by Steve Mims
EUGENE, OREGON — Happy Thanksgiving! Here is a recap of Oregon Athletics that happened last weekend.
The status of Bo Nix was in doubt and debated across town all week as Oregon prepared to host Utah.
Even Oregon coach Dan Lanning admitted that he was not sure if his star quarterback would be ready to play on Saturday, noting a late kickoff might have been a factor in getting Nix on the field.
Nix got the start against Utah and was limited on the ground, but his only designed run of the game sealed 12th-ranked Oregon’s 20-17 win over No. 10 Utah at Autzen Stadium.
Nix, the senior making his final appearance at Autzen, was injured late in a loss to Washington during the previous week. He was limited in practice, but completed 25-of-37 passes with a touchdown against the Utes.
“Early in the week, I didn’t know that he would be able to go,” Lanning admitted. “He was aggressive, he continued to work at it. Our medical group did a phenomenal job of assessing where he was at. Late in the week, we became more and more aware that we felt like ‘Hey, this might be a possibility’, let’s just see where it goes. This is one of those times where Pac-12 after dark was a good thing. It gave us a little bit more time for rehab, all the way up until the game.”
Utah tied the game with two touchdowns in the third quarter, but Camden Lewis provided the winning margin with a 41-yard field goal in the fourth quarter.
Oregon stopped Utah on fourth down twice in the fourth quarter and Bennett Williams had an interception. Nix had a 2-yard run in the final two minutes to clinch the win for the Ducks.
Oregon improved to 9-2 and moved up to No. 10 in the Associated Press Top 25 as it prepares to visit Oregon State Saturday. With a win, the Ducks would finish 8-1 in the Pac-12 and advance to face USC in the championship game.
Oregon missed an opportunity for a marquee win when third-ranked Houston blew by the Ducks, 66-56, Sunday night at Matthew Knight Arena.
Oregon is 3-2 as it heads to Portland to face another ranked opponent in No. 20 UConn in the Phil Knight Invitational on Thursday. Oregon could also face No. 18 Alabama, No. 12 Michigan State or No. 1 North Carolina during the three-day tournament.
Oregon won a couple of dramatic matches at Matthew Knight Arena during the weekend to stretch its winning streak to 11 in a row.
The 12th-ranked Ducks defeated UCLA 25-18, 25-27, 16-25, 25-22, 15-10 on Friday night. Two days later, Oregon beat USC 21-25, 23-25, 25-20, 25-20, 15-12.
Brooke Nuneviller had 19 kills in each match while Mimi Colyer combined for 46 kills during the weekend.
Oregon is 21-5 and sits second in the Pac-12 at 15-3 as it prepares to visit California on Wednesday.
The Oregon women’s team placed 14th in the NCAA Championships while the UO men finished 16th in Stillwater, Oklahoma.
Steve Mims has spent 25 years as a sportswriter, including 21 years at The Register-Guard. He covered University of Oregon athletics from 2013-2020. He works in Eugene as a registered representative and insurance agent at PBC Insurance. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.