The 2013 season for Oregon Ducks Quarterback Marcus Mariota was one that could have been forgotten when you mention the word injury. He was clearly not himself toward the end of the season in key Pac-12 game that derailed the Ducks BCS hopes and put them in the Alamo Bowl, but the Oregon Ducks still ended the season a respectable 11-2 and in his return for another season the Oregon Ducks will once again be in the thick of things for a spot in the first year of the College Football Playoff. In the offseason, Mariota put in some work which was apparent on Monday, Media Day at the University of Oregon, “Being able to gain a little weight will help me in the college game and in the NFL as well. For me it was continuing to work hard and improve. A lot of lifting, running – keeping that speed.” Mariota also worked on a key element of his game, “I’ve worked on my footwork this (off)season. You kind of throw with your feet. If I’m in the right spot I’ll throw from the right position. For the team, we’ve come a long way. Young guys are ready to explode on the field.”
“We have expectations for ourselves. We want to be a part of the Pac-12 Championship game. We want to be a part of the National Playoff Picture. We’re going to take it one day at a time and see where that takes us.”
Oregon Quarterback Marcus Mariota on Expectations for the 2014 season.
Mariota was asked about the losses from last season but it is clear he is looking forward to the upcoming season, “Injuries happen. All we can do is learn from it and get better from it.” He returned to school for his degree, and a light course load consisting of golf and yoga, and perhaps an online course should allow him time to focus on his game,”I have a couple credits to finish up in December. With the amount of free time I’ll have. Time in the treatment room, doing recovery stuff. More time for film work. Having more time for football it will be really beneficial to me.”
The Oregon Quarterback was asked about who he looked up to in the Conference at the Quarterback position and he directed the attention to two foes he will face this season, “(I) Really admire Hundley. He’s really been able to transform that program around. He’s a great dual threat guy. He’s one of those special players. Sean Mannion. That dude’s been doing it a long time now. He’s a player guy. He’s really for his players and his coaches.” Ultimately the message at Oregon always seems to be the same. One day at a time to get to the ultimate goal, “We have expectations for ourselves. We want to be a part of the Pac-12 Championship game. We want to be a part of the National Playoff Picture. We’re going to take it one day at a time and see where that takes us.”
The Oregon Ducks kick off the 2014 campaign on Saturday, August 30th hosting South Dakota at Autzen Stadium. Kickoff is set for 7:30pm Pacific Time on the Pac-12 Networks.