|Oregon Ducks football|
|Athletic director||Rob Mullens|
|Head coach||Mark Helfrich
2nd year, 24–4 (.857)
|Other staff||Scott Frost (OC)
Don Pellum (DC)
|Home stadium||Autzen Stadium|
|Field||Rich Brooks Field|
|Division||Pac-12 North Division
|All-time record||628–475–46 (.567)|
|Postseason bowl record||13–15 (.464)|
|Playoff appearances||1 (2014)|
|Claimed national titles||0|
(1916, 1919, 1933, 1948, 1957, 1994, 2000, 2001, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2014)
|Division titles||4 (2011, 2012, 2013, 2014)|
Thunder Green and Lightning Yellow
|Fight song||Mighty Oregon|
|Mascot||The Oregon Duck|
|Marching band||Oregon Marching Band|
|Rivals||Oregon State Beavers
The Oregon Ducks football program is the intercollegiate football team for the University of Oregon located in the U.S. state of Oregon. The team competes at the NCAA Division I level in the FBS and is a member of the Pacific-12 Conference (Pac-12). Known as the Ducks, the team was commonly called the Webfoots until the mid-1960s, and the first football team was fielded in 1894. As a graduate of Oregon and a letterman in track, Phil Knight, who co-founded the Nike brand, donates significantly to the university's athletics programs. Oregon plays its home games at the 54,000 seat Autzen Stadium in Eugene, and its main rivals are the Oregon State Beavers and the Washington Huskies. The Ducks and Beavers historically end each regular season with the Civil War rivalry game in late November.
The football program began in 1894 and played its first game on March 24, 1894, defeating Albany College 44–3 under head coach Cal Young. Cal Young left after that first game and J.A. Church took over the coaching position in the fall for the rest of the season. Oregon finished the season with two additional losses and a tie, but went undefeated the following season, winning all four of its games under head coach Percy Benson. In 1899, the football team left the state for the first time, playing the California Golden Bears in Berkeley, California. Oregon's largest margin of victory came in 1910 when they defeated the University of Puget Sound 115–0.
Oregon changed coaches frequently during this era, going through sixteen different head coaches in nineteen seasons, until Hugo Bezdek, who had coached the Webfoots to a 5–0–1 record in 1906, returned to Oregon from the University of Arkansas in 1913. Bezdek, Oregon's first truly professional coach, led the team from 1913 through 1917. A versatile motivator of athletes, during his tenure Bezdek was also the West Coast scout for the Pittsburgh Pirates.
In the 1916 season, Oregon went undefeated with seven wins and one tie under head coach Hugo Bezdek, shutting out all their opponents except California. They opened the season against Willamette University, defeating them 97–0. The game against Washington ended in a 0–0 tie. The tiebreaker for the Pacific Coast Conference title went to Washington, due to Oregon's use of an ineligible player but Oregon was given the invitation to the 1917 Rose Bowl, then known as the Tournament East-West Football Game at Tournament Park due to the cost of a train ticket to Los Angeles being significantly less from Eugene than from Seattle. The Oregon football team defeated the heavily favored University of Pennsylvania Quakers 14–0, securing their first Rose Bowl victory.
Playing at newly constructed Hayward Field, which would be their home stadium in Eugene until 1967, the Webfoots again tied Washington for the Pacific Coast Conference title in 1919, winning the tiebreaker based on their 24–13 victory over the Huskies in Seattle. Oregon lost the 1920 Rose Bowl to Harvard University, 7–6. This would be the team's last bowl appearance until the 1948 Cotton Bowl.
In the late 1920s and early 1930s, Oregon made the first attempts to establish a nationally prominent football program by luring established Eastern coaches west, first John "Cap" McEwan in 1926 from Army, then Clarence "Doc" Spears from Minnesota in 1930. Both coaches achieved moderate success, but neither outlasted his contracted term: McEwan resigned amid a contract dispute, and Spears, hired under a five-year contract, left Oregon after two seasons to return to the Western Conference at Wisconsin.
Prince G. "Prink” Callison, Oregon native, alumnus, former player and coach of the freshman team, took over from Spears in 1932. Behind standout back Mike Mikulak and a smothering defense (50 points allowed, five shutouts), Callison led the 1933 Webfoots to a 9–1 mark and Pacific Coast Conference co-championship, with the only loss to USC. This record would stand as the best in school history until 2001.
After the homegrown Callison retired in 1937, Oregon again hired a working head coach, pulling Gerald “Tex” Oliver from Arizona. Oliver coached until World War II, when he took a leave of absence to serve as a naval officer; Oregon basketball coach John Warren served as interim head football coach in 1942, posting a 2-6 record, after which the school shut down the football program for the duration of the war.
Oliver returned as head coach after the war, eventually posting a mediocre 23–28–3 cumulative record. His 71–7 loss at Texas in 1941 on the day before the attack on Pearl Harbor stands as the most points allowed by any Oregon team, and the second largest margin of defeat. Oliver, in 1945, is the only coach to see his team lose twice to Oregon State in the same season. In October 1946, Oliver abruptly resigned as Oregon's head coach, expressing dissatisfaction with the level of support shown by the administration for the football program.
Oliver was replaced by another working head coach, Jim Aiken of Nevada. Aiken had immediate success with the team he inherited, which like many post-war squads, was peppered with war veterans including Brad Ecklund, Jake Leicht and Norm Van Brocklin, and transfers George Bell, Woodley Lewis and John McKay. Oregon’s 1948 team went 9–1 in the regular season and tied with California for the PCC championship; the teams did not meet on the field that season and in a secret ballot by the conference presidents, Cal was awarded the 1949 Rose Bowl bid. In a bid to sooth hurt feelings, the conference broke tradition and allowed the Webfoots to play in a post-season contest other than the Rose Bowl. Oregon’s Cotton Bowl game that season (a 21–13 loss to SMU with Doak Walker) was the team’s only bowl appearance between the 1920 and 1958 Rose Bowls.
