The University of Oregon, which is in the U.S. state of Oregon, has a college football team known as the Oregon Ducks. The team is an FBS member of the Pac-12 Conference and participates at the NCAA Division I level (Pac-12). The team’s previous moniker, the Webfoots, predated its current name, the Ducks, which was adopted in the middle of the 1960s. In 1894, the programme fielded its inaugural football squad. The 54,000-seat Autzen Stadium in Eugene is the site of Oregon’s home games. The Washington Huskies and the Beavers from Oregon State are its main competitors. Traditionally, in late November, the Ducks and Beavers play each other in the regular-season finale. One of the most well-liked programmes since the 2010s is the one in question. a football team at Oregon for its distinctive uniform design in recent years.

oregon duck

Image source: College and Magnolia


On March 24, 1894, the inaugural game of the football programme was played, with head coach Cal Young leading the team to a 44-3 victory over Albany College. After that first game, Cal Young resigned, and J.A. Church took over as coach for the remainder of the season in the fall. Despite having two more defeats and a draw at the end of the season, Oregon went undefeated the next year by winning all four of its games under head coach Percy Benson. The football team travelled outside the state for the first time in 1899 when they travelled to Berkeley, California, to play the California Golden Bears.  In 1910, Oregon defeated the University of Puget Sound by the greatest margin of victory in its history, 115-0.Prior to Hugo Bezdek, who led the Webfeet to a 5-0-1 record in 1906 while serving as their head coach, returning to Oregon from the University of Arkansas in 1913, Oregon frequently changed head coaches during the early 20th century, going through sixteen different head coaches in nineteen seasons[3][8]. From 1913 until 1917, Bezdek, Oregon’s first genuinely professional coach, served as the team’s head coach. Bezdek, a skilled athlete motivator, served as the Pittsburgh Pirates’ West Coast scout during his time there. [Reference needed] Under Bezdek, Oregon had a perfect record in 1916, defeating every opponent bar two with seven victories and one tie. They defeated Willamette University 97-0 in their season opener. In the matchup with Washington, there was no winner. In two games, Oregon used players who weren’t eligible, and the Pacific Washington won the Coast Conference. [Other citation(s) required] But because a rail ticket to Los Angeles from Eugene costs substantially less than one from Seattle, Oregon received an invitation to the 1917 Rose Bowl, then known as the Tournament East-West Football Game at Tournament Park. The Oregon football team won the Rose Bowl for the first time after defeating the much favoured University of Pennsylvania Quakers 14-0.Bezdek left Oregon in 1918 to take the general manager position with the Pittsburgh Pirates. [Reference needed] Shy Huntington, one of the heroes of the 1917 Rose Bowl, succeeded him.

The Webfeet again tied Washington for the Pacific Coast Conference championship in 1919, but Charles A. Huntington’s team won the tiebreaker thanks to their 24-13 victory over the Huskies in Seattle. The Webfeet played at newly built Hayward Field, which would serve as their home stadium in Eugene until 1967. Oregon was defeated by Harvard University 7-6 in the 1920 Rose Bowl.The club wouldn’t make another bowl appearance until the Cotton Bowl in 1948. Oregon made its first attempts to develop a nationally renowned football team in the late 1920s and early 1930s by drawing successful Eastern coaches west, first enticing John “Cap” McEwan from the Army in 1926 and then Clarence “Doc” Spears from Minnesota in 1930. Both coaches had a fair amount of success, but neither survived past their appointed time: McEwan quit. Oregon was defeated by Harvard University 7-6 in the 1920 Rose Bowl. [3] This would be 1932. Mike Mikulak, a strong running back, and a stifling defence (50 points allowed, five shutouts) helped Callison lead the 1933 Webfeet to a 9-1 record and the co-championship of the Pacific Coast Conference, with the one loss coming to USC. Up until 2001, this achievement was the finest in school history. Gerald “Tex” Oliver was recruited from Arizona to take over as head coach after the native-born Callison retired in 1937. Oliver coached up until the start of World War II, when he took a leave of absence to serve as a navy officer. In 1942, Oregon basketball coach John Warren took over as interim head football coach, tallying a 2-6 record.

Jim Aiken of Nevada, another active head coach, took Oliver’s place. With the roster he inherited, which like many post-war squads was full of veterans like Brad Ecklund, Jake Leicht, and Norm Van Brocklin, as well as transfers George Bell, Woodley Lewis, and John McKay, Aiken enjoyed immediate success. The 1948 Oregon squad finished the regular season 9-1 and tied with California for the PCC title. The schools did not play each other that year, and Cal won the 1949 Rose Bowl bid in a secret vote of the league presidents. The conference defied convention and let the Webfeet to participate in a postseason game other than the Rose Bowl in an effort to appease angry fans. the Oregon Cotton Bowl contest that year The squad only made one bowl trip between the 1920 and 1958 Rose Bowls (a 21-13 defeat to SMU with Doak Walker). With younger players, Aiken was unable to continue his success. The Ducks had a 1-9 record in 1950, which is remains the school’s worst winning % as of 2011. By the end of his fourth season, they were one of the poorest major college teams in the country. In the beginning of 1951, Aiken resigned due to suspicions of recruiting and practise infractions. After Aiken’s resignation, Oregon once more hired Len Casanova from the University of Pittsburgh to take over the programme. Casanova was a working big college coach. After slowly reviving the team, Casanova eventually guided the Ducks to a winning season in 1954. In 1953, against Nebraska in Lincoln, the Ducks participated in the first college football game to be broadcast nationwide and won 20–12. 


