Eugene, OR, United States (4E Sports) – The Oregon Ducks executed another home-opening rout, this time against the South Dakota Coyotes, 62-13 Saturday at Autzen Stadium, after changes introduced during the offseason.
Among the constants was their 3-4 defense and quarterback Marcus Mariota, who passed for 267 yards and three touchdowns and ran for 43 more and a touchdown.
Mariota became Oregon’s career leader in touchdowns (82) in the process while tying Darron Thomas for UO’s all-time touchdown passes (66).
The changes included a new defensive coordinator in Don Pellum, who rotated two dozen players that allowed five yards per play and stuffed South Dakota on two fourth downs, forced two fumbles and 7-of-17 on third downs.
Another important change was red-zone efficiency: 5-of-5 inside the 25-yard line.
Oregon also lost its top four receivers.
But there’s the inclusion of freshman running back Royce Freeman, who scored on a one-yard dive and 26-yard run and had 75 yards on 10 carries.
Also new is Oregon’s three-back rotation that includes Thomas Tyner and Byron Marshall.