Nineteen carries for 89 yards was about what Oregon hoped to see from Bryce Love.
“Our plan was to make Stanford one-dimensional,” defensive end Drayton Carlberg said. “Limit Love and that would help us a lot toward victory.”
K.J. Costello foiled that plan by throwing for 327 yards and three touchdowns as seventh-ranked Stanford defeated No. 20 Oregon 38-31 in overtime Saturday night at Autzen Stadium.
“We made them one-dimensional as far as the run game, but there are two dimensions as part of the defense,” Carlberg added. “As a whole, we didn’t get it done.”
Oregon held Stanford to 21 points though the first 56 minutes of regulation before giving up 17 the rest of the way.
“I think the defense played well up until the time when it mattered,” Oregon defensive tackle Jordon Scott said.
The defense made its most important play early in the fourth quarter when Stanford faced fourth-and-one at the Oregon 30-yard line while trailing 24-21. The Cardinal could have attempted a field goal to tie the game, but instead Cameron Scarlett was stuffed by Carlberg and Nick Pickett for no gain.
“I think fourth-and-one is the mentality I talk about,” Scott said. “All week that is what the defense worked on. Not just stopping Bryce Love, but situations like fourth-and-one or fourth-and inches when you need a big-time play. We got that, but it was not enough to win, so it really doesn’t matter.”
Love ran 19 times for 147 yards and two scores in last year’s 49-7 win over Oregon, but was held to an average of 4.7 yards in the rematch. His only breakaway resulted in a 22-yard score while his other 18 carries averaged less than four yards.
“Our guys played hard and did a great job against the run,” UO coach Mario Cristobal said.
For the third week in a row, Oregon’s opponent was led in receptions by a tight end as 6-foot-5 Kaden Smith had six catches for 95 yards. Six-foot-four tight end Colby Parkinson had three catches for 50 yards, including the game-winning 23-yard catch in overtime.
JJ Arcega-Whiteside, a 6-3 wide receiver, had only one catch in the first half for a 13-yard touchdown. He caught a 15-yard touchdown pass to get the Cardinal within 31-28 with 3:10 left to play and then caught a 16-yard pass to get Stanford in position for a game-tying field goal at the end of regulation.
“I know they made some plays in the passing game, obviously that is part of it,” Cristobal said. “Those were big matchup issues. Big guys with a lot of length and range and they got us with some big plays. We have to continue to find ways to alleviate that. We played a lot of man coverage, part of that is stopping the run, and they got us on a few plays.”