Is Bo Nix really capable of leading the Oregon Ducks to the College Football Playoff while staying in the Heisman conversation? We’ll know soon.
Mentioning Bo Nix as a Heisman Dark Horse became a running joke during his time at Auburn. He showed flashes of greatness to be sure, but he always seemed to pair those with head-scratching moments of failure.
When Nix opened his Oregon career with an utter beatdown at the hands of Georgia, the “Bo Nix Experience” looked alive and well.
Nix has spent the last two months changing the narrative though. He’s led the Ducks to eight-straight victories, scoring 40 points or more in each of those wins. He’s thrown 23 touchdowns with just five interceptions along the way.
Many are now seriously pondering, “Is Nix an actual Heisman Trophy contender?” Others are wondering, “Has Nix fooled everyone into believing him again?”
How much should college football fans trust Nix, especially going into a big test against No. 25 Washington on Saturday?
Is Bo Nix for real? Or will Washington expose the Oregon QB?
Nix has genuinely played as well as any quarterback in college football since that disaster game against Georgia and the No. 1 defense in the nation.
He answered a ton of questions against UCLA, throwing five touchdowns in a marquee matchup against a Pac-12 title contender.
However, skepticism is fair enough. We all watched the rollercoaster at Auburn and UCLA’s defense isn’t exactly a juggernaut. They rank 53rd in SP+ and 72nd in ESPN FPI.
In fact, the average ranking of FBS defenses Nix has faced since the Georgia game is 79th in SP+ and 92 in FPI.
Those thinking the Huskies will be the ones to expose Nix shouldn’t hold their breath though. Washington is ranked 46th and 77th in those measures respectively on defense. They were undone by Dorian Thompson-Robinson and UCLA. Nix and the Ducks have enough firepower to do the same.
The real tests for Nix will come in the final two games of the season when Oregon will take on Utah and Oregon State. Those two are among the best defensive teams in the Pac-12.
Even then, Nix is hard to predict. Washington State, the Pac-12’s top defense statistically, seemed to get the better of him, forcing a devastating pick six in the second quarter of their meeting. Despite that huge mistake, Nix produced three touchdowns and threw for 428 yards while leading Oregon to a comeback victory.
We’ve seen two straight months of consistently strong performances from Nix. Faltering now would be an outlier, not the norm for the Duck QB. The Bo Nix of Auburn used to make mistakes that cost his team victories. The Bo Nix of Oregon makes up for them when they come.
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