Aiken couldn’t maintain his success with younger players. By his fourth season, the Ducks were one of the nation’s worst major college teams, posting a 1–9 record in 1950, still the lowest winning percentage in school history as of 2011. Aiken resigned amid allegations of recruiting and practice violations in early 1951.
|“||Everything that Oregon athletics is today, it owes to Len Casanova. He has been the pillar, the strength and the inspiration for our program for over 50 years.||”|
—Bill Moos, 
Once again, Oregon found a working major college coach to take over its program, hiring Len Casanova from the University of Pittsburgh after Aiken's resignation. Casanova gradually rebuilt the program, and eventually led the Ducks to a winning record in 1954. The Ducks played in the earliest nationally-televised college football game in 1953, against Nebraska in Portland, winning 20–12.
In the 1957 season Oregon tied Oregon State for the conference title, but earned the Rose Bowl bid because of the conference no-repeat rule. The Webfoots lost 10–7 to the heavily favored and number one ranked Ohio State University in the 1958 Rose Bowl. Braven Dyer of the Los Angeles Times, who had picked Ohio State to win by a 48–14 score, said: “The score of 10–7 was a complete moral victory for the underdog Ducks from Eugene who had been doped to lose by three touchdowns. They lost, but at day’s end there weren’t many fans who were willing to concede that the better team had won." ” Vincent X. Flaherty, writing in the San Francisco Examiner, said: “Len Casanova undoubtedly performed the greatest coaching feat of the season for the Rose Bowl classic...there couldn’t have been a bowl team anywhere in America yesterday that dazzled with more spectacular finesse.”
Casanova led the Ducks to two more bowl appearances, in the Liberty Bowl (1960 vs Penn State) and the Sun Bowl (1963 vs Southern Methodist), before becoming the second athletic director for the University of Oregon in January 1967, replacing Leo Harris. Future NFL Hall of Fame members Mel Renfro and Dave Wilcox were players under his tutelage. Many of his assistant coaches such as George Seifert, John McKay, and John Robinson went on to have their own successful head coaching careers. His career record of 82–73–8 marked the highest number of wins recorded by a head coach at the university at that time. The Len Casanova Center, Oregon's athletic department headquarters near Autzen Stadium, is named in his honor.
Assistant coach Jerry Frei became head coach after Len Casanova moved on to athletic director in 1967, the year Oregon moved its home football games to the newly constructed Autzen Stadium. Although his teams were never selected for a bowl game, and he ended his Oregon career with a losing record, he coached several players who went on to NFL stardom, including Hall of Fame member Dan Fouts and All-Pro wide receiver Ahmad Rashad. In 1970, he coached the Ducks to an improbable comeback at UCLA, scoring 20 points in the final four minutes of the game to beat UCLA 41–40. However, Frei was unable to defeat arch-rival Oregon State, and after the 1971 loss some influential boosters reportedly were demanding that he make significant changes to his coaching staff.
On January 18, 1972, Frei resigned as head coach, citing disagreements with university boosters and athletic director Norv Ritchey. Following his resignation, the student body president at the time, as well as numerous published letters to the editor of the Register Guard voiced their support of Frei.
After an exhaustive search that included interviews with several established head coaches, Frei’s offensive line coach, Dick Enright, was elevated to head coach for the 1972 season. Enright was the least experienced candidate for the position, having been a high school coach until 1970, and he struggled to maintain team discipline and consistent play. Enright famously tried to make an option quarterback out of Dan Fouts, who was not a runner. Although his 1972 team did beat Oregon State for the first time in nine seasons, Enright’s teams only won six games in two seasons. After complaining to the media about what he considered sub-standard conditions of football facilities, he was fired after the 1973 season, replaced by Don Read, his quarterback coach.
Although he possessed a great offensive mind, Read was unable to field a competitive team in his first job as a major college head coach. Oregon’s longest losing streak – 14 games – was set during Read’s three-year term, which also saw the team’s worst loss in history (66–0 at Washington in 1974).
After the Ducks’ home opener in 1975, a 5–0 loss to San Jose State, UO president William Boyd told a reporter he’d “rather be whipped in a public square than sit through a game like that.”
Read was fired, with one year left on his contract, after the 1976 season ended. His teams had gone 3–18 in conference play, were shut out seven times in three seasons, and owned just one win over a team with a winning record (17–3 over Colorado State in 1976).
In announcing Read's termination, Oregon athletic director John Caine said it had been a financial decision; Read hadn't shown enough progress to generate interest in season ticket sales, boosters were not making donations, and Read couldn't be sent out recruiting without a contract extension, for which there was no support. Breaking recent—and unsuccessful—tradition, Caine also said "the successor will not come from the current staff ... There is a need for a different approach than we've had here for a number of years ... I'm looking for a multi-talented individual, one with perhaps a different personality and a different background."
It had become clear that drastic action was needed to correct a suffering program. Caine had informed an alumni group that the Oregon football team had lost money the last three seasons. Normally, it is a University's football program that provides funding for other non-revenue sports, but at Oregon, football was siphoning money from the successful basketball program and cutting into the budgets for wrestling, baseball and track.
Caine could not afford to pay top dollar for a college coach; he told reporters he wouldn't top $35,000 annually for his new head coach, but that he would sweeten the pot with a $100,000 recruiting budget, the second highest in the conference. The coaching search took two weeks. After being rebuffed by Bill Walsh, who took the Stanford job, and Jim Mora, who withdrew his name from consideration because he considered the job a dead end, Caine appointed UCLA assistant coach and Oregon State graduate Rich Brooks as Oregon's 29th head football coach, over finalists Monte Kiffin and Ray Greene.
Brooks got off to a shaky start, with four two-win seasons in his first six years at Oregon. In 1980, a pay-for-credit scandal, disclosure of an illegal travel fund, misuse of phone cards and criminal sexual abuse charges against Oregon football players led Brooks to tender his resignation to President Boyd; Boyd refused to accept the resignation. Oregon was placed on probation by the Pac-10 (1980) and NCAA (1982). After several mediocre seasons, including 1983 and an infamous scoreless tie with Oregon State known as the "The Toilet Bowl" the Ducks posted an 8–4 season in 1989, going to the Independence Bowl – Oregon's first postseason appearance in 26 seasons. Brooks would achieve two more bowl games before his final season in 1994.
