Third quarter: USC 38, Oregon 20

EUGENE, Ore. -- Oregon is going to need a fourth-quarter miracle against USC to stay in the national title hunt.

Even for an explosive offense, 18 points is a lot to make up. The Ducks not only need three scores, they need to stop Matt Barkley and company.

Still, De'Anthony Thomas' 96-yard kickoff return for a touchdown created just enough "maybe" that it would be premature to write the game story at this point.

Keep in mind: Even with a loss, the Ducks are still on top of the Pac-12 North. If Stanford beats California, the Ducks would have to lose to Oregon State next weekend for the Cardinal to play in the Pac-12 championship game.