FROM EUGENE -- A few clouds dot the sky here, but the sun still dominates what appears to be a pretty ideal October afternoon, weather-wise. Weather.com predicts a temperature of 72 degrees at kickoff. Can't ask for much better than that. Well, you could. It just would be greedy, is all.
Anyway, here is our gameday box and players to watch.
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WASHINGTON (5-1, 1-1 in Pac-12) at No. 9 Oregon (5-1, 2-1)
5 p.m. PT, Autzen Stadium
TV: FOX Sports 1. Radio: 1000-AM, 97.7 FM.
The series: Washington leads the series 58-43-5.
What to watch: Can the Huskies’ pass rush get to Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota? UW ranks third nationally with 24 sacks through six games, and Hau’oli Kikaha leads that effort with 10 – more than anyone in the country. Meanwhile, the Ducks’ offensive line, ravaged by injuries, has allowed 15 sacks through six games, though that unit got a big lift last week with the return of left tackle Jake Fisher. WSU sacks Mariota seven times earlier this season. Washington might need a similar effort to throw off the Ducks’ offense well enough to have a chance to win. … UW’s offense will have its hands full against a fast, athletic Oregon defense led by All-American cornerback Ifo Ekpre-Olomu. But the Ducks do rank 107th in total defense (470.3 yards per game) and 85th in yards-per-play allowed (5.8). Might be a good game to get the ball in John Ross’ hands about 12 times. … Can UW’s defense continue its turnover spree? The Huskies have scored five defensive touchdowns this season, four of those by linebacker Shaq Thompson, and that’s helped make up for what has been a pretty shaky performance by the offense. They’ll need to force a few more turnovers to slow Mariota and Oregon’s trio of talented running backs.
The pick: Oregon, 31-17.
No. Name Pos. Ht. Wt. Year
10 Cyler Miles QB 6-4 225 R-So.
Has to play best game of young career for Huskies to have a shot.
1 John Ross WR 5-11 179 So.
Big-play specialist considered playing for Oregon as recruit.
7 Shaq Thompson LB 6-1 228 Jr.
Leads country with four defensive TDs.
32 Budda Baker S 5-10 173 Fr.
One-time Oregon commit still looking for first INT.
No. Name Pos. Ht. Wt. Year
8 Marcus Mariota QB 6-4 219 R-Jr.
Superb passer, outstanding runner. Best player UW will see this year.
14 Ifo Ekpre-Olomu CB 5-10 195 Sr.
One of best CBs in the country, and big challenge for UW offense.
75 Jake Fisher OT 6-5 300 Sr.
Ducks were pleased to get him back from injury for UCLA game.
91 Tony Washington LB 6-3 250 R-Sr.
Leads team with three sacks.
Christian Caple can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Twitter: @ChristianCaple