The pinnacle of Brooks' Oregon career came in his final season, when his team became the Pacific-10 Conference Champions with a 9–3 regular season record and a Rose Bowl appearance. The defining moment of the season came in a game against the 9th-ranked (AP) Washington Huskies, and is widely remembered by Duck fans as "The Pick". Prior to that game, the Ducks had won only three games against the Huskies in 20 seasons, including many heartbreakers in the heated rivalry. Late in the game, with the Ducks nursing a 24–20 lead, Washington was in position to score and take the lead when the Huskies' quarterback Damon Huard threw an interception to Kenny Wheaton, who returned the interception for a 97-yard touchdown, sealing the win for the Ducks. The Pick is replayed on the big screen at Autzen Stadium before each football game. Following the Washington game, the Ducks finished the rest of the regular season without a loss, but lost to Penn State in the 1995 Rose Bowl, 38–20.
After the 1994 season, Rich Brooks announced that he would leave Oregon to become the new head coach of the St. Louis Rams. Although Brooks had a poorer winning percentage, with 91 victories he surpassed Len Casanova to become the winningest coach in school history. The field at Autzen Stadium was dedicated as Rich Brooks Field, in honor of his tenure and accomplishments.
Offensive coordinator Mike Bellotti was elevated into the head coaching position after Rich Brooks vacated the position in 1995. During his head coaching career, Bellotti elevated the expectations of the Ducks football program. Season records that in the past would have been deemed acceptable or even laudable became considered mediocre and disappointing. Bellotti was immediately successful, leading the team to a 9–3 record his first year and an appearance in the Cotton Bowl Classic. In his 14 seasons, Bellotti’s teams were selected for 12 bowl games, and only once (2004, 5–6) did the Ducks post a losing record during his tenure.
Bellotti coached the team to the Pac-10 Championship in the 2000 season, shared with Washington and OSU. With a Rose Bowl bid on the line, the Ducks lost the 2000 Civil War at Corvallis, dropping the Ducks to the Holiday Bowl The Ducks defeated Texas 35–30 in the Holiday, for the first 10-win season in program history.
In the 2001 season, senior quarterback Joey Harrington, a Heisman Trophy finalist, led the Ducks to its first 11-win season in program history and an outright Pac-10 championship. The season was riddled with close games, 6 of which ended with a spread of one score or less, coining the nickname "Captain Comeback" for Harrington. The only loss of the season came at home to the Stanford Cardinal.
The Ducks ended the 2001 regular season ranked No. 2 in both the AP and Coaches polls, but the BCS computer formula ranked Oregon No. 4, behind No. 2 Nebraska – which had been thrashed by Colorado in its final regular season game – and No. 3 Colorado; this kept Oregon out of the national championship game. The discrepancy caused the BCS committee to alter the ranking system for subsequent years to a formula which, if applied in 2001, would have placed Oregon in the national championship game. The 2001 Ducks instead played at the Fiesta Bowl against Colorado. Oregon's run defense stifled Colorado's running game, holding them to just 49 yards on 31 carries. Harrington passed for 350 yards and led the Ducks to a 38–16 win. Oregon settled for a final 2nd place ranking in both the AP and Coaches polls. After the 2001 season, offensive coordinator Jeff Tedford left for the head coaching job at California, replaced by Andy Ludwig.
The 2003 season was highlighted by a big win against the 5th ranked Michigan Wolverines, ruining Michigan's aspirations of a big season during a trip to a west coast game for the third time in four years.
Ludwig resigned as offensive coordinator after a dismal 2004 campaign, the only losing season (5–6) for a Mike Bellotti-coached Oregon team. Recently fired BYU head coach Gary Crowton took the offensive reins; the 2005 season saw a dramatic improvement from 2004, going 10–1 in the regular season, with the only loss to top-ranked USC. In the eighth game of the season against the Arizona Wildcats, the senior starting quarterback for the Ducks, Kellen Clemens, suffered a spiral fracture in his ankle, ending his season and his collegiate career. Despite losing Clemens, the Ducks won the game as well as the rest of their regular season games but lost the Holiday Bowl to the Oklahoma Sooners.
In 2006 the team started off well, winning four games to open the season, including a controversial victory against then-ranked #11 Oklahoma. But the Oklahoma victory proved to be the high point of the 2006 season; the team eventually fell apart, going 3–5 for the remainder of the regular season, and were pounded by BYU in the Las Vegas Bowl, losing 8–38 in a dismal performance.
Gary Crowton left Oregon for the offensive coordinator position at Louisiana State University after the 2006 season; Chip Kelly was hired to replace him in February 2007. Kelly's impact was felt immediately, with the 2007 Ducks going 8–1 behind QB Dennis Dixon and ranked as high as No. 2, before being decimated by injuries at quarterback. Finishing the regular season with three straight losses, the Ducks were relegated to the Sun Bowl, where they defeated South Florida 56–21. Geoff Schwartz started from 2005–07 at right tackle, as part of an offense that led the conference in rushing for the first time since 1955 in 2006 and then again in 2007, and was a second-team 2007 All-Pac 10 selection.
The 2008 season saw the emergence of quarterback Jeremiah Masoli as the leader of Chip Kelly’s spread offense. Masoli, a transfer from City College of San Francisco, stepped in against Washington in the season opener, when starter Justin Roper was injured, and led the Ducks to a 44–10 victory. Despite injuries, Masoli cemented himself as the starter by mid-season. In the 2008 Civil War, the Ducks defeated the Oregon State Beavers in Corvallis, 65–38, knocking the Beavers out of the Rose Bowl. The Ducks went to the Holiday Bowl. In a clash of two teams with high powered offenses, Oregon beat the Oklahoma State Cowboys in the 2008 Holiday Bowl and finished the season ranked in the top 10.
In March 2009, Bellotti announced his resignation; Kelly would take over as the head coach, and Bellotti was named athletic director, replacing Pat Kilkenny. Bellotti left the program as the winningest coach in Oregon history, with 116 wins and a 67.8 winning percentage.
