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OPEN GAME THREAD: WSU at No. 16 Oregon

Game coverage from around SBN: Here

Time: 6:15 p.m. PDT

The place: Autzen Stadium

TV: Oregon Sports Network; also distributed on Comcast SportsNet in the Northwest; also available via for $1.99 fee

Radio: Find your local station here.

The line: Oregon minus-33

Last meeting: Homecoming 2008 for the Cougs, coming off their first win of the year over Portland State, the Cougs got whipped by the Ducks 66-14, thanks to a number of turnovers and inept rushing defense.

When the Cougs have the ball ...

Pos. Name (# = Redshirt) Pos. Name (* = Redshirt)
X Daniel Blackledge (6-0, 175, Jr.) RE Will Tukuafu (6-4 262 Sr.*)
F Gino Simone (5-11, 174, Fr.) DT Brandon Bair (6-7 268 Jr.*)
LT Tyson Pencer (6-7, 297, #Fr.)
DT Blake Ferras (6-6 290 Sr.)
LG Alex Reitnouer (6-5, 253, Fr.) DE
Kenny Rowe (6-3 232 Jr.)
C Kenny Alfred (6-2, 300, #Sr.) SLB Eddie Pleasant (5-11 207 So*)
RG Joe Eppele (6-7, 309, #Jr.) MLB Casey Matthews (6-2 235 Jr.*)
RT Micah Hannam (6-4, 284, #Jr.) WLB Spencer Paysinger (6-3 226 Jr.*)
TE Tony Thompson (6-2, 241, #Sr.) CB Willie Glasper (5-11 188 Sr.*)
Z Jared Karstetter (6-4, 203, So.) FS
T.J. Ward (5-11 208 Sr.*)
QB Jeff Tuel (6-3, 207, Fr.) ROV Javes Lewis (6-1 185 So.*)
RB Dwight Tardy (5-11, 204, #Sr.) RC Talmadge Jackson III (5-10 182 Jr.)

When USC has the ball ...

Pos. Name (* = Redshirt) Pos. Name (# = Redshirt)
WR D.J. Davis (6-1 205 Jr.)
LE Dan Spitz (6-6, 268, #Fr.)
LT Bo Thran (6-5 293 Jr.*) DT Bernard Wolfgramm (6-3, 288, #Jr.)
LG Carson York (6-5 285 Fr.*) DT Toby Turpin (6-5, 284, #Jr.)
C Jordan Holmes (6-5 285 Jr.*) RE Travis Long (6-4, 247, Fr.)
RG Mark Asper (6-7 323 So.*) SAM Andy Mattingly (6-4, 255, Sr.)
RT C.E. Kaiser (6-4 300 Jr.*)
MIKE Alex Hoffman-Ellis (6-1, 233, #So.)
TE Ed Dickson (6-5 243 Sr.*) WILL Jason Stripling (5-11, 225, #Sr.)
WR Jeff Maehl (6-1 175 Jr.) LCB Brandon Jones (5-9, 178, #Jr.)
WR Lavasier Tuinei (6-5 200 So.) SS Xavier Hicks, Jr. (6-0, 211, #Sr.)
QB Jeremiah Masoli (5-11 220 Jr.) FS Chima Nwachukwu (5-11, 201, Jr.)
RB LaMichael James (5-9 180 Fr.*) RCB Daniel Simmons (5-10, 188, #Fr.)

NOTE: This is the third consecutive game the same 11 players have started on defense; that happened just once last year (the final three games of the year). Seven of the 11 starters today have started all five games.

Special Teams ...

Pos. Name (# = Redshirt) Pos. Name
K Nico Grasu (6-0, 221, Jr.) K Morgan Flint (5-9 173 Sr.*)
P Reid Forrest (6-2, 193, #Jr.) P Jackson Rice (6-3 217 Fr.)

Keys to the Game Not Getting Embarrassed
1. Don't get rattled. Oregon will play with a lot of emotion early on the strength of its crowd. The team will have to not be intimidated to keep from getting buried early. No turnovers. No penalties. Give yourself a chance.

2. Play assignment-sound defense. Oregon is not going to try and simply steamroll us the way USC did. They're going to try and move the Cougs side to side with a lot of misdirection. Will these guys trust each other and stay home? It can't hurt that we've finally got some continuity on this side of the ball, with the same 11 guys starting for the third game in a row. It's really the only chance they have to slow Oregon down, because as SMU and Hawaii showed, sideline to sideline speed is not this team's strength -- they're much more comfortable running downhill, as we saw against Stanford and USC.

3. Move the chains by whatever means necessary. Jeff Tuel has a huge task in front of him. Oregon's got a lot of speed on defense, and the offensive line just can't match up with the Ducks athletically. But the one thing Tuel showed last week was a knack for figuring out a way to take what the defense gives him and get positive yards. This will be a game that truly shows what kind of strategist Todd Sturdy is -- he's going to have to get real creative with his play calling, which Tuel's skill set gives him the opportunity to do. I guarantee Oregon is going to see some looks from this offense that won't have shown up on video, and it just might be enough to generate some yards.

Oh, and let's get out of this without any more big injuries. Thanks.