Final: Oregon 59, FSU 20 – Tallahassee.com
Florida State’s unbeaten streak and chance to defend its national championship ended on Thursday in the Rose Bowl.
Undone by five turnovers and Oregon’s fast-paced offense, directed by Heisman Trophy winner Marcus Mariota, the Seminoles crumbled under the Ducks’ second-half onslaught in the College Football Playoff semifinal.
Oregon scored 41 points – 34 off turnovers – over the final two quarters to beat FSU, which entered on a 29-game win streak.
The Seminoles also beat Auburn last January at Rose Bowl Stadium to capture the BCS title.
The game may have also ended the college career of quarterback Jameis Winston, a redshirt sophomore who is considered one of the top selections in the 2015 NFL Draft if he elects to enter professional football.
Eligible underclassmen must declare for the Draft by Jan. 15.
Winston went 29 of 45 for 348 yards with one touchdown and an interception. He also fumbled.
Mariota, who is also expected to be a top selection in the Draft if he declares, was 26 of 36 for 338 yards and two scores.
He also had an interception.
FSU, which trailed 18-13 at the half, lost four fumbles.
The Ducks scored the game’s final 34 points and will advance into the Jan. 12 title game in Arlington, Texas, against the winner of the Sugar Bowl between Alabama and Ohio State.
Their 59 points was a Rose Bowl record.
Third Quarter: Oregon 45, FSU 20
Oregon was opportunistic in the third quarter – thanks in large part to Florida State miscues.
The Ducks turned three fumbles – two from running back Dalvin Cook and one by quarterback Jameis Winston – into touchdowns to build a 25-point advantage at 45-20.
Cook, a freshman running back, fumbled at the end of a 10-yard gain at the Oregon 31 on the Seminoles’ opening possession of the second half.
The Ducks responded with a 69-yard scoring drive on five plays.
Winston marched the Seminoles 75 yards on 10 plays on their ensuing possession.
He connected with freshman Travis Rudolph from 18 yards out to slice the deficit to 25-20 at the 8:07 mark in the quarter.
Just as quickly, Oregon fired back.
Marcus Mariota and Darren Carrington connected on a 56-yard scoring pass as Oregon went back in front 32-20.
A second Cook fumble – this one following a 15-yard reception – set up the Ducks’ third touchdown of the quarter.
And, in a bizarre play, Winston lost a fumble as he scrambled for time on a fourth-down pass attempt.
Tony Washington picked up the ball on the bounce and scored from 58 yards.
Winston also suffered an interception in the closing minutes for the Seminoles’ fourth turnover in the quarter.
Halftime: Oregon 18, FSU 13
Florida State made its fourth trip into the red zone count.
Karlos Williams scored on a 10-yard run with 36 seconds left in the second quarter to pull the Seminoles within 18-13.
Instead of playing it safe, Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota’s third interception of the season gave FSU another possession.
And Roberto Aguayo nearly answered, hitting the post from 54 yards.
FSU had been held to a pair of field goals on three possessions inside the Ducks’ 20 prior to that score.
Robert Aguayo’s 26-yard field goal at the 5:18 mark in the second quarter pulled FSU within 11-6.
Oregon, however, answered and the Seminoles nearly found themselves trailing at halftime by at least nine points for the fourth time this season.
FSU quarterback Jameis Winston was 13 of 21 for 136 yards in the opening half. Receiver Rashad Greene was held to one reception for a minus 3 yards.
Thomas Tyner’s 1-yard run capped a 10-play, 75-yard drive to push the Ducks’ lead to 18-6.
Mariota was 18 of 26 for 157 yards.
The Seminoles, without a fourth-down conversion on the season, was thwarted again. This time just shy of a touchdown on fourth-and-goal to start the second quarter.
Winston, on a keeper around left end, was stopped for no gain.
Oregon then marched 88 yards in 18 plays to extend its margin to 11-3 on Aidan Schneider’s 28-yard field goal.
The Seminoles will receive the ball to open the second half.
FIRST QUARTER: Oregon 8, FSU 3
The 2015 Rose Bowl just might be a track meet yet.
Florida State and Oregon are playing at a quick pace, as expected.
Things seemed to be going the Seminoles’ way to begin the game, until Oregon got on the scoreboard.
The Ducks’ defense also stopped FSU on two running attempts near the goal line to close out the quarter.
A shovel pass from Marcus Mariota to Charles Nelson, who dived o the 1-yard line, set up a touchdown run by Royce Freeman to give Oregon a 8-3 lead over FSU. (The Ducks converted on a 2-point conversion).
Roberto Aguayo’s 28-yard field goal gave FSU a quick lead over Oregon before the touchdown..
Aguayo and the Seminoles had lined up for a 43-yard field goal just three plays before, but an Oregon player was called for a penalty (illegal hands to the face), giving FSU a new set of downs.
FSU quarterback Jameis Winston was grabbed from behind by an Oregon defensive lineman and fumbled the football, but the Seminoles recovered before Aguayo’s kick.
Mariota stated the game completing 6 of 7 passes for 53 yards.
FSU running back Karlos Williams broke off a 21-yard run during the Seminoles” first offensive drive of the game.
Florida State All-American tight end Nick O’Leary tweaked his left hamstring in pregame warmups, reported during ESPN’s pregame show.
O’Leary returned to the locker room, where he had his leg wrapped. He started the game.
Read or Share this story: https://on.tdo.com/1zDnr0M