No. 23 Oregon looks to keep rolling hosting Portland State
EUGENE, Ore. (AP) — For his first outing of the season, Oregon quarterback Justin Herbert had six touchdowns — five via pass and one on the ground. There's a possibility that against Portland State on Saturday he won't be in the game long enough to get as many.
Oregon coach Mario Cristobal is thinking about the unthinkable.
If Justin Herbert were to get injured again this fall, the Ducks need to have a backup quarterback who is prepared to keep the ship afloat in the rough Pac-12 seas.
The Willie Taggart era got off to a 4-1 start with Herbert taking the snaps, but Oregon went 1-4 while the 6-foot-6, 231-pound starter was mending a fractured collarbone.
Quarterbacks are on display at Oregon’s spring game
EUGENE, Ore. (AP) — With Justin Herbert already set as Oregon's starting quarterback, some of the focus at the Ducks' spring game was on other positions.
Like his backup. And his receivers.
The spring game was split into two sides, Team Thunder on the offense and Team Lightning on the defense. Points were awarded for different tasks, like touchdowns, and the Thunder came out on top 59-34.
Justin Herbert was the star of Oregon’s scrimmage on Saturday in Portland.
But the starting quarterback made most of his big throws against the Ducks’ second-team defense.
Mario Cristobal was equally pleased with the way defensive coordinator Jim Leavitt’s first-string unit performed, which had a lot to do with backup quarterbacks Braxton Burmeister and Tyler Shough’s combining to complete only 8-of-18 passes for 79 yards with no touchdowns and one interception.
Demetri Burch was an all-conference quarterback who ran for nearly 2,000 yards and 25 touchdowns during his final two seasons at Apopka (Fla.) High School.
Most of his recruiting interest came from college coaches who saw him play wide receiver in seven-on-seven camps.
Braxton Burmeister was expecting to watch Justin Herbert put on a show from his front-row seat throughout his freshman season at Oregon.
The cozy redshirt was only going to be pulled in case of emergency.
And then coach Willie Taggart had to dial quarterback 911 after Herbert fractured his collarbone and senior backup Taylor Alie suffered a concussion during the Ducks’ costly victory over California on Sept. 30, 2017.
Oregon’s promising 4-1 start with Herbert melted down into a mediocre 5-5 record.
Pima College safety Haki Woods recently announced he’d be re-opening his recruitment only 10 days after verbally committing to Arizona.
When Oregon offered Woods a scholarship the next day, Arizona fans directed their ire — again — at Willie Taggart.
The Ducks coach was hired in December from South Florida, and Saturday will be the first time he’s ever coached against Arizona, but there’s already some bad blood between the two programs.
While the Arizona Wildcats have their QB in Khalil Tate, injuries and uncertainty plague Oregon
It’s nice to have stability at the most important position in sports.
The Arizona Wildcats have it now, with Khalil Tate having taken over at quarterback and run his way into the Heisman Trophy conversation. Oregon, their opponent Saturday, is still seeking it.
The Cats can relate to the uncertainty the Ducks currently face. They are hoping to have starting quarterback Justin Herbert back this week. He has been out since Sept. 30, when he suffered a broken left (non-throwing) collarbone.
Freshman safety Scottie Young Jr. could return for Arizona Wildcats at Oregon
Notes and takeaways from Arizona Wildcats coach Rich Rodriguez’s weekly Monday news conference at the Lowell-Stevens Football Facility:
The Ducks are experiencing some early turbulence on the planned flight back to the top of the Pac-12 standings.
The first 10 games of the Willie Taggart era included a 4-1 start with Justin Herbert running the offense and four losses in the past five games since emergency pilot Braxton Burmeister was thrown into the cockpit.
Oregon’s first-year coach said the focus during a much-needed bye week is to “regroup, reset and get rolling again.”
SEATTLE — Most of Saturday’s announced crowd of 70,572 was stuck in a sea of taillights exiting Husky Stadium during the fourth quarter.
The rain-soaked fans seeking relief inside warm cars missed Jake Browning’s final snap of the game, which didn’t have any bearing on Oregon’s 38-3 loss to Washington but meant a lot to the visitors.
SEATTLE — It sometimes rains at Husky Stadium.
And for the second consecutive season, the Huskies poured it on the Ducks.
Justin Herbert wasn’t healthy enough to play, Braxton Burmeister’s good start didn’t last and Oregon was drubbed 38-3 by No. 12 Washington on a cold, rainy Saturday night.
The Ducks (5-5, 2-5) have lost two consecutive games to the Huskies (8-1, 5-1) in lopsided fashion after having their 12-year reign in the series collapse during last year’s 70-21 throttling at Autzen Stadium.
SEATTLE — Oregon’s offense has no surprises without Justin Herbert.
For the fourth week in a row, the Ducks threw for less than 75 yards and ran on nearly three-fourths of their plays during a 38-3 loss to Washington on Saturday night at Husky Stadium.
“Obviously, every team knows we are going to run the ball,” Oregon center Jake Hanson said. “That doesn’t matter because we’ve shown we can run the football and still win games.”
It has been a gloomy October on the gridiron for Oregon and Utah.
Entering Saturday’s matchup at Autzen Stadium (2:45 p.m., Pac-12 Networks), the Ducks (4-4, 1-4) and Utes (4-3, 1-3) are a combined 0-6 this month.
