WR Samie Parker (PHOTO BY Eric Evans)

2002 Statistics

Coach: Mike Bellotti
67-29, 8 years
2002 Record: 7-6
at Arizona WON 31-14
at UCLA WON 31-30
at Washington State LOST 21-32
at Oregon State LOST 24-45
Wake Forest LOST 17-38

2002 Final Rankings
AP-UR, Coaches-UR, BCS-UR

2003 Outlook

The Oregon Ducks looked to build on their 2001 success by coming out of the gate with a 6-0 record and a #6 national ranking. They finished by losing six of the last seven games, including the Seattle Bowl against Wake Forest - oy!!! The problem was the defense could not stop anybody in the air and allowed a hefty 37 points a game. That simply will not happen this year.

The Oregon offense thrives on balance. Kellen Clemens will bring the potency a young Joey Harrington did, with Clemens' high-potential providing even more excitement. The big question is the running game. Whitehead must stay healthy for the Ducks to be contenders. This offense will put up points, but they need to have receivers establish worth early and often. One part of the offense will help the other as the running and passing games both need growth, but if either has trouble, the other will suffer accordingly as neither is strong enough, yet, to carry the team. But, potential, ah, potential.

Defensively, this group is aggressive. Maybe, in 2002, they were a bit too aggressive, but lessons were learned. The secondary will to be much better. The results they gave to opposing offenses were disgusting. They would be wise to utilize their depth and play with an extra DB more. In doing so, they can give their two LBs the responsibility to stop the run and strategically blitz more. The front four is outstanding and will do their job (gave up 3.0 yd/rush). As simple as it sounds, if they make more stops this year, they will win more games because of the explosive offensive potential.

Oregon has tough road games at Arizona, Arizona State, Washington, and UCLA and at home against Michigan, Washington State, and Oregon State. Realistically, the Ducks will be looking at an 8-4 campaign and a second-tier bowl game. Though this will not sit well in Eugene, fans can't get too concerned. This is a team still trying to find their identity and they are relatively immature. The Ducks will play close with many of these Top 25 opponents. Still, bringing the quack back will have to wait another year.

Projected 2003 record: 8-4
TE Tim Day
DT Haloti Ngata
RB Chris Vincent
QB - 3 DL - 4.5
RB - 3.5 LB - 3
WR - 3.5 DB - 2.5
OL - 4 ..

Passing: Jason Fife, 367-190-10, 2752 yds., 24 TD's

Rushing: Terrence Whitehead, 63 att., 272 yds., 2 TD's

Receiving: Samie Parker, 49 rec., 724 yds., 8 TD's

Scoring: Jared Siegel, 20-24 FG, 49-50 PAT, 109 pts.

Punting: none

Kicking: Jared Siegel, 20-24 FG, 49-50 PAT, 109 pts.

Tackles: Kevin Mitchell, 114 tot., 64 solo

Sacks: Kevin Mitchell, 6 sacks

Interceptions: Keith Lewis, 5 for 16 yds.

Kickoff returns: Justin Phinisee, 7 ret., 29.3 avg.

Punt returns: Steven Moore, 3 ret., 15.3 avg.


FS Keith Lewis (PHOTO BY John Giustina)
OFFENSE: Allan Amundson-RB, Keenan Howry-WR, Jason Willis-WR, Corey Chambers-OG, Onterrio Smith-RB (NFL), George Wrighster-TE (NFL)
DEFENSE: Seth McEwen-DE, Kai Smalley-DT, Darrell Wright-DE, David Moretti-MLB, Garret Graham-OLB, Rasuli Webster-ROV, Jose Arroyo-P, Roderkus Wright-DE (transferred)

written by Tim Chapman

Oregon enters the 2003 campaign with two very capable quarterbacks. Senior QB Jason Fife started every game last season but could see himself behind exciting soph Kellen Clemens talent-wise. Clemens has an extremely strong arm and quick feet. He also brings a positive air of arrogance that can be positively contagious. Lets not forget about Fife though. Aside from experience, he also threw for 2752 yds and 24 TDs against only 10 INTs. The thing that sets Fife apart from Clemens is his better decision-making ability. Clemens has better tools and is a better fit for this offense, so once he improves his ability to read a defense, the spot will be his … that is, unless Fife floors. Bet on seeing Clemens as the starter by mid-season.

