NCF Nation: Christian Powell

Ducks roll (this is not a recording)

October, 27, 2012
10/27/12
6:21
PM ET

The Oregon Ducks jump out to a 56-0 lead in the first half, sit the starters, give up a couple of scores but cruise to a huge win.

Stop me if you've heard this one before.

The No. 4 Ducks kept to their 2012 script, pounding on the Colorado Buffaloes 70-14 at Autzen Stadium. The Ducks, per usual, struck early and often behind touchdown runs from Kenjon Barner, touchdown passes from Marcus Mariota and electrifying plays from De’Anthony Thomas on offense and special teams.

Barner put together his fourth straight 100-yard rushing game, needing just nine carries to reach 103 yards with a pair of touchdowns. Thomas was equally explosive, carrying five times for 97 yards and a score. But it was Thomas’ 73-yard punt return for a touchdown that was eye-popping. Thomas chased down the ball with his back to the opposite end zone, turned the corner, side-stepped a couple of tackles and then took off down the sidelines for the score.

In relief of Mariota, backup quarterback Bryan Bennett rushed for 73 yards and three touchdowns. Mariota finished the game 10-of-14 for 136 yards with a pair of touchdown passes. He also carried four times for 23 yards and a score.

Colorado (1-7, 1-4) picked up a pair of third-quarter touchdowns from Christian Powell, who rushed for 121 yards on 20 carries. But as many teams do, the Buffaloes found themselves in a 28-0 hole by the end of the first quarter.

Oregon (8-0, 5-0) has kept up its end of the deal and travels to Los Angeles next week undefeated for its much-anticipated showdown with USC.
The Pac-12 should stop scheduling Sacramento State. And Colorado might want to rethink its ideas about FCS teams.

Sacramento State, which won at Oregon State in the 2011 opener, beat Colorado 30-28 with a 30-yard field goal as time expired.

Colorado, 0-2 after losing to Colorado State in the opener, is now 1-2 all-time against FCS teams. It lost to Montana State in 2006.

The Buffaloes didn't just lose, they got beaten. They jumped to a 14-0 lead, but the Hornets didn't back down. They outgained the Buffs 466 yards to 341. While Sac State did most of its damage through the air, it still outrushed Colorado 154 yards to 153.

But the biggest difference was at quarterback. Sophomore Garrett Safron threw for a career-best 312 yards on 25-of-37 passing for the Hornets. He also was 4-for-5 for 53 yards on the game-winning drive.

Colorado quarterback Jordan Webb was just 12 of 24 for 160 yards. In Webb's defense, it's clear the Buffs don't have much talent at receiver.

The lone bit of good news for Colorado was freshman fullback Christian Powell, who ran for 147 yards and three touchdowns.

Colorado was hoping to get its young team off to a fast start against a very soft early schedule. Now that the Buffs are 0-2 against that soft schedule, it's not easy to see where victories -- even a victory -- will come.

A notoriously bad team on the road, Colorado will be at Fresno State next weekend.

California 50, Southern Utah 31: California led just 20-17 in the third quarter, but the the Bears erupted in the fourth quarter to post an easy win. Quarterback Zach Maynard completed 17 of 23 passes for 229 yards with a touchdown and an interception. Running back Isi Sofele rushed for 104 yards on 19 carries, and wide receiver Keenan Allen had two touchdowns, one on a 69-yard punt return. It was the Bears' first victory inside newly renovated Memorial Stadium. A week after looking terrible in a loss to Nevada, the Bears piled up 518 yards, scoring 30 points in the fourth quarter. Still, it was hardly an impressive win. The Bears defense, expected to be strong, surrendered 371 yards. The Thunderbirds had just 209 yards in a 34-3 loss to Utah State the previous week. Cal is at Ohio State next weekend.

Washington State 24, Eastern Washington 20: Mike Leach has his first win coaching the Cougars, but his offense is still not clicking. Jeff Tuel threw a pair of touchdown passes to Isiah Myers, but the Cougs were outgained by the FCS Eagles 469 yards to 355. The Cougs' highlight, in fact, was a 60-yard field goal just before halftime from Andrew Furney. Tuel completed 20 of 26 passes for 171 yards and two touchdowns with no interceptions. He may have cemented his hold on the starting job, as backup Connor Halliday completed just 5 of 11 for 76 yards with an interception. Washington State is at UNLV on Friday.

SPONSORED HEADLINES