It’s a happy report card for the Oregon Ducks football team after the 55-10 victory over Hawaii. Every position group played well for the most part, but the Ducks still have a problem with flags.
After 14 penalties a week ago, anything less could be considered an improvement, but Oregon was flagged nine times, which is still far too many. A few of those penalties extended the two scoring drives Hawaii managed. This game could have easily been a shutout performance, but silly unnecessary penalties allowed the Rainbow Warriors 10 points.
In the big scheme of things, the penalties didn’t hurt, but against Pac-12 competition, they will hurt and could cost the Ducks a victory.
Bo Nix was great against Hawaii, going 21-of-27 passing for 247 yards and three touchdowns. He was able to throw down the field more than he did at Texas Tech and this film should make opposing defensive coordinators lose sleep.
Backup Ty Thompson was also good and it was probably his best game as a Duck. He looked more comfortable in the pocket and made good throws with confidence. He was 5-of-7 for 102 yards and a touchdown.
Oregon still needs to have a more consistent running game, but this was an improvement. The Ducks rushed for 229 yards on 30 carries, but a lot of that came when the game was well in hand. Noah Whittington led all rushers with 80 yards on just five carries and a touchdown. Jordan James managed just three carries, but scored twice.
This group showed exactly how talented they are and it’s still missing Kris Hutson. Nix spread the wealth around with 10 different Ducks with at least one reception. Tez Johnson scored twice as did Traeshon Holden in what was his best game thus far.
The offensive line was good and improved on those false starts that plagued them at Texas Tech. Whether that’s because they were in familiar surroundings or if they’ve actually cleaned it up remains to be seen. But for at least a week, the problem has been solved. More importantly, they didn’t allow a sack.
Pressuring the quarterback is still something that needs to improve on a consistent basis, but considering Hawaii’s offense where the quarterback doesn’t have the ball long, the Ducks did a good job at getting to Brayden Schager. They had two sacks and were in the backfield a lot. This will need an uptick as Pac-12 play begins.
The second level of defense really wasn’t available much for Hawaii as the Oregon linebackers were flying around. They all went to the ball and didn’t miss many tackles. Bryce Boettcher continues to be a revelation with his six tackles, one for loss.
This grade should have been an A considering the type of offense Hawaii runs and holding them to just one late touchdown. The Rainbow Warriors were held to nearly 200 yards fewer through the air than they averaged coming in.
The grade was lowered because of the penalties and the pass interference calls that maintained drives. It was an improvement over last week, but it’s still too much.
As usual, kicker Camden Lewis was perfect, going 2-for-2 on field goals, including a 43-yarder in the first quarter.
Tez Johnson also had a nice game fielding punts. He had 47 yards on five returns, including a 15-yard return that almost went the distance.