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Heisman Finalists Announced

Heisman Finalists Announced

Kelly Kline/Heisman Trophy Trust via Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Three of college football's top players will soon travel to New York as part of the Heisman Trophy ceremony.

Alabama's Amari Cooper, Wisconsin's Melvin Gordon and Oregon's Marcus Mariota were named finalists Monday for college football's top honor. 

Mariota is considered the favorite to win the award after leading a Ducks team to a 12-1 record and a Pac 12 title. He has completed 68.7% of his passes for 3,783 yards with 38 touchdown passes and 2 interceptions. Mariota also has run for 14 touchdowns.

Gordon, who broke the single-game rushing record against Nebraska with 408 yards, has totaled 2,336 yards on the ground and 26 touchdowns. The record was broken the following week by Oklahoma's Samaje Perine, who ran for 427 yards. If Gordon is able to run for 293 yards against Auburn in the Outback Bowl, he will eclipse Barry Sander's single-season record of 2,628 yards, set in 1988.  

Cooper led a rejuvenated Crimson Tide passing attack with 115 catches for 1,656 yards and 14 touchdowns, as Alabama captured the No.1 seed in college football's playoff.

The Heisman Trophy will be presented on December 13.

 

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(2) Oregon Wins Pac-12 Championship

(2) Oregon Wins Pac-12 Championship

Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images(SANTA CLARA, Calif.) -- Marcus Mariota scored five total touchdowns while the Oregon defense held Arizona scoreless in the first half, helping the second-ranked Ducks (12-1) to a 51-13 win in the Pac-12 Championship Game on Friday. The win avenges a regular-season loss to the Wildcats (10-3) which continues to be the only blemish on Oregon's record.

"There are a bunch of big smiles, and I'm proud of that," Ducks coach Mark Helfrich said. It was the first conference title for Oregon since 2011.

The Ducks were forced to settle for a pair of field goals in the first quarter before the offense began to open up. Mariota rushed for one of his three touchdowns on the ground, giving Oregon a 13-0 lead. The Heisman hopeful ran in from 4-yards out six minutes later for another score as the Ducks led 23-0 at halftime.

"This is a huge accomplishment for us," Mariota said. "Now we need to continue to improve and get better for whoever comes next."

Mariota opened the second half with a passing touchdown, connecting with Devon Allen for a 4-yard score before the Wildcats finally got on the board. A 69-yard pass from Jesse Scroggins to Cayleb Jones helped Arizona avoid a shutout, trimming the lead to 30-7, but Oregon answered with 14 straight points. 

In the fourth quarter, Kenny Bassett scored on a 19-yard run before the Ducks gave up a touchdown run as time expired. Royce Freeman dominated on the ground for Oregon, rushing for 114 yards on 21 carries despite not reaching the end zone.

Oregon has all but guaranteed themselves a berth in the inaugural College Football Playoff, with the final rankings being announced on Sunday.

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Helfrich on Arizona: ‘They’re Very Well Coached’

Helfrich on Arizona: ‘They’re Very Well Coached’

Stephen Dunn/Getty Images(EUGENE, Ore.) -- Second-ranked Oregon will go up against seventh-ranked Arizona on Friday in the Pac-12 championship game.

Oregon leads the all-time series 24-16 and has won 16 of the last 21 meetings. Meanwhile, Arizona’s current two-game winning streak in the series is its longest since back-to-back victories in 2006-07.

"They're very well coached up front in terms of the d-line recognizing blocks and scheme," Ducks head coach Mark Helfrich said on Tuesday.

Arizona running back Nick Wilson has 15 touchdowns this season and rushed for 1,263 yards.

"They've got a little bit of a two-headed monster at tail-back as well, very productive," Helfrich said of the Wildcats running game that includes Terris Jones-Grigsby.

The Heisman Trophy finalists will be announced next week and Ducks quarterback Marcus Mariota could be one of the favorites to win it.

"I wouldn't be in this position without my teammates," Mariota said on Tuesday.  "Hopefully in the end whatever the outcome is the invitation itself is just an honor."

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Oregon Flies High In The Civil War

Oregon Flies High In The Civil War

Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images(CORVALLIS, Or.) -- Marcus Mariota took the Ducks to new heights Saturday as he led Oregon to a 47-19 victory over Oregon State. 

Mariota proved once again why he is one of the top quarterbacks in the country by passing for 367 yards and four touchdowns. The Heisman hopeful also ran for a pair of touchdowns. 

"All week we prepared, just picking up the tempo," Mariota said. "We wanted to play fast and played well tonight."

The Ducks racked up 565 yards of offense on the Beavers as they captured a seventh straight victory in the Civil War rivalry. 

