Marcus Mariota had a career-high 456 yards passing as #2 Oregon rolled to a 59-14 win over Tennessee this afternoon in Autzen Stadium. The sophomore Heisman Trophy candidate tossed four touchdowns, 23-33 passing.
Mariota shook off a 2-8 start and had 350 yards by halftime. He left the game with 5 minutes to go in third quarter and the Ducks up 52-7. He also added 6 carries for 27 yards, including a 9-yard touchdown sprint on a keeper around left end.
Freshman tight end Johnny Mundt was a surprise star in the game, getting the start with Colt Lyerla out with a stomach virus and a broken finger. Mundt had the best day for a tight end since Ed Dickson, grabbing 5 balls for 121 yards and 2 tds, including a 57-yard catch-and-run where he bowled over two defenders. Senior Josh Huff had his second 100-yard day, with 6 catches for 125 yards. Huff broke free on a 54-yard post pattern for a score in the first quarter.
Daryle Hawkins streaked down the right sideline wide open for a 45-yard touchdown on 4th and 6. Mariota, De’Anthony Thomas, Byron Marshall and Thomas Tyner added touchdowns on the ground.
In all the Oregon offense rolled up 687 yards and 29 first downs.
The defense gave a 51-yard pass completion, Tennessee driving for a score and an early 7-0 lead. The Ducks missed an early field goal, had three quick penalties and looked flat and disorganized. Midway through the first quarter they had to settle for a Matt Wogan field goal after a pass interference penalty, and looked like they’d given big momentum to the Volunteers when Josh Huff fumbled on the Tennessee 33. The play went to review, and the replay official ruled Huff’s elbow was down.
Crisis averted, the Ducks took command, scoring 56 unanswered points before UT put a drive together against the 2s and 3s in the fourth quarter.