In his first season as the head coach of the Ducks, Chip Kelly stumbled out of the gate, losing to Boise State by 11 points in a game ending in controversy with Oregon running back LeGarrette Blount punching Boise State linebacker Byron Hout on national television, after Hout was seen heckling Blount. The Ducks showed only minor improvements with close wins against the Purdue Boilermakers and the Utah Utes. It wasn't until the start of the Pac-10 season that the Ducks began to display their potential, by dismantling the highly ranked California Golden Bears 42–3. The 2009 Ducks only lost one more game, to the Stanford Cardinal in the regular season, to win the Pac-10 title by two games. Oregon went to the 2010 Rose Bowl, where they lost 26–17 to the Ohio State Buckeyes.
During the offseason, the team was mired in controversy. Starting running back LaMichael James was involved in a domestic dispute in which he pleaded guilty to physical harassment of a former girlfriend, and was suspended for the first game of 2010 season. Starting quarterback Jeremiah Masoli was suspended for the entire 2010 football season over thefts from a local fraternity house. On June 7, Masoli was cited for marijuana possession, driving with a suspended license and failing to stop when entering a roadway. In response, coach Chip Kelly removed him from the team.
Despite the loss of Masoli, the Ducks dominated their opponents in the 2010 season. On October 17, the team moved up to the No. 1 ranking in both the AP and USA Today Coaches Poll for the first time in school history. This occurred after the #1-ranked teams, the Ohio State Buckeyes and the Alabama Crimson Tide lost in consecutive weeks.
The Ducks finished the regular season with a 12–0 record; winning the conference at 9–0, they were the only team in Pac-10 history to defeat every other conference team in a nine conference game season. Ranked No. 2 in the BCS rankings, the Ducks played Auburn in the 2011 BCS National Championship Game at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona, losing on an Auburn field goal as time expired, 22–19.
Despite his opening game suspension, Oregon RB LaMichael James won the 2010 Doak Walker Award as the nation's outstanding college running back. James was also Oregon's first unanimous All-American football player, appearing on all five all-America teams recognized by the NCAA.
Oregon won its third straight conference championship in 2011, winning the new Pac-12 North Division and defeating UCLA in the inaugural Pac-12 Conference Championship Game. The Ducks became the first Pac-12 team other than USC to win three consecutive titles outright since the conference was formed in 1959. LaMichael James became the first player in conference history with three 1,500+ yard rushing seasons, and ranks second on the Pac-12's career rushing list. James was a finalist for the 2011 Doak Walker Award, and was named a finalist for the 2011 Paul Hornung Award. Punter Jackson Rice was a finalist for the Ray Guy Award. On January 2, 2012 the Oregon Ducks won the Rose Bowl, defeating the Wisconsin Badgers 45–38 for the title.
The Ducks continued their streak of national relevance into the 2012 season, reaching the #1 ranking in the AP poll for only the second time in team history on November 12. But a loss at home to Stanford ended Oregon's string of conference championships. The team was selected to play in the 2013 Fiesta Bowl against Kansas State, making Oregon only the fourth team in history to play in four consecutive BCS bowl games. Running back Kenjon Barner was a finalist for the Doak Walker Award and was named Oregon's fifth consensus All-American.
Immediately following the end of the 2012 season, Kelly interviewed for head coaching vacancies with the Cleveland Browns, Buffalo Bills and Philadelphia Eagles. Kelly initially declined the offers, but a few weeks later, agreed to terms with the Eagles.
On June 26, 2013, the football program was penalized with 3 years of probation and a reduction of scholarships by the NCAA but no bowl bans. This decision was made after an investigation into the school's use of football recruiting services under former head coach Chip Kelly.
In 2013, Helfrich's first season as head coach, the Ducks were bound for the national championship after early season domination and QB Marcus Mariota was a front-runner for the Heisman The Ducks then lost two games in the span of 3 weeks to Arizona and Stanford. The regular season was capped off with a 36-35 win in the Civil War against the Oregon State Beavers. Oregon went on to beat Texas in the Valero Alamo Bowl 30-7.
Helfrich led the 2014 Ducks to a 12-1 (8-1) regular season record, winning his first Pacific-12 Conference Championship as a head coach. The record season included wins over reigning Big Ten Conference and Rose Bowl champion Michigan State, and rivals Washington and Oregon State. The Ducks' sole loss came in a Thursday night home game against Arizona. Oregon rebounded with eight consecutive wins, including a dominant win in a rematch against the Wildcats in the Pacific-12 Football Championship Game. Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota was voted the school's second unanimous All-American and first Heisman Trophy winner, receiving the second highest point percentage in the award's history. Mariota was also named the school's first winner of the Maxwell, Davey O'Brien, and Walter Camp awards.
After finishing #2 in the final College Football Playoff rankings in 2014, Oregon qualified to face undefeated defending national champions Florida State in the Rose Bowl, designated a semi-final game for the College Football Playoff. The Ducks defeated the Seminoles 59-20. With the win the Ducks advanced to the inaugural College Football Playoff National Championship Game to face the #4 ranked Ohio State Buckeyes, who defeated #1 ranked Alabama in the Sugar Bowl, the other College Football Playoff semi-final game. The Ducks were defeated in the CFP National Championship game 42-20 by the Buckeyes. Oregon finished the 2014 season with an overall record of 13-2 and a #2 ranking in the final Associated Press football poll.
In 120 years of football, the Ducks have won no national titles. They have played in two national championship games, one during the BCS era and one in the current playoff era.
|Oregon National Championship Appearances|
|Season||Coach||Final Record||Opponent||Championship Game Result|
|2010||Chip Kelly||12–1||Auburn||L 19–22|
|2014||Mark Helfrich||13–2||Ohio State||L 20–42|
Dating back to their days in the Pacific Coast Conference, Oregon has claimed at least a share of twelve conference titles.
|Oregon Conference Championships|
|Season||Conference||Coach||Conference Record||Overall Record|
|1916†||Pacific Coast Conference||Hugo Bezdek||2–0–1||6–0–1|
|1919†||Pacific Coast Conference||Shy Huntington||2–1||5–1–3|
|1933†||Pacific Coast Conference||Prink Callison||4–1||9–1|
|1948†||Pacific Coast Conference||Jim Aiken||7–0||9–2|
|1957†||Pacific Coast Conference||Len Casanova||6–2||7–4|
Note: †Denotes shared championship.
