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Sellout crowd watches Arizona get crushed by No. 12 Oregon

arizona-wildcats-football-recap-oregon-ducks-pac12-stats-highlights-2022 Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Jedd Fisch got his sellout, but his team’s performance might have some fans asking for a refund.

Arizona was blown out by No. 12 Oregon, allowing 580 yards and turning it over three times in a 49-22 loss on Saturday night at Arizona Stadium.

A crowd of 50,800, the first sellout since 2015, saw the Wildcats (3-3, 1-2 Pac-12) have no answer for the Ducks’ explosive offense. Oregon (5-1, 3-0) ran for 306 yards and seven touchdowns, one shy of the UA opponent record, with Ducks quarterback Bo Nix accounting for three of those scores.

Nix also threw for 265 yards on 20-of-25 passing, completing 14 consecutive throws at one point to go with his 70 rushing yards.

Arizona had 356 yards, barely half what it had in last week’s 43-20 win over Colorado with Jayden de Laura throwing for 241 and a TD on 24-of-42 passing. But he was intercepted once and lost a fumble, with Oregon converting both of his giveaways into TDs.

The Ducks scored on seven consecutive drives after punting to start the game, outscoring Arizona 42-10 in the second and third quarters. They put up 21 in the first 10 minutes after halftime, turning a 28-13 lead into a 36-point advantage.

Nix scored on a 2-yard run to make it 35-13, then after de Laura had a pass intercepted after it was tipped at the line the Ducks turned the takeaway into points via a 23-yard Bucky Irving run.

Arizona’s third turnover came not long after, with de Laura getting strip sacked on a blitz and Oregon’s Micah Roth recovering. Nix’s third TD run, a 25-yarder, made it 49-13 with 5:04 left in the third.

Tyler Loop hit his third field goal, a 30-yarder, with 28 seconds left in the third to end Oregon’s 21-0 run, then de Laura connected with Tetairoa McMillan on an 11-yard TD pass to make it 49-22 with 9:51 remaining.

Arizona drove deep into Oregon territory on its first two possessions, and made it past the 50 on its first three drives, but only ended up with three points. The Wildcats had a 1st and goal from the 7 when, after rushing to the line, an inside handoff to Jacob Cowing on a jet sweep was muffed, with the Ducks recovering.

The UA’s second drive stalled just outside the red zone, with Loop hitting a 38-yard field goal for a 3-0 lead with 5:13 left in the first.

Oregon took the lead with 2:53 left in the first on a 55-yard TD run by Noah Whittington, going nearly untouched through the Arizona defense after making cut at the line of scrimmage. Before that, the Wildcats had held the Ducks to 19 rushing yards on five carries.

Arizona had to punt from near midfield on its third drive, and Oregon followed that with an easy 90-yard drive capped by Nix’s 2-yard keeper to make it 14-3 early in the second after hitting Kris Hutson on a 42-yard play-action pass.

The Ducks made it 21-3 with 4:42 left in the first half on a 3-yard TD run by tight end Moliki Matavao, capping off an 86-yard drive that included Nix going 4 of 4 for 73 yards.

Arizona finally had something go its way late in the first. Cowing was laid out by Oregon’s Dontae Manning on a swing pass, and after the Wildcats called timeout (and was back up to the line for the next play) the play was reviewed and ruled targeting, ejecting Manning from the game. One play later, DJ Williams broke off a 52-yard TD run to make it 21-10 with 3:43 to go in the half.

It was the longest play from scrimmage this season for the Wildcats.

Oregon got the points back, though, scoring on a 1-yard Jordan James run with 34 seconds left in the second.

Arizona went into the locker room down 15 after Loop hit from 36 yards, a score that came thanks to Jonah Coleman gaining 43 yards on a draw play that was meant to run out the clock as well as Oregon calling timeout when the UA had set up for a 46-yard attempt (that Loop missed right) with 10 seconds to go. That prompted Fisch to put the offense back out, and after Cowing drew a holding penalty on a deep route, Loop connected from 10 yards closer.

Arizona hits the road next Saturday to take on No. 21 Washington. The Huskies (4-2, 1-2) are likely to fall out of the Top 25 after losing 45-38 at ASU.