football - Page 207

Photos: Oregon football media day

The Oregon Ducks football team talked with members of the press this morning for media day before their first official practice session of the season. Practice today is scheduled for 1:15 p.m. at the grass practice fields near the Casanova Center and is open to the public.

Oregon Ducks Head Coach Chip Kelly fielded numerous questions from the press surrounding the team's off-field controversy and their ability to compete nationally next season.(Aaron Marineau/Oregon Daily Emerald)

LaMichael James jokes around with reporters during his interview. (Aaron Marineau/Oregon Daily Emerald)

Oregon Ducks Quarterback Darron Thomas discussed his new role as a team leader with the press as the Ducks begin preparing for their opening game of the season against the LSU Tigers on September 3. (Aaron Marineau/Oregon Daily Emerald)

Oregon football ranked No. 3 in USA Today coaches poll

The University of Oregon football team earned its highest preseason ranking ever, coming in at No. 3 in the USA Today coaches poll that was released on Thursday. The Ducks received a pair of first-place votes and trailed only the top-ranked Oklahoma Sooners and the No. 2 Alabama Crimson Tide.

Prior to this season, Oregon’s highest preseason ranking came in 2001, when the Ducks came in at No. 8 following a co-Pacific-10 Conference Championship in 2000. Last year, Oregon was the 11th-ranked team in the nation in the preseason polls and went on to finish No. 3 in the final polls behind undefeated national champion Auburn and the unbeaten TCU Horned Frogs.

Here’s a look at the poll:

1. Oklahoma (42)
2. Alabama (13)
3. Oregon (2)
4. LSU (2)
5. Florida State
6. Stanford
7. Boise State
8. Oklahoma State
9. Texas A&M
10. Wisconsin
11. Nebraska
12. South Carolina
13. Virginia Tech
14. Arkansas
15. TCU
16. Ohio State
17. Michigan
18. Notre Dame
19. Auburn
20. Mississippi State
21. Missouri
22. Georgia
23. Florida
24. Texas
25. Penn State

Other Pac-12 schools who received votes: Arizona State, Utah, Arizona, Oregon State and Washington.

Photos: Ducks summer football practice

The Oregon Ducks football team took to the practice field today for a light summer workout as they prepare for their showdown with the LSU Tigers on September 3 to open the season. Here are a few frames from the day.

Ducks linebacker Josh Kaddu celebrates hauling in a catch during a light practice session at Pape Field. (Aaron Marineau/Oregon Daily Emerald)

Quarterback Darron Thomas warms up his throwing arm before practice on Thursday, July 21. (Aaron Marineau/Oregon Daily Emerald)

Quarterback Darron Thomas could only watch as Ducks defensive back Erick Dargan stretched out to make the catch as the. Thomas and Dargan, along with several other teammates, took turns in unfamiliar roles as wide reciever and cornerback as part of a good-hearted warm up. (Aaron Marineau/Oregon Daily Emerald)

July 18 – Morning Headlines


July 18 – Morning Headlines

Listen to the Morning Headlines:
Morning Headlines with Steve Kaye


  • Hyw. 38 fatal crash 
    74 year old pick-up driver loses his life in Sunday crash near Elkton
  • Eugene officer injured slightly in afternoon accident
    A Eugene police officer was slightly injured in a crash Sunday afternoon in the northbound lanes of Delta Highway just north of the Interstate 105 onramp, police said. Officer Kara Williams, a nine-year veteran with the Eugene department, was in one of…
  • Eugene Courthouse community garden receives major donation
    One of Eugene’s newest community gardens, the Courthouse Garden is celebrating success through a major donation to help it keep growing.
  • Change coming for Springfield’s ward boundaries
    Springfield’s ward boundaries will get some tweaking this year, thanks to uneven growth in the city. According to the 2010 Census, more people are moving into the city’s eastern wards.
  • EMU Fishbowl to undergo renovations, additions
    To coincide with Oregon 2020, a comprehensive plan that includes enhancing the student experience by designing opportunities for community engagement, the EMU Fishbowl is planning to add new additions in hopes of bringing a livelier atmosphere to campu
  • Oregon football nearing start of summer camp
    The Oregon football team broke out of the Willie Lyles stranglehold this week and made a few promising headlines as the start of summer camp draws near. The Ducks have been running voluntary workout sessions on the practice fields outside the Casanova


Tim Chuey Weather:

We’re starting the week off warming up today, but we’ll just go back to like last week ended. There is summer weather out there, but we can’t seem to find it

An upper level trough of low pressure (“U” shape) has moved in along the coast and will keep us alternating between periods of clouds and cooler temperatures, and rain or drizzle and even a thunderstorm thrown in for good measure, then back to less cloudy and slightly warming temperatures until late next week. A frontal system will be approaching the Pacific Northwest by midweek which would indicate the that there seems to be no end to this wet “Springlike” weather pattern soon. We could see a change over next weekend, but it is too soon to get too excited about it until there is some hard evidence it is possible.

