Pac-12 Game Preview: Oregon vs. Tennessee


Three seasons ago, the Oregon Ducks decimated the Tennessee Volunteers and with the second ranked team in the nation heading into their week three re-match with the Vols, they’ll have a great chance to do it again.

Through two weeks in 2013, it’s been easy going for the Ducks, who’ve already scored more than 120 points and amassed more than 1,300 yards of total offense. Oregon has also enjoyed five 100-yard rushing performances, including a pair from both De’Anthony Thomas and Marcus Mariota in the team’s first two contests – numbers that should look mighty intimidating to the Volunteers.

While it’s unlikely that the Vols will put a stop to Oregon’s premier rushing attack, they’ll hope to at least slow the Ducks down. However, considering Tennessee has allowed nearly 600 total rushing yards against inferior opponents such as Austin Peay and Western Kentucky, limiting the Ducks’ ground game seems like a pretty tall order.

If they aren’t able to impede Oregon’s bevy of speedy ball carriers, the Vols’ only other option would be to keep up on the scoreboard. Fortunately, Tennessee has shown it can score points so far this year (48.5 per game), but as mentioned above, they haven’t exactly been challenged by quality foes.

Of course, you could say the same for Oregon – which has defeated Nicholls State and Virginia this season – but with so many offensive weapons and that lightning quick tempo, the Ducks obviously have the significant edge heading into their game with Tennessee.

Still, the Vols are the best team Oregon has faced thus far. There’s no denying that Tennessee has plenty of talent (coming out of the SEC and all), but this bettor can’t help but remember what happened when these two schools met a few years ago. And this Oregon team is even better than the one that thrashed the Vols 48-13 in 2010.

So, we’ve easily determined that Oregon will win this one. Considering the Ducks are a 28-point favorite, picking them on the moneyline would be wise – but not super profitable – however, taking them to cover that massive spread is a little trickier. Oregon won its last game by 49 points, but it certainly won’t beat the Vols that badly. Once again, I can’t help but use the 2010 meeting between these schools as a precedent to pick this one. The Ducks won by more than 30 then and since they are stacked with even more talent this time around, it would seem they could win by a similar margin (or more) again.

Take Oregon to cover -28 on Saturday.

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