In 2011, the Pacific-10 Conference added Colorado and Utah, bringing the membership total to 12 teams, leading to the creation of the Pacific-12 Conference. At that time, the conference split into two six-team divisions, north and south and created a Conference Championship Game. The champions of each division face off in the Conference Championship Game, with the team with the highest conference record hosting the game.
Oregon tied with Stanford for every Pac-12 North Division Championship from 2011 to 2013, representing the division in the Championship Game in 2011 due to a win over Stanford with Stanford representing the division in 2012 and 2013 due to wins over Oregon. In 2014 the Ducks won the North Division in their ninth game of the season, becoming the first team to win the Pac-12 North Division outright.
|Oregon Divisional Championships|
|Season||Division||Coach||Conf Record||Overall Record||Opponent||Championship Game Result|
|2011†||Pac-12 North||Chip Kelly||8–1||12–2||UCLA||W 49–31|
|2012†||Pac-12 North||Chip Kelly||8–1||12–1||N/A||Stanford Represented North Division|
|2013†||Pac-12 North||Mark Helfrich||7–2||11–2||N/A||Stanford Represented North Division|
|2014||Pac-12 North||Mark Helfrich||8–1||13–2||Arizona||W 51-13|
Note:†Denotes shared championship
Marcus Mariota became the first player in the history of the University of Oregon to be awarded the Heisman Trophy, receiving 90.92% of possible points, the second highest total in the history of the trophy. It should be noted that Mariota earned the award without a media campaign, having declined an offer from the University of Oregon during the summer prior to the 2014 season. This is in contrast to the media campaigns orchestrated by the University of Oregon in the past for potential Heisman contenders, for example, during the 2001 season, a $250,000 billboard in Time's Square promoting Joey Harrington as "Joey Heisman." Mariota's Heisman winning season was marked by breaking every career and single season record at Oregon for total offense, total scoring and passing and winning the program's 12th Pacific-12 Championship.
Six other players from the University of Oregon have received Heisman votes, with LaMichael James being the only Duck to receive votes in multiple years (2010, 2011). The highest non-first place finish in the Heisman balloting also came from LaMichael James, who in 2010 came in third behind Cam Newton (1st) and fellow Pac-12 player Andrew Luck (2nd). Cam Newton would go on to be first overall pick in the 2011 NFL Draft, with Andrew Luck being selected first overall in 2012.
|Top 10 finishes in Heisman Trophy voting|
|1948||Norm Van Brocklin||QB||83||6th|
The Ducks have had five players and three coaches inducted in the College Football Hall of Fame.
|Year Inducted||Player||POS||Seasons at Oregon|
|1954||Hugo Bezdek||Coach||1906, 1913 - 1917|
|1966||Norm Van Brocklin||QB||1945 - 1949|
|1969||Johnny Kitzmiller||HB||1928 - 1930|
|John Beckett||OL||1913 - 1916|
|1977||Len Casanova||Coach||1951 - 1966|
|1986||Mel Renfro||HB||1961 - 1963|
|1988||John McKay†||HB||1947 - 1949|
|2007||Ahmad Rashad||RB||1969 - 1971|
|2014||Mike Bellotti||Coach||1995 - 2008|
†McKay played halfback at Oregon from 1947 to 1949 and coached as an assistant from 1950 to 1958. He was inducted into the CFHoF in recognition of his success as the head coach of the USC Trojans, whom he coached from 1960 to 1975, winning four national championships and nine conference championships in 16 seasons.
Six former Oregon football players have been inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, the eighth most among all colleges.
|Year Inducted||Player||POS||Seasons at Oregon||NFL Team(s)||Years with NFL Team(s)|
|1971||Norm Van Brocklin||QB||1945 - 1949||Los Angeles Rams||1949 - 1957|
|Philadelphia Eagles||1958 - 1960|
|1978||Alphonse Leemans||RB||1932||New York Giants||1936 - 1943|
|1993||Dan Fouts||QB||1970 - 1972||San Diego Chargers||1973 - 1987|
|1996||Mel Renfro||S||1961 - 1963||Dallas Cowboys||1964 - 1977|
|2000||Dave Wilcox||LB||1962 - 1963||San Francisco 49ers||1964 - 1974|
|2008||Gary Zimmerman||OL||1980 - 1983||Minnesota Vikings||1986 - 1992|
|Denver Broncos||1993 - 1997|
As of 2014, 17 former Ducks have played on Super Bowl winning teams (or NFL/AFL Championship in the pre-Super Bowl years). Michael Walter has the most Super Bowl Rings with three, all earned with the San Francisco 49ers in the Joe Montana era.
