EUGENE, OR – The Oregon Ducks rolled the Colorado Buffaloes 45-3 at home Friday night, where scouts from 18 NFL teams were in attendance to watch Oregon quarterback Justin Herbert.
Allowing at least 30 points per game this season, Colorado entered Friday’s game as major underdogs. Adding to their defensive concerns, Colorado would be without their best defensive player Mustafa Johnson, who was listed as 50/50 after suffering an ankle injury two weeks prior against Arizona State.
Oregon’s run game has been shaky at best this season, but the Ducks were able to establish a physical run game in large part due to the explosive blocking of offensive tackle Penei Sewell. Behind Sewell, who head coach Mario Cristobal described after the game as “the ultimate difference maker”, CJ Verdell rushed for 171 yards off of 14 carries and Cyrus Habibi-Likio was able to punch in 3 touchdown runs.
Where the final score may tell a different story, Colorado competed most of the first half. The Buffaloes had a chance to cut Oregon’s lead to 7 points with 1:36 left in the 2nd quarter when they trailed only 17-3. After a 77-yard drive Colorado ended up with a favorable first and goal look on the Oregon 3-yard line, but quarterback Steven Montez was picked off in the end zone by Verone McKinley III. Oregon would end the half with a quick Jaylon Redd touchdown bringing the score to 23-3 at halftime.
The Oregon defense was spectacular again, holding Colorado to only 3 points, and recording 4 interceptions along with 2 sacks.
While Oregon won by 42 points, they could be without two of their biggest playmakers moving forward after breakout tight end Jacob Breeland and safety Jevon Holland both exited with lower leg injuries. The Ducks hold their breath hoping for good news regarding tonight’s injuries, as this game was an example of how Oregon can perform when they play to their potential.
When comparing this Oregon team to the likes of peak Miami and Alabama, Cristobal stated “I’m honored to have been at several places and been a part of some really good teams. You know what, I think our guys though, we can be even better.”
Oregon will travel to the University of Washington next weekend to face Huskies on October 19th, at 12:30 PM PST.