Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Dooley takes on Oregon: Aims at programs like Oregon to model UT

By Dan Harralson

The Pac-10 defending champions roll into Neyland Stadium Saturday. They come in as the 12.5 point favorite and without giving up a point to the opposition. Sure it was New Mexico week one and sure some may say the Tennessee program is down. The Oregon football program reminds me of the Tennessee program of the mid to late 1990's. Replacing quarterbacks is an after thought when you have the pieces around it that makes the most important position work. Look at a 1998 Tee Martin: Tee was a redshirt Junior. Martin red-shirted and benefited by learning as a backup (plus the fact the tools were all around him - called a team.) This Oregon team reminds me of a team that can sneak up on people, due to the tools around the quarterback position that generates the flow of the team. The redshirt senior, Nate Costa, is ready more than ever to lead Oregon back to Pasadena (and who knows maybe Glendale the way college football is off to this season.) The Hilmar, California product is surrounded by offensive talent Kenjon Barner, Remene Alston, Jeff Maehl, David Paulson, plus a Cliff Harris (just to name a few.) The point is, that Oregon has ran their football program the right way in their conference. They have not taken any shortcuts and/or have indulged in any ineligible players regarding their program (like another Pac-10 program that illegally benefited off success recently disclaiming the rights to others.) Rich Brooks laid the foundation, followed by Mike Bellotti and now the 2010 Oregon team could very well be in parallels to 2004 Auburn: undefeated and left out. If Oregon gets by road tests at Tennessee and USC, the Ducks could easily finish undefeated and become left out (if Alabama and Ohio State remain unblemished.) Oregon's program has came a long way and they are ready to stay near the top of college football's best programs. Today I had the privilege of talking to Derek Dooley. Below is Coach Dooley on Oregon running a football program the right way:

My Prediction: Oregon 34 Tennessee 20