Mostly cloudy this AM with a slight (20%) chance of showers, partly cloudy with a (30%) chance of showers and a slight (20%) chance of thunderstorms this afternoon and evening, mostly cloudy with a good (50%) chance of showers late tonight (0.50 in. of rain possible, more in thunderstorms), mostly cloudy and cooler Tuesday with a good (50%) chance of showers and a slight (20%) chance of thunderstorms in the afternoon and evening (under 0.10 in. of rain possible, more in thunderstorms), mostly cloudy Tuesday night and Wednesday AM, partly cloudy with a (20%) chance of showers Wednesday afternoon and evening, mostly cloudy with a slight (20%) chance of showers Wednesday night highs 81-70 warming to 76 Wednesday lows 54-50. Partly cloudy with a slight (20%) chance of showers Thursday and Thursday evening, then just partly cloudy Thursday night through Sunday highs 75-82 lows near 48. (seasonal averages high 82 low 51)

The Pollen forecast for the Eugene/Springfield Area is for trees and weeds to be low, and Grass to be moderate. (Provided by Allergy and Asthma Research Group)

Because weather forecasting is a combination of science, intuition, and timing there can be no absolute guarantees that individual forecasts will be 100% accurate. Nature is in a constant state of flux and sudden unexpected weather events can happen.

Keep Current on the Weather:


Click for an opinion piece on government architecture trends

Oregon football nearing start of summer camp

The Oregon football team broke out of the Willie Lyles stranglehold this week and made a few promising headlines as the start of summer camp draws near.

The Ducks have been running voluntary workout sessions on the practice fields outside the Casanova Center and from the looks of it things have gotten back on track.

Oregon cornerback Cliff Harris resumed practice with his teammates after taking some time to settle several issues related to unpaid traffic fines over the past few years.

A total of $4,486 in payments were submitted on behalf of Harris to a collections agency, which stemmed from fines related to five violation committed in his hometown.

Harris also settled nearly $4,300 in outstanding fines locally.

Elsewhere in Oregon football news, the Ducks received word that quarterback Jeff Lockie of Danville, Calif., intends to join the latest Oregon recruiting class. According to a report by, the Ducks offered Lockie a scholarship via a phone conversation on Wednesday with Mark Helfrich, Oregon’s offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach.

Rated as a three-star recruit by and a two-star recruit by, Lockie chose Oregon after previously receiving a scholarship offer from San Diego State.

Behind starter Darron Thomas and backup Bryan Bennett, Oregon will also have incoming freshman Marcus Mariota along with Lockie and fellow Ducks signee Jake Rodrigues on the 2012 quarterback depth chart.

On the awards front, Oregon continued to pull in national recognition in the preseason. Junior LaMichael James is up for his second straight Doak Walker Award as the nation’s top running back, Thomas is in the running for the Davey O’Brien Award, and Josh Kaddu is among the selections for the Butkus Award as the nation’s best linebacker.

Other Pac-12 opponents under consideration for the Doak Walker Award include Arizona’s Keola Antolin, UCLA’s Johnathan Franklin and Washington’s Chris Polk.

On the Davey O’Brien watch list, Thomas is joined by Stanford’s Andrew Luck, Arizona’s Nick Foles, USC’s Matt Barkley and Utah’s Jordan Wynn.

Kaddu is joined by Arizona State’s Vontaze Burfict, USC’s Chris Galippo, California’s Mychal Kendricks, and Stanford’s Shayne Skov on the Butkus Award watch list.

Pleased To Meet You…


Pleased To Meet You…
– Sam Finley, EDN

EDN Sports Editor

Greetings!  You may have read a handfull of my pieces I’ve done for EDN or other publications in town.  Or you may want to know one question: Who the heck is this guy?

