EUGENE, Ore. (AP) — Justin Herbert threw for 489 yards and four touchdowns and Oregon snapped a five-game losing streak with a 54-35 victory on Saturday over Arizona State.
Pharaoh Brown caught seven passes for a career-best 129 yards and two touchdowns as the Ducks (3-5, 1-4 Pac-12) finally got a conference win and appeared to snap out of their prolonged funk.
Herbert, a true freshman who was making his third career start after taking over the job from graduate transfer Dakota Prukop, has scored 12 touchdowns over that span. Herbert’s passing yards against the Sun Devils matched Bill Musgrave’s record of 489 set against BYU in 1989.
Herbert tossed a short pass to Brown, who took off down the sidelines and stiff-armed the last defender for a 75-yard touchdown on the Ducks’ first series of the game. It was ninth touchdown pass: Last weekend he tied the school record with six TD passes in a 49-52 overtime loss at California.
The Sun Devils (5-4, 2-4) also started a freshman at quarterback. Dillon Sterling-Cole was pressed into service in last weekend’s 37-32 loss to Washington State after Manny Wilkins was injured.
Sterling-Cole passed for 302 yards and his first career touchdown. Kalen Ballage ran for 62 yards and two scores, including a 15-yard run that got the Sun Devils within 30-22 in the third quarter.
Arizona State: Walk-on Tyler McClure, who is not on scholarship, made his second career start at center for the Sun Devils. Starting center AJ McCollum dressed but did not play against the Ducks. Arizona State has been depleted by injuries. In addition to Wilkins, top running back Demario Richard (532 yards, 3 TDs) was out, as was cornerback Kareem Orr and safety Armand Perry. Left guard Stephon McCray was injured on Arizona State’s first series of the game.
Oregon: It was the Ducks’ 10th straight victory over the Sun Devils. … Oregon avoided a six-game losing streak with the win. The Ducks have not lost that many straight games since 1991. They need to win three of their final four games for bowl eligibility.
The Sun Devils are off next week before hosting Utah on Nov. 10. The Utes fell 31-24 at home to No. 4 Washington on Saturday.
The Ducks visit USC next week. The Trojans are coming off a 45-24 win at home against California on Thursday night.