Posted with permission from Bleacher Report
In a blog post by Ken Woody, a former player for Oregon and assistant coach for Washington, he listed the following quote from Kelly:
"We're not going to line up our best against the rest like the Huskies did in their spring game. They ran their number one offense against the number two and three defenses so Jake Locker could go 16 of 18 with two drops. And they had their number one defense up against the second and third offense so they could shut someone out. We're going to compete. The number one offense will go against the number one defense."
Apparently the importance of the rivalry between Oregon and Washington is not lost on Kelly. In truth, it's a rivalry that has lost some of its luster due to Washington's current slump.
The games between the Ducks and Huskies have just not been very competitive the last few years, and as much as it pains me to admit it, I like that Kelly is trying to inject some fire into it.
That being said, the cultures at Oregon and Washington couldn't be any different. Oregon is at the top of the Pac-10, while Washington is most assuredly at the bottom.
Going 0-12 is extremely damaging to the psyche of a program and could create a downward spiral if a change in attitude doesn't occur.
I'm going to defend Steve Sarkisian to some extent, as I don't think it is completely unreasonable to pit the first team against the second team. I think in a way it sparks its own competition. The second teamers could either hang their heads while the first teamers celebrate, or they can put their heads down and get better.
At the same time, the first team needs that boost in confidence going into summer. Sure, it exposed a huge lack of depth on the team, but Locker and the team came off the field smiling, which is something you couldn't say about last year.
As for it padding Locker's stats, I think you could say that, but I would also contend that Locker really is better. He was putting a great touch and accuracy on all his throws throughout spring.
And don't be too harsh on the second team defense—they did sack Locker four times in the game.
The other thing that needs to be taken into account is the health of the team. The Huskies were starting to feel the effects of a much more intense and physical spring, unlike anything they had experienced over the last four years. There were some questions of depth going into the spring game.
The last thing they needed was the ones beating up on each other.
These are two new head coaches, in Kelly and Sarkisian, that come from competitive offensive backgrounds. It would certainly be fun to see them start to go at it in the years to come.
It wouldn't be surprising if both coaches start ramping up the offense against each other. I certainly hope that Oregon fans are as hopeful as I am that the rivalry will get back on its competitive feet.
For more opinions on Oregon Football read Bleacher Report
Kelly Wastes No Time Spicing Up Rivalry
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