Boise State Upsets No. 17 Oregon
Sept. 20, 2008
EUGENE, Ore. (AP) - Kellen Moore threw for 386 yards and three touchdowns in his first road start and Boise State upset No. 17 Oregon 37-32 Saturday as the Ducks' quarterback troubles continued.
Jeremiah Masoli, a junior college transfer who was projected as Oregon's third-string quarterback going into the season, started but left the game in the first half with a reported concussion.
The Broncos (3-0) of the Western Athletic Conference took advantage of the Ducks' offensive struggles. Moore, a redshirt freshman, was composed in completing 24 of 36 passes. Vinny Perretta had three catches for 91 yards and a touchdown.
It was Boise State's first victory over a Pacific-10 team on the road. The Broncos are 3-11 against the league, with all of their victories coming against teams from Oregon (they had defeated Oregon State twice before in Boise).
Oregon (3-1) planned on using both Masoli and true freshman Chris Harper at quarterback after starter Justin Roper injured his left knee in the Ducks' 32-26 double-overtime victory at Purdue the previous week.
But combined Masoli and Harper attempted only six passes in the first half as Boise State took a 24-6 lead.
Then came more bad news: Masoli did not return after halftime. He appeared on the sidelines wearing his jersey with shorts.
Harper's troubles continued in the second half and Oregon gave freshman Darron Thomas a try. The Ducks had hoped to redshirt him.
Roper will likely also miss Oregon's next game against Washington State. The team hopes to have him back for a trip to top-ranked Southern California on Oct. 4.
Roper was named the starter only a week before the opener against Washington when projected starter Nate Costa was injured and required season-ending surgery on his knee.
The Ducks went into the game ranked fourth in the nation in rushing with an average of 323.3 yards per game. They were also ranked fourth in total offense, with an average of more than 562 yards.
The Broncos managed to slow Oregon, allowing 464 yards of total offense and 227 yards on the ground.
Oregon's LeGarrette Blount ran 16 yards - leaping over a pair of linemen tangled on the turf - to score, but the 2-point conversion failed and the Ducks were up 6-0 in the first quarter.
Boise State halved the margin on Jeremy Brotzman's 51-yard field goal, a career-best, then took a 10-6 lead when Moore found Tommy Gallarda with a 9-yard scoring pass.
Ian Johnson upped the Broncos' lead with a 6-yard scoring run, before Moore hit Chris O'Neill with a 3-yard pass to make it 24-6 and quiet the Autzen Stadium fans.
Moore was intercepted by Oregon's Talmadge Jackson early in the second half, leading to Jeremiah Johnson's 18-yard touchdown run and narrowing it to 24-13.
The Broncos answered on the next series with Moore's 73-yard scoring pass to Perretta. Brotzman added a pair of field goals, from 26 and 34 yards out, to make 34-13 for Boise State.
Thomas gave Oregon life in the fourth quarter. First he hit Jeff Maehl with a 24-yard scoring pass, and then found Ed Dickson with a 20-yard TD pass to narrow it to 37-26.
Another late comeback appeared possible for Oregon. The Ducks got down to the Boise State 7 after two consecutive pass interference penalties by the Broncos, and Thomas found Moore in the end zone to close to within 37-32 with 2:07 left in the game. But time ran out for Oregon.
Thomas completed 13 of 25 passes for 210 yards and a touchdown in his debut. He threw one interception. Dickson had seven catches for 103 yards and two scores.