Oregon now heads to the Pac-12 championship to face the Arizona Wildcats. The Wildcats are the only team to defeat the Ducks, handing them a 31-24 loss in Eugene back on October 2. 

"We're just going to continue to approach it just like any other game," Mariota said. 

 

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Civil War Preview

Civil War Preview

Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images(EUGENE, Ore.) -- Second-ranked Oregon (10-1) will travel to Oregon State (5-6) in the 118th edition of the Civil War on Saturday.

The Ducks hold a 61-46-10 advantage in the all-time series and have a 29-9-1 (.756) mark vs. the Beavers since 1975, including wins in six straight.

Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota is coming off a three touchdown pass game in their 44-10 win over Colorado last weekend and has thrown a touchdown in all 37 games of his career.

"Somebody was talking to me the other day about how easy he makes it look sometimes," Oregon coach Mark Helfrich said. "What he's doing is really difficult. His decision making, competitiveness, his command of the team is so outstanding. It's great to be around him because he makes you want to work harder as a coach. The other guys feed off of him."

Oregon is averaging 45.8 points per game and are allowing just 23.6 points on the defensive front.

"The Civil War's always a big game. We always talk about taking one game at a time. But we understand it's a huge part of this community and a huge part of this state," Mariota said. "To play in it, it's truly special."

The Beavers are averaging 26.3 points per game and fell to Oregon 36-35 last year.

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Marcus Mariota Leads Ducks Past California, 59-41

Marcus Mariota Leads Ducks Past California, 59-41

Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images(SANTA CLARA, Calif.) -- Heisman Trophy candidate Marcus Mariota threw five touchdown passes in Oregon's 59-41 win over California at Levi's Stadium on Friday night.

Mariota threw his first interception of the year and passed for 326 yards in the victory.

"During the game I was upset," Mariota said. "Coach came and joked with me and got me to relax a little bit and forget about it. It's OK. It happens. I just have to learn from it."

The Ducks (7-1) improved to 4-1 in the Pac-12 and California (4-4) dropped to 2-4.

"You might want to go buy a lottery ticket, Marcus made a couple of mistakes," Ducks head coach Mark Helfrich said. "I'm actually glad, I think, that that happened to get him off the schneid."

Oregon running back Royce Freeman had 112 yards on the ground and two touchdowns.

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Mariota: Excited to Play in Levi’s Stadium

Mariota: Excited to Play in Levi’s Stadium

Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images(EUGENE, Oregon) -- Sixth ranked Oregon will get another test on the road when they travel to California on Friday night.

The Ducks come into the game 3-1 in the Pac-12 this season and the team is looking forward to playing in the newly built Levi's Stadium.

"It'll be exciting to play in Levi's Stadium," Heisman Trophy candidate Marcus Mariota  said Tuesday. "My brother and my dad are huge Niners fans, it'll be cool to take pictures and show them."

"Playing on a Friday night, there's not that much college games on, people will be tuning in," Mariota added. "It'll be a lot of fun."

Mariota has thrown 19 touchdowns and passed for 1,957 yards this season.

The Golden Bears are 2-3 in the Pac-12 so far this season.

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No. 2 Oregon Upset by Unranked Arizona

No. 2 Oregon Upset by Unranked Arizona

Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images(EUGENE, Ore.) -- No. 2 Oregon was handed their first loss of the season Thursday as the unranked Arizona Wildcats defeated the Ducks 31-24.

This is the second straight season the Wildcats have beat the Ducks. 

Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota gave credit to Arizona and the strength of PAC 12 teams after the defeat. 

"They're undefeated," he said. "It's obviously a testament to our conference. If you're not prepared each week, if you're not ready to play, you'll lose."

The loss is a blow to Mariota's chances at winning the Heisman and Oregon's hopes of being invited to college football's first four-team postseason playoff. 

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(3) Oregon Defeats (7) Michigan St.,46-27

(3) Oregon Defeats (7) Michigan St.,46-27

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(EUGENE, Ore.) -- (3) Oregon (2-0) scored four unanswered touchdowns in the second half to beat (7) Michigan State (1-1) on Saturday night, 46-27.

Down 27-18 with 4:33 remaining in the third quarter, Ducks junior quarterback Marcus Mariota found freshman wide receiver Devon Allen for a 24-yard touchdown. Oregon took the lead 2:59 later when Mariota connected with senior wide receiver Keanon Lowe on a 37-yard touchdown strike.

Mariota finished the game 17 of 28 for 318 yards and three touchdowns. He also rushed for 42 yards on nine carries.

The loss snaps an 11-game winning streak for the Spartans.

