Oregon football stories. Oregon @ Arizona 2009

the 11th game of my ducks 2009 season was on the road at Arizona on the saturday before thanksgiving

#11 Oregon @ Arizona


the only people i talked about the UA game with was Maddi, Sophie, Robyn and the guys in marine bio class

i didn’t talk about the game with anybody else because for once in my life, i was super nervous and scared for a game

i was scared because Arizona is where our national championship dreams got crushed in 2007, it’s where Dennis Dixon went down and our 2007 season went with him

talking about the UA game brought back memories of 2007 and whenever i think about that game, my eyes tear up even to this day

i was DEAD QUIET at school this week

people asked me why i wasn’t talking at all about oregon, i said “we’re playing at Arizona”  those that watch college football knew what i was talking about and would simply say “oh i see” and i’d just be like “yea”

the place where Dixon and the 2007 season ended, and now we’re back with another dream ready to be crushed in Tuscon

the dream: The Rose Bowl

if we lose to ‘Zona, no Rose Bowl

if we win, we play Oregon State for the right to go to the Rose Bowl

the whole week, i’m honestly just terrified cause we’re playing at ‘Zona and they get to kill our dreams again

just, oh god it’s too painful i was thinking, at the time i was like “i’d rather us not play at Arizona”

my stress level is through the roof all week, i can’t do homework

all i can do is play Robyn’s game ‘Miami Shark’ and let it take my mind off of the game

so i played ‘Miami Shark’ all week at home instead of doing homework

there’s nothing i can do to make the pain of 2007 go away


on saturday of the game, alex, my dad and i went up north to bellingham to visit Alex and I’s friend Anna-Lee (she’s my best friend)

alex and Anna-Lee went to a movie, i would’ve gone except i had my game to watch.  they were gonna meet up later with me at Pauline’s house and watch the end of the game with me

my dad drove me up to my Aunt Pauline’s house in Birch Bay to watch the game

Pauline wasn’t home she was i think with Anna-Lee and alex at the movie, not sure??

we got to the house around 430pm

i ran upstairs and turned on the TV

my dad watched the game downstairs because he remembers 2007 so he knows this is no normal game, so he knows to let me watch the game alone

the teams come out before kickoff and oregon is wearing the same fucking uniform combo they wore in 2007 at Arizona.  when i noticed that, i knew the team was playing for Dennis Dixon, trying to erase demons by fighting fire with fire

the Nissan Pregame Shift ends and my heart beat is through the roof at an unhealthy level, my body is shaking/trembling

right before kickoff i said to myself “well i guess we have to play this game, so Ducks, go out and win this for Dennis Dixon”



opening kickoff, UA kicks off and oregon gets the ball first, just like we did in 2007

on 2nd and 10 from our own 40 yard line, LMJ breaks free for a big gain and gets down near the UA 34 yard line

i went crazier during this game than i have any other game, including the 2011 national title game, so i can’t describe how crazy i went but i’ll try my best to describe myself

on that run, i was jumping and yelling “go go go!”

then on 3rd and 9 from the UA 31, Masoli completes a pass to Ed Dickson, his preffered target, for a first down and i’m yelling “that’s what i’m talking about baby!”

very next play on 1st and 10, Masoli does a play action pass and completes it to Jeff Maehl inside the 5 yard line and i’m just jumping going crazy all alone upstairs!

i was all alone upstairs, but if you saw me that night, you would’ve thought i was at the game

2nd and goal from the UA 14, masoli does a zone-read play, instead of reading the defensive end he reads the defensive tackle

he crashes so Masoli keeps it himself running right, but all the linebackers for UA went right to cut him off, so Masoli cuts back against the grain going left and runs for the endzone “go! come on masoli!”

at the goal line, Masoli lowers his head and bulldozes into the endzone!!!


down in the red desert, oregon strikes first!! 7-0 Ducks!!!!

when Masoli scored, the entire house shook because i was running around upstairs yelling at the top of my lungs “WE SCORED! WE SCORED! WE’RE WINNING! MASOLI SCORED! THIS IS FOR YOU DIXON!!”

then UA has the ball and even though i’m in a house, i’m yelling like i’m at the game, my heart is pounding

oregon puts pressure on UA quarterback Nick Foles and he’s sacked!!!

UA is forced to punt!

with the ball again, oregon runs a zone-read play where the playside lineman (lineman on the side which the running back is going) pull to the left to be lead blockers for the qb if he keeps it

in this case, Masoli keeps it and busts his way for a big gain to near our 40!

