Stanford quarterback Tanner McKee threw a 14-yard touchdown pass to John Humphreys in overtime as Oregon’s College Football Playoff chances took a huge hit with a 31-24 loss to the Cardinal on Saturday.
Anthony Brown’s 5-yard touchdown run with 9:32 had given the No. 3 Ducks their first lead, but his fourth-down pass in overtime fell incomplete, giving Stanford the win.
Stanford sent the game to overtime when McKee’s 2-yard fade pass to Elijah Higgins capped a two-minute, 87-yard drive aided by two personal foul penalties and a holding call in the end zone.
Oregon was without offensive coordinator Joe Moorhead after the school said he was being evaluated for a non-COVID related illness, but it still gained 414 yards on the day.
Stanford opened the scoring on a 25-yard field goal by Joshua Karty and hit pay dirt after one of Oregon’s rare turnovers.
Brown was intercepted by Gabe Reed, and two plays later, McKee found Brycen Tremayne in the corner of the end zone for an 18-yard score to make it 10-0.
Oregon got on the board with Brown’s 3-yard TD run, but Stanford answered right back with a 12-play, 75-yard drive capped by Isaiah Sanders 2-yard TD run.
The Ducks’ chance to cut into the lead before halftime was stopped after Brown was stuffed on fourth and goal at the 1, wasting a 12-play drive.
Oregon used a dominant third quarter to get back in the game, holding the Cardinal to 21 total yards. C.J. Verdell’s 1-yard run again cut Stanford’s lead to three.
Verdell had 64 yards on the ground before leaving with an apparent leg injury, and Oregon capped off that drive with a field goal to tie the score at 17.
All-American defensive end Kayvon Thibodeaux, who had missed the previous two games with an injury, was ejected for targeting late in the fourth quarter, meaning he will miss the first half of the Cal game.
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