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Oregon Routs Texas in Mack Brown’s Farewell

Oregon Routs Texas in Mack Brown’s FarewellThearon W. Henderson/Getty Images(SAN ANTONIO) --  Marcus Mariota threw for 253 yards and a touchdown to lead No. 10 Oregon to a 30-7 victory over Texas in the Alamo Bowl. The Ducks (11-2) dominated from start to finish, but the win was overshadow...

Mariota Staying at Oregon

Mariota Staying at OregonThearon W. Henderson/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Oregon Ducks quarterback Marcus Mariota announced Tuesday he will return next season for his junior year."It is an honor to be a student at the University of Oregon and to have the opportunity to represen...

Arizona Stuns No.5 Oregon 42-16

Arizona Stuns No.5 Oregon 42-16Banana Stock/Getty Images(TUCSON, Ariz.) --  Ka'Deem Carey rushed for 206 yards and four touchdowns as Arizona stunned No. 5 Oregon 42-16 on Saturday. It was the biggest win in over two decaDes for the Wildcats (7-4, 4-4 Pac 12), who all but put a...

Oregon QB Marcus Mariota Has A Partially Sprained MCL

Oregon QB Marcus Mariota Has A Partially Sprained MCLThearon W. Henderson/Getty Images(NEW YORK) --  Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota has a partially sprained MCL in his left knee, the school acknowledged on Friday. Mariota was seen wearing a brace during Oregon's 26-20 loss to Stanford on Thursday...

Stanford Ruins Oregon’s Perfect Season for Second Straight Year

Stanford Ruins Oregon’s Perfect Season for Second Straight YearThearon W. Henderson/Getty Images(STANFORD, Calif.) -- Oregon running back De' Anthony Thomas guaranteed the Ducks would put up at least 40 points against Stanford.  Instead, the Ducks were lucky they put up 20.No. 5 Stanford shutout Oregon in t...

Mariota Leads No. 2 Oregon Over No. 16 Washington 45-24

Mariota Leads No. 2 Oregon Over No. 16 Washington 45-24Thearon W. Henderson/ Getty Images(SEATTLE)  --  Marcus Mariota threw for three touchdowns while rushing for another as No. 2 Oregon defeated No. 16 Washington 45-24 on Saturday. Byron Marshall added two rushing touchdowns for the Ducks, (6-0...

Mariota Leads No. 2 Oregon Over No. 16 Washington 45-24

Mariota Leads No. 2 Oregon Over No. 16 Washington 45-24Thearon W. Henderson/ Getty Images(SEATTLE)  --  Marcus Mariota threw for three touchdowns while rushing for another as No. 2 Oregon defeated No. 16 Washington 45-24 on Saturday. Byron Marshall added two rushing touchdowns for the Ducks, (6-0...

(3) Oregon Romps Nicholls St. 66-3 in Helfrich’s Debut

(3) Oregon Romps Nicholls St. 66-3 in Helfrich’s DebutChristopher Barth/Getty Images(EUGENE, Ore.) -- Oregon sophomore quarterback Marcus Mariota threw for a touchdown and rushed for another two, helping No. 3 Oregon defeat Nicholls St. in head coach Mark Helfrich's Oregon debut Saturday. Mariota finished...

(4) Oregon Rolls Past (5) Kansas State in Fiesta Bowl

(4) Oregon Rolls Past (5) Kansas State in Fiesta BowlStephen Dunn/Getty Images(GLENDALE, Ariz.) -- De'Anthony Thomas raced the opening kickoff 94-yards for a score, as (4) Oregon flew past Kansas State 35-17, to win the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl Thursday. "The one thing that has happened to us all season long...

(2) Oregon Defeats California, 59-17 Behind Mariota’s 6 Touchdowns

(2) Oregon Defeats California, 59-17 Behind Mariota’s 6 TouchdownsThearon W. Henderson/Getty Images(BERKELEY, Calif.) -- Ducks freshman quarterback Marcus Mariota tied a school record with six touchdown passes as (2) Oregon (10-0) pounded California (3-8) Saturday night, 59-17.Oregon took a 24-10 lead into half-time,...

Mariota Throws 4TDs In Oregon’s 52-21 Victory Over Washington

Mariota Throws 4TDs In Oregon’s 52-21 Victory Over WashingtonOtto Greule Jr/Getty Images(EUGENE, Ore.) -- Freshman quarterback Marcus Mariota tossed four touchdowns as (2) Oregon (6-0) pounded (23) Washington (3-2), 52-21 in Pac-12 action Saturday night.The Ducks began the game by scoring 21 unanswered points in...

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