Week 4 Predictions: Colorado vs Oregon

The goal of ‘As a Matter of Quack’ is to represent a broad spectrum of Oregon Ducks fans, so hopefully from time to time we can get you a special treat, and this is one of those weeks.
Matter of Quack proudly welcomes former Oregon Duck & current Montreal Alouettes QB, Vernon Adams Jr. (yes, it’s REALLY him) for this week’s predictions!
Make sure to give him a follow on Twitter (@vadams_qb) and Instagram (@bigplay_va).  From all of us at MoQ, THANK YOU Vernon for being so gracious with your time and knowledge.
How could we beat Colorado?  How could we lose to Colorado?  Who’s gonna win!?  Let’s get to it…

Colorado (2-1) vs Oregon (2-1)
Saturday, September 24th // Eugene, OR // 2:30pm PST // PAC-12 Network

Why we could BEAT Colorado:

@vadams_qb
We have way too many weapons on offense & special teams and they have to come to the Zoo

@WildKingdumb
The speed on Oregon’s roster is second to none, and when pointed in the right direction it becomes elite level talent.  Oregon can capitalize in the run game and… run away with the game.  This graphic designer thinks if the pass game is clicking this game could get ugly in a good way for Ducky fans.  I expect the Defense to come out with its hair on fire, I think they will be on attack, possibly giving up a couple big plays, but I expect to see tackles for loss and improved LB play. 

@Uoduckgirl
Because #DuckNation might implode if we don’t? Then again the bandwagoners would definitely bail after another L.

But seriously, Prukop is decent enough. If you look at his stats in the Duck Game notes 56 – 84, 0 INT is not thaaaat far off from Liufau 54-76-0 and hopefully being back at Autzen will help boost his confidence. I’d like to see some bold moves from him.

If Liufau is indeed out for the game, that could help the Ducks D and with McCartney out (which is sad) we might be able to get some strong drives on O. I would like to see passes to DC and runs for TBJ. I saw RF on the DC and don’t think he should be playing in this game. We need him later down the road.

@GoDucksTroll
The simple answer is that a banged up Oregon team is better than Colorado, and this game is at Autzen. To go more in-depth: Colorado’s starting QB Sefo Liufau is banged up and may not play, and Colorado’s running game has been subpar. I expect the Oregon defense to look better than they have up to this point in the Hoke era.

@BigShaun
Our run game grinds them into submission. Prukop does enough to keep the defense honest and doesn’t turn the rock over. Their defense overall would probably consider Pellum an upgrade at DC.

@JonathanAdams
Oregon and Colorado are seemingly engaged in the football version of “NameThat Tune“.

CU: “We can beat you without our kicker and best linebacker and with an injured QB!”

UO: “Your kicker is hurt? Please. We don’t even use that guy. We can beat you without our best o-lineman and our Olympic sprinter WR. Oh, and our Heisman-quality RB probably won’t play either!”

(Yes, I just referenced a 30-year-old game show. I’m old, deal with it.)

With injuries mounting on both sides, Oregon certainly seems better equipped to survive the talent drain. They rushed for 300+ yards last week, mostly without Royce Freeman, and receiver is a deep position. The loss of Tyrell Crosby hurts the most, but he missed the opener and sat out the second half against Virginia, so at least the Ducks are as prepared for this as possible.

Colorado, on the other hand, wilted in Ann Arbor after QB Sefo Liufau left the game in the 3rd quarter, with backup Steven Montez going 0-for-7 in relief duty after inheriting a 28-24 lead (Michigan came back to win 45-28). And the Wolverines started finding room to run on the edges after stud LB Derek McCartney (who scored on a fumble return in the 1st quarter) left the game with an ACL injury just before halftime.

If Liufau plays, the Ducks should blitz him early to find out right away if he has any mobility. If he’s healthy enough to play as well as he has in the first three games then he’s certainly good enough to gun down the Ducks. But if he can’t go, or if the injury limits his effectiveness, then it’s hard to see Colorado’s offense scoring enough to win in Eugene for the first time since 1967, when they spoiled Autzen Stadium’s grand opening.

Last week against Michigan, CU’s defense gave up 4+ yards-per-carry and two 40+ yard TDs, plus they allowed two special teams TDs — so an Oregon win sees them running the ball effectively, getting some big plays on offense and special teams (like a Charles Nelson return TD), and doing enough defensively to further CU’s 3rd down woes (they were 1-for-13 last week).

