5 keys to Washington State beating Oregon

NOTHING EXTRAORDINARY on offense is needed for the Cougars to hang with Oregon as long as WSU plays sounds football. On defense, though, the keys to victory are very specific.


1. Protect the Quarterback.

Oregon's secondary has looked very porous this season.  If the WSU offensive line can buy him time, Luke Falk should have a productive day.

2. Avoid Turnovers.

The Ducks do not defend complex passing well, but their defense is premised on creating turnovers so they still welcome teams to throw.


3. Contain Freeman.

Oregon does not have a pro-caliber passer to work with, so the entire system hinges on the success of Royce Freeman and the zone read rushing attack.

4. Stay home and make your tackles.

This zone read tries to confuse and generate mistakes.  Stay home let don't over commit.  The Ducks are easily beat in passing situations.

5. Expect the unexpected.

Mark Helfrich is a gambler and WSU has paid off like a loose slot machine on special teams.  Expect the Ducks to take a chance or two with some special teams trickery.

Kickoff: 3 p.m./Pac-12 Networks
CF.C Prediction: 28-27 Cougs

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