“great run masoli! keep doing that baby, keep busting through their defense!”

our offense stalls and pisses away a chance to get up by 10 or 14

we punt and they have the ball back

with the ball, Foles hands off to their RB (running back) and he breaks free for a big gain all the way down near our 20

as he’s running i’m yelling “tackle him assholes! get him! get that bitch down!”

from near our 20, it’s 3rd and 10, i yell “stop them here and force a field goal”

Foles throws to a guy near the sideline and he runs for a first down

“oh my god play defense you assholes!”

then Foles throws a screen pass and their guy catches it and turns for the endzone

“get him down!”

right before he reaches the endzone, an oregon guy hits him and the ball pops loose! FUMBLE!!!

right as an UA guy is reaching down to get it on the goal line, an oregon guy kicks it with his heel and the ball goes through the legs of the UA guy and into the endzone…  everyone dives on the ball!

if Arizona has it, its a touchdown for UA, if we have it then its a touchback and our ball

who’s got the ball?!

the refs look through the pile and point in oregon’s direction!

oregon has it!!!! oregon ball!!!!!!!! no points for ‘Zona!!!

what a play by our defense!!!

“great play defense, that’s what i’m talking about!!”

i’m running around upstairs yelling “we got the ball! we got the fucking ball!”  (i swear a lot during games)


first play back on offense, Masoli tries running to the right but there’s no room to run.  as he’s holding off the UA defender trying to stay on his feet, the ball comes loose..

UA has it, no, they kicked it! Jeff Maehl dives on it! whew, we still got the ball! “thank goodness!”

very next play, Masoli does a play action pass and completes a deep pass to Lavasier Tuinei for a first down in UA territory!!

“that was awesome! keep moving offense don’t stall!”

next play, Masoli hands off to LMJ going left, there’s no holes for him to run through so he stops in the backfield, like actually he stopped, like he stood totally still for a flash of a second to wait for a hole to open up

the offensive line then opens up a hole and in the blink of an eye, LMJ goes from 0 to 60 and darts through the hole for another first down!

“that a boy lamichael! great patience baby!”

then Masoli does another play action pass and completes it to Andre Crenshaw on the sideline for another first down! 1st and goal Ducks!

“punch it in baby!”

2nd and goal, Masoli rolls right and again he fumbles it! luckily, David Paulson falls on it so we still have the ball

“come on masoli!”

3rd and goal, masoli does a play action play, spins off a defender and rolls right.. headed toward the sideline he spots Jeff Maehl, throws it, caught! Maehl turns and dives into the endzone!!!


14-0 DUCKS!!!!!!!!!!

i’m running around upstairs going totally wild!!!!

i rip my shirt off yelling “we scored! we’re fucking up 14-0! the MAEHLMAN delivers to an area near you!!!!”

my dad is downstairs and he’s like “wow, i knew adam is crazy about the ducks, but i didn’t know he was this crazy”

with the ball back, UA’s Nick Foles gets sacked again by oregon!!

Arizona goes 3 and out and is forced to punt again!

we’re up 14-0 in the place that kills our dreams with the ball back, i’m breathing a little easier now

1st and 10 for oregon, Masoli rolls right and instead of throwing it away like he should have, he tries to squeeze it in to Jeff Maehl but it gets tipped by Arizona and intercepted!

“god damn it masoli, throw the fucking ball away!”

“alright defense, hold them to a field goal and we’ll run out the clock to go into halftime up 14-3”

that’s not how it goes though

on 2nd and 10, Foles completes a pass down near our 20 yard line

1st and 10, Foles flares a pass out to the right and the guy sprints to inside the 5 yard line

2nd and goal, Foles throws a jump ball to the corner of the endzone and UA comes down with it


“fuck! let’s go into halftime up 14-7 guys”

but everything would go wrong and oregon’s will would be put to the test this night in Tuscon, Arizona

oregon’s offense goes 3 and out and UA gets the ball back with 50 seconds left in the half

Foles completes a pass to the oregon 40

20 seconds left Foles completes a pass to the oregon 30

as time expires in the 1st half, Arizona makes a field goal to make the score 14-10


i’m glad we’re winning at halftime, but UA gets the ball to start the 2nd half and they have all the momentum so my heart is pounding

during halftime, i went to the computer upstairs and started playing Miami Shark to try and keep my heart beat at a healthy level for 20 minutes


the whole 2nd half i was screaming some bloody shit i can’t describe so i won’t quote myself anymore..