|Super Bowl||Player||POS||Seasons at Oregon||NFL Team|
|1938 NFL Championship||Alphonse Leemans||RB||1932||New York Giants|
|1951 NFL Championship||Norm Van Brocklin||QB||1945 - 1949||Los Angeles Rams|
|1960 NFL Championship||Norm Van Brocklin 2nd||QB||1945 - 1949||Philadelphia Eagles|
|1962 AFL Championship||Dave Grayson||DB||1957 - 1960||Dallas Texans|
|Super Bowl VI||Mel Renfro||CB||1961 - 1963||Dallas Cowboys|
|Super Bowl XII||Mel Renfro 2nd||CB||1961 - 1963||Dallas Cowboys|
|Super Bowl XVI||Fred Quillan||C||1974 - 1977||San Francisco 49ers|
|Super Bowl XIX||Fred Quillan 2nd||C||1974 - 1977||San Francisco 49ers|
|Michael Walter||LB||1979 - 1982|
|Super Bowl XXIII||Michael Walter 2nd||LB||1979 - 1982||San Francisco 49ers|
|Super Bowl XXIV||Michael Walter 3rd||LB||1979 - 1982||San Francisco 49ers|
|Super Bowl XXIX||Derek Loville||RB||1986 - 1989||San Francisco 49ers|
|Bill Musgrave||QB||1987 - 1990|
|Super Bowl XXXII||Gary Zimmerman||OT||1980 - 1983||Denver Broncos|
|Super Bowl XXXV||Patrick Johnson||WR||1994 - 1997||Baltimore Ravens|
|Super Bowl XXXIX||Jed Weaver||TE||1995 - 1998||New England Patriots|
|Super Bowl XLII||Reuben Droughns RB||2007 - 2008||New York Gaints|
|Super Bowl XLIII||Dennis Dixon||QB||2005 - 2007||Pittsburgh Steelers|
|Super Bowl XLVI||Spencer Paysinger||LB||2007 - 2011||New York Giants|
|Super Bowl XLVII||Ed Dickson||TE||2005 - 2009||Baltimore Ravens|
|Dennis Dixon 2nd||QB||2005 - 2007|
|Haloti Ngata||DT||2002 - 2004|
|Super Bowl XLVIII||Walter Thurmond III||DB||2005 - 2009||Seattle Seahawks|
Every year, several publications release lists of the their ideal "team". The athletes on these lists are referred to as All-Americans. The NCAA recognizes five All-American lists. They are the Associated Press (AP), American Football Coaches Association (AFCA), Football Writers Association of America (FWAA), Sporting News (SN), and the Walter Camp Football Foundation (WCFF).
Oregon has had 28 players honored 33 times as first team All-Americans (7 Consensus) in its history, including five players honored in different seasons.
Following the end of the 2014 regular season, four Oregon players were honored as first-team All-Americans.
|List of Oregon Ducks football undefeated seasons|
|Year||Coach||Regular Season Record||Final Record|
|Total Undefeated Seasons||3|
This is a partial list of the five most recent bowl games that Oregon has competed in. For the full Oregon bowl game history, see List of Oregon Ducks bowl games
Including the 2015 Rose Bowl, Oregon has played in ten consecutive bowl games. Oregon has played in five BCS bowl games, including four consecutive BCS bowl games from 2009 to 2012, tied for first overall in consecutive BCS bowl game appearances.
|2010||January 10, 2011||BCS National Championship Game||Auburn 22||Oregon 19|
|2011||January 2, 2012||Rose Bowl||Oregon 45||Wisconsin 38|
|2012||January 3, 2013||Fiesta Bowl||Oregon 35||Kansas State 17|
|2013||December 30, 2013||Alamo Bowl||Oregon 30||Texas 7|
|2014||January 1, 2015||Rose Bowl||Oregon 59||Florida State 20|
Oregon was selected as the second seed in the inaugural College Football Playoff and defeated the defending national champions, third seed Florida State. They will go on to play the fourth seed Ohio State in the championship game.
|2014||2||#3 Florida State||Rose Bowl||W 59-20|
|#4 Ohio State||National Championship Game||L 42–20|
|Total Playoff Record||1–1|
Official record against the current football members of the Pacific-12 Conference.
|Opponent||Won||Lost||Tied||Percentage||Streak||First Meeting||Most Recent Meeting|
|Oregon State||62||46||10||.568||Won 7||1894||2014|
|Washington State||49||36||7||.571||Won 8||1901||2014|
|North Division Totals||223||225||25||.498|
|Arizona State||17||16||0||.515||Won 8||1966||2012|
|South Division Totals||120||124||2||.492|
Official record against all current and former conference opponents of the Oregon Ducks football program. In their 121 year history, the University of Oregon has been a member of the Pacific Coast Conference, Athletic Association of Western Universities, and the Pacific-8, Pacific-10 and currently the Pacific-12 Conferences. The History section of the Pacific-12 Conference article provides a membership history of the Pacific-12 Conference. Oregon was an independent from 1959 to 1963.
|No longer conference opponents|
|Opponent||Won||Lost||Tied||Percentage||Streak||First Conference Meeting||Most Recent Conference Meeting|
|Arizona State||16||14||0||.533||Won 6||1979||2012|
|Oregon State||49||40||5||.548||Won 7||1915||2014|
|Washington State||44||33||6||.566||Won 8||1915||2014|
|Total Conference Record||321||309||20||.509|
The Civil War game with Oregon State was originally called the "Oregon Classic" or the "State Championship Game." It is the 7th oldest rivalry in division I FBS football.
The Oregon–Washington football rivalry, also known as the "Border War," has been ongoing since 1948 and has incited particularly poor behavior from fans of both teams. Although Washington has historically dominated the series, since the late 1970s the teams have essentially split their games. As of 2014, Oregon has won the last 11 match-ups by a margin of at least 17 points, the longest win streak in the rivalry by either team.
|at Arizona State||vs Arizona State||at Arizona||vs Arizona|
|vs USC||at USC||at Arizona State||vs Arizona State|
|at Colorado||vs Colorado||vs UCLA||at UCLA|
|vs Utah||at Utah||vs Utah||at Utah|
|vs Eastern Washington||vs UC Davis||vs Southern Utah||vs Bowling Green||vs Nevada||vs Ohio State||at Ohio State|
|at Michigan State||vs Virginia||vs Nebraska|
|vs Georgia State||at Nebraska||at Wyoming|
The Ducks coaching staff is led by Oregon native Mark Helfrich, the son of former Oregon Ducks Letterman Mike Helfrich. Helfrich is a former NAIA All-American quarterback who played at Southern Oregon University from 1992 to 1995. Helfrich also saw a brief stint as a professional player, playing quarterback for Vikings Vienna in 1997. Following his time with the Vikings Helfrich returned to his home state where he was hired as a graduate assistant at Oregon for the 1997 season. In 1998 Helfrich was hired by Dirk Koetter to serve as the quarterbacks coach for Boise State. In 2001 Helfrich followed Koetter to Arizona State to continue coaching quarterbacks. After Koetter was hired by the Jacksonville Jaguars to serve as offensive coordinator following the 2005 season, Helfrich was hired by another former Koetter assistant, Dan Hawkins to serve as offensive coordinator of the Colorado Buffaloes. Helfrich returned to Oregon in 2009, hired by his predecessor Chip Kelly who had promoted to head coach to serve as offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach. Helfrich was promoted to his current position following Kelly's departure to coach the Philadelphia Eagles following the 2012 season.
