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Dan Lanning recaps win over Utah, looks ahead to return home vs. California

These are the weeks when some coaches and players may wish that the 24-hour rule was more of a guideline than anything else. After getting the biggest win of the season on Saturday, and the biggest win of Dan Lanning’s career with a 35-6 trouncing of the Utah Utes, the Oregon Ducks now look ahead to a Week 10 game against the California Golden Bears.

They allowed themselves to celebrate the victory for 24 hours, but by the time Sunday night rolled around, it was back to business.

On Monday night, Lanning met with media members to talk about his final thoughts on the victory over Utah after watching the tape, and what to expect this week against a Golden Bears’ team that’s shown an ability to put points on the board.

Here are some of the most notable quotes from that press conference:

Opening Statement

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Lanning: “All right. Good Monday so far for our guys. Fun game coming off the weekend. I thought that was a great environment for our guys to go put their best foot forward and play their most complete game. Certainly excited about, you know, what’s ahead of us here at the end of the season, and I’m excited about the direction our guys are going so, can open it up.”

Post-Tape Impressions

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Question: After having watched the film, what are some of your general impressions of the game?

Lanning: “I certainly think we played a complete game but I know also that we can play a lot better. And there’s some moments there where I think we stubbed our toe, whether it be a penalty here or there the kind of held us back. You look at the end of the game, we had some penalties on drives at the end of the game that led to punts. Not necessarily the cause of a punt, but we just put ourselves in position where we could have been a lot more successful throughout the game, and there’s some missed opportunities that were sitting out there as well that we can take advantage of. So lots of room for growth. But did we play a complete game? Yeah, I absolutely feel like we did.”

Measuring Stick

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Question: You’ve called this a complete game, will you use it as a measuring stick for your team going forward?

Lanning: “I told our players I think this is what we’re capable of and you know, since the summer, we’ve talked about the process of Good to Great and then say, ‘Hey, we’re good. Right? We’re a good team right now.’ And really, what you do in November, you know, that’s going to determine if we’re a great team and we want to play our best football at the end of the season. We’ve played our best football to date this last week, and we have to play better going forward. So if we continue to grow, I think that just shows what we’re capable of. And we watched the film and said, ‘Wow, we could have played a lot better.’ So that’s certainly a positive moving forward.”

Bo Nix Uniqueness

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Question: At the college level, how unique is Bo’s ability to check plays and run the offense the way that he does compared to other teams you’ve been with?

Lanning: “Yeah, certainly my role on teams are better in the past I probably don’t get it’s kind of a picture of what those quarterbacks were able to do for their team. But I’ll say this, I’ve never been around a quarterback like Bo that understands what we’re trying to accomplish so well. And there are times when there as a coaching staff we’re on the sidelines saying, ‘Okay, wait, wait, what did he check into? Oh, all right. Good, that works.’ And he gets it right. A lot more often than not, and, you know, that was a look that we’d worked a lot because it’s a tough pressure to deal with. And we felt like we had a really good answer if we saw it. I thought our coaching staff and the players on the field had a really clear indication of exactly what we wanted to accomplish if we saw that look. Bo did a great job of getting us in that play and our players did a really good job of executing. That happens every single week. Not every time it ends in a touchdown, right? But that happens every single week for us where he gets us into a play or our offensive staff identifies something that can get us into a play that we think is going to be successful and that’s just one example of it.”

California's Offense

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Question: Cal’s offense is far more prolific this year than it has been in the past. What have you seen from them on tape this season?

Lanning: “They’re not remotely the same team we’ve played in the past. These guys are scoring a lot of points. They’re extremely efficient. I think they’re playing some of their best ball, especially offensively, here towards this point of the season. They’ve found a rhythm and they’ve settled in at quarterback. They have some really talented skill players. I think their running back is leading the conference in yards. He’s certainly dynamic and has had some explosive runs. He’s an NFL back for sure. They’ve created a lot of success for themselves on offense. And they play really sound on defense. You know, their coaching staff obviously has ties to this place, but they built a brand of what good defensive football looks like over his career over coach Wilcox’s career. And I think there’s a lot of things that are coming together for them. They’re an extremely capable team. So yeah, they are playing their best ball right now. And they’re gonna they’re gonna be a challenge for some of the things that they do.”

