|ESPN.com: Pac-12||[Print without images]|
Posted by ESPN.com's Ted Miller
EUGENE, Ore. -- Considering Oregon's dominant 44-10 victory over Washington, the "10" might be more impressive than the "44," which is unusual for a program that's built a reputation for unstoppable offenses and bend-but-don't(always)-break defenses.
Ducks defensive coordinator Nick Aliotti couldn't wait to read the final box score, which he was glad to do out loud.
"95 yards rushing... 242 total yards... less than 50 percent completion rate," he said. "Yes, I'm very pleased."
The Ducks, who recorded their fifth consecutive victory over the Huskies for the first time in the history of the rivalry, blew Washington away, 55-34, a year ago, but the Huskies eclipsed 400 yards of offense.
Not this time.
The Huskies averaged just 2.2 yards per rush, and dual-threat QB Jake Locker was mostly contained, rushing for 57 yards -- he lost 26 on sacks -- and passing for 103 yards, connecting on only 12 of his 28 throws.
"I'd say the Ducky D did pretty well," DE Nick Reed said. "This year, I think the defense is going to take a bigger role."
Huskies freshman TB Chris Polk finished with 19 yards on 14 carries, his longest run going for five yards.
While everyone knew the Ducks secondary was outstanding, the up-the-middle defense -- particularly with two new starting DTs -- was suspect.
Didn't seem that way against Washington, which entered the game with four returning starters on one of the most experienced offensive lines in the Pac-10.
"Everyone can quiet down about that now," Reed said.
Oregon had three sacks, including two from end Will Tukuafu. The Huskies only produced two substantial drives, and their best plays came on Locker scrambles.
"Maybe the best part of what we did was defend Locker," coach Mike Bellotti said.
The only downside: The Ducks didn't force any turnovers, a specialty a year ago.
The Huskies ranked second in the Pac-10 in 2007 in rushing, with 203 yards per game, but couldn't find cracks in the newly stout Oregon defense.
"We just couldn't run the ball," coach Tyrone Willingham said.