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Oregon Ducks Football: Rushing Attack Will Be the Difference vs. Kansas State

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Ryan RudnanskySenior Writer IDecember 11, 2012

"Anything you can do, I can do better."

And so will be Oregon's cry against Kansas State in the Fiesta Bowl.

Behind dual-threat quarterback Collin Klein and junior running back John Hubert, Kansas State has averaged 4.89 yards per carry this season, 37th in the nation, via CFBStats.com. This includes 41 rushing touchdowns, sixth in the country.

But Oregon, behind dual-threat quarterback Marcus Mariota and running backs Kenjon Barner and De'Anthony Thomas (as well as a host of other contributors), has averaged 6.06 yards per carry, the best mark in the nation. That includes 47 rushing touchdowns, tied for first in the FBS.

While Oregon has a worse run defense than Kansas State, that won't matter. The only team that was able to stop Oregon's rushing attack this season was Stanford, and that's an elite run defense you're talking about.

Kansas State will score its fair share of points in the Fiesta Bowl on Jan. 3, but, as we saw with most of Oregon's opponents this season, that doesn't matter if you can't stop the Ducks' running game.

Heck, USC scored 51 points against Oregon on Nov. 3 and still lost by 11 points. USC racked up 615 total yards, but Oregon posted 730 total yards. That included 426 yards on the ground (7.1 yards per carry).

It's not like the rushing attack has slowed down, either. The Ducks exploded for 430 yards and six touchdowns on the ground in the 48-24 victory over Oregon State to close out the regular season on Nov. 24. Barner rushed for 198 yards and two touchdowns on 28 carries. 

Stanford may have shocked Oregon on Nov. 17, but pit Oregon against a run defense that isn't elite and watch the wheels go 'round and 'round. 


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