So with the latter in mind, let me formally introduce myself.  My name is Sam Finley and I am now your humble sports editor for the Eugene Daily News.  I’ve covered U of O athletics on and off since 2000, and I’m looking forward to the challenge of developing the EDN sports page into something no one else has seen in this area.

But rather than blather on with a lengthy introduction, why don’t I give you a few random thoughts about the sporting scene (both local and not-so-local) at the moment?

First off, somebody asked me what I thought about the MLB All-Star Game on Tuesday.  Here’s the answer?  I didn’t watch it.  My feeling was, with all the big name players like Derek Jeter that didn’t care enough to show up for it, that it just isn’t the big deal it was 10-20 years ago.  Apparently, many across the country felt the same way, as this one drew the worst TV ratings in the All-Star Game’s history.  Thus, why waste my time?

Cory Spangenberg has swung his last bat for the Emeralds.

Staying on baseball, if you haven’t been following the Eugene Emeralds this season, you’re missing out.  Currently, the Ems have a 21-6 record, and these young Padres’ prospects have been fun to watch so far.  It’ll be interesting to see how they do now without Cory Spangenberg (who was promoted up to San Diego’s Fort Wayne affiliate two days ago), but that’s the beauty of the Class A level:  You really never know what, aside from funny mascots like Sluggo, you’re going to get.

Switching gears a bit, with all of the great quarterbacks that Oregon has had over the years, it can be hard to pick just who is the greatest in the Ducks’ history.  Norm Van Brocklin comes to mind, as does Dan Fouts.  An honorable nod must also be made to guys like Bill Musgrave, Akilli Smith, Kellen Clemens, and Dennis Dixon, who could’ve brought the U of O to much greater heights if injuries (to themselves or others) hadn’t got in the way.

But here’s my pick for the best ever: Joey Harrington.  The guy only lost three games as a starter during his two-and-a-half years.  He also led the Ducks to two Pac-10 championships, as well as their highest overall national ranking (at number two) in 2001.  No, he didn’t rewrite the Oregon record books like Musgrave or Smith, and he certainly didn’t have the greatest arm in the world.

Joey simply knew how to do one thing: win.  To this day, I still believe that he should’ve finished higher than fourth in the 2001 Heisman Trophy vote.  Having said all that, if Darron Thomas has another couple of outstanding seasons as the main signal caller, I may have to reconsider my position.

Speaking of current Oregon football players, I’m sure a lot of you are excited for the upcoming season.  Coming off a BCS game appearance last year, and opening this one against a loaded team like LSU will certainly do that.  However, I also know a lot of you are troubled by some of the alleged recruiting violations being investigated by the NCAA right now.

It doesn’t help matters when a few people in the local media have quickly rushed to judgement that head coach Chip Kelly is hiding something.

Sluggo is hoping the Ems' winning ways can continue.

How can they know about his guilt?  No one should assume any innocence or guilt until all the facts are in.  We don’t know what Chip said to the NCAA, and won’t until this information is released.  

In light of this, some have suggested that Oregon should release all the documents now to prove they’ve done nothing wrong .  But as Lee Corso likes to say: Not so fast, my friend.

Contrary to the pontifications of some out there, the best thing that the U of O can do at the moment is remain silent until the investigations cover an actual grey area. Why?  Well, I’m running out of word space, so a more definitive explanation will be provided in next week’s column.  In the meantime, support your local athletics programs and we’ll see you in the bleachers.

June 29 – Morning Headlines


June 29 – Morning Headlines

  • Tim Chuey WeatherLook for improving weather as we approach the end of the week, then really nice weather for the long 4th of July holiday weekend:Forecast for the Southern and lower Mid Willamette Valley including Eugene-Springfield and Albany-Corvallis:Mostly cloudy with a slight (20%) chance of showers today, a (30%) chance of showers this evening, a slight (20%) chance of showers late tonight and Thursday AM, a mix of clouds and sun in the afternoon, mostly cloudy Thursday evening, partly cloudy late Thursday night and Friday AM, mostly sunny and warmer in the afternoon, then partly cloudy Friday night highs 69-77 lows near 49. Partly cloudy Saturday AM, mostly sunny and a bit warmer Saturday afternoon, then partly cloudy Saturday night through Monday AM, mostly sunny and slightly warmer Monday afternoon (Independence Day), mostly clear Monday night, then mostly sunny Tuesday highs 77-86 lows 50-53. (seasonal averages high 77 low 49).

    The Pollen forecast for the Eugene/Springfield Area is for weeds and trees to be low, and Grass to be high. (Provided by Allergy and Asthma Research Group).

