Posted November 07, 2012 on
AP on Fox
Kenjon Barner's record-setting night helped Oregon pass one major test and move closer toward a spot in the BCS championship game.
The second-ranked Ducks have a couple more tests on the horizon but first they have to avoid an upset during Saturday night's visit to struggling California, which may not have its starting quarterback available.
Barner rushed for a program-best 321 yards and scored five times on the ground, matching a Pac-12 mark, to lead Oregon to a 62-51 win at then-No. 18 Southern California this past Saturday. Marcus Mariota also threw for four touchdowns and the Ducks gained 730 yards while matching a school record with their 12th straight victory.
Barner's performance surely boosted his Heisman Trophy candidacy, and he'll try to add to his resume Saturday.
"It's a blessing. It's an honor," Barner said. "But I don't really worry about it. I can't worry about that, I can't focus on that right now because there's still a lot of football left and anything can happen."
More importantly, his effort helped the Ducks move past Notre Dame for third in the BCS standings.
Oregon (9-0, 6-0) trails second-place Kansas State by .0152 and could get a boost with wins over No. 16 Stanford and No. 13 Oregon State to wrap up the season. Before they get to those games, the Ducks have to get past Cal (3-7, 2-5).
"I think we're going to get everyone's best shot no matter who we play," linebacker Michael Clay said. "They're going to come out fired up and ready to get at us. So we just have to be ready for that, especially on road games. We have to weather the storm."
Oregon has won three straight over the Golden Bears after losing three in a row, but the Ducks trailed at halftime in last season's meeting before pulling away for a 43-15 win. Oregon erased a one-point deficit by scoring 29 unanswered points on Oct. 6, 2011.
During its previous visit to Berkeley on Nov. 13, 2010, Oregon needed a punt return touchdown and another score early in the fourth quarter for a 15-13 win.
"It was a dogfight," Clay said. "They missed a field goal, but it was a dogfight. It'll be another one down there."
This time, the Ducks will face a Cal team that's lost three straight and might not have starting quarterback Zach Maynard available. Maynard is dealing with an injured left knee and Allan Bridgford could start in his place.
Bridgford has attempted a combined 48 passes for the Bears and hasn't thrown for a touchdown in his six games. He started in the season opener against Nevada on Sept. 1 when Maynard was disciplined for missing a tutoring session but completed only two of nine passes for six yards.
The junior went 2 of 7 for 26 yards after Maynard got hurt against Washington on Nov. 2 and couldn't lead Cal to a tying score in a 21-13 defeat.
"It would be different if it were my first time playing a college football game but it's not," Bridgford said. "I've played a number of games. I've thrown a handful of passes. I'm not overly nervous. I'm just ready to have fun and waiting to have my shot."
Maynard, though, doesn't have ligament damage in his knee and coach Jeff Tedford will likely wait to see how the injury heals before choosing a starter.
"It's totally dependent on how he's moving and what he feels like," Tedford said. "Each day it gets a little bit better. It's kind of out of our control. He'll get as much rehab as he can and it's just how he responds to that."
Along with its three game win-streak in the series, Oregon has taken 11 of the past 15 meetings. Cal, though, holds a 39-33-2 all-time lead and a 26-15-2 edge on home matchups.
BEST OF MAXIM
The nation’s elite stayed perfect on Saturday, though it wasn’t all smooth sailing for ‘Bama or Oregon (clockwise from top: AP/ Herbert, AP/ Wagner, Getty/ Laberge)
Tailgater Top 25 Rankings, Week 9
Alabama couldn’t make good on Vegas’ nine-point spread. In fact, it took about 59 minutes for the Crimson Tide to secure its ninth win of the year. But as well as LSU played...
Kenjon Barner modestly said the No. 2 Oregon Ducks did ''pretty well'' in their big win against USC. As for his own record-setting effort, the ever-humble running back credited his teammates.
So it fell to former Ducks running back and good friend LaMichael James to come right out and say it: Barner has proven he's one of the best running backs in the country...
There is nobody in the nation who doesn’t know how good the Oregon Ducks are this season, especially after the 62-51 trouncing over the USC Trojans this past Saturday.
After the big victory that established the Ducks as the Pac-12 standard of excellence, Oregon has seen improved poll results and is now looking towards the big picture as they head down the final...
Oregon Ducks running back Kenjon Barner (5-11 192 Sr) has soared into the Heisman discussion with his eye popping school-record 321 rushing yards and five touchdowns last Saturday in the 62-51 win over the USC Trojans. With his numbers and recent stellar performance, you would think that he would now be the Heisman leader, but he has shared the spotlight on offense with a backfield...
After establishing several records including a school best in single-game rushing with 321 yards on 38 carries and five touchdowns, Kenjon Barner discusses Oregon's 62-51 win over USC on Saturday, Nov. 3, 2012 at the LA Coliseum.
Heisman Hopefuls:(1) Collin Klein: (QB: Kansas State University): After leaving Saturday’s contest against Oklahoma State with concussion-like symptoms it is too early to tell the long-term impact of Klein’s decline in performance or potential absence. He has solidified himself as the front-runner for the award with great road performances against Oklahoma and West Virginia...
Week 10 Maxwell Award Elite
In a Pac-12 statement game against USC, Oregon RB Kenjon Barner finally showed the country what he can do in a full game. On a hefty 38 carries, Barner ran for a school-record 321 yards and five touchdowns, which ties a Pac-12 single game record. Barner, our Maxwell Award Player of the Week, is currently third in the nation with 1,295 rushing yards, eighth...
From out of the thick Oregon mist came a rocket known to fans of Riverside, California's Notre Dame High School football.
Kenjon Barner blazed into the University Park neighborhood of Los Angeles at full speed and never slowed. He waved to family and friends while torching the turf for enough yards to shake even the sleepiest fans awake.
His rushing performance earned national...
Champs of the Week:1. Kenjon Barner, RB, Oregon- 321 rushing yards, 5 TD’sThis one almost seemed personal to Barner. The senior back, originally from L.A., set a school record with 321 rushing yards in five touchdowns in the high-scoring affair with USC. With all the talk early in the year about De’Anthony Thomas being the Heisman candidate on this Oregon Ducks squad...
It was a matchup that had been anticipated for roughly eleven months. As soon as the 2011 college football season came to a close, the Ducks and Trojans fans alike had November 3rd, 2012 circled on their calendars. It was the day the two perennial Pac-12 powers would clash, battling for their spot in the driver's seat of the conference.
While the stakes weren't quite as...
Former Oregon and current San Francisco 49ers running back LaMichael James was at the Oregon-USC game on Saturday night and spoke to media regarding Kenjon Barner's performance in which James' individual game rushing record was shattered by Barner's 321-yards on 38 carries. Oregon won the game 62-51.
Week ten of the college football season saw some of the top teams in the country almost lose as Alabama and Notre Dame has close calls. Would that help AJ McCarron and Manti Te'o because they had to persevere to win or will it hurt? Kansas State's Collin Klein got knocked out of his teams win over Oklahoma State and Kenyon Barner made a statement against Monte Kiffin'...
2012 Heisman Trophy Hopefuls…Can anyone beat Collin Klein?By Tyler LurkinsCollin Klein, QB, Kansas St.-Klein still has the lead and as long as K-State keeps winning, he may be the only pony on the ticket. With a shade under 700 yards rushing and 1875 yards in the air, Klein is the top player in the country.Braxton Miller, QB, Ohio St.-Miller also has eye popping stats. Throwing...