The offense is led by Scott Frost, who also coaches the quarterbacks. Frost, a former quarterback himself, earned two letters at Stanford in 1993 and 1994 before transferring to the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 1995 where he would go on to win two national championships under hall of fame coach, and future congressman Tom Osborne. While playing at Stanford Frost earned his first start in a game against the 1994 Oregon Ducks team that would go on to win the Pac-10 and play in the Rose Bowl. During the game Frost threw his first touchdown pass, to wide receiver David Shaw, who is currently the head coach for Pac-12 North Division rival Stanford. While Frost was the backup quarterback during the Husker's national championship run in 1995, he would be the starter from 1996 to 1997, compiling a record of 24-2, including a dominant 42-17 victory over a Tennessee team led by Peyton Manning in the 1998 Orange Bowl. In addition to experience at the quarterback position Frost played the safety position after being drafted 67th overall in the 1998 NFL Draft by the New York Jets. Frost played in the NFL from his rookie year in 1998 to 2003, in his career he saw action in 59 games, recording 15 tackles, 1 quarterback sack and 1 interception. Frost has been on the Oregon staff since the 2009 season, having been hired to coach the wide receivers by new head coach Chip Kelly. Frost was promoted to his current position by his predecessor, current head coach Mark Helfrich following Kelly's departure to coach the Philadelphia Eagles following the 2012 season.
The defense is led by Don Pellum, who also coaches the inside linebackers and serves as the Recruiting Coordinator. Like offensive coordinator Scott Frost, Pellum has experience playing the position that he now coaches, having played the linebacker position at Oregon from 1980 to 1984 under revered coach Rich Brooks. After completing his undergraduate studies in 1984 Pellum served as a graduate assistant for the Ducks from 1985 to 1986 while completing a Master's degree in telecommunications and film, as well as completing work towards a Ph.D. Since graduating and becoming a full-time assistant coach in 1987 Pellum has coached at Oregon in some capacity for 22 years, with two breaks during that time, serving as the defensive line coach at neighboring Willamette University in 1987 and as recruiting coordinator and as an assistant athletic director at Pac-12 rival California from 1990 to 1992. Pellum's current tenure on the Oregon staff stretches back to the 1993 season where he was hired by his former coach Rich Brooks to coach linebackers, Pellum has coached each defensive position group at Oregon since his 1993 hire. Following the 2013 season, Pellum was promoted to his current position following longtime Oregon defensive coordinator Nick Aliotti's decision to retire after coaching at Oregon for 24 years (15 consecutive).
The Ducks are known for having by far and away the longest tenured coaching staff in Division I-A College Football, with six out of eleven coaches having served more than ten years on staff. Running backs coach Gary Campbell is the longest serving coach on the Oregon staff, hired by Rich Brooks for the 1983 season, his tenure has spanned four head coaches and six athletic directors. Campbell has coached 19 players to 1,000 yard seasons, including three players with multiple 1,000 yard seasons, as well as achieving two seasons in which there were multiple 1,000 yard rushers.
The Ducks' staff is also remarkable for its number of alumni, Pac-12 alumni, and Pacific Northwest locals. Five coaches have at least one degree from either the University of Oregon or a university within the state of Oregon. There are an additional three coaches who have attended or graduated from Pac-12 rival schools.
Another unique feature of the current Oregon football staff, as well as the staff in a historical sense, is the amount of coaches who have coached for Oregon as well either of its archrivals Oregon State and Washington. Currently on staff are Matt Lubick and John Neal, who have both served as assistants at Oregon State. Additionally, current Washington head coach Chris Petersen and Oregon State Running backs coach Chris Brasfield are both former Oregon assistants. In recent history there are even more examples, including former Oregon defensive coordinator Nick Aliotti, who served as an assistant at Oregon State between stints at Oregon, former Washington assistants Justin Wilcox (now at USC) and Peter Sirmon both of whom played at Oregon in the late 1990s. Even longtime Oregon head coach Rich Brooks can claim allegiance to either side, having graduated from and coached for Oregon State before beginning his storied tenure at Oregon. This trend shows no signs of stopping, following former Oregon State head coach Mike Riley's exit to Nebraska following the 2014 season, former Oregon assistant Jeff Tedford, who also served as head coach at California from 2002 to 2012, expressed interest in the job opening, having described it as a "destination job."
|Name||Position||Seasons at Current Position||Seasons at Oregon||Alma Matter|
|Mark Helfrich||Head coach||2||6||B.S. – Southern Oregon (1996)|
|Scott Frost||Offensive Coordinator, Quarterbacks||2||6||B.A. – Nebraska (1997)|
|Don Pellum||Defensive Coordinator, Inside Linebackers||1||22||2x B.A. – Oregon (1985)
M.A. – Oregon (1986)
|Steve Greatwood||Running Game Coordinator, Offensive Line||28||28||B.A. – Oregon (1980)|
|Matt Lubick||Passing Game Coordinator, Wide Receivers||2||2||B.S. – Colorado State (1995)|
|John Neal||Passing Game Coordinator, Secondary||12||12||B.A. – BYU (1980)|
|Tom Osborne||Special Teams Coordinator, Tight Ends||14||14||B.A. – Washington State (1983)|
|Gary Campbell||Running Backs||32||32||B.A. – UCLA (1973)|
|Ron Aiken||Defensive Line||2||2||B.A. – North Carolina A&T (1977)
M.A. – The Citadel (1982)
|Erik Chinander||Outside Linebackers||1||1||2x B.A. – Iowa (2003)|
|Jim Radcliffe||Strength and Conditioning||30||30||B.S. – Pacific (Ore.) (1980)
M.S. – Oregon (1992)
Oregon has used six sites as home fields for its football team:
Autzen Stadium, the home of Oregon's football team since 1967, was named in honor of Thomas J. Autzen, a Portland businessman and, ironically, a graduate of rival Oregon State University. After his death, the Autzen Foundation, managed by son and Oregon alum Thomas E. Autzen, gave the university $250,000 towards construction of the facility, completed in 1967. The 59,000 seat stadium is known as a very intimidating and loud environment. Standing room around the rim of the stadium allows the capacity to swell to more than 60,000. On October 27, 2007 in a game against USC, the crowd of 59,277 was able to reach a noise level of 127.2 decibels, the 4th loudest ever recorded at a college football game.