@colewagoner
Oregon, while seemingly down a notch from previous years, still has superior athletes to Colorado. Colorado went 1-13 on 3rd down conversions against Michigan and this is a good opportunity for the Oregon defense to continue their ascension while the offense finds a rhythm.

@SwooshMcDuck
Our RB depth is still at or near the top of the conference even if Freeman isn’t 100% ready to go. Prukop is getting more familiar with the playbook each week, if the O-Line can give him time, the receiving game should open up.

@MambaSquatch
How Oregon starts PAC12 play with a win. Prukop and the Ducks offense must keep The Buffs defense unbalanced. This will happen if Oregon can make quick precise reads in both the run and pass game. The run game will hum along per usual. What Ducks fans are waiting to see is the killer mentality we have seen from previous Ducks teams. In order for this to happen, Dakota will have to be more decisive than last week. As far as the defense? Put Colorado in situations where Oregon can be opportunistic. And then? Simple, be opportunistic. 3rd and long situations will lead to turnovers eventually.

@Reedstrong7
Oregon is the better team at home.  Plus we want Mark Helfrich to get a fresh extension.  Offense gets healthy and defense fools the fanbase for a week.

@BathisaDuck
We beat Colorado by making the big plays. We tend to win games when we connect on our long passes, we missed too many against Nebraska.

@AlexHorwitch
Over the past few years, coming off a loss (especially such a deflating one like last week), the Ducks have done a great job of standing up, brushing themselves off and moving on. A home game, with students back, new jerseys to show off, and against an improved but still “meh” Buffalo team should be enough to let the Ducks get back into their groove. This has all the makings of a classic “don’t count us out yet” beat down.

@jaromney
By not being dumb? But, that’s becoming a rather alarming trend in the Helfrich era. We got all the penalties of the mid-80’s Miami Hurricanes, but none of the swagger. Hopefully this week the Oregon coaching staff learned how to read a clock and realized they have a scholarship kicker on the roster. I suppose completing passes and tackling is also important, but whatever, that’s boring.

@DMDoubleG
The offense will click a little better, in all phases. Dakota has another week of work with the receivers and the offense, the RB’s will have a week of prep to make up for Royce’s absence, rather than getting sudden work (Royce is technically listed on the depth chart, but I don’t think he will play), and the Buffs’ injured QB will not be quite healthy enough to go blow-for-blow with our offense.

@samuelnassab
We lose to Colorado is not something I realistically see happening, but if it were to happen it would be a light show from Colorado QB Sefo liufau. He was knocked out of the game against Michigan last week, but his dual threat ability will give the ducks a fit if he plays.

@MrBenzduck
We beat COL by controlling the pace and giving Prukop enough time to not panic

@jdamis
Run the ball. Michigan’s De’Veon Smith averaged 7.9 YPC last week, and I think the Ducks should be able to do the same or better. Ducks go for two more than once tomorrow, but not on every TD.

Why we could LOSE to Colorado:

@vadams_qb
The only way I see us losing is if our Defense has no 3 & outs and our offense isn’t clicking.  Also depends if their starting QB plays or not.

@WildKingdumb
Getting gashed in the run game up the middle… allowing WR on crossing routes to run for days… penalties.  Oregon hasn’t fixed many of their issues from week to week, and if that continues it will be more of the same pain for those at Autzen. 

@Uoduckgirl
If Liufau plays we might be up for a challenge with the developing D line but I am super excited Dye is back on the DC and I love me some Arrion Springs. If we continue with this 2PC strategy which doesn’t appear to be working I think this could hurt us. Take the Points! We need better clock management as well. Losing Crosby and Allen is going to hurt both from a talent and leadership stance. I can’t know for certain but it doesn’t appear that this team is rallying around DP like they did with VA Jr. I’m glad DA is going to be on the sidelines providing support.

@GoDucksTroll
If there is a complete meltdown, a la Arizona 2013. The passing game is shaky and with the potential of the Rolls Royce in the shop for repairs the inside run game doesn’t click. Instead we will see Taj Griffin run 25 yards to the sideline in hopes of finding a crease. Our defense, particularly the defensive tackles, cause no havoc and whoever is slinging the ball for Colorado has all day for his receivers to lose our easily confused safeties.

@BigShaun
Oregon has a veteran mobile QB who may be getting healthy against us and some receivers who can get open and get downfield. Oregon’s LBs still playing like they don’t know the 4-3.

In general this is a big game for the Ducks. It has the potential to really dictate the tone as we enter conference play.

