Nov 20, 2021; Salt Lake City, Utah, USA; Utah Utes running back Tavion Thomas (9) runs for a first quarter touchdown against the Oregon Ducks at Rice-Eccles Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Swinger-USA TODAY Sports

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No. 23 Utah drubs No. 3 Oregon, denting CFP hopes

Cameron Rising passed for 178 yards and ran for a touchdown, and Britain Covey returned a punt for a score as No. 23 Utah steamrolled No. 3 Oregon 38-7 on Saturday in Pac-12 Conference play in Salt Lake City.

With the win, Utah (8-3, 7-1 Pac-12) earned the Pac-12 South Division title and a spot in the conference championship game on Dec. 3 in Las Vegas. Utes coach Kyle Whittingham became the all-time wins leader at the school with 142.

Tavion Thomas rushed for 94 yards and three TDs for Utah, which has won four straight games overall and 18 of its past 19 contests at home. Brant Kuithe caught five passes for 118 yards for the Utes.

Anthony Brown led Oregon with 231 yards passing and a touchdown but the Ducks were limited to just 294 total yards, only 63 of which came on the ground.

The Ducks (9-2, 6-2) had their five-game winning streak snapped.

Oregon is still in the driver’s seat for the Pac-12 North Division title and a spot in the conference championship game. However, the Ducks will fall out of the top four of the College Football Playoff with their second loss.

The Utes grabbed the lead on a 10-yard TD run by Thomas with 4:40 to play in the first quarter that capped a 13-play, 63-yard march. Later, Rising scooted around left end for a 1-yard scoring run with 5:08 remaining in the second quarter to finish off an 80-yard, 9-play drive and give Utah a 14-0 lead.

Thomas added his second TD – going untouched on a 4-yard run – and pushed the Utes’ lead to 21-0 with just 27 seconds remaining in the half.

Oregon tried to get something out of the time left before halftime but ended up punting on the final play of the half, with Covey ripping off a 78-yard return for a touchdown.

Utah outgained the Ducks 242-122 in the first half, running 40 plays to Oregon’s 26.

Oregon finally responded, driving 75 yards in nine plays with Brown’s 36-yard TD pass to Devon Williams to open the third quarter. But the Utes answered, powering down the field to Thomas’ third touchdown run, this one from 5 yards out with 3:56 to play in the third, to regain their 28-point lead.

Utah added a 26-yard field goal by Jadon Redding halfway through the fourth quarter to cap the scoring.

–Field Level Media

Field Level Media
Sport Writer & Editor
FLM has a North American focus while tying into regional and hyper-local resources – providing the ability to distribute compelling content through the writing of professional journalists. As the U.S. sports content provider to dozens of digital and print media publishers through strategic partnerships with the likes of Reuters and Nielsen Sports, FLM covers the nuts and bolts with a breaking news desk and game event coverage.


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