2nd half starts and Arizona just marches right down the field

1st and 10 from our 31, UA running back (RB) explodes for a 1st down to our 14

3rd and 1 from our 7, Foles hands off to RB and to quote ESPN play by play anouncer Brent Musberger “they knew something, TOUCHDOWN ARIZONA”

down 17-14 in Arizona, now we’re in some deep trouble

oregon has the ball and Masoli completes a pass to Jeff Maehl for a first down, but that’d be our only offense for what felt like an eternity

we punt the ball again and its ‘Zona ball again

2nd and 10 near their own 45, Foles completes a 1st down pass to near our 40 yard line

2nd and 6 near our 40, Foles completes a short pass and their guy runs and gets down near our 20 yard line

‘Zona gets stopped by us though and settles for a field goal


i’m going crazy upstairs!!! i’m yelling “this is our chance, turn the tide of the game! we can tie or take the lead, take back the game here!”

but nope, UA stuffs our offense and we’re forced to punt again

(after going up 14-0 early in the 2nd quarter, our offense only picks up one first down all the way up until early in the 4th quarter.. in actual time, we only picked up one first down in a period of nearly 2 hours)

with the ball back, on 3rd and 4, Foles completes a pass to the UA 45 but the reciever runs all the way to the oregon 32 before being down

then on 3rd and 10 from our 32, UA runs for the first down


start of the 4th quarter on 3rd and goal, Foles throws a pass to the goal line and to quote Brent Musberger’s classic voice “TOUCHDOWN ARIZONA”

it’s 24-14 Arizona early in the 4th quarter

i’m totally silent because i’ve seen this before, dreams crushed in Tuscon, Arizona

i simply screamed “oregon, this is the last time i’m yelling! if you wanna go to the god damn fucking Rose Bowl, you start scoring right now! this is your season! if not for the Rose Bowl, make this comeback for Dennis Dixon!!! this is it oregon!”

moments later, alex and Anna-Lee arrive after seeing their movie, they both come upstairs to watch the game

alex comes upstairs to watch the game, Anna-Lee came just to hang out with me 🙂

on this night, that meant she’d see a crazy side of me nobody else has ever seen

right then and there, the moment Anna-Lee came upstairs to watch with me, oregon wakes up and as you’ll read, this game turns into the best game i’ve ever seen

2nd and 10, Masoli completes a pass to Jeff Maehl for a 1st down

next play, Masoli completes another pass to Ed Dickson for another 1st down

3rd and 3, Masoli keeps a zone-read option, it looks like he’s stuffed for a loss, but he bounces off an offensive lineman and busts his way for a 1st down! you can’t teach that, that was Masoli making a play because he refuses to lose!

at the Arizona 33, Masoli fakes the handoff to LMJ, rolls left and lobs a deep pass to Jeff Maehl inside the 5 yard line and Maehl goes up in the air and comes down with it!!!

1st and goal Ducks!

3rd and goal, Masoli does a zone read and the defensive tackle crashes so Masoli keeps it and walks into the endzone!!!

TOUCHDOWN DUCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! MASOLI WITH THE SCORE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

24-21 ARIZONA! i’m going crazy but i know we’re still down by 3

UA gets the ball back

on 3rd and 12, oregon sacks Nick Foles!!!

4th down and they have to punt finally!!

the tide of the game is changing, we can tie or go ahead here!

1st and 10 for the Ducks at the Arizona 45

hand off to LMJ and he breaks free for a 1st down!!

our offense stalls but we’re in field goal range thankfully!

4th down, snaps it, Morgan Flint kicks it

it’s a low line drive kick so i’m holding my breath

does it have the distance?

to quote Brent Musberger on the kick  “hits the crossbar and goes across, we are deadlocked!”

when i saw the ball hit the crossbar and go across i was like


when it hit the crossbar, i hesitated and then threw my arms up in the air when it bounced across!!!



we’ve got all the momentum!!

but it wouldn’t last long..

after kicking the ball off, Arizona has the ball at their own 29 yard line

Foles throws a screen pass to Juron Criner and he catches it, turns up field and runs through 4 oregon defenders and is in open space with 2 oregon guys chasing trying to get him

i’m yelling “get him! someone get that bitch! get that bitch down god damn it!”

but nope

Criner goes the distance, TOUCHDOWN ARIZONA!

just like that we’re down 31-24 with 7 minutes left in the game

i yell “alright oregon, now we have to score again!”

oregon ball at our own 45, 4th and 4 with 6:30 left in the game

oregon goes for it because we have to, but we don’t get it

“fuck! what’s your fucking problem oregon?!”

