Oregon gets exposed in loss to Utah as Pac-12 CFP hopes crumble
Utah Utes running back Tavion Thomas runs for one of his three touchdowns Saturday night against Oregon. Jeffrey Swinger-USA TODAY Sports

Oregon was the last remaining hope the Pac-12 had at making the College Football Playoff for the first time since 2016. That hope completely crumbled with an embarrassing 38-7 loss at Utah on Saturday night.

The previously one-loss Ducks were completely exposed by the Utes. Utah got out to an early 21-0 lead. As if that weren’t enough, Utah called a timeout to force an Oregon punt right before halftime. The decision couldn’t have worked out better for the Utes, as Britain Covey returned the punt 78 yards for a touchdown as time expired.

Oregon surprisingly came out of halftime with a touchdown, but that was all the Ducks could manage. They rushed for just 63 yards while allowing Utah to rush for 208 yards and four touchdowns.

Oregon entered the game ranked No. 3 in the College Football Playoff rankings. The Ducks were riding on the strength of a shocking road win over Ohio State in their second game of the season, as well as wins against an extremely weak Pac-12 North. They did have some respectable wins beyond the Ohio State victory, such as their home win over Fresno State and their close road win at UCLA.

Overall, Oregon never had the look of a dominant team that deserved a playoff spot. The Ducks were mostly just getting by against poor Pac-12 competition — and even lost to a three-win Stanford team.

This article first appeared on Larry Brown Sports and was syndicated with permission.

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