Mariota leads Oregon’s rout of Colorado
Ducks quarterback throws for five touchdowns, runs for two more in 57-16 victory over Buffaloes
The Associated Press
BOULDER, Colo. — Marcus Mariota threw five touchdown passes and ran for two scores as No. 2 Oregon brushed off some early trickery to rout Colorado 57-16 on Saturday.
The Ducks’ sophomore connected for two touchdowns each with Josh Huff and Bralon Addison, and played only 2½ quarters.
The Buffaloes had Folsom Field in a frenzy when they kept things tight early on, but the crowd didn’t like it when Colorado kept going for field goals while the Ducks were piling up the points.
Oregon (5-0, 2-0 Pac-12) has scored at least 55 points in all of its games under first-year coach Mark Helfrich, a former offensive coordinator at Colorado who took over when Chip Kelly left to coach the Philadelphia Eagles.
Forcing a three-and-out after the opening onside kick, a 75-yard TD toss from receiver Paul Richardson on a double-reverse and a fourth-down stop had the 40-point-underdog Buffaloes (2-2, 0-2) in the fight early.
Richardson also caught five passes for 134 yards.
The Ducks trailed for 6½ minutes, falling behind 3-0 and 10-8, and they were leading just 15-10 when they got the ball at their 25 with 2:08 left in the first quarter.
Within a minute, they were up 29-10.
Mariota dropped back and saw Addison blowing past his man, and he hit him in stride along the dejected Colorado sideline for a 75-yard touchdown.
After Terrance Mitchell’s interception, Mariota connected with Keanon Lowe from 17 yards out for his second TD in 58 seconds, and the rout was on.
The Buffaloes reached the Oregon 5- and 14-yard lines on their next two drives but first-year coach Mike MacIntyre went for the field goals both times, just as he did when Colorado’s first drive stalled at the Ducks 16.
Answering Oregon’s touchdown machine with field goals wasn’t an effective formula for an upset, but it did keep the Buffaloes from coming away empty-handed.
After Will Oliver’s pair of chip shots made it 29-16, Oregon went for it on fourth down from the Buffs 27 and 1 and the Ducks converted each time.
Mariota walked it in to make it 36-16, capping a drive that took 3:38, a lifetime by the Ducks’ quick-strike standards, and then he hit Huff from 4 yards out to put the Ducks ahead 43-16 at halftime.
The Ducks reached the 50-point plateau on their first drive after the break when Mariota found Addison uncovered for a 44-yard touchdown and he hit Huff from 26 yards out before calling it a night.
Mariota was 16 of 27 for 355 yards with no interceptions and one sack. Addison had 158 yards on five catches and Huff had 103 yards on five receptions.