Arizona ball in our territory

3rd and 16 from our 40 with 3:20 left in the game, we have to stop them from picking up enough yards to be in field goal range because a field goal puts them up by 10 and that seals the deal

but UA goes deep and throws for the endzone to go for the TD! both an oregon guy and UA guy go up for the ball and it’s tipped and incomplete..

no wait! it was intercepted by Oregon!!! we had another guy running with their recievers and he dove to catch the tipped ball! INTERCEPTION!!

our ball at our own 20 with 3 minutes left..  we have to score on this drive or else our dream season ends

i said “if we score, this will be forever known as the greatest drive in the history of Oregon football.  Ducks, do this for Dennis Dixon! this is what makes legends baby!”

then i also said “Oregon, you have to score here because Anna-Lee is watching and she can’t see my team lose”


1st and 10, Masoli fires a pass to Jeff Maehl but its short of a first down and its inbounds so the clock is ticking

“gotta move gotta move” i’m yelling

2nd and 1, Masoli with a zone-read keeper for 2 yards, but he gets the first down and gets out of bounds to stop the clock as they reset the chains

1st and 10, Masoli looks to throw but finds nobody so he takes off running.  picks up 5 yards before stepping out of bounds to stop the clock at 2:28

2nd and 6, Masoli hands off to LMJ, an Arizona guy grabs his jersey short of a first down but LMJ uses all his strength and keeps moving his feet forward, he struggles but gets the first down!  2:02 left in the game

1st and 10, Masoli looks to throw but sees nobody and is pressured so he can’t run, so he throws the ball away out of bounds.  1:53 left

2nd and 10, Masoli throws to Jamere Holland and he gets the first down before stepping out of bounds at the Arizona 45, stops the clock with 1:49 left

1st and 10, Masoli completes a pass to Jeff Maehl but only for 4 yards and he was inbounds so the clock is moving

“gotta go gotta go oregon!” i’m yelling

2nd and 6, false start on oregon so now its 2nd and 11  “damn it oregon, hurry up!”

2nd and 11, Masoli throws to D.J Davis but he drops it, but it stops the clock at 1:06

3rd and 11 at the Arizona 46 yard line with 1:06 left in the game.. boy it doesn’t get more fun than this! gotta love college football!

Chip Kelly gets gutsy and calls a run play

LMJ knifes it up though and runs for a 1st down! LMJ gets down to the Arizona 27 yard line!  59 seconds left

52 seconds left an Arizona guy has equipment issues so the clock stops momentarily

1st and 10, Masoli throws but its incomplete, 38 seconds left

2nd and 10, Masoli completes a 5 yard pass to Jeff Maehl but he’s inbounds so the clock is ticking, so oregon has to burn and does burn one of its two remaining time outs.  31 seconds left

during the time out, Arizona students start jumping the wall and lining the sidelines preparing to rush the field if they win

they’re ready to rush the field just like they did when they beat us in 2007

we gotta score to make them look stupid and silly for jumping the gun

3rd and 5, Masoli has nobody to throw to so he throws it away, live to fight another down

23 seconds left

4th and 5, it all comes down to this play, my heart can’t take this!

UA calls a time out so i’m just sweating bullets from being so nervous!

4th and 5, Masoli rolls out to the right and fires a pass to Jeff Maehl, got the first down!  Brent Musberger “Maehl, the reliable one”

18 ticks on the clock left!

oregon hurries up and lines up again because the clock will start moving once the ref puts the ball down because Maehl was inbounds

ref puts the ball down, center snaps it and Masoli throws to D.J Davis and he steps out of bounds to stop the clock with 11 seconds left

11 seconds left, enough time for 2, maybe 3 shots at the endzone

2nd and 3 from the Arizona 8 yard line down by 7 with 11 seconds to go in the game

you can’t find drama like this anywhere else, not even in the halls of high school

hell not even hollywood could write a script this good!

ball is snapped, Masoli lobs it to the endzone and its



TOUCHDOWN ED DICKSON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


we’re still down 31-30 though, still gotta make the crucial extra point

on the extra point, its a bad snap, the ball rolls on the ground but the greatest holder in the history of football (high school+college+NFL) Nate Costa grabs it, puts it down and Morgan Flint kicks it and its good!!!!!!