Samie Parker (49 rec, 724 yds, 8 TDs) makes Eugene very happy by announcing his return for his senior season. Parker is a clutch receiver (strong YAC) and has the ability to stretch a defense, which will help both QBs find the underneath routes open often. He will be a marked man, but he'll certainly play an important role (often as decoy) in making the entire offensive engine work better as a whole, regardless of his numbers.

Senior FB Matt Floberg (6-3, 247) really brings the lumber to linebackers who shoot the run gaps. His unusual height and decent hands makes him an ideal target to either be open or, at least, occupy an opposing LB as a decoy. The Ducks need to include Matt more -- no matter what, he is a bankable asset around which the running game can be built.

The loss of Onterrio Smith leaves a big question mark in the backfield. Terrence Whitehead was the second leading rusher and had 869 fewer yards than Smith, but a respectably promising 4.4 yd/rush. Whitehead is a sophomore and has a lot of room to grow (he showed a flash of things to come with a 37 yd TD run against UCLA). But can his 5-10, 200 lb frame handle 20 or more carries/game? He's talented, but he can't carry the load just yet. And the lack of depth in the backfield poses a problem.

The offensive line brings back a big, quick group that consists of four returning starters. Seniors OG Joey Forster and C Dan Weaver are the bell-cows up front. They did see their problems, however. The Ducks weren't as protective as they should have been in allowing 28 sacks-- that's about four/game. They do have experience, and that will be a big help. With Clemens at the helm, they are really going to need to give him time to see the defense. Blocking for the running game will be a big challenge.

Oregon uses TEs to their full potential. They may end up moving senior Josh Rogers (has played both ways in Div I-A) to TE fulltime to take advantage of his great blocking skills (and speed, team's fastest TE w/4.9-40). He will need to be able to catch the ball more than he has so far. If he doesn't fit the mold, sophomores Tim Day and Nate LiaBraaten are definitely ready, but inexperienced.

The Ducks do have Parker, but after him, there is room for anyone to step up. This is a weakness until receivers emerge. Look for soph WR Demetrius Williams. Junior WR Keith Allen and senior WR Gary Daniels to play into the mix. But the three only had 9 catches for 139 yds combined, so obviously the coaching staff will throw in another freshman, as well. Somebody needs to step up… We will keep you posted.


C Dan Weaver (PHOTO BY John Giustina)


Returning Starters in bold
QB Jason Fife-Sr Kellen Clemens-So
FB Matt Floberg-Sr Ryan Loftin-Jr
TB Chris Vincent-Fr Terrence Whitehead-So
WR Samie Parker-Sr Kellen Taylor-Jr
WR Demetrius Williams-So Keith Allen-Jr
TE Tim Day-So Josh Rogers-Sr
OT Adam Snyder-Jr Jermaine Randolph-Fr
OG Nick Steitz-Jr Ian Reynoso-So
C Dan Weaver-Sr Robin Knebel-Jr
OG Joey Forster-Sr ..
OT Mike Delagrange-Jr Josh Atkins-Jr
K Jared Siegel-Jr Travis Stright-Fr



written by Tim Chapman

The defensive line loses three starters, yet they have the best front four in the Pac-10, maybe behind only Oregon State and USC. The lone returning starter is junior DT Igor Olshansky. Igor is a stud- no questions (70 tackles, 9 TFL, 4 sacks). His quickness, strength and agility give the Ducks much around which to build. He will draw attention inside. Soph DT Haloti Ngata brings speed (5 QB Hurries). He does a great job of getting to opposing QBs and forcing them to the inside (where Olshansky and senior DT Junior Siavaii clean up). However, DE Roderkus Wright is no longer on the team. He transferred to I-AA Portland State and was to be counted on heavily for taking some of the pressure off his cohorts.

The defensive secondary stays intact with a fast group of DBs who can really hit. Seniors CB Steven Moore (5 INTs, 15 pass break-ups) and FS Keith Lewis (80 tackles, 5 INTs) have solid experience. So does sophomore Aaron Gibson, as he did well (51 tackles, 5 TFL) in his baptism-by-fire. With those experiences upon which to build, he will now adjust better to the long-ball and undoubtedly continue to improve. Sophomore Marques Binns will be called upon in nickel situations, and if he bulks up, he might even move to a Rover position. This is a young but deep group that will have to handle aggressive man-to-man schemes when needed, and the Ducks need this ability often.

