Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea / USA Today
Oregon Football

Top Five Oregon Football Players vs USC

November 3, 2019

Oregon showed up and balled out against the Trojans in a dominating 54-26 win.

There were so many guys who could’ve made this list, but I had to settle on just five. That means not recognizing guys like Brady Breeze, Thomas Graham Jr. and Troy Dye, who all had fantastic games.

But without further ado, here's the five I settled on. 

Juwan Johnson

The graduate transfer had a monster game and showed why he was such a big missing piece for this Oregon offense. The Penn State transfer had 7 catches for 106 and completed the hat trick with 3 touchdowns.

In The Juice this week, Justin Hopkins talked about how Johnson was primed to explode, and he delivered in the biggest way possible. His 11-yard touchdown in the third quarter left me speechless; it made me think about the last time there was an Oregon receiver who could’ve made that play. It was a great ball by Herbert, and an even better snag by Johnson.

He’ll look to keep his hot streak going against Arizona in two weeks and show fans just why the coaches were so excited to bring him into the mix.

Justin Herbert

Herbert didn’t have the craziest of stat lines, but was highly efficient -- completing over 80 percent of his passes. He ended the night with 225 yards, 3 touchdowns and an interception.

It would’ve been a near perfect game for Justin had he not thrown the head-scratching interception in the first quarter (on which Redd and his quarterback clearly were not on the same page). But after that turnover, the senior looked like a man on a mission.

It was only Herbert's second interception on the season; he now sits at a 12:1 touchdown-to-interception rating. A side note: It was fantastic to see Herbert avoid pressure and keep the chains moving with his 14-yard run.

I know a lot of people want to see Herbert run more, so it was a good sign to see him use his feet.

Kayvon Thibodeaux

Thibodeaux had a fantastic all-around game. His numbers don’t exactly jump off the stat sheet, but he finished with 2 tackles and 1 sack.

The biggest thing was him just pinning his ears back and getting after the quarterback. All game, it felt like he was making Kedon Slovis move around and get out of his rhythm, putting the freshman in situations where he had to get rid of the ball quickly.

On the Brady Breeze house call, it was Thibodeaux that was able to get pressure on Slovis and force him into making the wrong throw. Thibodeaux just keeps on improving as the season has gone on, and he is developing into one of the better pass rushers in the Pac-12 as a true freshman.

Deommodore Lenoir

I was incredibly worried heading into this game that the Trojans' wideouts might get the better of the Ducks' secondary, but that was not the case. For the most part, the defensive backs held the much-heralded USC wide receivers in check, not allowing any player to get more than 75 yards receiving.

A big part of that was Lenoir and his ability to match up physically with any wide receiver. Lenoir is so great at using his hands and his solid frame to put a little pressure on wideouts and not allow them to run their routes very easily.

Lenoir had a few great plays where he was able to break up a pass or knock a receiver off of his route. Not to mention his spectacular one-handed interception across the middle.

Overall, it was just a great game for Lenoir start to finish, and it was a promising sign to see the secondary bounce back after getting burned more than a few times last week.

Mykael Wright

I mean, I simply couldn’t leave Wright off of this list after the massive 100-yard kick return to give the Ducks a two-touchdown lead heading into halftime. It was the play that felt like it swung the momentum back in the Ducks' favor and allowed Oregon to to really open up the game in the second half.

Aside from the kick return, Wright was great in coverage and did his part in slowing down the Trojans' offense. There were only a few plays when the receiver that Wright was covering was actually able to come down with a catch.

Wright has been electric as a true freshman. It appears he’ll be a true lockdown corner for years to come.

Verify your student status
See Subscription Benefits
Trial only available to users who have never subscribed or participated in a previous trial.