to quote Brent Musberger “bad snap, put down, and flint saves it.  nate costa was the holder that time with a good pair of hands”

Brent Musberger is always quotable, he’s got such a big game classic voice

Nate Costa would be named the Pac 10 player of the week that week just for that hold, that’s how crucial that extra point was!

oregon kicks off and makes sure Arizona gets no return on it

instead of throwing a hail mary, Nick Foles just kneels the ball to end regulation

we’re going to overtime!!!!!!!!!

that’s when i said “this game is epic, this’ll be on ESPN’s instant classics”

right as Foles kneeled the ball, Musberger dropped his most epic line ever

“and so we will go to overtime, the battle for the Rose Bowl continues in Tuscon”


in overtime, both teams get the ball at the 25 yard line.  also both teams get the ball, unlike the No Fun League (NFL) where the first team to score wins.  also in college, there are no ties after the 1st overtime like the NFL, in college you just keep playing more overtimes until somebody wins, its more fun that way in my opinion!  there have been 7 overtime games before (games that went to 7 overtimes), awesome stuff!  college football > NFL

back to the game!

oregon got the ball first, and on 2nd and 10, LMJ bursts free all the way down to inside the 5 yard line

1st and goal Ducks!

3rd and goal, Masoli fakes to LMJ and rolls left, fires to the back of the endzone for Jeff Maehl and to quote Musberger again

“coming up with a fine grab is Jeff Maehl”


THE MAEHLMAN DELIVERS IN TUSCON AT ALL HOURS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

38-31 DUCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

now Arizona gets the ball from the 25, and if they don’t score a TD, we win!!

on 3rd and 4, Arizona runs for the 1st down and stays alive

on 2nd and 7 from inside the 10, ‘Zona fumbles it!!

oregon players are saying they have it!!!!  if so the game is over and oregon wins!

ref determines that Arizona has the ball though so this is epic game goes on deep into the night

2nd and goal, Nick Foles fires into the endzone aand..

TOUCHDOWN ARIZONA! extra point is good

38-38 after the 1st overtime, we go to the 2nd overtime!! this game is so epic!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

the teams switch with who goes first after each overtime so Arizona gets the ball to start the 2nd overtime


Arizona has the ball

on 3rd and 10 from the 25, Foles throws a screen pass, the same exact play that got them the 31-24 lead in the 4th quarter, but oregon knew it was coming and stops it!

4th down, Arizona kicks the field goal and makes it 41-38 Arizona

field goal to tie, TD to win, but a turnover and we lose

1st and 10 from the 25, Masoli does a play action pass and completes it to Ed Dickson inside the 5 yard line!!

3rd and goal from the 1 yard line, Masoli keeps it on the zone-read and plunges into the endzone!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

MASOLI WITH THE SCORE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

OREGON WINS IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

WE’VE WON WE’VE WON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Brent Musberger with the call “Masoli.. oregon wins it, the Ducks will face oregon state in eugene for the right to go to the Rose Bowl”

the moment Masoli crossed the goal line, i exploded!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

the house shook like crazy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

there were people a mile away that could probably hear me!

it’s really hard to describe just how crazy i went, but you could ask my best friend Anna-Lee Hynes, she watched the game with me so she could tell you just how crazy i went the moment Masoli crossed the goal line!

after a minute i yelled at the top of my lungs “THAT WAS FOR YOU DENNIS DIXON!!!!!!!!! THAT WIN WAS FOR YOU!!!!”

i just, god i just went totally crazy, like you have no fuckin idea how crazy i went!!


after 10 minutes or so, my mom calls to talk about the game and i was just yelling into the phone

“we beat Arizona!!!!!!!!! we got that win for Dixon!!!!!! Civil War for the Roses and i’m gonna be there!!!!!!! beat the Beavers and we’re going to the Rose Bowl!!!!!!!!! Holy Shit mom this is the most epic ride of my life!!!!!!! that was the most epic game ever!!!!!!!!!!  Masoli is a legend!!!!!!!!!”

i didn’t calm down for atleast a half hour!

that was the most epic game i’ve ever watched, even to this day!

that game was drama at its best!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tsEGSzN_xgM  highlights of the most epic game of all time!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ysX4eoY-fhw “The Drive”

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