Ducks motivated for Huskies

Originally Published: October 29, 2003
By Ted Miller | Special to
So what does Oregon's 35-0 victory over Stanford mean? The Ducks first shutout of a conference opponent since 1992 reversed nearly every recent downward trend, but it's worth noting that they similarly buried Stanford 41-14 last year, their only win over the final seven games. Coach Mike Bellotti repeatedly has rejected equating this season with last, so it's no surprise he is spinning things in a positive direction. "This game in my mind was signaling a new direction for us," he said.

During the three-game losing streak the Stanford victory ended, the Ducks didn't intercept a pass and were minus-10 in turnovers. They had three interceptions vs. Stanford and won the turnover battle 4-2. They had just four sacks during the losing streak, but equaled that tally against Stanford. After scoring two touchdowns or less in four consecutive games, the Ducks rolled up four touchdowns and 458 yards against the Cardinal, led impressively by a career-high 172 yards rushing from tailback Terrence Whitehead.

Still, Bellotti knows that a truer test will be had Saturday at Washington. "Whether we're there or not, we're going to find out against the Huskies," he said.

Ted Miller | email

ESPN Senior Writer