Nov 3, 2012; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Oregon Ducks receiver Josh Huff (1) scores on a 21-yard touchdown pass against the Southern California Trojans at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Oregon defeated USC 62-51. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-USA TODAY Sports

Phil Steele's College Football Preview: Oregon Ducks at #5, USC #6, Stanford #11

Back in April in his look at the Top 26, Phil Steele – had the Ducks pegged at #3 with Stanford right behind at #4. Now we take a look at his Top 40 Teams heading into 2013. The list is very Pac 12 friendly. There are seven teams from the conference on his list, including an intriguing USC at #6 right behind Oregon.

For the Ducks, Steele sees them as a National Title contender in 2013. Of the offense, he says that Oregon has always had productive quarterbacks and if Marcus Mariota can stay healthy he could be one of the early contenders for the Heisman Trophy. No real surprise here since we know what we’re getting when we watch Mariota and his health did effect him slightly last season.

On the Receiving Corps Steele says Oregon’s is the most experienced in years and Oregon continues to upgrade the talent at wideout. The Ducks at running back could be a question this year but again Steele sees strength with the Ducks. Even without Kenjon Barner he likes the ‘next man up’ mentality.

On Defense he sees the linebacker position being down slightly, but says Oregon has two NFL caliber players at the cornerbacks.  With the amount of points the Ducks put up on offense, and one team last year able to contain them in Stanford I see this as pretty solid.

Check out his thoughts at PhilSteele.com

Phil Steele’s Pages on Oregon have a ton of info and more detailed breakdowns.

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