Kedon Slovis throws 3 interceptions as Oregon beats No. 13 USC for Pac-12 title

Nick Bromberg
·3-min read

USC’s comeback magic ran out against Oregon.

Kedon Slovis threw his third interception of the game with 2:47 to go as the No. 13 Trojans (5-1) fell 31-24 to Oregon (4-2) in the Pac-12 title game.

The interception came as Slovis was scrambling to his right and appeared to simply need to throw the ball away. But instead of firing the ball deep into the USC bench he threw it along the sideline. That allowed safety Jamal Hill to make a play on the ball and secure the interception with his right foot still on the ground.

The interception was Hill’s second of the game.

Oregon’s attempt to run out the clock after the pick almost ended in disaster, however. Anthony Brown — in at QB to run the ball — dropped a second-down snap and recovered it just before USC players did with 1:19 to go. Had USC recovered, the Trojans would have gotten the ball in Oregon territory with plenty of time to score a touchdown.

Instead, the Trojans got the ball back with 23 seconds left and no timeouts at their own 20. And USC couldn’t get near the end zone because of that lack of time.

Oregon tight end Hunter Kampmoyer (48) celebrates a touchdown with wide receiver Devon Williams (2) during the first quarter of an NCAA college football game for the Pac-12 Conference championship against Southern California, Friday, Dec 18, 2020, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)
Oregon has won consecutive Pac-12 titles. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

Oregon goes back-to-back in the Pac-12

Oregon ended USC’s undefeated season and won its second straight Pac-12 title in the process. Utah entered the 2019 title game favored over Oregon and needing a win to make the College Football Playoff. Instead, the Ducks won 37-15 and erased any hope of a Pac-12 team making the playoff.

Oregon was an underdog again on Friday night, though USC was only favored by a field goal. And the chances of the Trojans making the playoff were slim to none. USC was outside the top 10 because it had won three of its first five games thanks to late comebacks.

That comeback magic felt due to run out sooner rather than later. And sure enough, it expired Friday night.

Oregon will likely go to the Fiesta Bowl as the Pac-12 champion since the Rose Bowl is set to host a College Football Playoff game. We’ll find out what bowl USC is going to on Sunday.

Sophomore defensive end Kayvon Thibodeaux was named the game’s MVP. He wreaked havoc all night along Oregon’s defensive front.

Slovis throws 3 picks against Oregon again

USC found itself in a hole early on. Slovis threw his first two interceptions on USC’s first and third drives of the game. Those two interceptions directly led to Oregon touchdowns as the Ducks jumped out to a 14-0 lead in the first quarter.

While Slovis struggled, McCoy also had a brutal drop as USC attempted to tie the game. McCoy had a deep pass from Slovis go right through his hands with 3:41 to go; four plays before Hill’s game-sealing interception. Had McCoy caught the ball, USC would have been inside the Oregon 10.

Friday night was the second three-interception game of Slovis’ career. The first came in 2019 against Oregon when he threw three picks in a 57-32 loss to the Ducks.

Slovis finished the game 28-of-52 passing for 320 yards and two touchdowns as USC also struggled to run the ball. Stephen Carr and Markese Stepp had 25 carries for 65 yards.

Oregon had just 243 total yards of offense but that’s because the Ducks benefitted from short fields in the first half. QB Tyler Shough was 8-of-15 for 91 yards and two touchdowns and an interception while Brown — a transfer from Boston College — threw two touchdowns on three completions.

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