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High-powered offense leads Ducks against ASU


The No. 5 Oregon football team doesn’t need to dress up for Halloween this year.

It is already scary enough.

Through three games, the Ducks (3-0) have scored more points (189) than minutes played (180).

However, the dominant showings have come against the likes of New Mexico, Tennessee and Portland State, whom have a combined record of 2-7.

“Have we faced a ton of adversity?” UO coach Chip Kelly asked. “No, but I’d rather be where we are right now than be 1-2 or 2-1 to be honest.”

State Press Television By Andrew Boven

Heading into week four, UO is ranked first in the country in points and yardage per game on both the offensive and defensive sides of the ball.

What’s even more frightening for host ASU (2-1) on Saturday is that the Ducks think they have underperformed so far.

“We’ve got to pick it up a little more, we‘re the Pac-10 champs,” sophomore running back LaMichael James told The Register-Guard. “We probably could play faster, read blocks better, [and] run better routes.

“Things are going to be a lot different now. Defenses get to watch film on us, so we’ve just got to go out there and clean everything up. It’s not really going to matter who’s the most talented team, it’s going to matter whoever preps for it the most, [and] whoever gets in the film room watching plays more.”

James, a pre-season All-American in many publications, is 93 yards shy of eclipsing the 2000-yard milestone for his career. Saturday will be just his 16th career game, or the same number of games in an NFL regular season.

Keeping secondaries honest for UO is sophomore quarterback Darron Thomas, who along with his feet, provides a limited role similar to Wisconsin’s Scott Tolzien.

“Darron has been tremendous,” Kelly said. “He’s done everything we’ve asked him to do, he’s been really smart with the ball, he’s done a great job running our offense and being a leader, especially for a young guy.”

Saturday, however, will test UO’s offense in a way its first three opponents failed to accomplish.

“It’s not a one person defense, I know Vontaze [Burfict] gets a lot of media, and deservedly so, but they’ve got more than him,” Kelly said. “You don’t finish at the top of the conference defensively with just one guy. It’ll be obviously the best defense we’ve faced in our first four games.”

Although the Ducks are probably the speediest team in the nation, Kelly is worried about the Sun Devil special teams unit that exposed No. 11 UW just a week ago.

“It’s going to be a challenge,” Kelly said. “I’ve always said when you get in this league, especially on the road, special teams are going to be a key.”

The coach pointed to last season with two prime examples.

“We had a blocked punt at Washington, we had a kickoff return at UCLA, when you’re playing teams that are even, special teams become huge,” Kelly said. “Our guys are going to have their work cut out for them; they’ve got some explosive guys.”

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