Oregon Ducks: top performances 2012

We're looking at some of the top individual performances in the Pac-12 in 2012.

Up next: Ifo Ekpre-alloverarizona

Who and against whom: Oregon corner back Ifo Ekpre-Olomu helped lead the Oregon defense to a 49-0 shutout victory over Arizona in what was supposed to be Oregon's first "real" test of the season.

The numbers: Ekpre-Olomu had just one tackle, but he picked off Arizona quarterback Matt Scott twice -- returning one of them for a 54-yard touchdown. He also broke up three passes.

A closer look: After Arizona failed to score on its first possession in the red zone, the Wildcats were given a gift on their second possession when Marcus Mariota fumbled at his own 12-yard line. A holding call forced the Wildcats back to the 20, but they were still poised to score the game's first points. That is until Ekpre-Olomu stepped in on the first of his two picks. Scott and Dan Buckner weren't on the same page and Ekpre-Olomu made a diving catch on the sideline to stop the red zone threat. It was all Oregon from then on as the defense stifled the Wildcats and the offense jumped ahead 28-0 in the fourth. Make it 35-0 after Ekpre-Olomu jumped a Scott pass, again intended for Buckner, and with a full head of steam went untouched for a 54-yard score. They were the first two picks of his career and he would go on to earn first-team all-conference honors. It was Oregon's only shutout of the year, but it came against the team that ranked second in the league in total offense (second only to the Ducks).

You can check out all of the top performances here.

Top performances of 2012: Marcus Mariota

February, 15, 2013
We're looking at some of the top individual performances in the Pac-12 in 2012.

Up next: Mariota's six pack

Who and against whom: Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota carved up the California secondary, turning a close game in the third quarter into a 59-17 blowout victory.

The numbers: Mariota completed 27 of 34 passes for 377 yards with six touchdowns and no interceptions. That's a 230.79 passing efficiency rating, which is very, very good. He also -- oh, by the way -- rushed six times for 42 yards.

A closer look: Running back Kenjon Barner hurt? The Ducks vaunted running game bottled up? The Ducks up just seven early in the third quarter? No matter. The Bears ended up getting Marcus Mariota'd. This game, in fact, seemed to provide ultimate confirmation that Mariota was an elite quarterback and a future Heisman Trophy contender. He was simply brilliant on the road in the second half of a game where things weren't going Oregon's way. The Ducks, who had rushed for at least 400 yards in the previous three games, were outrushed by the Bears 236 yards to 180. Barner had just 65 yards on 20 carries, 256 fewer yards than he had the previous weekend against USC. Cal's defense wanted to force Mariota to pass to win. He did, and with panache, tossing touchdown passes of 10, 10, 35, 39, 14 and seven yards. He tied the Oregon school record for touchdown passes in a game and tied USC's Matt Barkley for the Pac-12 season-high.


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