The #12 Oregon Ducks (1-0) won their 2020 debut against the Stanford Cardinal (0-1) by a score of 35 to 14!
It was a wet and wild one in Eugene as the Ducks kicked off a strange 2020 season against an ancient foe - the Stanford Cardinal.
It was announced about an hour before the game that expected Stanford starting quarterback Davis Mills as well as standout receiver Connor Weddington were out due to Covid-19 restrictions.
Despite committing two turnovers in the first half, Oregon led at halftime thanks to a pair of deep passes to Mycah Pittman and Johnny Johnson III. Stanford’s Austin Jones scored the opening touchdown of the evening, but running back CJ Verdell and tight end DJ Johnson struck back for the Ducks with red-zone scores and the Duck defense held strong to preserve a 14-7 lead going into the half.
Travis Dye and Tyler Shough scored a rushing touchdown each in the third quarter, and the Cardinal defense began to crack against Oregon’s rushing attack late in the game. Cyrus Habibi-Likio atoned for his early fumble by putting the nail in the Cardinal coffin with a short running touchdown.
It was a terrible night for kickers, as Stanford’s Jet Toner missed all four of his attempts and Camden Lewis also failed to hit his lone field goal attempt.
Shough had a handful of stellar plays and a handful of bad plays, but overall things look promising for the young quarterback who finished 17 of 26 for 277 yards and interception, while also tallying 85 yards on 11 carries and a touchdown in the air and on the ground.
Up next is a road trip to take on the Washington State Cougars for the Ducks, while the Cardinal takes on the Colorado Buffaloes.
Tyler Shough: 17/26 - 277 YDS - 1 INT - 1 TD - 11 Car - 85 YDS - 1 TD
Jack West: 13/19 - 154 YDS
Tanner McKee: 3/7 - 62 YDS
TD SCORERS: (UO) CJ Verdell, DJ Johnson, Travis Dye, Tyler Shough, Cyrus Habibi-Likio (STAN) Austin Jones
DUCK YARDS: 496 yards - 227 passing - 269 rushing
CARDINAL YARDS: 413 yards - 216 passing - 197 rushing
TURNOVERS FORCED: Ducks: 0 - Cardinal: 2 (1 Int - 1 Fum)
1ST QUARTER NOTES
- Austin Jones got the Cardinal off to a strong start, earning a couple of first downs with a pair of long runs.
- Pressure on 2nd-&-7 from Isaac Slade-Matautia forced Jack West to miss a wide open Simi Fehoko.
- Stanford’s Jet Toner missed the 48-yard field goal.
- CJ Verdell picked up Oregon’s first 1st down of the season with his first two carries for a total 11 yards.
- Oregon was forced to punt on the next set of downs despite an 8-yard completion to tight end DJ Johnson to set up a 3rd-&-2. Tyler Shough misread the option run and Verdell was brought down with no gain.
- Noah Sewell made his first play as a Duck when he brought down Nathaniel Peat for a loss of two yards, but West got the Cardinal back on the Oregon side of the field with a 38-yard pass to Brycen Tremayne to the Duck 37.
- The Duck defense forced a 4th-and-6 at their own 33-yard line, but Jones caught a pass and juked Nick Pickett to reach the six-yard line.
- Two plays later, Jones rolled over a Duck to score the first touchdown of the game.
Cardinal 7 - Ducks 0
- Shough looked deep down field on the first play of Oregon’s second drive and found Mycah Pittman near the sideline for a 44-yard one-handed catch.
- Verdell helped keep the drive alive by converting a 3rd-&-6 with a 23-yard gain to reach the Stanford 16.
- Once in the Cardinal red zone, Shough picked up nine yards with his legs, then Verdell ran in a 10-yard score on 3rd-&-4.
Ducks 7 - Cardinal 7
- Jones caught a pass in the flat and took it 11 yards to earn the first down and end the first quarter.
2ND QUARTER NOTES
- After further review, it became clear the playclock had struck zero before the snap, negating Jones’ catch and returning the ball to the Stanford 32-yard line. Stanford was forced to punt two plays later.