    Because weather forecasting is a combination of science, intuition, and timing there can be no absolute guarantees that individual forecasts will be 100% accurate. Nature is in a constant state of flux and sudden unexpected weather events can happen.

    Updates available at

  • Two county unions shifting to cheaper health benefit plan
    Two Lane County unions intend to switch to a cheaper health care plan for the county, which could lower the number of unpaid days off that the county administration will require of workers in the coming year. Public Works Association Local 626 and Lane…
  • Local man with a webcam says LTD bus ran red light
    LTD says the citizen-recorded video helped its investigation into the incident. Last week a local man captured video of what appears to be a Lane Transit District EmX bus running a red light on Gateway Street (near Applebees) in Springfield. Ben Haller…
  • Eugene Police Believe Kidnapping Suspect may be in Pocatello
    Officers with the Eugene Police Department in Oregon are looking for a kidnapping suspect who they believe may be hiding out in Pocatello. A spokesperson for Eugene Police says Lance Pa…
  • Downtown Eugene Pits Filled
    Eyesores, big holes, whatever you called downtown Eugene’s pits, now you can call them “gone.” They’ve been part of downtown for decades, but now they are no more as both are …
  • Eugene Dog Ownership Limits Will Be Discussed
    The amount of dogs a person could house was increased to three back in 2005 by Eugene City Council, but now there’s discussion on lowering it again. The council will discus…
  • VA, DeFazio team to offer vets eBenefits
    US Congressman Peter DeFazio and the Department of Veterans Affairs have arranged a series of registration events for the VA’s new online eBenefit service, which allows veterans to moni…
  • Purina recalls bags of dry cat food sold in Oregon
    Purina has recalled 870 bags of dry cat food. The food may have been contaminated with salmonella, the company said in an alert on its web site.
  • MLB suspends Eugene’s Donavan Tate
    Eugene Emeralds outfielder Donavan Tate was suspended 50 games by Major League Baseball on Tuesday for a second positive test for a drug of abuse, a violation of the minor league…
  • Ems win seventh straight
    The Eugene Emeralds scored 11 runs on 11 hits to win their seventh straight game 11-0 over Salem Keizer Tuesday night at PK Park. Clint Moore went 2-3 with two runs scored and two …and more »
  • Ducks take on Texas in demo for new video game
    Oregon Duck fans can take on Texas on Xbox LIVE and PlayStation Network starting Tuesday in the demo for EA Sports NCAA Football 12.

Not Just Another Football Game For The Ducks


Not Just Another Game
– Sam Finley EDN

46k fans turned out for a preview of what's coming this season.

It didn’t determine much as far as how the Ducks will do in the fall, but this year’s Oregon spring football game was one of the most spirited in recent memory.  A record crowd of 43,468 fans showed up at Autzen Stadium on Saturday to view an event that was probably more emotional for the events between the plays than during the action.

The Ducks saluted members of the U.S. military for the second consecutive year with ceremonies before kickoff, during halftime, and after the game.  They also honored the recent death of Eugene Police officer Chris Kilcullen, by providing a special jersey bearing his badge number 248 to members of his family. According to coaches and players, moments like these put certain things like football in perspective.

“The atmosphere was unbelievable,” explained head coach Chip Kelly. “It’s not just about our football program, and they weren’t just here for the game.  They came to honor the troops as well as to honor the memory of officer Kilcullen.  It was a chance to say ‘thank you’ to the people who make the ultimate sacrifice for the rest of us on a daily basis.”

Officer Chris Kilcullen was honored with a ceremony at halftime

“It was an eye-opener for a lot of us,” said junior quarterback Darron Thomas. “It’s all about caring about one another and helping out one another. Today was all about putting a smile on our soldiers’ faces. It was certainly a big joy for me.”

As for the actual game itself, the green team defeated the white team 16-0 in a game where the offensive output on both sides was sparse.  Junior running back LaMichael James scored the game’s only touchdown with a 68 yard run early in the first quarter.

“It was just great blocking from the offensive line,” said the potential Heisman trophy contender about the score. “They blocked well and all I had to do was run.”

Another offensive spark came from incoming freshman tight end Colt Lyerla.  He caught three passes from Thomas for 36 yards. Not a bad performance considering that over a month ago, he was attending Hilsboro High School. The 6’5, 225-pound newcomer believed his decision to graduate early to practice this spring was worth it.

