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Pac-12 Quarterbacks: Mariota Wins Second Conference Honor, Mannion Sets School Record

In his biggest test to-date, #2 Oregon (6-0, 3-0) quarterback Marcus Mariota rose to the occasion last Saturday and led his team to a 45-24 win against #20 Washington (4-2, 1-2).


Marcus Mariota

With the win, Mariota again took home offensive Pac-12 player of the week honors. He is the first conference player to win this honor for two straight weeks. This repeat came from the sophomore’s 24 of 31 passes, 366 yards and three touchdowns. He also ran for 88 yards and added one more score to secure the team’s victory in the fourth quarter.

For this talented quarterback a passing and rushing touchdown in a game is nothing new: Mariota has done this in all six games this year and has a streak going back to the 2012 season with eight games.

The Ducks remain undefeated as Mariota has contributed 25 touchdowns (17 passing, eight running); he has zero turnovers this season and sits at No. 5 for passing efficiency (182.40 quarterback rating) and No. 6 for total offense (358.30 yards per game); Oregon is No.2 for total offense (630.50 yards) per game.

Saturday’s play impressed Washington coach Steve Sarkisian who said via ESPN, “I don’t have a Heisman vote, but I’d be hard-pressed to say we’ll see a better quarterback this year. That guy is special. I don’t know when he is planning on going to the NFL, but when he does, I think he’ll be a top-five draft pick… He threw the ball extremely well, and when we covered him, he ran. We tried to spot him. We tried to blitz him. We tried to contain him. But he played a tremendous game.”

So where does Mariota sit in the Heisman race? He is 7/5, with Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel right behind him at 5/1. The only other Pac-12 player in the race includes #11 UCLA’s (5-0, 2-0) quarterback Brett Hundley at 14/1. In last Saturday’s game against Cal (1-5, 0-3) in front of NFL scouts, Hundley passed for 410 yards–a career high–and three touchdowns.

For the Ducks, they seem unstoppable and this week, they’ll extend their perfect season against Washington State (4-3, 2-2) at (-38).

Oh yeah, another talented Pac-12 quarterback: Oregon State’s Sean Mannion

Oregon State’s (5-1, 3-0) quarterback Sean Mannion is also getting his share of headlines this season as he sits at No. 1 nationally for 2,511 passing yards through six games. He has 25 touchdowns and three picks.

Who’s behind him at No. 2? Ball State’s Keith Wenning with 2,301 yards, 15 touchdowns and five yards.

Sean Mannion of Oregon State

Sean Mannion

You may ask why you haven’t hear more about him. He’s kinda fallen into the same trap as Louisville quarterback Teddy Bridgewater: Oregon State’s strength of schedule has been weak.

This includes a Week 1 loss to East Washington with wins against Hawaii, Utah, San Diego State, Colorado and Washington State. But after this weekend, look for Oregon State to face solid competition in games against Stanford, USC, ASU, Washington and then a visit to Oregon.

Last Saturday, Mannion had 414 passing yards and set a school record with six touchdowns, leading Oregon State to its fourth straight win. As for his Heisman odds, Bovada hasn’t put him in the conversation at all while the Heisman Pundit has.

This week, look for Mannion to have another big game as he’ll face Cal and see a fifth win (-10.5).

USC Battling Injuries for Notre Dame Game

This week USC (4-2, 1-2) will travel to South Bend to take on Notre Dame (4-2) and three of its players are questionable to play, according to interim coach Ed Orgeron. This includes top wide receiver Marqise Lee, running back Tre Madden and linebacker Morgan Breslin.

This doesn’t come as too much surprise for Lee and Breslin, who were both out last week against Arizona (3-2,0-2), but Madden got injured in that game. USC will have healthy running back Silas Redd to rely on and against Arizona, he had 19 carries for 80 yards.

The Trojans have won five straight games against Notre Dame in South Bend but this could end on Saturday (-3).


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