One week in the books, and we’re a week of games away from the quarter mark of the season. Oregon and Florida are both coming off wins from last week and both were able to make it by a couple of scores. It just took the Ducks a little longer to get that separation. Okay, a lot longer, but still big win for each team. Unfortunately, I doubt either team is going to win this game by a wide margin like last week. However, here’s what you can expect.
Neutral turf is exciting, and that means the Ducks are going to attack behind their offensive player of the week, halfback Jimmy Tickle. Quarterback Devonta Cribbs is going to be able to balance things out with receivers Dijon Swann, Coty Betts, and Williams Cope. All of whom had a nice game last week, but none moreso than Tickle. He had 28 carries for 166 yards with two rushing touchdowns and it was a nice night. Davonte Lawson played well as a safety valve tight end, and Cope put up 100 yards in receiving.
Defensively, it’s nice to turn up three turnovers, all interceptions. It’s also odd considering that this Oregon defense isn’t great in the secondary. Good, but they’re not the best. Statistically speaking, nobody looked stellar, but as a whole the Oregon defense played well. Safety Shaka Black led the way with six tackles, and then linebacker Joe Clark Jr. followed that up with four tackles of his own. Again, this Oregon defense played well as a unit, but they’ll need to be better tonight.
Kingston Fox didn’t have a bad debut up at the quarterback position in the Newcomer game. But it was definitely different from his debut as Florida’s quarterback. Fox put up 368 passing yards with four touchdowns through the air with an interception. It wasn’t the rushing performance Fox had in his CFSL debut, but receiver Nick King put up nine catches for 140 yards with two receiving touchdowns. The Fox-King connection is off to a great start and can only improve. It helps when receiver Darren Pegues had a fantastic kickoff return where halfback Avery Jordan was able to tally 19 carries for 103 yards with two rushing touchdowns. Receiver Cole King was able to add some relief as well.
The Florida defense is another matter entirely. Linebacker Xavier Halle totaled eight tackles, four of which were behind enemy lines. Safeties Othello Jones and Elliot Wells then combined for a total of 29 tackles, of which Wells had 18. It was impressive defensive performance for the back half of the defense, especially since they only gave up 17 points in total.
HB Jimmy Tickle vs. MLB Xavier Halle
These two are going to go head-to-head consistently. And the only question is, how many yards will Tickle again? Halle has proven a knack for getting in the backfield, but we’ll see if he can do that tonight to Tickle. And how that plays out is going to be pretty entertaining for all parties involved tonight.
Oregon has their work cut out for themselves in dealing with Kingston Fox. More importantly, Florida will get to have fun limiting Tickle, which puts pressure on Devonta Cribbs. We’ve seen Cribbs rise to the occasion once before, but this time, he’s going to have to do it against a pretty talented secondary. In order for Florida to win, Fox has to play great, and Tickle shouldn’t be allowed to. That’s not possible. Oregon wins by seven.