Ducks and Trojans finally get together

The Oregon Ducks and USC Trojans finally meet on the playing field after a week of hyperbole that will make the atmosphere of Autzen Stadium in Eugene explosive. Oregon (3-0) is ranked No. 24 in the latest AP poll has not faced USC, ranked No. 1 in all polls and the two-time defending national champions in three years. Kickoff for the game is scheduled for 4 p.m. and will be televised live on ABC.

The Trojans lead the overall series 34-15-2, but the Ducks have won four of the last five games. The men of Troy defeated the Ducks in 2004, 44-33 in a game also played at Autzen Stadium.

Oregon Head Coach Mike Bellotti is in his 11th season as the Ducks' boss and has a record of 83-40 record and two conference championships under his belt. Pete Carroll is in his fifth season at USC and has three conference championships and a record of 44-9 (all as USC) as a college coach.

Oregon started off the season by travelling to Houston, Texas and defeating the University of Houston Cougars, 38-24. The following week the Ducks opened up their home season at Autzen by pounding Montana (Div I-AA) 47-14. Last week the then No. 23 Fresno State Bulldogs ventured into Oregon's home stadium and was setback 37-34. Southern California has beaten Hawaii, 63-17 on the road and last week overtook Arkansas, 77-17 at the L.A. Coliseum.

Both coaches have great respect for each other and have been cautious in being quoted about the upcoming match up. Carroll looks at the Oregon game as he would any other match up, and believes his teams' preparation is the key ingredient.

"Do I feel like they are threatening us, and are going to give us a hard time?" responded Carroll in regard to the subject of preparing for Oregon this week. "Absolutely, it doesn't matter who we are playing. I don't think it is because of who we have playing, I think they have a loaded up offense. They have a really good philosophy with how they run their offense. I don't think it has to do with our personnel right now. That isn't what I am concerned about. I am concerned about teaching the game plan, and executing it well so we can hopefully give them some problems. I feel pretty much the same every week about that."

Bellotti similarly praised the Trojans and gave some insight to what it might take to beat USC.

"What I would like to see, just based upon the way their last couple of games have gone, is that it be a fairly low-scoring game," said Bellotti earlier in the week. "I would like to think that our defense is going to step up, and our special teams are going make some field position changes. I don't know that we want to match touchdowns with USC. At this point I think the lower the score the better that is for the Ducks and I think that we have the ability to move the football and we can score points. I am just not sure we can do it quite as fast as USC has shown they have done it the past two games. I think it is important that we contain that scoring and make it a slower pace of the game. I don't know if we can do that. Our idea last week was no huddle and up-tempo. It will be interesting and exciting for everybody."

Kickoff for the game is at 4 p.m. and ABC will televise the game live with Keith Jackson, Dan Fouts and Scott Walker. The game will also have live radio coverage on the Oregon Sports Network with Jerry Allen, Mike Jorgensen and Bobby DiBisschop. The game will be broadcast on a delay basis on OSN Television with Joe Giansante and Anthony Newman on Sat. Sept. 24 on KEZI in Eugene, KDRV (Medford), KDKF (Klamath Falls). Comcast 14 will show the game at 11 p.m. on Saturday night (Sept. 24) and again on Sunday night at 8 p.m. Direct TV (channel 656) will transmit the game on Monday, Sept. 19 at 7:30 p.m. ESPNU and Direct TV will also show the game on Wed., at 10 p.m.

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