In the best win of the season for the Ducks vs Arizona on Saturday, 48-28, senior Royce Freeman set a few program milestones. Not only is Freeman breaking Oregon football benchmarks, but he’s making some Pac-12 history along the way.
The Maxwell Award semifinalist rushed for 135 yards on 19 carries vs the Wildcats. Additionally, he tied a career-high with four touchdowns, placed himself atop a prestigious Pac-12 record and helped guide the Ducks to victory and bowl eligibility. Not a bad afternoon.
“Every time we hand off to Royce, we expect a touchdown,” said Willie Taggart. “He’s everything. I’m proud of him and I love him. I’m so appreciative to him for coming back. He does it all for the love of the University of Oregon.”
It was his 30th career 100-yard rushing performance for the Ducks. Freeman has now rushed for 100 yards or more in five straight games, beginning with Stanford. He has not run for less than 122 yards in any 100-yard game this season. It was his eighth overall contest with 100 rushing yards or more in 2017.
Freeman secured four touchdowns in a game only twice in his career. He achieved the feat on opening day of this season vs Southern Utah. Yet, the first time he scored four came at the hands of Washington during his freshman season (2014).
PAC-12 CAREER TOUCHDOWNS FROM SCRIMMAGE
#1 - Royce Freeman, 62 (Oregon)
#2 - Ken Simonton, 60 (Oregon State)
#3 - LaMichael James, 58 (Oregon)
#3 - LenDale White, 57 (USC)
#4 - Skip Hicks, 55 (UCLA)
#5 - Charles White, 53 (USC)
Freeman is the Pac-12’s all-time leading scorer from scrimmage
PAC-12 CAREER RUSHING TOUCHDOWNS
#1 - Ken Simonton, 59 (Oregon State)
#2 - Royce Freeman, 58 (Oregon)
OREGON’S TD FROM SCRIMMAGE LEADERS
#1 - Royce Freeman (58)
#2 - LaMichael James (57)
Freeman is the Ducks’ all-time leader
UO CAREER RUSHING LEADERS
#1 - Royce Freeman (5,499 career rushing yards)
#2 - LaMichael James (5,082 career rushing yards)
#3 - Kenjon Barner (3,623 career rushing yards)
Freeman is the Ducks’ all-time leader
FREEMAN’S SWAN SONG
- 225 carries (14th)*
- 1,353 rushing yards (8th)*
- 6.0 yards per carry (41st)*
- 14 rushing touchdowns (13th)*
- 12 catches
- 144 receiving yards
- 12.0 yards per reception
RUNNING OVER, THROUGH, AND AROUND RICH ROD
With the 59th touchdown of his career, Freeman passed LaMichael James as UO’s all-time leader. Not to mention, he slid past LaDainian Tomlinson (58) for 10th on college football’s all-time scoring list.
Following a Wildcat penalty, the great Freeman galloped 28 yards for his second score of the half and 60th of his illustrious career. The Imperial product tied OSU’s Ken Simonton for the most total scores from scrimmage in Pac-12 lore.
With his third TD of the night, Freeman secured 61 for his career, as the Ducks doubled their advantage of Arizona, 35-21. The tally gave him one more than Simonton (60).
“I felt like it took a lot of pressure off me,” Freeman said after the victory. “The big guys up front. I felt like I needed to take it upon myself to do a little bit more.”
On his final paint job of the game, Freeman tickled the pylon for his fourth score and 62nd of his career. The ground assault (58) placed him one tally behind Simonton (59) for the most in conference history.
BUSTING DOWN THE DAM
There was a moment when Freeman could have secured his fifth score, but this guy believes Coach Tag is waiting for Oregon State next week. What better team to tie/break the all-time record against than the program that showcased Simonton?
Not to mention, the Ducks have a large plate of cold, drizzly, rainy revenge to hand the Beavers. Regardless, Freeman needs one rushing tally to tie the Pac-12 record-holder and two to become the man, himself. There won’t be any issues finding extra motivation on Saturday.
Next up for Oregon (6-5, 3-5) is their final regular season game of the 2017 campaign. The Ducks will be looking to avenge last years 34-24 loss to the Beavers (1-10, 0-8). Kickoff is slated for 4:00 p.m. PT at Autzen. You can watch The Civil War on ESPN2.
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