Moshofsky Sports Center, named in honor of former University of Oregon football letterman (1940–42) and long-time university supporter Ed Moshofsky, was dedicated in August 1998, the first indoor practice and training facility in the Pacific-10 Conference. Located south of the Casanova Athletic Center, the Moshofsky Center accommodates the majority of the University’s intercollegiate athletic programs. The $14.6 million facility includes an enclosed full-length artificial surface football field and 120-meter four-lane synthetic surface running track and an automated system in place to lower a batting cage for use by the softball team, as well as protective netting that transforms the facility for use by the men’s and women’s golf teams. A combination of indirect lighting and two parallel skylight panels contribute to an energy efficient system which allows the flexibility to alter lighting conditions.
A new Football Operations Center adjacent to Autzen Stadium, the Hatfield-Dowlin Complex, was completed in 2013. Featured in the expansion, which wraps around the north and west sides of the Casanova Center, is a new 25,000-square-foot weight room, an enhanced grass football practice field as well as the addition of two new synthetic turf practice fields, and a full-service dining facility available to all University athletes, students and staff. The six story facility incorporates a centralized football headquarters upstairs incorporating nine dedicated football position meeting rooms, two team video theaters, offense and defense strategy rooms as well as a larger conference suite for the coaching staff. Additional amenities include a players' lounge, a recruiting center to host prospective student-athletes, dedicated areas to accommodate professional scouts, a media interview room as well as an advanced video editing and distribution center. A new outdoor courtyard and plaza to the west of the Casanova Center is designed in the center of the complex, uniting the expansion with the existing Cas Center and Moshofsky Center. The design and construction cost of the $68 million facility was donated by Nike founder and chairman Phil Knight.
The University of Oregon football team has been known in recent years for its unique uniform style, consisting of multiple color combinations of helmets, uniforms (both shirts and pants), socks, and shoes, resulting in a new uniform setup every week (not counting in-season changes to uniform designs). The changes have been often well-liked and praised by football recruits. New uniform schemes are coordinated by Oregon alumnus Tinker Hatfield, an executive at Nike. Nike has had the outfitting rights for the Ducks since 1995.
For several decades in the 20th century, Oregon's uniforms were traditional, generally featuring a yellow helmet (with the original interlocking "UO" emblem) and yellow pants, joined with a green home jersey with gold letters or white road jersey with green letters and "UCLA-style" shoulder loops. During the Jerry Frei era (1967–1971), the helmets were solid green with subtle logo variations. In 1972, new head coach Dick Enright returned the yellow helmet with Green Bay Packer-style green and white striping and no logos, a helmet style that continued until 1977, when new head coach Rich Brooks added the green block-style interlocking "UO" emblem. In 1985, the team added the Oregon Donald Duck logo to the jersey sleeves. Mike Bellotti made subtle changes in the livery, removing the striping from the helmet, jersey and pants, and adding a green variation of the pants.
The Oregon uniform underwent a radical change for the 1999 season, where new, Nike-designed gear featuring a redesigned "O" emblem with solid green helmets and jerseys with lightning yellow letters were revealed. This began a period of unusually non-uniform standards for a typical college football team. Since 1999, Oregon has completely revised its uniform appearance roughly every three seasons. The frequent uniform changes and their typically flashy uniform have provoked some controversy. Fans of a more traditional approach to college football tend to ridicule each new uniform as it is released, while younger fans and players—in particular, potential Oregon athletes—react more favorably to the flashy nature of the livery.
The football team used nine different football combinations in the 2005 season, but introduced even more combinations in the 2006 season. The new uniforms in 2006 provided 384 possible different combinations of jerseys, pants, helmets, socks, and shoes. A metallic-yellow colored helmet with silver flames, which debuted in the 2006 Las Vegas Bowl, increased the possible combinations to 512. These uniforms were more technologically advanced than other uniforms, 28% lighter when dry, 34% lighter when wet, and greater durability with reinforcing diamond plating patterns at the joints. The Ducks wore the previously announced white helmets for the first time on October 20, 2007 in Seattle, when they played the Washington Huskies. In 2008, during the Arizona-Oregon game, they wore new, all black uniforms nicknamed "lights out", but instead of the typical metal diamond plated shoulder pads, the new uniforms had a wing pattern.
The original "block UO" helmet emblem made a comeback, when it was worn along with a throwback jersey, against Cal in 2009. However, the neo-throwback green jersey with gold letters, with the modern logo instead of the "UO" on the yellow helmet, did appear in the 2009 Civil War.
For the Arizona game in 2008, Oregon unveiled a new uniform design based on the "lights out" design from the previous season featuring the "wings" pattern on the shoulder pads as well as a more simplified uniform design, while retaining the number font style of "Bellotti Bold" and the colors of green, black, white, yellow, grey, gold, and steel. This was the primary uniform design from 2009 through the 2011 regular season.
Another uniform revision was introduced at the 2012 Rose Bowl and carried forward into the 2012 season, with the "wings" moving from the shoulder pads to the helmets as chrome decals, and a broader "feather" detail with iridescent fabric highlights. Five different helmets are incorporated into the uniform kit.
On October 19, 2013, Oregon wore special Breast Cancer Awareness uniforms in a game against Washington State. In addition to new bold pink helmets, the Ducks wore pink Nike Vapor Talon Elite cleats, pink Nike Vapor Carbon Elite socks and pink Vapor Jet gloves in combination with their black Nike Pro Combat uniform system. The special edition uniforms were designed to raise awareness and funds for the Kay Yow Cancer Fund as the helmets were auctioned off.
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A statement made to his squad gave some indication regarding his feelings: "We are playing in a first-class league, before first-class crowds and against first-class competition, but under a second-class regime."
Predictably silly ... ridiculous ... this is all pretty stupid, but hey, 20-year-olds are stupid