This Oregon tip drill was part of their first-half success.

After a disappointing 2016 season ended with a 4-8 record and the firing of head coach Mark Helfrich, there were plenty of questions about how Oregon would do in 2017 under new head coach Willie Taggart. The Ducks got off to a good start with a 77-21 Week 1 win over Southern Utah, but Week 2’s game against Nebraska looked to be a tougher test. Through the first half, though, Oregon was rolling, taking a 42-14 lead into the break. And they did so thanks to a couple of remarkable tip drill plays and a touchdown scored on a dive over the pile.

Here’s the first tip drill, which happened on the Cornhuskers’ first drive of the game (they were already down 7-0 thanks to a quick Oregon touchdown). Quarterback Tanner Lee’s pass for receiver Stanley Morgan Jr. bounced off Morgan’s helmet, and was tipped by one Ducks’ defender (possibly linebacker Justin Hollins?) to safety Tyree Robinson for an interception:

The second Oregon tip drill came on offense in the second quarter, with the Ducks up 21-14 but facing a third and long. Quarterback Justin Herbert threw a pass for tight end Jacob Breeland, which went off his hands and was caught by wide receiver Johnny Johnson III.

And later on that drive, running back Royce Freeman went airborne for his second touchdown of the game:

These highlights were just part of what fueled Oregon’s remarkable first half, and they even got ESPN’s Kirk Herbstreit to admit he may have underrated the Ducks:

The team account took that in stride:

Some of this may be about Nebraska’s own struggles, but Oregon is certainly looking impressive. If they can keep that up in the second half, they’ll definitely get some national notice.


About Andrew Bucholtz

Andrew Bucholtz is a staff writer for Awful Announcing.