“I definitely got a taste of what it’s going to be like,” explained Lyerla about his spring. “It’s been tough learning the offensive schemes, but it’s definitely a work in progress.”

Junior Lamichael James made the only score of the game

Otherwise, the defense on both the green and white squads dominated the day. There were several hard-hitting plays, as the normally high octane offensive players were held in check by defensive end Dion Jordan, who had two sacks, as well as some hard-hitting tackles from linebackers like Kiko Alonso and Michael Clay. As the spring comes to a close, Clay believes that there is plenty of talent on the squad ready to replace defensive leaders such as Casey Matthews, who was drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles this weekend.

“Casey had an awesome football IQ,” claimed Clay.  “But I think we all know bits and pieces, and if we put it together, then we know a lot.  For that reason, I think we’ll be just fine.”

Indeed, when fall camp opens in August, the Ducks will have a month to prepare for their season opener.  They’ll start in Dallas, Texas against LSU.  It won’t be an easy first one, but it’ll certainly determine if they will once again contend for a national title.

“We’ll have to put our man pants on for that one,” said defensive coordinator Nick Aliotti.

Yet the Ducks don’t seem to be sweating the opening game, and are eager to apply any lessons learned this spring over the summer.

“We just have to keep improving as a team,” explained senior tight end David Paulson. “I like how we progressed in the past couple of weeks.  Now we just have to get focused on getting stronger in the weight room and get ready for fall.”

“I really happy with how the spring went and I’m looking forward to the summer,” said LaMichael James. “They say defense wins championships and offense wins games.  Well, I think we have one of the best defenses in the country and our offense will be ready to go.”

EDN is pleased to welcome sports writer Sam Finley to the team.

May 2 – Morning Headlines


Here are the local headlines:

Tim Chuey: Mostly cloudy with AM rain today, afternoon showers likely (60%) and cooler, mostly cloudy with a slight (20%) chance of showers tonight and cooler.

Duck linebacker Kiko Alonso arrested
Lane County Corrections has confirmed University of Oregon linebacker Kristian “Kiko” Alonso was arrested and released from the Lane County Jail Sunday.

Ricks, Blackett wins Eugene Marathon
By KVAL Sports 31 year old, Justin Ricks of Pueblo, CO won the Men’s Eugene Marathon on Sunday morning. He finished with a time of 2:22:05. 34 year old Katie Blackett of Boulder, CO claimed the Women’s Eugene Marathon.

Ducks honor Chris Kilkullen
The Ducks honored fallen Eugene Police Officer Chris Kilcullen duirng a special half-time ceremony during Saturdays spring game.

Oregon’s Spring game – Green beats White 16-0
The Oregon Ducks exited spring football practice Saturday with soaring expectations that are tempered by some offensive questions. The game was attended by the record estimated crowd of 43,468, which dwarfed last year’s attendance of 25,211.


March 8 – Morning Headlines


The morning headlines from around Eugene/Sprinfield on this 100th Anniversary of International Womens Day:

Morning forecast from Tim Chuey Weather
Increasing chance for getting wet today. Look for valley rain and mountain snow that will be down to pass levels and lower (8am update)
Business tax break added to bill
The state’s first-ever evenly split House results in big changes.
City tax proposal challenged
A Lane County resident challenging Eugene’s proposed income tax, charges the wording of the proposed income tax is illegal and unfair.
Husband says woman died in fall from pickup
A local man told police that his wife died after she accidentally fell from his pickup onto Highway 99 near Goshen early Sunday morning.
Inmate’s death apparently suicide
City and state police are investigating the death of an inmate who apparently used a bedsheet to hang himself in a Springfield Municipal Jail cell on Sunday.
Ice fans seek more fundraising time
Hockey fans and other supporters of the Lane County Ice Center say they’re unlikely to meet this month’s deadline of raising $2.4 million to keep the beleaguered county-owned facility open.
Robinson says OSU targeting his kids
Art Robinson is alleging that the school is conspiring to expel his three children — all graduate students there — as political payback for his activism.
Oil threatens state rebound
Oregon’s economy is improving, but rapidly rising oil prices threaten those gains, economist Tim Duy said, based on the latest University of Oregon Index of Economic Indicators.
Football players have some sort of brain damage, states top neurologist
If you played the game of football in high school, college and most especially if you’re a professional National Football League (NFL) player, your brain has been damaged due to repeated impact.

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