Oregon put up some awesome offensive numbers, and those dominated the postgame discussion with UW players and coaches. Oregon rushed for a school record 465 yards. The Ducks also totaled 39 first downs and 661 yards.
Everyone gave lots of credit to Oregon skill and scheme, but the Huskies continue to blame themselves for physical and mental mistakes.
There was some controversy about Tyrone Willingham's decision to to go for an onside while trailing 41-34 with just under six minutes remaining, It was recovered by Oregon at the Huskies 44, and the Ducks quickly covered the distance, increasing their lead to 48-34. "I wanted to create something to give our team the best chance to win," Willingham explained.
The Huskies were pleased to get that third-quarter drought behind them, but there wasn't much celebration about that because of the final result.
It was UO's fourth straight win over UW, and all by 20 points or more. I asked Willingham if there was anything in that run of defeats to indicate that the Huskies were closing the gap on the Ducks, but he simply replied that it doesn't matter because a loss is a loss.
Finally, without actively insulting Arizona, the Huskies did generally note their awareness that the schedule looks to get a bit more managable from here, starting next Saturday against the Wildcats.
At 2-5, Washington must win five of its final six games to reach bowl eligibility.
Other game notes:
Player of the game
Oregon tailback Jonathan Stewart, a junior from Lacey, rushed for a career-high 251 yards and two touchdowns. He averaged 7.8 yards per carry. His rushing total is the second highest in school history. It was his 10th 100-yard rushing performance of his career, one shy of the school-record shared by three former Ducks. Stewart also moved into a tie for 10th on the Oregon career scoring list (162 points).
Husky of the game
Washington quarterback Jake Locker completed only 12 of 31 passes, but four went for touchdowns, and all from long distance: 83 yards to Anthony Russo, 26 and 38 yards to Marcel Reece, and 43 yard to Louis Rankin. Locker had a career-high 257 passing yards and also led the Huskies with 78 rushing yards.
"It's disappointing because we've played great teams, we've played great backs and that's all fine, but it's time for the Huskies to start winning. It's disappointing. I'm a senior and we're going get it right next week against Arizona when they come into our house." – Jordan Reffett, UW senior defensive tackle.
Linebacker Donald Butler suffered a knee bruise and did not return. Willingham called this potentially the most serious injury the Huskies suffered Saturday. Fullback Luke Kravitz of Olympia suffered a stinger and didn't return. Center Juan Garcia (finger) and linebacker E.J. Savannah (stinger) suffered injuries, but finished the game. … Oregon true freshman wide receiver Aaron Pflugrad made his first career start and junior receiver Terence Scott made his Ducks debut.
This was Oregon's fourth straight win over Washington, but the Ducks first victory at Husky Stadium since 1997. … Locker's pass to Russo was the fourth-longest in UW history. … Russo now has at least one reception in 31 consecutive games. … Cornerback Byron Davenport's interception on the final play of the first half gives UW eight interceptions this season by eight different players. … Oregon's opening drive marked the first time this season that a UW opponent had scored a touchdown on its first possession. … Washington scored in the third quarter for the first time since the opener at Syracuse. … Rankin's 43-yard reception was the longest of his career. … Rankin contributed 248 all-purpose yards: 132 in kickoff returns, 73 rushing and 43 receiving.
Arizona, noon Saturday, Husky Stadium, Channel 11.