@JonathanAdams
Oregon is flat after the loss at Nebraska, while Colorado is angry and fired up after the loss at Michigan. Oregon’s offense continues to struggle throwing the ball effectively, Colorado’s defense finds a way to limit Oregon’s rushing attack, and the Buffs force a couple of turnovers. Sefo Liufau plays, shreds Oregon’s pass defense, and, like Tommy Armstrong last week, a senior QB overcomes adversity to get a signature win four years in the making.

@colewagoner
Colorado went into The Big House and gave a top 5 team a game for 3 quarters and Sefo Liufau is completing 75% of his passes through three games.

@SwooshMcDuck
Ralphie comes in on the heels of a decent showing against Michigan. They don’t have quite the talent that Oregon does, but there is no overlooking them. The O-Line is decimated. If we can’t cobble together a line that gives Dakota time to read through his progressions, prepare for Nebraska Part Deux.  If the Ducks don’t come out ready to play & more disciplined on both sides of the ball, we’re in for a long afternoon. Penalties could be a killer in this game too.

@MambaSquatch
How Oregon could let this game get away. I believe a slow start on offense could put Prukop in a hole he isn’t comfortable with. Also the obvious, if Oregon is down and not clicking on offense, we see less of the Ducks strength, the run game. While Dakota has yet to throw an INT, if he is trailing and forced to pass, we may see his first. Another contributing factor to QB turnovers will be holding on to the ball too long. This offense is built on quick reads in both passing and the running game.

@Reedstrong7
Sefo Liufau somehow stays healthy and Colorado somehow finds a defense.

@BathisaDuck
We lose to Colorado by becoming predictable on offense, and if Colorado starts to go to the passing game.

@AlexHorwitch
Oh boy. This would be a bad one. Like, a really bad one. Colorado played tough (for a half) against Michigan only to be embarrassed in the second half. They could have a chip on their shoulder and want to prove that they aren’t the Pac-12 cellar dwellers that they once were. Meanwhile, the Ducks are coming off a heartbreaker, have lost Devon Allen and Tyrell Crosby, will have limited action out of Royce Freeman, and just aren’t in the right head-space. This has all the makings of an epic collapse.

@jaromney
Lose to Colorado? Please, those dorks from the Big 8 don’t stand a chance. This is payback for Tony Graziani losing his life in the ’96 Cotton Bowl.

@DMDoubleG
Missed two point conversions. Just kidding. Penalties, missed tackles, and lack of gap integrity.

@samuelnassab
We beat Colorado because it’s Colorado. And it’s at Autzen. Not to mention all the students are back this week so this will be the biggest home presence the Ducks have had this year. Prukop’s conservative style didn’t lead us to a victory against the Huskers, but I have a lot of faith it does against the Buffs.

@MrBenzduck
We lose to COL by an outbreak of viral hubris

@jdamis
The Ducks shouldn’t lose this game, but after recent losses in recent years to Arizona, Utah, and Washington State, I realize there’s no gimmies anymore. Really, though, I think the only way the Ducks lose this game is by letting Nebraska beat them twice.

Prediction:

@vadams_qb
49-21 Ducks!

@WildKingdumb
Oregon Wins.  32-28

@Uoduckgirl
I think we win but unlikely a blowout.  As far as score – I have no idea these days. As long as we don’t lose by the number of not attempted PAT then I guess that’s an improvement over NEB.

@GoDucksTroll
Oregon wins, 49 – 28.

@BigShaun
Oregon 45, Colorado 21 – Pissy Beaver fans mad at uniforms: ALL OF THEM

@JonathanAdams
Oregon 40, Colorado 30.

@colewagoner
Ducks win. 41-31

@SwooshMcDuck
Oregon 39, Colorado 24
Oregon manages to bring penalties down under 100yds & the combined running game puts 250+yds on the Runnin’ Ralphies. Prukop throws for 2 TD’s. Quack-Quack, next stop Pullman.

@MambaSquatch
Ducks 44, Colorado 31

@Reedstrong7
Oregon wins the game rather easily, say 34-17.

@BathisaDuck
42-21, Oregon

@AlexHorwitch
I think it’s going to be somewhere in the middle of my two scenarios…which is slightly terrifying. Oregon wins, 34 – 27.

@jaromney

Orygun wins 41-31 and somewhere Akili Smith smiles.

@DMDoubleG
If WE win: 42-28     If THEY win: 38-24

@samuelnassab
Ducks 44, Buffs 27

@MrBenzduck
Oregon, 40-28

@jdamis 
47 – 27, Ducks



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