Under new head coach Ron Gould, the UC Davis football team sped up the pace in spring practice. With Thursday’s announcement that the Aggies will play Oregon in 2016, picking up the pace sounds like a great idea.
That year, UCD will travel to historic Autzen Stadium in Eugene, Oregon for a nonconference game on Sept. 3 against the powerful Ducks — who finished 12-1 in 2012.
While the teams have never faced each other on the football field, the respective programs share several coaching bonds, including Gould, who played defensive back at Oregon and was later a graduate assistant coach there from 1990-91.
The coaching tree extends further to the Ducks’ current staff with defensive coordinator Nick Aliotti. The longtime Oregon assistant played from 1973-75 for former Aggie head coach Jim Sochor and has been with the Ducks for more than two decades.
Another former player of Sochor’s was Mike Bellotti (1969-72) who achieved great success at Oregon during his 14 seasons as head coach, winning 116 games and leading the Ducks to 12 bowl games.
Oregon will become the seventh Pac-12 team UCD has played, joining Arizona, Arizona State, Cal, Oregon State, Stanford and UCLA.