Oregon Fall Camp: Day 16

Though the sixteenth and final day of final camp was closed to the media, there was still plenty of interest in who the top performers were during Thursday's scrimmage. Oregon head coach Chip Kelly didn't give too many details as it appears him and his staff won't have an easy decision to make when it come to deciding on a starter at quarterback.

1. Though the final day -- and subsequently, the final scrimmage -- of Oregon's fall camp was closed to the media, there was plenty of intrigue post-practice when Oregon head coach Chip Kelly made himself available to the media. Obviously, the topic on everyone's mind was the competition between Nate Costa and Darron Thomas, however Kelly was tight-lipped giving any details, stating that both players looked "outstanding." Stats provided after the scrimmage show that today's competition between Costa and Thomas was somewhat of a microcosm of the competition that has taken place at that position throughout the fall. Costa finished the day 17-of-35 for 138 yards, including one touchdown and one interception, appearing confident when asked if he felt he did everything possible to win the starting job.

"I think so," said Costa, "I think if I didn't, I'd probably regret it. I came out here with that mentality and gave it all that I have...we'll see what happens, but I look forward to facing New Mexico."

By simply looking at the stats, one could certainly make a case that Thomas had the better day as he finished 14-of-23 for 125 yards and three touchdowns, throwing nary an interception. When asked to make a case for himself for the starting job, Thomas said he accepts the challenge of leading this team.

"I just want to be that guy starting," admitted Thomas with a smile, "I did all my work in fall camp...I did some good things, I did some bad things, but I think it's gonna be alright."

Now that both Costa and Thomas have each made their respective cases on the field, the attention now turns to Kelly and his staff who will have about a day and a half to review film and consult with one another on which player is best fit to lead. Kelly admitted that the decision will likely take him and his staff some time to figure out.

"It's going to take most of the afternoon," said Kelly, "We have a meeting tonight at 7:30, so hopefully they've got five hours to see if they can bang the tape out...the next 48 hours we'll be around (the Cas Center) for awhile."

When asked if him and his staff will have a decision by 7:30, Kelly said, "No, not at all. There's no reason to."

2. Outside of the quarterback position, today's final scrimmage also gave other players one last time to make a lasting impression on the coaching staff. After practice, Kelly mentioned a handful of players that made positive contributions Thursday afternoon.

"(Running back) Dontae Williams had his best scrimmage since he's been here," said Kelly, "Daryle Hawkins really showed up today (too). That was real evident. Without having to make an evaluation, those two guys -- both Daryle and Dontae -- really played pretty well. I think we've answered some questions as far as depth things (go)."

Williams finished the day with six carries for 48 yards and two touchowns, while Hawkins made most of his noise catching passes, nabbing nine receptions for 60 yards to go along with his five carries for 13 yards.

Notes: True freshman quarterback Bryan Bennett also had a very good day making the most of the reps he received during the scrimmage. Bennett ended the day 6-for-10 passing for 60 yards, two touchdowns, and an interception. Bennett also ran nine times for 41 yards and a touchdown, engineering three touchdowns in his first three drives with the third stringers. Kelly appeared very pleased with Bennett's effort after practice. "He's gonna be a really, really good quarterback here," said Kelly, "We hit Bryan (today) and we didn't hit Nate or Darron...for the first time being hit, he was the hitter, not the hit-tee a couple of times, which was interesting...but I think he's got a bright, bright future here."

Stats from Thursday's final scrimmage here

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