20 for '23: On the Ducks, Beavers and Vikings as the college football season begins
On Bo Nix, the DJU Heisman campaign, culture tests, best home games and more as football returns.
College football in Oregon is back. Here are 20 thoughts to ring in the 2023 football season.
1. A test of culture
It’s a bit of a shame we’re only going to get one matchup of Dan Lanning’s Ducks against Deion Sanders’ Colorado Buffaloes. Sure, Lanning smoked a cigar after signing day and even took a shot at Primetime’s program last month when he asked what Colorado had ever won in the Pac-12. Otherwise, Lanning guards the inner workings of his program like it’s Fort Knox. Meanwhile, in addition to having cameras follow him around all the time, Sanders let the folks over at ESPN in for a look, which included this quote: “I don’t care about culture. I don’t care. I don’t care if they like each other, man. I want to win.”
The Buffaloes have 86 new players on their roster. The Ducks have a handful of their own.
“We have over 45 newcomers on scholarship, over 50 players on our team that are new to our roster. You hope they do a great job of transitioning in with the guys we already have here. One thing that has been great is the opportunities we get to spend together away from football.”
2. Game face
You all saw it during the offseason. There’s proof out there.
Dan Lanning smiling. Dan Lanning laughing. Dan Lanning having a good time.
Heck, team outings during the summer at the coach’s Eugene household were raved about amongst the locker room. Just days before camp, they even went out paint-balling.
“I was a popular target,” Lanning said last month.
But lately, Lanning’s been in business mode. And it’s not just around the assembled media.
“There’s a level of seriousness that comes in with the season,” said offensive lineman Marcus Harper. “That man has been at the highest of the highs and he wants to do it as his own head coach. We feel it. Every single one of us in the building feel it and we want that level of success for ourselves. He’s been there before, so everyone is buying in to changing what we need to do to make that jump from good to great.”
3. Pick your QB room
Oregon’s Bo Nix, Ty Thompson and Austin Novosad
Oregon State’s DJ Uiagalelei, Ben Gulbranson and Aidan Chiles