Utah suffered agonizing defeats to Stanford (23-20) and USC (28-27) before a 30-10 pratfall against surging Arizona State last Saturday in Salt Lake City.
Oregon is simply lost without injured quarterback Justin Herbert, losing by an average of 27.3 points during its three-game skid.
Utah, Oregon face challenges heading into Saturday’s game
EUGENE, Ore. (AP) — While Justin Herbert's appearance in pads at practice this week was tantalizing, a more pressing matter for Oregon was preparing for Utah.
Herbert started the season at quarterback for the Ducks but fractured his collarbone in a 45-24 victory over California on Sept. 30. Oregon (4-4, 1-4 Pac-12) has lost three straight without him.
Quarterback Braxton Burmeister was days away from enrolling at Arizona in January when new Oregon coach Willie Taggart offered him a scholarship. Burmeister now is the Ducks’ starting quarterback.
The morning of signing day, Eugene native offensive lineman Cody Shear received an Oregon offer, too, and flipped to the Ducks.
To fill Burmeister’s quarterback slot, the Wildcats signed unranked quarterback K’Hari Lane.
Braxton Burmeister is expected to start his fourth consecutive game at quarterback for the Ducks with Taylor Alie serving as the backup.
But even with a fractured collarbone, Justin Herbert has looked tantalizingly good throwing passes in practices this week.
Oregon coach Willie Taggart hasn’t officially ruled out Herbert for Saturday’s game against Utah at Autzen Stadium (2:45 p.m., Pac-12 Networks).
Willie Taggart looked on with a smile as Justin Herbert feathered a series of deep passes into the arms of wide receivers during Tuesday’s practice.
Oregon’s starting quarterback looks as good as ever wearing a red non-contact jersey over his shoulder pads.
But how does Herbert feel less than four weeks after suffering a fractured collarbone?
Herbert didn’t run through the padded tackling dummies with the other signal-callers during the portion of practice open to the media.
Coaches are always expressing the importance of playing for all 60 minutes.
Unfortunately for the Ducks, the football cliché is true: Teams are required to come out of the locker rooms after halftime.
Therein lies the problem, or at least one of the glaring problems, for Oregon, which has been outscored 58-0 in the second half during its three-game losing streak and 119-56 in the second half against FBS competition this season.
PASADENA, Calif. — Braxton Burmeister had two minutes to celebrate his second-longest completion of the season.
Then a 37-yard pass to Dillon Mitchell was overturned upon review during the second quarter of UCLA’s 31-14 win over Oregon Saturday at the Rose Bowl.
The next time Burmeister looked deep came late in the third quarter on third-and-three from UCLA’s 40-yard line when he again targeted Mitchell on the right sideline before Colin Samuel reached out to intercept the pass at the 4-yard line.
PASADENA, Calif. — Marcus Mariota’s final performance here was as majestic as the stunning backdrop.
Braxton Burmeister limped out of the historic stadium battered, bruised and bloodied after Oregon’s first trip to the Rose Bowl since drubbing Florida State in the inaugural College Football Playoff semifinal.
The Ducks’ painful fall continued during Saturday’s 31-14 loss to UCLA on the same field that was covered in green and yellow confetti on Jan. 1, 2015.
Starting a game at the Rose Bowl is something Braxton Burmeister probably daydreamed about growing up in La Jolla, Calif.
The circumstances that have led to the true freshman’s ascension to the top of Oregon’s depth chart are a nightmare scenario for coach Willie Taggart and his coaching staff.
Justin Herbert, an emerging Pac-12 star, fractured his collarbone, and senior backup Taylor Alie, a former walk-on, suffered a concussion during the Ducks’ costly 45-24 victory over California on Sept. 30.
Taylor Alie was the next man up.
For a little over two quarters.
Oregon’s fifth-year senior took over for the injured Justin Herbert against California but suffered a concussion in the fourth quarter of the 45-24 win on Sept. 30.
The season-altering sequence of events forced the incineration of Braxton Burmeister’s redshirt.
The true freshman is expected to make his third consecutive start, with Alie available in a backup role, against UCLA on Saturday at the Rose Bowl (1 p.m., Pac-12 Networks).
Falk has 3 TD passes, No. 11 Washington State beats Oregon
EUGENE, Ore. (AP) — Eleventh-ranked Washington State can add a road win to this season's resume, finally.
Luke Falk threw for 282 yards and three touchdowns and the Cougars held Oregon scoreless after the first quarter for a 33-10 victory Saturday night at Autzen Stadium.
The Cougars (6-0, 3-0 Pac-12) were on their first trip after quirky scheduling gave them their opening five games in Pullman. The team is off to its best start since winning seven to start the 2001 season.
No. 11 Washington State goes on the road to face Oregon
No. 11 Washington State (5-0, 2-0 Pac-12) at Oregon (4-1, 1-1), Saturday, 8 p.m. ET (FOX)
Oregon QB Justin Herbert out with fractured collarbone
EUGENE, Ore. (AP) — Oregon quarterback Justin Herbert is out "for a while" because of a fractured collarbone, coach Willie Taggart said Monday.
Taggart also said at his weekly news conference that junior linebacker Kaulana Apelu is out for the season with an ankle fracture.