Mariota-Carrington connection helps Oregon break away in Rose Bowl

2014 Heisman Trophy winner Marcus Mariota had a pretty pedestrian first half by his standards. Heck, he even threw a rare interception right before heading into the locker room.

The second half, however, was a different story. Like it has been so many times in the Chip Kelly/Mark Helfrich era, Oregon broke away in the second half to beat Florida State, 59-20, in the semifinals of the College Football Playoff, and Mariota’s partnership with receiver Darren Carrington was a one reason why.

Mariota and Carrington hooked up on touchdown passes of 56 and 30 yards to turn a 25-20, back-and-forth affair into a comfortable 39-20 lead in the third quarter. Florida State imploded from there, turning it over four times in the third quarter to dash its hopes of a 30th consecutive victory and second straight national championship.

[Related: Complete 2015 Rose Bowl coverage]

Mariota finished the day 26-of-36 for 338 yards, two touchdowns and an interception, while Carrington caught seven passes for 165 yards and two scores. Mariota also ran the ball eight times for 62 yards and a touchdown.

Oregon will meet the winner of Thursday night's Alabama-Ohio State Sugar Bowl contest in CFP National Championship on Jan. 12, in Dallas.

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