John Neal can be very blunt about things, and this week the Ducks may have their work cut out for them when they take on Georgia State of the Sun Belt Conference. Neal describes the Panthers as another team similar to Eastern Washington, that has a quarterback who is accurate and has a quick release. Georgia State is second in the Sun Belt in total offense at 487 yards per contest. Led by quarterback Nick Arbuckle who averages 335.5 yards and four touchdowns in GSU's first two contests. He's also given up two interceptions.
"They're like Arizona without the running quarterback, "Neal said comparing GSU the Arizona Wildcats. "So therefore, that puts them like Eastern Washington, trying to get rid of the ball real quick.
Eastern Washington of course racked up 438 yards and five touchdowns against the Ducks in the opener two weeks ago. Neal said as shocking as that was, it was a wake up call.
"You can't do much on a pass rush, you have to protect your perimeter, make tackles and get off blocks," observed Neal of the quick release passing game. "If we can do that then we should have a great game."
So what can the defensive front do then if GSU is a quick throw offense, to help the Duck secondary?
"Put their hands up and run to the ball," said Neal without hesitation. "When ball is thrown and we run fast to it, we stop lanes, stop cutbacks and big plays.
"That's something I want to see Saturday, and expect it because we're doing it practice right now."
And if the Ducks don't do what the coaches expect?
"If we're out there and this team is moving the ball up and down the field, then I got to make one of two decisions," explained Neal about what might happen if players don't take the opportunity to make plays. "Either we're not very good or I got to make changes, and right now it will be make changes if we don't get the job done."