- Shough threw his first career interception on his first touch of the second quarter. It was also the first career interception caught by Stanford’s Levani Damuni.
- The coverage of the game switched to ESPN News due to the special coverage of president elect Joe Biden’s speech.
- Jones gave Stanford another quick first down, but some impressive coverage from Mykael Wright on third down forced another unsuccessful field goal attempt from Toner - this time from 40 yards out.
- Shough ignited the next Oregon drive with a 25-yard gain. Then, on 3rd-&-8, Redd made an impressive catch for a gain of 15 yards to reach the Stanford 33.
- After Stanford was called for a pass interference, Cyrus Habibi-Likio had an unforced fumble that was recovered by Damuni.
- Wright was called for pass interference on Stanford’s next drive which brought the ball to the Oregon 35 but West was unable to lead his team to a first down.
- Shough used a couple of quick passes to Redd and Johnny Johnson III, respectively, to earn a first down and give Oregon some breathing room by reaching their own 14-yard line. Then, Stanford was called for a late hit on Shough and an illegal chop block on the defense that put the Ducks at the Stanford 40.
- Johnny Johnson III got Oregon near the end zone with a 38-yard reception, and two plays later, DJ Johnson caught his first touchdown pass from five yards out.
Ducks 14 - Cardinal 7
- Stanford ran out the clock on their final possession of the second quarter.
************HALFTIME SCORE: Ducks 14 - Cardinal 7 *************
3RD QUARTER NOTES
- Oregon started with the ball in the second half, and Verdell had four consecutive touches to give the Ducks a couple of first downs.
- Johnny Johnson III nearly fought off a defensive pass interference to make a miraculous catch in the end zone, but it was overturned after review.
- Travis Dye carried the ball two consecutive times and ended up in the end zone with a 14-yard touchdown run.
Ducks 21 - Cardinal 7
- West made a big play on his first play of the second half by finding Fehoko for a 33-yard gain.
- The Stanford offense did an admirable job marching down the field, but once again, a deep pass in the red zone on third down was incomplete. Jet Toner missed his third field goal attempt of the night, this time from 35 yards out.
- Devon Williams caught his first official pass as a Duck: a nine-yard quick out.
- Shough used his legs to escape what should have been a loss, and instead gained 15 yards on a scramble. The QB then connected with Johnson III for a 13-yard gain and wrapped up the 10-play, 80-yard drive with a 9-yard TD run.
Ducks 28 - Cardinal 7
4TH QUARTER NOTES
- Third string freshman quarterback Tanner McKee made his debut for Stanford in the fourth quarter. His first career completion was to Fehoko for a 46-yard gain.
- A pass interference called on Daewood Davis put Stanford at the Oregon 13, then a pass to Tucker Fisk resulted in a goalline situation for the Cardinal and an ejection for Nick Pickett due to targeting.
- Instead of pounding in the rock from the Oregon one-yard line (after an Oregon delay of game moved the ball closer), Shaw elected to pass. The decision backfired when Fehoko was called for the offensive pass interference, dragging the Cardinal back to their own 16-yard line.
- Jet Toner missed his fourth field goal attempt. This time from only 27 yards out.
- Shough led his squad towards the Cardinal end zone in speedy fashion, aided by a nifty Dye spin move that helped the back gain 40 yards on a carry. However, the drive stalled in the red zone and Camden Lewis missed a 37-yard field goal attempt.
- Nathaniel Peat kept the Cardinal’s hopes alive by cracking off a 75-yard run on first down to reach the Duck 7-yard line, and two plays later Jones pounded it in for a touchdown.
Ducks 28 - Cardinal 14
- Shough nearly threw a pick on the next drive, but big plays from Verdell and Johnson helped reclaim Oregon’s momentum.
- Habibi-Likio made up for his fumble by scoring on a 4-yard run to cap off a 9-play, 73-yard drive.
Ducks 35 - Cardinal 14
- Stanford moved the ball for the remainder of the fourth quarter until time expired