Oregon Win-Total Prediction
With a new coach leading the way, can the Oregon Ducks get back on track in the 2017 season?
According to oddsmakers at BetDSI, Oregon is listed with 100/1 odds to win the College Football Playoffs this season. The Ducks are also listed with 15/1 odds to win the Pac-12 in 2017. When it comes to the over/under for regular-season wins, Oregon is listed at 8. The over carries a line of +110, while the under has a money line of -140.
Following a 4-8 record in 2016, Oregon parted ways with Mark Helfrich, just two years after he coached the Ducks to the College Football Playoffs. Helfrich was with Oregon for four years, but was replaced by Willie Taggert. Taggert comes over from South Florida, where he went 24-25 in four years, but improved in each of the four years. USF was 10-2 last season and 7-1 in the AAC.
Normally known for being one of the best offensive teams in the country, Oregon averaged just 35.4 points and 492 yards per game last season. That’s still good, but only ranked 36th nationally. Justin Herbert will be the starting quarterback this season. He threw for 1,936 yards and 19 touchdowns last season in limited action. He appeared in the final eight games of Oregon’s 2016 season. Herbert will have a pair of great backs with him in the backfield. Royce Freeman rushed for 945 yards and nine touchdowns while Tony Brooks-James had 771 yards and nine scores. Oregon loses a pair of top receivers from 2016, but brings back Charles Nelson, who caught a team-high 52 passes for 554 yards last season.
Defensively, Oregon ranked 126th in total yards allowed last year. They gave up 41.4 points and 518 yards per game. Troy Dye is back to lead the defense. He had a team-high 91 tackles with 13 tackles for loss and 6.5 sacks in 2016. Justin Hollins is also back at linebacker. He had 9.5 tackles for loss and three sacks a year ago. Brenden Schooler had a team-high four interceptions at safety in 2016, but is moving over to wide receiver this season.
Oregon opens the season with home games against Southern Utah and Nebraska. It will make a road trip to Wyoming before Pac-12 play as well. Conference home games include Cal, Washington State, Utah, Arizona and Oregon State. The Ducks will travel to Arizona State, Stanford, UCLA and Washington. The schedule seems somewhat favorable for Oregon. The Ducks get a Nebraska team that is working in a new QB. Oregon also gets to avoid USC in conference play and all five home games in Pac-12 play are very winnable. If they take care of business at home and avoid a non-conference loss, they just need one road win in Pac-12 play to get to 9 wins. That is certainly possible. Oregon brings back a lot this year, so I think the offense and defense should both show a lot of improvement.
2017 WIN TOTAL PREDICTION: OREGON OVER 8 (+110)