                                                                                      Image source:  Chris Hansen

Due to the conference’s no-repeat policy, Oregon and Oregon State matched for the conference title in 1957, but Oregon still qualified for the Rose Bowl. In the 1958 Rose Bowl, the Webfeet were defeated by the widely fancied and top-ranked Ohio State University, losing 10-7. According to Los Angeles Times’ Braven Dyer, who predicted Ohio State would triumph 48–14, “The underdog Eugene Ducks, who had been given drugs to cause them to lose by three touchdowns, were given a perfect moral victory with the final score of 10-7. Even though they lost, not many of their supporters were willing to accept that the superior team had prevailed. According to an article by Vincent X. Flaherty in the San Francisco Examiner: “Unquestionably, Len Casanova provided the best instruction.

There was no bowl team in America yesterday that shined with more breathtaking flair, making it the achievement of the season for the Rose Bowl Classic. Before taking over as the second full-time athletic director at the University of Oregon in January 1967 to replace Leo Harris, Casanova steered the Ducks to two more bowl berths in the 1960 Liberty Bowl against Penn State and the 1963 Sun Bowl against Southern Methodist  Mel Renfro and Dave Wilcox, two future members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, were players he coached. Many of his assistant coaches, including John McKay, George Seifert, and John Robinson, went on to have successful head coaching careers of their own. His 82-73-8 career record was the most victories ever amassed by a head coach at the university.

Time of Jerry Frei (1967–1971)
A two-decade decline in Oregon’s fortunes started with Casanova’s appointment to the administration. In 1967, when Oregon moved into the new Autzen Stadium, veteran offensive line coach Jerry Frei took over as head coach. His teams never had more than six wins in a season and were never chosen for a bowl game. (The Pac-8 (and Big Ten) had just one Rose Bowl team prior to the 1975 season.) He taught a number of players that went on to become NFL stars, including Hall of Fame quarterback Dan Fouts and All-Pro wide receiver Ahmad Rashad, who was known as halfback Bobby Moore while a Duck. Despite the fact that his time at Oregon came to an end with a losing record. He led the Ducks to an incredible comeback against UCLA in 1970, scoring 20 points in the final four minutes to defeat the Bruins 41-40.  But in the Civil War game, Frei was unable to defeat Oregon State (coached by Dee Andros), and following the setback in 1971, several powerful backers reportedly urged that Frei make significant changes to his coaching staff. On January 18, 1972, Frei submitted his resignation as head coach, citing differences with the school’s boosters and Norv Ritchey, the athletic director. Following his resignation, Frei received a lot of support from The Register-Guard readers, including the student body president at the time. These letters to the editor were published. 

Dick Enright period (1972–1973)
Frei’s offensive line coach, Dick Enright, was promoted as head coach for the 1972 campaign after a thorough search that included interviews with a number of seasoned head coaches. Given that Enright had only coached high school teams up to 1970, he was the least qualified choice for the job and found it difficult to keep the team’s composure and maintain a steady level of play. Dan Fouts, who wasn’t a runner, was infamously converted by Enright into an option quarterback. Despite beating Oregon State in 1972 for the first time in nine seasons, Enright’s teams only managed six victories over the course of two seasons. He was fired following the 1973 season when he complained to the public about what he believed to be subpar football facilities. Time of Don Read (1974–1976)
Don Read, his quarterback coach, took over for Enright.  The first time Read served as the head coach of a big institution, he was unable to field a competitive squad. Throughout Read’s three-year tenure, Oregon saw its worst loss in club history and the longest losing streak in the Pac-12 (14 games), both of which were records (66–0 at Washington in 1974).  Oregon president William Boyd said he’d “rather get whipped in a public square than suffer through a game like that” to a reporter following the Ducks’ 1975 home opener, a 5-0 loss to San Jose State. Following the 1976 season, Read was sacked with one year remaining on his contract. In conference play, his teams had a 3-18 record, had been blanked seven times in the previous three seasons, and had only ever defeated a squad with a winning record once (17–3 over Colorado State in 1976).

John Caine, the athletic director at Oregon, announced the dismissal of Read and claimed that it had been a financial decision because Read hadn’t made enough progress to spur interest in season ticket sales, boosters weren’t giving, and Read couldn’t go out recruiting without a contract extension, which had no support. In contrast to recent, failing custom, Caine said “The replacement won’t be a member of the current staff; we need a different strategy than what we’ve been using for a while. I’m trying to find a multi-talented person, maybe with a distinct personality and background.” It had become obvious that a struggling programme required immediate correction. Caine had told a group of alumni that the Oregon football team had suffered a defeat. for the previous three seasons. Typically, a university’s football programme will subsidise other non-revenue sports, but at Oregon, football was taking money away from the basketball programme, which was already profitable, and reducing financing for wrestling, baseball, and track. The apex of Brooks’ tenure at Oregon occurred in his last campaign, when his squad won the Pacific-10 Conference with a 9-3 regular-season record and made it to the Rose Bowl (their conference championship was also their first ever outright conference championship as all the previous ones were shared). The game against the ninth-ranked (AP) Washington Huskies included the season’s pivotal play, which Duck supporters commonly refer to as “The Pick.”  The Ducks had only defeated the Huskies three times in the previous 20 seasons, with many of those games ending in heartbreaking losses due to the intense rivalry.  With the Ducks holding a 24-20 advantage late in the game, Washington was poised to score and take the lead until Huskies quarterback Damon Huard fumbled the ball. tossed an interception to Kenny Wheaton, who then returned it 97 yards for a score to give the Ducks the victory. Before every football game at Autzen Stadium, The Pick is rerun on the stadium’s large screen. The Ducks went unbeaten the rest of the regular season after the Washington game, but they fell to Penn State in the 1995 Rose Bowl.