Jeffrey Bassa

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Question: How valuable has Jeffrey Bassa been for you this season?

Lanning: “Jeff’s a good player and I think everybody else has seen, you know, what we’ve always known as far as what Jeff can be. His biggest role for our team beyond, you know, him making plays is really him getting us in the right call. He’s our signal caller on defense. He’s a phenomenal communicator. And because he studies and works so hard to know where things are going to be, it’s why he’s able to be productive too because he knows where the ball is going before he goes there. And he’s able to beat people to the point of attack, he’s able to understand what kind of rush move he wants to use. So I’m really impressed with Jeff and excited to see him continue to grow.”

Unheralded Stats

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Question: Are there things that you point to that don’t pop out in a box score that really shows how improved this team is this season?

Lanning: “I mean, defensively, missed tackles are down. I don’t know if that’s something that’s ever gets really charted in the box score. I think our downfield blocking and guys being involved in plays where they’re not touching the ball that’s up and that’s not going to be something that shows up in the box score. You know, one of the things we coach the hardest today is how we’re going to celebrate when we have a successful play. Doesn’t seem like something a lot of people would coach, but we’re watching this and say, ‘Hey we can do a better job of getting a hat on a helmet,’ after that’s a phenomenal play, how are we gonna celebrate that together? So there are a lot of things that really go back to our DNA traits. We talked about connection that we’re looking for from our players. And I think we’ll continue to see that as the season moves forward.”

Strength and Medical Staff

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Question: Your strength and medical staff rarely get recognized, but how important have they been more you in keeping this team as healthy as it is at this point in the season?

Lanning: “They do a phenomenal job. Chief and his staff, we have a meeting every single day to give an update of where we’re at. I think what we do in sports science here is really special. You know, I think we’re able to prevent a lot of injuries because before we get to an injury, we realize that a player’s player load is high or his hamstring strength isn’t where it needs to be and we’re able to pull off of them. We modify practice to make sure that they’re able to see the field where I think a lot of places in the country don’t necessarily have that technology or the ability to use that. I think our strength coach is unbelievable. Coach Love and his staff do a phenomenal job of connecting with our players and making sure they get the needs that they need to be able to go out there and execute. A couple of things that we’ve changed on game day, we do a primer lift, you know, with our players. We didn’t do that in the past and that’s been something that’s really good for us to activate their body, get them ready for battle, and they’ve done a good job of that.”

Fernando Mendoza

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Question: What impressed you about Cal QB Fernando Mendoza on Saturday vs. USC?

Lanning: “His decision-making. This offense is really built off of loaded box: we’re going to be able to throw it over your head, and light box we’re going to be able to run it. They’ve run the ball really effectively. I think a lot of that comes down to the decision-making of the quarterback because a lot of those are tied to RPOs. He’s done a great job with that. He’s able to throw it into really tight windows. He throws a bullet pass. I mean it gets on them. Their wideouts do a good job of catching contested passes, but he puts it into places where only they can get it. He’s operating at a high level. He probably doesn’t get enough credit for his ability to run the ball as well. He’s certainly had some successful runs this season with his legs. He’s really a complete player.”

Khyree Jackson

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Question: How unique is the skillset for Khyree Jackson, a CB who is so capable of being a physical tackler in the backfield?

Lanning: “I mean, he has unique traits of a player that can play for a long, long time. When you build them on Madden, that’s how you build ’em. Long, guys that can run. He’s built like that and he certainly is productive you know when the ball is in his area, and he’s proven that he’s a willing tackler which you can’t always say that about a corner. He’s proven that he is. Excited to have the versatility of him at that position.”

Georgia Similarities

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Question: Do you see any similarities between this Oregon team and the 2021 Georgia team?

Lanning: “No, I don’t think that. The similarities are we’re playing good football, but this team is definitely different than the ’21 Georgia team. But I do think there’s similarities in other teams that I’ve been a part of, and you know, how we play, how we execute, and really the love for one another. There’s definitely some similarities in that. But as far as where our strengths lie and what kind of team we are, you know, where we really hang our hat. I think there’s a lot of differences really between us in that team, but there’s definitely similarities and other teams that I’ve coached.”

Story originally appeared on Ducks Wire