It was a perfect day for football in Eugene for the annual Oregon football Spring Game. An estimated 45,000 showed up to see what head coach Dan Lanning had set up for his second year as head coach.
Bo Nix, Bucky Irving, and Kris Hutson showed their experience throughout the afternoon. It took some time for the ‘Green Team’ and ‘Yellow Team’ to get going. There were a lot of physical hits on defense, some would make old-school Chicago Bears fans happy. We knew coming into his second year, that Lanning would bring a more physical defense, more so than he had last season.
Jeffrey Bassa, Devon Jackson, and Jamal Holl combined for 14 tackles on the day. As a team, there were 16 pass breakups. In the game, there were just six red zone chances between the teams and the Ducks were a combined 3 for 6 on fourth down.
Offensively, there were more fireworks as the game went on, including some key long, downfield passes from Nix and Ty Thompson. Nix had a better day. Thompson struggled and started the first quarter 0-6 passing. He finished the game 16 for 24 for 270 yards and a touchdown.
Head coach Dan Lanning is not concerned about his backup quarterback, “That’s football a little bit, right? You know we had some bad balls early, some adversity early, didn’t complete some, some slow starts. And then be able to get some shots there at the end, I think that was big.”
Thompson was able to find Kris Hutson and Tez Johnson for big plays. In the end, Nix’s Green Team led by Marcus Mariota won 23-20 over Thompson’s team led by Jevon Holland.
Freshman Austin Novosad who had his first Autzen experience on Saturday followed Nix in the lineup and completed his first pass going 1 for 4. Lanning is impressed with Novosad and his accomplishments this spring, “Yeah, he completed his very first ball. I want to go back and watch the rest of his performance, but I thought he was calm, cool, and collected.”
On Special Teams, Camden Lewis was perfect on the day hitting field goals from 36, 44, and 31 yards respectively. Ross James and four kickoff returns for 167 yards, which included a 62-yard return.
Oregon Football breaks now as we head toward the summer and will reconvene for fall camp. The Ducks host Portland State to open the 2023 season on Saturday, September 2nd.
All quotes obtained during post-game interviews for the Oregon Spring game.
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