Lockerroom Report

Eugene -- The Oregon Ducks football team, one week removed from an embarrassing loss at the hands of LSU, took a step in the right direction Saturday afternoon, stomping on the Nevada Wolfpack 69-20.

The mood inside the locker room was positive and upbeat, but players and coaches alike realize that there's still plenty of room for improvement despite a 49-point victory.

Junior quarterback Darron Thomas mentioned that after several receivers dropped passes against LSU, the team focused heavily on hanging on to and controlling the ball all week during practice. Thomas ended up tying an Oregon record with six touchdown passes, five of them in the first half. He continued to emphasize his faith in his wide receivers, saying that he knows they'll get open, he just has to get them the ball.

Two of those touchdown passes ended up in the hands of much maligned freshman playmaker DeAnthony Thomas, who finally got to show the skills that the Ducks have expected out of him since his arrival. The younger Thomas said that working with junior running back LaMichael James has helped him get into a rhythm, even going as far as to call James a "big brother".

Redshirt freshman center Hroniss Grasu earned praise from junior left guard Carson York for his improvements and growth since earning the starting position in fall camp. Grasu himself said that he thinks he's improving as a leader and communicator on the line but will spend a lot of time in the film room in an effort to keep progressing.

Overall, a looser locker room atmosphere was on display on Saturday as the freshmen continue to grow and the upper classmen continue emphasize their faith in their younger counterparts. The Ducks will resume practice in preparation for Missouri State next Saturday at Autzen Stadium.

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