Dec 30, 2013; San Antonio, TX, USA; Oregon Ducks quarterback Marcus Mariota (8) runs past Texas Longhorns defensive end Caleb Bluiett (42) during the first half at Alamo Dome. Mandatory Credit: Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

Valero Alamo Bowl: Marcus Mariota takes off (GIF)


It’s been a tough season for Oregon Ducks’ quarterback Marcus Mariota.

After an outstanding redshirt freshman season in which he completed 230 of 336 passes for 2,677 yards with 32 touchdowns and six interceptions and rushed for 752 yards and five touchdowns on 106 carries and led the Ducks to a Fiesta Bowl victory over the Kansas State Wildcats, Mariota looked even better in 2013. The Honolulu, Hawaii native led the Ducks to an 8-0 start, a likely #2 ranking in the BCS and if they won out, a trip to national championship. Plus, despite Florida State Seminoles’ quarterback Jameis Winston’s play, Mariota appeared to be the favorite to win the Heisman Trophy.

Then, Mariota suffered a knee injury and was not the same player at all. In a 26-20 loss to the Stanford Cardinal on November 7, Mariota had 250 yards and two touchdowns through the air, but carried the ball only six times and was held to -16 yards. He also had a costly fumble. Nine days later, in a 44-21 win over the Utah Utes, he was held to -16 yards rushing.

It’s been over a month since the Ducks were last in action and it looks like Mariota’s rest had paid off.

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The Ducks currently lead the Texas Longhorns in the Valero Alamo Bowl 13-7.

Tags: Duke Thomas Marcus Mariota Oregon Ducks Texas Longhorns Valero Alamo Bowl