Senior MLB Kevin Mitchell (114 tackles, 10.5 TFL, 6 sacks) has seemingly been here forever. His three outstanding seasons bode well for this last campaign as he flies to the ball with a vengeance. Because the front four are a force, and Mitchell plays like a man possessed, he will earn possible All-American status at the conclusion of this season for the Ducks.

Even though the secondary returns three starters, this was a unit that finished 115th in pass defense - horrible!!! The DBs were allowing receivers to get behind them. In the Pac-10, receivers are too fast, so something has to change. But beyond Lewis and Moore, this is a young group. They won't be as bad, but how much the secondary improves will be a benchmark for the entire defense's 2003 success.

Mitchell stands naked in the middle with nobody outside of him. After losing both OLBs, they will look to junior walk-on Jerry Matson and senior David Martin. Both are proper replacements and can play well in pass coverage. The key to watch will be how well they cover speedy backs Tyler Ebell, Stephen Jackson, and Cornell Canidate out of the backfield. The verdict early is that they will need support from their DBs. This unit's play will also go a long way to measuring any defensive success.


LB Kevin Mitchell (PHOTO BY John Giustina)


Returning Starters in bold
DE Devan Long-So Quinn Dorsey-Sr
DT Haloti Ngata-So Robby Valenzuela-Jr
DT Igor Olshansky-Jr Junior Siavii-Sr
DE Chris Solomona-Jr Matt Toeaina-Fr
MLB Jerry Matson-Jr Justin Andrews-So
ILB Kevin Mitchell-Sr Ramone Reed-Jr
OLB David Martin-Sr Anthony Trucks-So
CB Steven Moore-Sr Charles Favroth-Jr / Rodney Woods-Jr
CB Aaron Gipson-So Marques Binns-So
ROV Marley Tucker-Jr Justin Phinisee-So
FS Keith Lewis-Sr Stephen Clayton-Jr
P Drew Larson-Fr Chris Annis-Fr




Junior PK Jared Siegel can kick the ball out of the stadium, pick a car window in the parking lot and put it right through - he's that strong and that accurate. This finalist for the Groza award brings insurance to an offense that will need it. The Ducks find a replacement at punter as they choose between two underclassmen - Drew Larson and Chris Annis.

The Oregon Ducks display an aggressive nature on special teams (9 kicks blocked.) They like to move people around to create confusion by sending players to various gaps. Special teams' battles will be won more often than not on either side of the ball - a bankable asset.


Kellen Clemens' drive to be the starting QB shifted to a higher gear this spring, climaxed by a brilliant spring game. Clemens finished 12 of 16 for 189 yards and three TDs. With Jason Fife a senior, and the Ducks' program on the rebound right now, it would be wise for Bellotti to insert the talented sophomore, Clemens, this season to promote ascension back to the top of the Pac 10. In fact, Fife may be having thoughts of transferring. He really hasn't separated himself much further than 3rd-string QB Johnny Durocher. This, of course is just speculation, but I have seen it happen before. Fife is ONLY content on giving signals from the field- not from the sideline… LSU transfer Chris Vincent will be looked upon to replace Onterrio Smith. A tough runner with good vision, Vincent will brings a healthy mix of power and finesse that should balance the offense nicely- just the way Bellotti likes it… The next NFL TE the Ducks produce may well be Ryan Loftin. He has good size for being so athletic. He sits third on the depth chart right now, but may work his way right to the top. This is a position where the Ducks are stacked… WR Kellen Taylor has made a real strong push for the starting spot opposite Parker. He can get vertical in a hurry and makes things happen once the ball is in his hands.

Rover Marley was jammin' on defense this spring - Marley Tucker that is. He led all defensive players during the spring scrimmage with six tackles and left web prints all over the turf. His backup, Justin Phinisee, has been busy this spring and will make for a great nickel back. The Ducks are going to need his help to improve on their poor pass defense from a year ago. Redshirt frosh FS J.D. Nelson is giving Stephen Clayton some stern competition at backup FS, thus adding to the depth of the Ducks' DB unit… DT Haloti Ngata is making a serious campaign for the Outland trophy. He is quicker, bigger and stronger … Walk-on DL Dustin Holmes could work his name into Oregon stat sheets starting this season. He is a hard-worker with "interior athleticism". With time to develop, he'll be a good one… My eyes are going to be on JUCO transfer Rodney Woods. He is an all-purpose player who can return kicks and punts, and is a compact corner who can become the big play man this defense needs.