QB Bryan Bennett Will Reportedly Return to Oregon Ducks' Program

Ben ChodosCorrespondent IIJanuary 12, 2013

Oregon quarterback Bryan Bennett will reportedly stay with the program for next season, even after losing the starting job to Marcus Mariota. 

Head coach Chip Kelly chose Mariota as the team's quarterback for the Ducks’ 2012 campaign, and Bennett saw limited action throughout the year. Although he is talented enough to receive more playing time at another school, Chris Courtney of 247Sports is reporting that Bennett will remain in Eugene. 

The Encino, Calif. product was ranked as the No. 43 prospect in his home state, and the 15th-best pro-style quarterback in the nation, according to Rivals.com.

In 2011, Bennett filled in admirably for injured start Darron Thomas against the University of Colorado. He completed 11 of his 20 passes for 156 yards and two touchdowns, leading the Ducks to a 45-2 victory.

He ended the year with 369 yards and six touchdowns while completing 25 of his 46 passes.

This past season, most of Bennett's time under center came when Oregon had already comfortably sealed a victory. He threw just 37 passes all season and recorded three touchdowns and three interceptions while adding 165 yards and six touchdowns on the ground. 

Bennett will be a junior next season, and he will likely spend the remainder of his career with the Ducks as a backup. 

Mariota did nothing to suggest that he will not be the starter for the remainder of his eligibility. He finished the year with 2,677 passing yards and a 68.5 completion percentage. He tossed 32 touchdown passes and just six interceptions while also recording 752 yards and five touchdowns on the ground. 

This is Mariota’s job to lose, but Bennett has still opted to follow Kelly's lead and remain with the Ducks. He will give the team great depth at quarterback for its 2013 season.