ROAD WARRIORS – No. 2 Oregon Hopes to Push Its Consecutive Road Winning Streak to 17 Against Colorado
It’s nearly been 36 months since Oregon’s football team has lost on the road.
Now, before you lob dozens of emails our way and point out the 2011 game when the Ducks lost their opener to LSU in Dallas, Texas’,…keep in mind, that game wasn’t considered a true road game since it was played on a neutral-site.
For those who can’t remember, it was a sunny Saturday afternoon on November 7th 2009, when Oregon traveled into Palo Alto, California ranked #7 in the country and lost 51-42 to Stanford in Chip Kelly’s first year as the Ducks head coach.
Since that day in early November nearly 3 years ago, Oregon ( 4-0 / 1-0 ) has gone on to win 16 consecutive road games, and look to increase that number to 17 when the Ducks travel to Boulder this Saturday to take on the Colorado Buffaloes ( 2-1 / 0-1 ).
Saturday’s quick two hour flight to Denver will only be Oregon’s second road trip this season.
Four weeks ago, the No. 2 Ducks traveled cross country to Charlottesville where they dispatched the Virginia Cavaliers 59-10.
At 16 consecutive road wins, the Ducks currently lead the nation in that category followed by Northern Illinois with 11 and Alabama with 10.
“I just love the atmosphere when we’re away,” said center Hroniss Grasu this week.
“In away games when you’ve got the fans yelling at you and all that stuff, you try to take it out of your mind,…but it’s all fun.”
When asked about the Ducks success on the road, Oregon coach Mark Helfrich gives much of the credit to his teams ability to focus on the task at hand and not allowing outside distractions influence their play.
“I think there is a certain element of less distractions on the road” explained Helfrich.
“There’s less guys worried about tickets …and who’s coming to sleep in their bed,…and whatever those things are that come with playing at home. We don’t look at it as an us against the world mentality,…it’s us against us….and try to compete against ourselves,…whatever we did yesterday, do it better.”
Consistency in preparation, schedule and details certainly has a lot to do with the teams success.
“I think it comes down to the coaches,” says defensive end Taylor Hart.
“We stay in Eugene ( early on Friday before departure ),… we practice here, and then we fly and we go to the hotel and have meetings. It’s pretty much the same deal for us.”
In their last visit to Boulder two years ago, the Ducks ran through and around Colorado demolishing the Buffaloes 45-2.
In that game, backup quarterback Bryan Bennett replaced starter Darron Thomas ( who was injured ) and threw two touchdowns and was 11 of 20 for 156 yards.
Senior RB LaMichael James also sat out due to an elbow injury and was replaced by Kenjon Barner who rushed for 120 yards and 2 touchdowns.
* Redshirt sophomore quarterback Marcus Mariota looks to extend his streak of 17 consecutive games throwing a touchdown pass.
* Mariota is 7-0 away from home as a starting quarterback and is 16-1 in his Oregon career.
* Oregon leads the all-time series with Colorado ( 9-8 ), and has won 3 consecutive.
* In eight visits to Boulder, Oregon has split those games. ( 4-4 )
* Oregon, Clemson and New Mexico are the only three teams yet to throw an interception.
* Oregon has scored 50 or more points in four consecutive games for the first time in school history.