to.

Mr. FishDuck

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As Coach Bellotti said "how the QB Goes, the Team Goes"  and USC just picked up that Oklahoma QB dual threat sensation.   The guy is probably a better QB than Bo Nix, so USC will be a challenge.  Nix does look good however.

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On 2/8/2022 at 7:38 PM, Charles Fischer said:

I recall Grinch as the DC at WSU that beat us so many years in a row.

Alex Grinch was the defensive coordinator at Washington State from 2015 to 2017, and during those three seasons the Cougars defense was ranked 74th, 50th, and 59th, respectively. 

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On 2/8/2022 at 10:54 AM, cartm25 said:

My rebuttal is I'd rather the Ducks be like Clemson dominating the ACC rather than a team like Ole Miss, a fun/entertaining/good team with a puncher's chance, constantly getting pushed back in place by powerful Alabama.

 

I guess what I'm trying to convey is a complete paradigm shift where we don't "need" USC to be strong/powerful because Oregon IS the dominate, flagship program. Let's be honest, every conference is top heavy and dominated by one, or two teams at the most: SEC = Bama (some might argue GA, but until this year Smart had never beat Saban) ; BIG10 = Ohio State ; BIG12 = Oklahoma ; ACC = Clemson ; P12 = "OREGON IS THE CLOSEST, BUT NO ONE HAS TAKEN OVER THE CONFERENCE YET SO THIS IS WHY I DON'T WANT A POWERFUL USC NOW . . . OR EVER".

 

I promise that Saban/Day/OK Coach/Sweeny are not thinking, "Man! I wish another team in our conference would get really good and make it harder for us to make it to the CFP. Would be good for us and the conference." IF Riley returns USC to dominance, he will not wish for a stronger Oregon. He will try to crush Oregon in recruiting and on the field every step of the way.

 

There is a power void in the P12 waiting to be filled. MC couldn't fill it with the Ducks, and now USC is as poised as ever to return to power. The College Football Playoff is the goal and the "lack of USC" was never preventing the Ducks from getting there, just head-scratching losses to the likes of Stanford, Cal, OSU, etc.

 

The only thing missing in the P12 is NOT a conference full of good teams that cannibalize each other. It's missing a team that stands above the rest (i.e. undefeated or no more than one-loss team). I want that to be UO, not USC. 

Point is, we believe USC is back. There's nothing we can do about that, and putting our fingers in our collective ears and saying it isn't so won't help matters. If I understand your perspective correctly, you'd rather be the top dog in a weak conference while I'd prefer to be a top dog in a stronger conference (ie 'Bama or Georgia).

 

I like the idea of having a stronger conference and not being laughed at as barely being better than a group of 5 conference (which BYU made us look like last year). Thing is, Utah is good, we think USC is back and Oregon is still on the rise. If Washington/Stanford can get their act together (God forbid), then we won't be the laughing stock of the power 5 any longer and a PAC-12 Conference Champion will carry some real weight with it into the CFB Playoff and that's good for all of us...

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On 2/9/2022 at 6:59 AM, Wrathis said:

Point is, we believe USC is back. There's nothing we can do about that, and putting our fingers in our collective ears and saying it isn't so won't help matters. If I understand your perspective correctly, you'd rather be the top dog in a weak conference while I'd prefer to be a top dog in a stronger conference (ie 'Bama or Georgia). I like the idea of having a stronger conference and not being laughed at as barely being better than a group of 5 conference (which BYU made us look like last year). Thing is, Utah is good, we think USC is back and Oregon is still on the rise. If Washington/Stanford can get their act together (God forbid), then we won't be the laughing stock of the power 5 any longer and a PAC-12 Conference Champion will carry some real weight with it into the CFB Playoff and that's good for all of us...

We agree that USC is back and there's nothing that can be done, I just don't believe this is good for the Ducks. Adding a strong USC that will take over recruiting in CA and be, at least, on par with the Ducks in terms of coaching is an additional obstacle, and not a boon for the Ducks.

 

You misunderstood my perspective. I want the Ducks to be THE top dog in the conference regardless of the other teams' strength. Clemson fans weren't (and are not) wishing that FSU and Miami would return to their traditional glory while they were going to SIX STRAIGHT college football playoffs (all while playing in a lame conference). Clemson is nervous about what MC is building at Miami, not cheering it. The Ducks would have made the playoffs last year (with a loss to Stanford) if they had won out. Guess who they didn't have to meet in order to qualify for the CFP? . . . USC.

 

Oregon has a national brand. Oregon has national clout. Oregon has money. A crappy conference didn't change that for the Ducks. If the Ducks' image took any hit, it was because of MC severely underperforming the talent on the team and losing to pitiful Stanford, Cal, and OSU, etc.

 

While a stronger conference and a powerful USC might be good for the conference, especially to the other lesser teams in the P12, I don't believe it's a NET BENEFIT to the Ducks, or their chances of being a regular in the CFP, because they ALREADY have the brand, reputation, and money needed.

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On 2/9/2022 at 8:10 AM, cartm25 said:

Oregon has a national brand. Oregon has national clout. Oregon has money. A crappy conference didn't change that for the Ducks. If the Ducks' image took any hit, it was because of MC severely underperforming the talent on the team and losing to pitiful Stanford, Cal, and OSU, etc.

Now THAT is a very, very good point.  And I would add..."taking the offense away from Oregon that it was known for."

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Mr. FishDuck

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On 2/9/2022 at 8:10 AM, cartm25 said:

While a stronger conference and a powerful USC might be good for the conference, especially to the other lesser teams in the P12, I don't believe it's a NET BENEFIT to the Ducks, or their chances of being a regular in the CFP, because they ALREADY have the brand, reputation, and money needed.

I could not agree more. I want USC to fail just like Buckeye fans, Bama fans, and Sooner fans want their key rivals to fail. Total domination by the Ducks should be the goal, not conference parity.

 

And I don't need any Oregon one-point victories, because those games are "more exciting." I want the Ducks to boat-race everyone, especially bitter enemies like USC, Washington, and Utah. 

 

If the Ducks win 11 of 12 regular-season games and the Pac-12 championship game, they'll make the College Football Playoff, even if the Trojans program inexplicably turns into a fumbling, bumbling mess. 

 

I desire a strong USC about as much as I welcome an IRS audit.

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