Maybe this is the season Oregon finally reclaim their Pac-12 title and find themselves in the playoffs for the national College Football title. Stanford stood in their way for the last couple of seasons, but in 2014, things are different, as the Ducks were led by Marcus Mariota in a 45-16 route, leaving no doubt about the current balance of power in the conference.
Oregon did lose to Arizona earlier in the season in what looked like a tragedy, but the Ducks have climbed up the rankings and seem to be in the hearts of the committee members at the moment, the most important thing for a team this season. Now that Stanford have lost for a third time, Oregon have a two-game advantage over everyone in their division, almost ensuring completely that they’ll be the North’s representative in the conference championship game.
The Stanford defense can no longer contain the special bran of offense Oregon put on the field each time, which includes running around the edges and attacking with speed and volume that might be impossible to match unless you have the personnel to slow things down. Marcus Mariota threw two touchdown passes and ran for a couple more, as Stanford struggled running the ball with just 132 yards on the ground, and Kevin Hogan failed to deliver a touchdown pass.
Stanford scored their only touchdown of the game with 1:01 left in the second quarter, and were held scoreless in the final 17:30 minutes of the game. The fear, the mental block and having to figure out a defense that was pretty much built to slow them down has disappeared. Oregon are the best team in the conference, and seem to be finally good enough to not give away any slips that will cost us a chance to finally see how they’d do against an SEC team.