In a game that favored the Ducks by 59 points, there was no surprise when Oregon walked away with a 66-3 victory in the season opener against the visiting Nicholls State Colonels. The No. 3 ranked Ducks were firing on all cylinders and managed to score plenty of points in fewer than two minutes. They also made history as three different Ducks — De’Anthony Thomas, Byron Marshall, Marcus Mariota — rushed for more than 100 yards.
Headlining the Oregon offense this afternoon were none other than the two Heisman candidates in Mariota and Thomas. Both players recorded over 100 total yards respectively and helped carry the load on offense.
“It’s something special,” Thomas said in reference to the record the Ducks broke today. “Just being with those guys, I feel like we should have those every game.”
For Mariota, it was a day that consisted of dominance both in the air and on the ground as he finished with 234 passing yards on 12-21 attempts along with 113 yards rushing on five carries. In addition to his notable stats, Mariota also recorded two rushing touchdowns: one coming from 46 yards out and the other from 12 yards.
“I kind of started the game out a little juiced and I missed a couple throws high,” Mariota said. “Once the game started flowing, I ended up throwing a little better.”
Thomas also had a field day on the ground as he led the team with 128 yards on 18 carries (career high). Like Mariota, Thomas also had two rushing touchdowns, both coming in the first quarter.
In addition to Mariota and Thomas, senior wide receiver Josh Huff finished with 118 yards receiving on five receptions to lead all receivers. Although Huff did not manage to score a touchdown, his performance in the air was more than notable.
“The receivers we have, they do an astounding job with everything we do,” Huff said following the game. “So when we (receivers) get our chance to get the ball in the air, we’re going to make the most of it. The depth at receiver is — my god — it’s amazing being around those guys and each one of those guys (receivers) are talented and just for us to be able to showcase that today and further along in the season, it’s going to be fun.”
Overall, the Ducks had an impressive outing their first game of the season. While there will always be room for improvement, the Ducks achieved their goal of starting the season with a win. If one thing was shown in today’s game, it was that the Ducks have a lot of depth at virtually every position.
“I’m very proud,” Thomas said. “I feel like our team came out hard and now we’re looking forward to next weekend.”